The Ultimate Banana Bread by MarkĀ Bittman

February 28, 2011
3 Ratings
  • Makes 1 loaf
Author Notes

Mark Bittman's banana bread, which he has deemed "the ultimate." Who's gonna argue with that? —freshandfoodie

What You'll Need
  • 8 tablespoons (one stick) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1.5 cups AP flour
  • .5 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1.5 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 very ripe bananas, peeled and mashed with a fork
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • .5 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9?x5? loaf pan.
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients. With an electric mixer, cream the butter with the sugar, then slowly beat in the eggs, bananas and vanilla.
  3. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and beat just until combined, being sure to scrape down the edges of the bowl a few times. Gently fold in the chocolate chips.
  4. Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 45 to 60 minutes, until nicely browned. A toothpick inserted into the center of the bread will come out fairly clean when it is done, but because of the bananas this bread will remain moister than most. Cool on a rack for 15 minutes before removing from the pan.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Laura Griffiith
    Laura Griffiith
  • JadeTree
  • Tbird
  • CM

6 Reviews

CM April 14, 2015
I added 2 tbsp of bourbon and changed the half cup of whole wheat flour to bread flour, and this turned out fantastic! I love how airy and subtle this is.
Laura G. April 11, 2014
chocolate chips w/ banana cake rocks !!
these would make good cup cakes w/ the right frosting.
JadeTree April 3, 2014
I'm not sure this is the "ultimate" banana bread (that implies fireworks and brass bands!) but it is good. It's a very sturdy loaf with good nutty flavor from the whole wheat flour, but it's not too dense. It's not cake-like at all, but the chocolate chips keep it from being stern and too virtuous. This is a great workhorse recipe that makes great snacks for a whole week - you take and bite and think, "yes, good banana bread," but it really satisfies as you savor the subtle flavors without the distraction of spices, and it isn't too sweet. A good recipe for families like us who are constantly cranking out bread with their leperous bananas!
Tbird June 21, 2013
My wife asked why I was making banana bread at 9:00 on a Friday night. I replied: "the bananas are going bad. What else should I do?" It's in the oven now. Can I wait till breakfast to try it?
jzirinsky July 18, 2012
I think the directions should say cream the butter and sugar first, then mix the dry ingredients. I threw the sugar in with the flours, but that could also be blamed on the fact I didn't read the recipe first. Otherwise, LOVED IT!
lgm001 August 27, 2011
Banana and chocolate work so well together... This is a must try...