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Simple rich low-calorie banana bread cake

Simple rich low-calorie banana bread pound cake – a rich, ultra-dense, exceptionally moist, and irresistibly fragrant Greek-flavored banana bread. This tasty cake has all the hallmarks of the fragrant Mediterranean spices – cinnamon, allspice, cardamom – all mixed in with fragrant vanilla, a hint of sweetness from the bananas, and a rich luxe pound cake textured thanks to the vegetable oil. This dairy-free cake is out of this world good. 

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This easy moist banana bread is so easy to make. We’ve swapped out butter for vegetable oil so there’s no melting butter and waiting for it to cool down enough to start baking. But the banana bread is still just as moist, dense, rich, and deliciously buttery as regular banana bread. For a fully vegan Greek spiced banana bread just swap the egg yolks for flax eggs. Once baked it tastes just like regular banana bread…only better because of the delicious Mediterranean spices and decadent sponge cake texture. Yum.

For a completely classic banana bread, you can leave out the Mediterranean spices…it makes for a cozy, rich, and delicious dairy-free banana bread just like mom used to make it. This simple 5 ingredient dairy-free banana bread recipe is easy and so versatile. Add more spices if you want, leave them out if you feel like making traditional banana bread, or add chocolate chips or nuts to jazz it up. There are so many options and they’re all so tasty.

Why you’re going to adore this easy banana bread recipe 

  • Easy banana bread recipe. Just mash the bananas, mix in the rest of the ingredients, and bake. That’s it.
  • The delicious mild banana flavor 
  • Just the right amount of sweetness – no extra sugar added. It’s all the natural sweetness from the bananas 
  • Dense, moist but still soft and fluffy cake texture 
  • Buttery even though it’s made without butter 
  • Will stay moist and delicious for days
  • Freezer-friendly banana cake 
  • Amazing as is but also great with extras like nuts or chocolate chips 

In this easy dairy-free banana bread recipe 

Equipment needed to make banana bread 

Ingredients and substitutions for making banana bread – with dairy-free, gluten-free, and vegan options 

Tips and tricks for making banana bread 

How to make banana bread 

How to freeze bananas 

Add-ins and ways to jazz up banana bread 

FAQs 

Equipment needed to make the best simple dairy-free banana bread 

This easy one-bowl banana bread requires no fancy equipment. It’s so simple to make that even a novice cake baker can make this moist spongy cake with delicious success.

A mixing bowl – you need a large mixing bowl to mix all the ingredients in.

Baking tin – A 23cm spring form pan or an 8- x 4-inch loaf pan, which produces a tall loaf. The recipe will also work in an 8 1/2- x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan, producing a slightly shorter bread – or a silicone baking pan. I like to use a bundt pan. Grease the pan well to allow for easy removal once the cake has cooled and settled.

An oven – I use a fan-forced oven to bake this cake. If you’re us a regular oven simply increase the temperature by 10 degrees or so. 

Ingredients and substitutions for making Mediterranean spiced banana pound cake

Bananas – we’re using very ripe bananas for this tasty banana bread because ripe bananas contain more natural sweetness and it’s the only source of sugar in this tasty cake.

Eggs – for this easy dairy-free banana bread recipe you will need 4 egg yolks (or 2 flax eggs for the vegan version). Eggs supply cakes, cupcakes, muffins, and cookies with their stability and structure, as well as a soft fluffy texture. To make this banana bread vegan, just replace the 4 egg yolks with 2 flax eggs.

Vegetable oil – a good quality neutral tasting vegetable oil is what you need to make the best buttery banana cake without any butter. I like to use coconut oil, but any neutral vegetable oil like avocado oil or sunflower oil will also work just as well. Tip: If you’re using coconut oil, you’ll need to heat it up unless you live in a warm climate so that it’s a liquid when you add it to the batter. Coconut oil can be a bit tricky to heat in the microwave because steam builds up and makes the oil pop. I recommend melting coconut oil in a small saucepan over low heat on the stovetop while stirring.

Flour – regular all-purpose flour makes the fluffy bread base for this tasty banana bread loaf. But I know some of you are wondering if you can make this banana bread gluten-free. Yes, you can make this vegan and gluten-free. Swap out the all-purpose flour for equal amounts of a gluten-free flour blend.

Almond flour – almond flour helps lock in the moisture and make the banana bread extra rich, soft, and moist. If you’re allergic to nuts you can replace the almond flour with coconut flour or regular flour.

The extras that make all the difference

Spices – ground cardamom, cinnamon, allspice, and vanilla powder gives this tasty banana bread a fragrant Mediterranean flavor that’s irresistibly good. 

Chocolate – I use a dark 56% vegan chocolate to glaze my almond cake because I love dark chocolate and the way it brings out the sweetness and nutty flavors of the cake. You can use your favorite chocolate to glaze your cake. 

The best bananas for making banana bread 

The best bananas for making banana bread and banana cake are always very ripe bananas that are past their prime. I usually only make banana bread with bananas where the peel has gone brown and the bananas are very soft and easy to mash. 

Of course, it often happens that I’m not quite ready to bake banana bread when the bananas are ripe and ready for baking. But that’s okay because bananas are great for freezing. 

How to freeze ripe bananas for later 

Peel the bananas and cut them into smaller chunks. Place them on a sheet tray.

Pop that sheet tray in the freezer and keep the bananas frozen until ready to use. Once the bananas freeze on the sheet tray, you can transfer them to a freezer-safe container or zip-lock bag.

When you’re ready to bake banana bread, let the bananas thaw in the fridge or at room temperature and you’re ready to mash and bake.

Expert cake-baking tips and alterations 

How to mash bananas – You can mash the very ripe bananas very simply by breaking the ripe bananas into chunks and mashing them with a fork. Or you can use an electric mixer to mash your bananas in a few easy steps; Break or slice the very ripe bananas into large chunks and place them in the bowl of your stand mixer—or use a regular mixing bowl and your hand mixer. Start beating on low, then gradually increase to medium-high speed as the bananas are mashed. 

Testing to see when the cake is done – every oven bakes a little differently and that’s why it’s always a good idea to test the cake for doneness. When this cake is baked throughout it will still be moist and spongy on the inside. Test by sticking a skewer into the cake. If the skewer comes out with only a few crumbs sticking to it the cake is done. If there’s still a little moist cake batter sticking to the skewer, the cake needs to be baked a little longer. Bake for 5 more minutes and test with a skewer again. Keep baking and testing until the skewer comes out with only a few crumbs sticking to it. (Note: wipe the skewer clean each time before testing.)

For banana nut bread – add 3/4 cup of chopped nuts to the banana bread batter; I like using either pecans or walnuts.

Lemon zest – Add lemon zest to the cake for a hint of freshness and a light fruity flavor.

Super moist cake – for a super moist cake, top with orange juice and maple syrup reduced sauce to make the cake extra moist and decadent.

Berries – Add fresh or frozen berries by gently folding the berries in the cake batter right before pouring the cake into the cake pan.

Icing sugar – Top with a dusting of icing sugar.

Crunch – Sprinkle almond flakes on top to give the cake extra crunch.

How to make the best moist banana bread in minutes

Grease a cake baking pan and dust the cake pan with almond flour.

Mash the bananas in a bowl. Mix in the egg yolks, sugar, allspice, ground cardamom, vanilla powder, ground cinnamon, lime juice, and vegetable oil. 

Once mixed, fold in the flour and almond flour before mixing in the baking soda by gently folding it into the batter. 

Pour the cake batter into the greased baking tin. 

Bake for 35 minutes at 400F (190 degrees Celsius) minutes or until the cake is done (you can test if the cake is done by inserting a skewer into the cake. If the skewer comes out with only a few cake crumbs sticking to it the cake is done).

Once the cake is finished baking, remove it from the oven and set it on the counter to cool. After 20-30 minutes of cooling, gently use a knife to loosen the cake from the sides of the tin before removing the cake. Carefully remove the cake from the baking tin and set it on a plate to cool completely. 

When the cake is nearly cooled down, melt the chocolate (melt the chocolate over a water bath or in a microwave) and drizzle it on top of the cake. 

Serve the cake with a side of fresh berries and a dollop of ice cream and enjoy.

What can I serve with banana almond cake?

Berries – a mix of fresh fruit and berries is my favorite way to serve the cake. The berries add freshness and a pop of color and work to bring out the delicious nutty flavor of the cake.

Whipped cream – Serve with a dollop of whipped coconut cream or whipped soy cream. It’s fresh, creamy, and decadent.

Ice cream – serve with tasty vegan ice cream (try my s’mores ice cream or homemade vegan cookie dough ice cream)

Berry coulis – fresh creamy berry coulis is a wonderful fresh side with banana bread cake.

FAQs – all your dairy-free banana bread questions answered 

Can I Use Frozen Bananas to make banana bread?

Yes, and I do this often. Whenever I have very ripe bananas and I know I can’t use them in time I cut them into slices and freeze them for later. To use frozen bananas just thaw them at room temperature. Drain off any excess liquid, mash, then use as instructed in the recipe below.

How to store leftover cake

Store this easy moist low-calorie cake in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Is almond banana cake freezer friendly?

Yes. You can easily freeze this rich banana cake for up to 4 months. Just allow the cake to cool after baking, then store it in a freezer-safe container and freeze for 3-4 months. Defrost the banana almond cake in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

Can I make banana bread vegan?

Yes. Just substitute the egg yolks with flax eggs. Make the flax eggs by mixing 6 tablespoons hot water with 2 tablespoons ground flax seeds and set the mixture aside to thicken for 10-15 minutes. Alternatively, you can use another vegan egg substitute (take a look at my vegan baking with eggs substitutes here)

How to make banana bread gluten-free?

You can easily make this banana bread vegan and gluten-free. Just swap out the all-purpose flour for equal amounts of a gluten-free flour blend.

Can I make the cake without the chocolate topping?

Absolutely. You can easily serve the banana almond cake without the traditional chocolate glaze. Serve it as is or with one of my other topping suggestions such as a dusting of icing sugar.

Are you looking for more easy tasty vegan desserts? You might like some of these reader faves:

DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?

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Simple rich low-calorie banana pound cake

A rich, ultra-dense, exceptionally moist, and irresistibly fragrant Greek-flavored banana bread. This tasty cake has all the hallmarks of the fragrant Mediterranean spices – cinnamon, allspice, cardamom – all mixed in with fragrant vanilla, a hint of sweetness from the bananas, and a rich luxe pound cake textured thanks to the vegetable oil. This dairy-free cake is out of this world good. 
Course Cake, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword Bread, cake
Prep Time 12 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Servings 1 cake – 6-8 people
Author Simone – Munchyesta.com

Equipment

  • A 23cm spring form pan or an 8- x 4-inch loaf pan, which produces a tall loaf. The recipe will also work in an 8 1/2- x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan, producing a slightly shorter bread I like to use a bundt pan

Ingredients

  • 4 Ripe Bananas
  • 0.34 cups (75g) Vegetable Oil
  • 4 Egg Yolks or 2 flax eggs
  • 0.8 cups (100g) All Purpose Flour
  • 0.83 cups (80g) Almond Flour
  • 3 tbsp Flaxseeds
  • ½ Lime – Juice from
  • ½ tsp Allspice
  • ½ tsp Cardamom Powder
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Powder or vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon Powder
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder

Glaze

  • cup (200g Melted Chocolate

Instructions

  • Grease a cake baking pan and dust the cake pan with almond flour.
  • Mash the bananas in a bowl. Mix in the egg yolks, sugar, allspice, ground cardamom, vanilla powder, ground cinnamon, lime juice, and vegetable oil. 
  • Once mixed, fold in the flour and almond flour before mixing in the baking soda by gently folding it into the batter. 
    Pour the cake batter into the greased baking tin. 
  • Bake for 35 minutes at 400F (190 degrees Celsius) minutes or until the cake is done (you can test if the cake is done by inserting a skewer into the cake. If the skewer comes out with only a few cake crumbs sticking to it the cake is done).
  • Once the cake is finished baking, remove it from the oven and set it on the counter to cool. After 20-30 minutes of cooling, gently use a knife to loosen the cake from the sides of the tin before removing the cake. Carefully remove the cake from the baking tin and set it on a plate to cool completely. 
  • When the cake is nearly cooled down, melt the chocolate (melt the chocolate over a water bath or in a microwave) and drizzle it on top of the cake. 
    Serve the cake with a side of fresh berries and a dollop of ice cream and enjoy.

Notes

Form- A 23cm spring form pan or an 8- x 4-inch loaf pan, which produces a tall loaf. The recipe will also work in an 8 1/2- x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan, producing a slightly shorter bread – or a silicone baking pan. I like to use a bundt pan. Grease the pan well to allow for easy removal once the cake has cooled and settled.

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