Skinny Whole Wheat Chocolate Almond Banana Bread

This Skinny Whole Wheat Chocolate Almond Banana Bread is healthier with whole wheat flour, almond meal, extra virgin olive oil & only 1/3-cup of raw sugar.

Skinny Whole Wheat Chocolate Almond Banana Bread by FamilySpice.com

I have always loved banana bread. When I was a student at the University of Arizona, every morning I would cut through the cafeteria and grab a slice to eat on my way to my morning class. Any baked goods with my morning tea is the right way to start the day, in my book. Of course, now I’m more careful about the baked goods I make and eat. I lower the sugar to the least amount as possible, and sneak in as much healthy stuff to not be noticed by the family. I’ve made many a variety of banana bread, and frankly this version is my favorite.

But why it is called a “bread” has always baffled me. Obviously they don’t have yeast. Quick breads, muffins and scones are sweeter – most of the time much too sweet for my taste. When a banana bread recipe calls for 1-cup of sugar for one loaf, it should no longer be allowed to be called a bread, but a cake, in my humble opinion. The same goes with muffins. If it’s too sweet, just call it a cupcake. Drizzle a scone with icing and it’s a dessert, not a good choice for breakfast or tea.

Skinny Whole Wheat Chocolate Almond Banana Bread by FamilySpice.com

I have been baking with whole wheat flour more and more, and it is not noticeable in banana bread, because of it’s naturally darker color. And this chocolate version only uses 1/3-cup of raw sugar. Yes, I do use chocolate chips, but I prefer my less sweet dark chocolate chips, and you can even reduce the amount further by using less. Almond meal in the bread gives me protein and the wheat bran additional fiber. The fatty butter has been replaced with (what else?) extra virgin olive oil. It certainly won’t make you skinny if you eat the whole loaf, but it certainly is healthier than the sugary alternatives floating around the world wide web.

Chocolate Almond Banana Bread

This healthier banana bread is made with whole wheat flour, olive oil, almond meal and only 1/3 cup of raw sugar. You can reduce the sugar even more by using dark chocolate chips. Recipe by Laura Bashar of Family Spice

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 1/4 cup almond meal
  • 1/4 cup wheat bran
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup over-ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/2 cup milk, low-fat
  • 1/2 cup raw sugar
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 egg, large
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips, bittersweet
  • 2 TBS almond slices

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk together:
    • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
    • 3/4 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened
    • 1/4 cup almond meal
    • 1/4 cup wheat bran
    • 1 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp baking soda
    • 1/2 tsp salt
  3. Using a stand mixer, whisk:
    • 1 cup over-ripe bananas , mashed
    • 1/2 cup milk, low-fat
    • 1/2 cup raw sugar
    • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 egg, large
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  4. In batches, add dry ingredients into wet, making sure everything is evenly distributed.
  5. Reserve 1-tablespoon from:
    • 1/2 cup chocolate chips, bittersweet
  6. Stir in remaining chocolate chips into the batter.
  7. Apply non-stick spray to a 9" x 5" loaf pan, and line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper. Pour batter inside.
  8. Top with reserved chocolate chips and:
    • 2 TBS almond slices
  9. Bake bread in oven for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.
  10. Let the bread rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack to cool completely, about 1 hour.

Prep Time:

Yield: Serves 12

Cook Time:

My kids’ teachers are avid runners and marathon fanatics participants, and I made several loaves of these lovely ladies. In fact, the bread was still warm when the kiddos delivered them, and I quickly received emails of thank-you’s from them throughout the day.

So call it a cake or bread, or whatever. It’s lightly sweet, with enough chocolate to not notice the healthy stuff packed inside!

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6 Responses to Skinny Whole Wheat Chocolate Almond Banana Bread

  1. Love adding almond butter to banana bread! This looks delish.

  2. I always thought the same. A bread can actually only be called bread when it includes yeast. Anyway bread or savory cake, I d go crazy for yours. Less sweetness is my kind of things, I am more for the rich banana and dark chocolate flavors and soon our banana tree should be giving fruits so now I know what I ll transform them into. Have a nice weekend!

  3. I have also often wondered why it is called bread – maybe just because it is traditionally baked in a bread loaf. It is definitely a cake.

  4. Bread or cake, this is what I need in my life. now.

  5. I’ve been very curious about the names for a long time too! Japan has more European influence than American in terms of baked goods, and cupcakes are not common in Japan (we have muffins though). When I came here, I wasn’t sure why certain things are called cupcakes and bread when they are all “sweet” in my taste. Your banana bread looks so good – chocolate is always winner in my house!

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