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We love banana bread around here. We’ve got a simple, dependable and decadent banana bread recipe plus honey-sweetened banana muffins with coconut oil and even a banana-zucchini bread.

But I love the extra fiber (that keeps kids satisfied for longer) in our new whole-wheat banana bread.

Don’t get me wrong. This isn’t health food. But we did make updates to a classic recipe for more nutrition without sacrificing one bit of flavor:

  • used whole-wheat flour
  • substituted applesauce in place of some oil
  • reduced sugar
  • added chia seeds
Tip: snack-sized applesauce containers are half a cup.

Want to Make Muffins?

This whole-wheat banana bread is a simple one-bowl recipe that doesn’t require any special tools. Just mix, pour into your pan and bake.

Plus, it’s super versatile: make a loaf or muffins.

For small kids, I love small muffin pans to make mini-muffins like these heart-shaped cuties. Perfect for toddlers and preschoolers.

For bigger kids, bigger muffins! I’ve had this bug-shaped pan from Nordic Ware for years and it’s still a huge hit every single time.

Tips for Using Specialty Pans

Even though these pans are “non-stick” I still like to give them a little help. Melt some butter and use a brush to get butter into the nooks and crannies. It’s two minutes that save you time (and heartache) later on.

When your muffins come out of the oven, slide a kitchen knife gently down the side to release them.


Whole-Wheat Banana Bread (with 2 Kinds of Chocolate!)

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Use this recipe to make either a loaf or muffins. The only difference will be cooking time. For muffins, start with 12 minutes and check your muffins for done-ness by pressing down on the top. If it springs back immediately, they’re done. Another hint: look for muffins that have risen with a slightly cracked surface. 

  • Author: Charity Curley Mathews, founder of foodlets.com



  • 34 medium sized-bananas, VERY ripe
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips


  1. Preheat the oven and prepare pan. Set oven to 350 degrees F. Melt a little butter and brush the sides of your loaf or muffin pan.
  2. In a large bowl or mixer with paddle attachment, mash the bananas. 
  3. Add eggs and mix again.
  4. Pour in applesauce, oil and sugar. Mix again.
  5. Add remaining dry ingredients: whole-wheat flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and chia seeds. Mix until JUST incorporated. 
  6. Pour in chocolate chips and fold into your batter. 
  7. Pour into a prepared loaf pan (usually 9×5 inches) or muffin pans (makes about 14 muffins, depending on the size of your muffin cups.
  8. Bake: For a loaf, bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour 10 minutes. For muffins, bake at 350 degrees for 12-16 minutes, depending on the size of your muffin cups.

Did you make this recipe?

Share a photo and tag us — we can’t wait to see what you’ve made!

Get Kids Excited

Just for laughs:

What did the orange say to the green banana?

You don’t look like you’re peeling well

Fun Facts

  • Bananas float in water because they are less dense in comparison.
  • Bananas are one of the most popular fruits in the American diet.
  • The banana is actually classified as a berry.

More Ideas

Super Simple Blueberry Scones with Whole Oats

3-Ingredient Rice Pudding (1 of them is Sweetened Condensed Milk!)

Easy Whole-Wheat Pizza Dough


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