Friday, December 19, 2014

Prize-Winning Banana Bread

Gifts From the Kitchen: First Place Banana Bread

Need a gift for a neighbor... ??  
Something to take as a hostess gift?? 

...Or perhaps you are the proud 
owner of a bunch of very over-ripe bananas...
..Or maybe you just need an award winning, 
easy and delicious recipe for banana bread??

Whatever the reason, 
you have come to the right place!

This prize-winning banana bread is sure to do the trick.  
As a gift,

wrap it up sweetly and include the recipe...
because they will want to make it again and again. 

When gifting this bread,
 I like to pair it with a bag of my favorite coffee...

It's a sweet treat...that's for sure.
This banana bread recipe has won more 
than her fair share of first place ribbons...

....5 time first place winner!  

Our neighbor said, 
"I do believe that was the best banana bread I've ever eaten!"
 I think he may be right.
  The very most important thing 
about banana bread in general, 
is of course...

The star of the show...
the main event...

THE banana.

The bananas must be ripe, over-ripe is better,
... and almost black is usually the very best. 
 The ones I used in the photo were acceptable, 
but if you are looking for an over-the-top 
BANANA flavor, let them be very over-ripe.

Three tips to GREAT banana bread:
     1.  Do not over mix.  
    The wet batter will certainly be lumpy, mashed bananas are lumpy by their very nature. Once the flour is incorporated....stop mixing.  When you do mix, be gentle...the crumb of your bread will be tender instead of tough.
      2.  Use the best ingredients.  
      By this, I mean use very fresh eggs and produce whenever possible (still use over ripe bananas in this case), it will reap the best final product.  The same is true for flour and baking soda, make sure it's fresh. 
        3.  Make sure the oven is level and pre-heated to the correct temperature.


        I love that a banana bread is simple to make. 
        The reward far outweighs the effort that goes into making it.

        There is something so sweet about a well-made, 
        well presented homemade treat.  

        This is a family favorite and most definitely good enough to give as a gift....
        ...and also good enough to make on a Sunday morning and keep it all for yourself... 


        The winning banana bread recipe is just below, along with a printable version...

        For even more prize-winning recipes...

        Because these other recipes are too good not to share...

        Please visit:

        First Place Apple Pie

        a Best of Show and 4 time first-place winner!!



        Or try the carrot cake... a BIG, big winner and a favorite of mine.
        (2015 update) This cake won a blue ribbon at the 2015 Ohio State Fair.

        Prize-Winning Carrot Cake


        Here is the recipe for the first place banana bread as promised.

        For a printable copy of the recipe: click here


        Happy Baking!!

        ~Karri

        63 comments:

        1. tried this recipe It was really easy to put together smells delicious, took about 65 minutes in the oven. Moist and tasty it is a keeper

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          1. Thanks so much for letting me know you liked it!! That's wonderful. You bring up a really good point about baking times... all ovens are different and depending on elevation and the oven temperature... baking times can vary slightly. Thankful you knew to let it bake a few extra minutes. So happy you enjoyed it... :) Karri

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          2. ILAN BECHOR-AVIV,ISRAELOctober 22, 2016 at 4:45 AM

            I made a lighter version which came out Great.I used 1/2 a cup of sugar + 12 sachets(9.6 grams in total) of sucralose based sweetener.I replaced 8 tablespoons of butter with 1/3 a cup ol cannola oil.I had to use 10% dairy cream instead of the sour cream.I used baking powder(not baking soda...maybe it's the same).I cut the amount of walnuts in half.Baked at 340 degrees F = 165 degrees Celsius for 55 minutes.It smelled great,moist,firm,high,looking wonderful and very very tasty.No need to look for other recipes.Period!!! Thanks for this great recipe.

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        2. The house smelled so good when the bread was cooking! I made 3 mini loaves the was so delicious. Next time I will share lol. Thank you for this recipe!!!!!

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          1. Cheri!! Thank you!! So happy to read your comment. Bread baking is one of the best aromas EVER!! Thanks for taking the time to let me know that you enjoyed it. Best, Karri

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        3. If I make this today...will it be as good tomorrow morning?

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          1. Hi! If you make it today, let it cool completely. Wrap the room temperature loaf in plastic wrap or store in an air tight container and your bread should be just as delicious tomorrow!

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          1. Yay!! So happy you liked it!! Thanks for letting me know. :) Karri

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        5. Hey, can I sub the sour cream with plain yogurt or Greek yogurt?

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          1. HI Gabriela, yes, I think those substitutions you suggested would work fine. Happy Baking!

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          2. I have a BB recipe that calls for buttermilk, which I substitute milk with dash of lemon juice until curdles. Comes out delish!!

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        6. Some asked if this freezes well... I can honestly say we always gobble it right up.... But I think it would freeze beautifully, if wrapped well to prevent it from drying out. Best of luck!

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        7. Hi Karri, Baking the bread as we speak. Can't wait. Quick question...3 bananas didn't make 1 and 3/4 cups for me...do you just leave it at 3 regardless or measure out? Thanks!

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          1. HI! Such a great question... Bananas, since they vary in size...I gave an amount/volume to aim for. Using about 1 3/4 cup mashed banana helps add enough moisture and banana flavor to create a great quick bread. That being said, if the bananas were very overripe and you were able to get 1 1/2 cups ...that should work out. I wouldn't use too much less than that... I hope your bread turns out well! I appreciate your question...Happy Baking!

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        8. Karri, this bread was SO delicious - thank you for sharing the recipe!! We made in a regular loaf pan, how long do you suggest we bake if we use mini loaf pans? This will definitely be a gift for friends this year!

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          1. Hi Jackie!! Thank you! I'm happy to hear you enjoyed it. I feel like when I made the smaller loaves I may have baked them for about 35-40 minutes... but every little loaf pan will be different....based on size and how full you fill it... Just be sure that the bread is nicely browned and a tooth pick comes out clean from the center... and then be sure to make a note of the time for your small loaf pans... ( like I should have done ;) ) Thanks for writing!!

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          2. Karri, I have made this bread twice now, where I am at they make a holiday loaf and my father in law will take this bread anytime over that. It is the bomb and very delicious. Making this for my girlfriends in and brother in Florida for Christmas, thanks for sharing this!!!

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          3. That's awesome!! So happy you are enjoying the bread... Thanks for writing!!

            :) Karri

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        9. Hi Karri..

          This is my 1st time trying your recipe.. ITS A KEEPER!!! Love it.. it came out perfect.
          Ive tried so many banana recipe's and didnt like them as much as this one.

          thank you so much for sharing :-)




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          1. Thank You Giselle! Yay!! So happy to read that you liked it!! Thanks for writing!! :) Karri

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        10. Since I live in Salt Lake City, a higher altitude, would I make any changes as to the amount of flour, baking time, etc.?

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        11. Since I live in Salt Lake City, a higher altitude, would I make any changes as to the amount of flour, baking time, etc.?

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          1. HI Ann! I think you would make adjustments... I am adding a link to King Arthur Flour...they are a great baking resource and have an article dedicated to the changes needed in high altitudes. Best of luck! http://www.kingarthurflour.com/learn/high-altitude-baking.html

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        12. Omg I just made this. ..it is AMAZING!! I have never made banana bread before and do not bake very well. ..I'm in practice mode. I can't believe how good it is. I split the mix into two small store bought foil pans. I have eaten half of one already. I think my mom bakes better than most people and I hate to say it but mine with this recipe is even better than hers. Can you tell I'm excited lol

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          1. Since it said adjust time in oven for smaller dishes, I put it in for 45 min. Seemed to be a perfect time. I started checking it with a knife in the center at about 42 min.

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          2. So Awesome!! I'm so very happy to read that the bread turned out delicious for you!! Good call on checking the bread at 42 minutes... any dried out baked good is due to baking the moisture right out of it--leaving it in the oven too long. Way to go!! Happy Baking!!!

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        13. This bread looks delicious! Do you think a gluten free flour or gluten free flour blend can be substituted for the all-purpose flour in the recipe?

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        14. This bread looks delicious! Do you think a gluten free flour or gluten free flour blend can be substituted for the all-purpose flour in the recipe?

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          1. I have not made a gluten free version of this recipe. I do know that working with gf floors can be tricky and often times require a few extra ingredients to off-set the change in the recipe. My suggestion would be to search out a good gf banana bread recipe, and maybe merge whatever they use for flour with the ingredients from this recipe... Just a thought. Best of luck!!

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          2. DELICIOUS!!! Its hard not to bake when WalMart is selling Banana's for 10Cent a pound. I have made this recipe 3 times. It was so good I had to give them away to my neighbors so I wouldn't eat them all, and Monday I whipped up some for my friends in New Jersey dealing with the cold storm. And again this morning. LOVE IT!! I do 8 mini loaves with this recipe with the oven set at 340 for 43 to 45 minutes (the baby mini loaves burn to quickly at 350). Prefect for a one portion and share with 7 other people :) Keep Sharing Karri. Thank you!!

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          3. Thanks so much for taking the time to write!! I'm so happy you are enjoying it. Good call on baking those mini loaves at a lower temperature!! Happy Baking!!

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        15. My apologies for pinning your bread to a board on my Pinterest account. I received an email from Pinterest that it has been deleted from my board. Thank you.

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          1. Oh Nica, no apology is necessary...you are so sweet! The pin removal was a mistake from Pinterest, I'm working hard to resolve the issue...and the pin IS available on Pinterest, I added it last night. A big thank you for writing...I appreciate your note.

            Karri

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        16. What if I don't have sous cream on-hand? Is there something else I can substitute or could I leave it out?

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          1. HI Hilary,
            Maybe a plain or vanilla yogurt. The sour cream is an important ingredient...in that it keeps the bread moist, add tang... Another choice...it's going to sound crazy...but, mayonnaise can also be a substitute. A lot of moist, strongly flavored cakes have a little in them... I would not try mayo in a vanilla or light flavored cake...but a chocolate or banana flavor -- a stronger flavor...it should be ok. Best of luck!!

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        17. I was looking for the best banana bread recipe online and I think I found it! I made this tonight, and let me say, this is by far the best recipe ever! The bread is super moist and delicious. I used chocolate chip instead of pecans and it was so addicting. I also substitute the butter with oil instead because I didn't have any and it turned out good still. Thanks for sharing the recipe, this will forever be the recipe I use! :)

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          1. Awesome!! Thank you for taking the time to write and let me know!! I LOVE hearing that the recipe was a good one for you and how much you enjoyed it. I think the chocolate chips sound like a delicious substitution for the nuts...great idea!! Thanks again. Best, Karri

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        18. This is my first recipe review ever. I've made no less than 27 different banana breads. This is the one!! I've now made it 5times just to be sure. Lovely recipe, delicious bread!!!

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          1. Hi Pamela!! So happy you found a recipe you LOVE!! Thanks so much for taking the time to write a review...I'm so glad you did!
            Happy Baking!

            Best,

            Karri

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        19. I just turned your banana bread out of the pan to cool and it is picture perfect. I always read through posts before trying the recipe because there are often tips to consider. My mom told me long ago that the weather can have an affect on any bread made with yeast, baking soda or baking powder. The barometric pressure and the humidity definitely make a difference. I lost my mom 6 years ago & really miss her gems of random information.

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          1. Hi Lisa, Thanks so much for letting me know the banana bread was a hit!! I hope it tasted good too!! You're right, so many tiny details can play a role in how our baked goods turn out!! -And yes, there is nothing quite like motherly advice... I often think of the sweet wisdom shared by my grandmother. :) Happy baking to you!!!

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        20. Hi Karri - do you know if (and how) this recipe can be converted for a bread machine? We love the recipe when backed as you list it, just sometimes want something yummy and easy. Thank you!

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          1. Hi Jackie!! I wish I knew...but I don't have a bread machine... Since this is a quick bread and doesn't require any kneading, I'm not sure how it would do in a bread machine. I guess I'm old fashioned... Just my wooden sooo and my oven!! Best of luck and happy baking! Do let me know if you try and tell us how it turns out. :) Karri

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          2. Hi Karri!! Well, we tried the recipe in the bread machine and I was worried like you about the over mixing aspect. It was much more dense but still extremely yummy. I must admit that I prefer it the old fashioned way! If my husband didn't need everything made from scratch because of a sodium sensitivity, I probably would always take the time to make it properly. But this a great way to get it done without using the oven. I appreciate your sharing these amazingly delicious recipes with us - thank you!!

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        21. Just made this and it will be my only Banana Bread recipe from now on! Love it!

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          1. Yay!! Colleen, thanks for writing to let me know!!! Great recipes are such a treasure!! Happy baking!!

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        22. Do you think that I could make these into muffins instead of a loaf? How would you adjust the baking time to avoid a dry cake? Thanks!

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          1. Hi Juliana! Yes, you can make this bread as a muffin and you will need to adjust the baking time--it can be tricky, you want them done, but still moist...I'm sure you can do it!! I might use paper cupcake/muffin liners, because the banana bread muffins might stick-- the banana and sugar makes for a deliciously sticky batter. If not, be sure to generously grease/spray muffin tins. Fill tins 3/4 full for even baking time. You'll have to let us know how it turns out!! Best of luck!! Happy baking!!!

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        23. Wow! This really is the best banana bread ever! I did 1/2 cup dark chocolate chunks and 1/2 toasted walnuts and it was amazing! My kids couldn't get enough and with 5 of them this banana bread didn't even last the afternoon. Will make this again and again.

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          1. How wonderful!! Your add-ins sound delicious!! Thanks so much for writing to let me know!!! :)

            Karri

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        25. so good! I subbed some vanilla greek yogurt or plain yogurt for the sour cream & did half the sugar & it still came out tasting AMAZING! Thanks Karri!
          -Wendy Saenz

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        26. Making this again today. Last time I made it, the bread was gone in a day! Great recipe!

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        27. Deliciousness!! I didn't have sour cream on hand so I had to sub plain Greek yogurt but yummy yum yum I'm sitting here trying not to eat a whole loaf myself!

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        28. Absolutely DELICIOUS and sooooo easy. I've been baking banana nut cakes/loaves for ages, this was terrific. I didn't have sour cream on hand so I too used the Greek yogurt and added as many toasted walnuts as I wanted and it was a big hit in the family. THANK YOU Karri.

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          1. Hi Renie! How wonderful!! Happy to hear it's a hit at your house.
            Best,
            Karri

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        29. Délicieux ce banana bread ! Merci.

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          1. Merci pour l'écriture ! Je suis si heureux vous avez aimé le pain de banane. ~Happy Baking!! ~Karri

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        30. I have tried your recipe two times with small modifications. First I have added less sugar and instead of sour cream 1/2 cup of Kefir. The first time I have added pecan nuts and raisins. Second time almonds and cranberries. Everything was amazing. The smell from the oven, the taste, everything. Thank you for the recipe

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        31. Add 1 tsp. banana extract to intensify banana flavor! Wonderful!

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