Heirloom Banana Bread

by Gramma Rosalyn Upchurch

Our family heirloom banana bread recipe that's been passed down from grandma to grandma.  It's rich, dense yet fluffy, and velvety-smooth. It's easy to eat it alone or with cream cheese frosting, and gets raves every time it's served. 

what's cool about this recipe

Super Easy & Fast to Make

This is one of those breads you literally "whip" up... in the food processor. Throw everything in, blend, pour into pans, bake, eat. Very often when I make this, I'm floored at how simple it was, yet the taste and texture scream that it was a slave-labor of love. Love, yes. Slave labor, hardly. 

It's Definitely One to Memorize

This is one of those recipes to keep in the mental catalogue, because it's just so handy, simple, and unexpectedly gourmet in its velvetyness and simplicity. 

It's a Big Hit

Every time I make this, it doesn't last long. In the meantime, everyone (including me) raves about how good it is. It's an unusually rich and soft banana bread. Can't help but become a family favorite. 

Awesome Snack

When this banana bread is around, which isn't long unless I make 4 loaves at a time, it fills the role of breakfast, snack, or post-workout yum. It's surprisingly hearty, and hits the mark on a lot of cravings at once just as it is. With variations, it's deadly good.

Heirloom Banana Bread by Gramma Rosalyn Upchurch

Passed down at least 5 generations, this time-tested recipe is fantastic. It's light and fluffy yet dense, smooth and velvety, and the texture often reminds me of a moist banana angel food cake. It's easy to eat alone or with cream cheese frosting.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 10 slices
Author Mom

Ingredients

  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 1/2 Cup butter at room temperature (1 stick)
  • 1 Cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 3/4 Cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Mix all ingredients in a food processor and blend well.
  3. Bake in bread pan 1 hour, or bake in muffin tins for 20 min. Yields 18-19 muffins.

Sweeties:

Do NOT wrap or cover this in aluminum foil for storage. It doesn't take long before aluminum foil begins to break down, and you'll find speckles of foil on your bread. It'll look like a grey, spotty mold with no fuzz. Hold your foil up to a light and you'll see the little holes in the foil shining like little stars.  Since plastic wrap is also chemical-laden, I suggest you sit down and eat this bread right away. :} Okay, kinda kidding there. A gallon storage bag will work great. Try slicing it before you put it away, and life's just that much easier.  Keeps on the counter a few days, but the fridge a little longer... like that'll ever happen.

Quick background about where this recipe came from, and how it's used 

This is Gramma Rosalyn Upchurch's recipe. Gramma Rosalyn is Grampa Wipps's mom. We're going on 5 generations with this recipe, and for all I know, it was passed down to Gramma Rosalyn from Gramma Thompson or even higher on the genetic chain. One thing's for sure, no one dares mess with this recipe, because it's already perfection as it is. Okay, so I'll throw in some nuts or strawberries, chocolate chips, or whatever... but the base recipe never changes. Never. 

This is the banana bread Gramma Wipps always makes as muffins or loaves, and brings to events. It's become a staple around our home too, as Jordan and Hoff (despite their love for bananas) rarely finish all of them before they ripen, so we always have over-ripe bananas on hand. This recipe is fantastic. It's light and fluffy yet dense, smooth, and the texture often reminds me of a moist banana angel food cake. It's velvet and easy to eat alone or with cream cheese frosting. Make muffins out of it and use your filling tool to put cream cheese frosting inside of it for something fun and different. We, however, typically eat it plain. I prefer loaves, but Gramma Wipps prefers muffins. I've always been partial to the center of a loaf, not the edges. Muffins have too many edges for me... even with cream cheese frosting injected inside. 

Variations 

  • Banana-Strawberry Bread
    • Add 1 C chopped fresh or frozen strawberries, and fold into the batter once it's made. If you're super lazy like I am, or have frozen strawberries to use-up, Just add bang them around until they separate and add them in with the food processor. The bananas will overpower them that way, though, so if you want it to be a strawberry-ish banana bread, leave 1 banana out.
  • Banana-Walnut/Pecan Bread
    • Add 1 Cup of either walnuts or pecans in the food processor along with everything else, and blend until the really large pieces aren't popping up in the batter anymore. Especially with walnuts, this chops them more finely and releases more oils and flavor into the bread. This is especially helpful with walnuts, which are a more mild nut.
    • If you want bigger chunks of nuts in your bread (like Hoff does), pulse your walnuts or pecans in the food processor before adding the remaining ingredients. Then, take HALF of the nuts out of the processor, add the other ingredients, blend, and then fold in the nuts you removed. That'll give you a really good permeation of oils and flavors, while still having big chunks. 
  • Banana-Chocolate Chip Bread
    • Use restraint and only add in 3/4 Cups of either milk or dark chocolate chips... your preference, but I'm telling you that milk chocolate is better. It's always better. Always. Don't argue with me, I'm your mom.

Making it into a Mix/ Bulk pre-prepared

  • double batch:  Since food processors can only hold so much, I don't advise doing a double batch. It's best to keep the batches separate. When making several at a time, I just measure-out single recipes into different bowls and run them individually through the processor. The nice thing about making several at once is that you only have to clean-up once. Huzzzah!
  • storing: You can totally store pre-made dry ingredients together in either a gallon baggie or quart-sized ball jar. If you have a vacuum-sealer, you can seal the lid down and it'll keep longer. Just keep in mind that without vacuum sealing your jar, your flour will age and eventually become rancid, so either seal and store longer term, or use it within 6 months.
  • frozen: We freeze banana bread all the time in a gallon storage bag, either as a loaf or as muffins. Really handy that way.
  • canning: I'm working on this. No, seriously, I am. I'll let you know if I succeed. I can build it. I have the technology.

Food Pairing Suggestions

  • strawberries
  • chocolate chips
  • cream cheese frosting
  • blueberries

 

Drink Pairing Suggestions

  • water
  • milk (or AI milk of 1/2 cream and 1/2 water)
  • apple cider
  • tea