One of our family favorites is
I have been making the same banana bread recipe for almost 40 years. My favorite recipe is the Kona Inn Banana
Bread on page 551 of Marion Cunningham’s Fanny Farmer Baking Book I purchased when it was first published in
It is a no-fail recipe, although it does need about 10 minutes longer to bake from my experience. One reason for the
longer baking time could be that I use previously frozen ripe bananas. The defrosted bananas yield a lot of juice
When ever I have over ripe dark bananas
I throw them in the freezer without peeling them. When I’m ready to use them, I place the amount needed
(six bananas for this recipe) to thaw in a large (4 cup) PyrexⓇ measuring cup.
Once thawed, the banana is ready to easily scoop or squeeze out of the peel and use. This results in a very
sweet, syrupy juice along with the bananas.
The recipe calls for eggs, and vegetable shortening, (I use CriscoⓇ). The end result is a rich, golden loaf that is
irresistible. Just leave it on the counter and it will disappear slice by slice. It’s quite a versatile recipe- calling for
walnuts, but pecans can be used, and my family loves when I add in chocolate chips.
Make it Vegan!
Because, some my family members observe lent by fasting
I have adapted the recipe so it can be made vegan. We enjoy the vegan version of the recipe so much that I make it
even when it’s not Lent. To make it vegan, I substitute chia seedeggs for eggs, which add a nice popping crunch, are
full of additional fiber, and lower in fat and cholesterol.
Occasionally I use vegetable oil to replace CriscoⓇ but oil IS oil, right? The oil makes it a bit lighter.
Following are both recipes- the original from The Fanny Farmer Baking Book, followed by my vegan variation.
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tsp baking soda
1 cup vegetable shortening
2 cups sugar
2 cups mashed ripe bananas- approx. 6 medium bananas
4 eggs (slightly beaten)
1 cup chopped walnuts
Variations and substitutions
Replace vegetable shortening with the same amount of vegetable oil.
Chia Seed Eggs
Replace 4 eggs with 4 Tablespoons chia seeds mixed with 12 Tablespoons of water
Mix the chia seeds and water well to hydrate the seeds. The mixture will thicken into a gel-like substance.
Chocolate chips -Mix in Nestlé mini chocolate chips (Trader Joe’s has a great vegan chocolate chip product). Add
as much as you like!
Fanny Farmer Instructions
Preheat oven to 350°F
Grease and flour (I use cooking spray)2 loaf pans
Stir and toss together flour salt and baking soda
In a large bowl mix the shortening, sugar, mashed bananas, eggs and walnuts.
Add the dry ingredients and stir until the batter is thoroughly blended.
Pour into the prepared pans and bake for about 65-70 minutes until a skewer comes out clean.
Combine dry ingredients. Mix in walnuts and chocolate chips. Set aside. In a stand mixer, add mashed bananas,
CriscoⓇ or vegetable oil, sugar, and slightly beaten eggs or chia eggs. Mix on low until ingredients are blended. Add
dry ingredients. Mix on low blending all ingredients together.
Pour into loaf pans. Bake for about 75-80 (checking at 65 minutes until a skewer comes out clean. If the loaves
seem to be browned while the inside is still uncooked, lay a piece of foil loosely on top and bake until done.
Set loaf pans on racks to cool. Once cooled, they can be removed and wrapped in plastic wrap and foil to be served
at a later date.
The original recipe calls for one loaf pan- but I’ve always used two, even when using larger than standard ones. I
also use mini vintage PyrexⓇ pans for individual loafs.