My dad makes fun of our family members when we do something goofy over and over again. He tells us that we are driving our car into a wall, putting the car in reverse, throwing it into drive and then hitting the wall again. And he repeats it to you over and over again in a sing song fashion. He’s crazy but mostly amusing.
Basically, I’m throwing it in reverse and driving into the wall every time that I buy bananas. I have good intentions of slicing them to eat in a bowl of cereal or oatmeal or as a topping for a sandwich, but most weeks they sit in the fruit bowl and turn brown. Frustrated, I throw them into the freezer peel and all.
Banana bread happens at least once a month in our house because as I search around for something to make for dinner, I notice the mummified black bananas sitting in my freezer door (the freezer turns them to dark bricks shaped like bananas). I feel guilty over the piles of bananas that I continue to buy and freeze so I throw three of them into a bowl to thaw and turn them into banana bread. For this recipe you can also use unfrozen, overly ripened bananas that are sitting on your counter or fruit bowl and have never been in the freezer.
This is my favorite recipe for banana bread to use up frozen bananas and it tastes so good that of course the banana buying cycle will continue.
Note – frozen bananas give off a lot of juice and are super soft so make sure that you thaw them in a bowl. There’s no need to drain them and they will look strange but they’re perfectly fine and actually have a stronger, sweeter banana flavor which is why I only use 1/2 a cup of sugar.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish with cooking spray.
In a medium mixing bowl smash the bananas, and then stir in the butter, vanilla extract, egg, and sugar.
In a separate bowl thoroughly mix all of the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, salt. If you like cinnamon you can add it as well. I don’t use it.
Add the dry ingredients to the banana mixture and stir until combined without over mixing.
Pour the banana bread batter into the baking dish and place in the oven on the middle rack. Bake for about 20 minutes and then turn the bread 1/2 way and bake for 15 to 20 minutes longer.
Test the center with a toothpick or metal fork. It should come out clean with no wet batter and the top should be browned.
If baking in a bread pan you will need to bake the banana bread loaf for 50 minutes to one hour. If baking in muffin tins bake the muffins for 20-25 minutes. All ovens bake differently so check your bread 5 minutes before the recommended time so as not to over bake your bread.
I love a warm fresh slice of banana bread with butter.
This bread will last on the counter top for 2-3 days covered or it can be stored in the refrigerator for 4-5 days. Warm a slice for 15 to 20 seconds in the microwave.