When we first went mostly grain free, I did a flurry of baking with only so-so results. Since then I have learned a few tricks for working with grain free flours with great results. Now my baking tastes a lot better! This banana bread is exactly like your grandma’s but better because it’s made with healthy ingredients and not too sweet. It is moist, fragrant with cinnamon and vanilla, and has a perfect tender crumb. As pictured, it is fabulous for muffins as well as a loaf.
It was a long road for me personally to get my cravings under control. I don’t think there is only one right way but I would love to share my experience and tips for the benefit of others. I am currently working on a series of posts about blood sugar control and the different theories for consuming carbohydrates for optimum health and weight loss. For now here’s what I’ll say: If you are at the very beginning of your journey, foods that are hard to stop eating are probably ones you should lay to one side for awhile. It is possible to break the craving cycles and you will feel so good when you do. If you don’t shut down the blood-sugar roller coaster it will be very hard to succeed.
No Sweet, Low Sweet and Which Sweet
If you want to try having occasional treats or(lucky you) you aren’t worried about weight loss, there are some things you want to consider. Your diet does not need to be sugar-free to be healthy(as in, no fruit sugars or totally keto), but the amount and type of sugar matters. Individuals with a healthy metabolism and therefore more insulin sensitivity can more easily eat and process sweeter things but we in the THM world believe the right carbs are vital for everyone. If you are working to heal your metabolism, the general rule is the less added sugar the better. THM advocates a sugar free but not carb free diet and I fully believe in that. I’m really sorry if I am the first one to tell you this, but even if you make “healthy” paleo versions you can’t subsist solely on muffins.
In general paleo cooking favors honey, maple syrup and coconut sugar, along with a few other naturally derived sugars. I follow the THM plan and use a totally sugar-free approach so I use stevia and erythritol with great results. Just note that you’ll omit the extra 2 tablespoons of coconut flour if you’re not using honey so that the batter will still be the right consistency. I came from the paleo world into THM so there are influences of both in my cooking but I’ve been eating 100% “on plan” the THM way for years.
Other than that, just note the unique absorbent quality of coconut flour. Each brand and even how you store it can vary widely in moisture content. I have followed recipes to the letter before to have them turn out super dry. Experience tells. I would suggest reserving the last few tablespoons in any recipe and adding it gradually to achieve the desired consistency.
Paleo Banana Bread THM XO (gluten free, low carb)
A paleo-friendly banana bread that is moist, fragrant and perfect for snacking or breakfast.
- 1/2 cup coconut flour
- 2 T. coconut flour omit if not using honey
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 Tbsp. cinnamon
- pinch salt
- 1/2 cup melted butter, ghee or coconut oil
- 1 cup mashed ripe bananas about 2-3 bananas
- 1/4 cup granulated swerve or 1/4 cup honey
- 5 eggs
- 2 Tbsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350. Combine the coconut flour(omitting the 2 T. if not using honey), almond flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl. Mix with a whisk or fork to break up clumps.
- In a separate bowl, combine the butter or ghee, bananas, honey or sweetener of choice, eggs and vanilla.
Stir the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well with a whisk until all the clumps are gone. Add some reserved or additional coconut flour if the batter is too runny. You want it to be very similar to regular quick bread batters.
Add the walnuts if using.
Grease a loaf pan or line 12 muffin cups. Spread the batter in evenly.
Bake for 18-20 minutes for muffins or 40-50 minutes for loaf, checking with a toothpick and being careful not to overbake. Cool and enjoy!