The Nutrient-Rich Dessert, Banana Bread

September 6, 2012 2:02 pm

Tips to Make a Healthier and Tastier Banana Bread

Banana bread has always been a much loved dessert. However, if it’s made with the basic ingredients, it could not be the perfect dessert for people following a strict low fat diet. But still it’s hard to resist the tempting aroma and taste of bananas, milk, butter and flour rolled into one fatty dessert.

With bakers’ overwhelming love for banana breads, they have found ways to make a healthier but tastier variety of this dessert. A variety in which all kinds of people, whether weight and calorie-conscious or not, could enjoy it! Here are a few tips to make healthier and tastier banana bread.

Substitute All-Purpose Flour with Whole Wheat Flour. Just like any other flour-based food, a good way to make a healthier dessert is to use whole wheat instead of the processed all-purpose flour. Normally in bread and cake recipes, half of the all-purpose flour is substituted with whole wheat flour. But if you prefer its nuttier, vigorous, full flavor, you can omit wholly the all purpose and replace by whole wheat flour. In that case, you can get significantly more fiber, vitamins, minerals and protein, twice as much as all-purpose. For those who want to hide the obvious flavor of whole wheat flour and get the same nutritional benefits, use white whole wheat flour.

Cut Down Sugar and Find Some Healthy Sugar Substitutes. Ideally, use as less sugar as possible in your banana bread if you really want a healthier dessert. Worried about the taste of your banana bread? Bananas contain natural sugars so you can add more of them than what the recipe calls for. This is a good way to sweeten your banana bread without risking your blood sugar levels. No worries, you can use bananas with no limits, plus you’ll be assured of extremely moist bread that has intense banana flavor.

If you can’t sacrifice the sugar, might as well use a healthier variety and that is packed brown sugar. This adds a stronger, caramel-like flavor to your bread compared to granulated white sugar.

If you will just do a little research on healthy natural sugar substitutes, you can find maple syrup, raw honey and organic sugar.

Toss in Some Nutritious Fruits and Nuts. This is probably the most convenient way to turn your banana bread into a nutritious dessert. The addition of blueberries, strawberries, mangoes, hazelnuts, walnuts, or almonds would not just offer you nutritional benefits but also adds good texture and flavors to your bread. Tossing in 1 1/2 cup of blueberries is a great way to savor their antioxidant benefits. Adding ½ cup of toasted, roughly chopped walnuts adds a nice crunch while giving you a bonus of omega-3 fatty acid, the type of fats which is good for the heart and lowers unhealthy cholesterol.

Almonds offer healthy monounsaturated fats as well. Adding fresh sliced strawberries as bread toppings is also a healthy way to make your dessert more attractive and more nutritious with their high concentrations of vitamin C, vitamin K, folic acid, manganese, vitamin B5 and B6, and significant amounts of antioxidants.     

Reduce Butter, Add more Buttermilk. It’s always a good idea to add nonfat buttermilk to your batter. Why? Because it makes your bread moist plus it lets you cut down the amount of fatty butter to be used. Buttermilk mixed with 2 tablespoons of canola oil goes great even without any trace of butter.