There are a lot of -frees with this bread – gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, refined sugar-free – but it’s amazing. The first time I tested it I was genuinely blown away by how virtually identical the crumb and flavour were to my usual spelt flour loaf.
A number of readers have made my tahini banana bread with buckwheat flour, so I thought it’d be a good starting point, but mixing with gluten-free oat flour is what makes the texture so great. Bananas are a natural binding agent so there’s no need for eggs or egg replacers like flax, making for a super simple quick bread with a very light crumb.
I’ve added chocolate chunks (obviously) but the mix-ins are flexible. See the substitutions section for more notes on that, and some other alternatives.
Even though I don’t have such a problem with gluten, I love baking with alternative whole grain flours and GF ones are great. This oat flour banana bread has recently become my go-to – it’s especially handy as spelt flour is still hard to get in my neck of the woods. And honestly, I think I like this version more.
Scroll to the bottom of the post or click “skip to recipe” above to see the recipe card with full ingredient measurements and instructions.
The extras are pretty easy to change here. Think the spices, chocolate, type of nut/seed butter, oil, etc. so see the substitutions section below for ideas on that.
- Three ripe bananas (the riper the better – see tips)
- Non-dairy milk (I use oat milk)
- Peanut butter (see substitutions)
- Olive oil
- Maple syrup
- Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free oat flour
- Buckwheat flour (see tips)
- Arrowroot flour
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Nutmeg (optional)
- Sea salt
- Chocolate chunks and/or other add-ins
Preheat the oven and line a baking tin with parchment paper, or grease with a neutral oil.
Place the bananas, milk, peanut butter, oil, maple syrup, and vanilla into a large bowl. Blend using an immersion blender until fully combined. Alternatively, add the bananas first, mash them with a fork, and then stir in the remaining wet ingredients.
Add the oat and buckwheat flour, arrowroot, baking powder and soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt to the bowl and use a wooden spoon to mix until no streaks of flour are visible.
Stir in the chocolate chunks and/or other add-ins. Don’t worry about over-mixing, just try to incorporate evenly throughout.
Spoon the batter into the prepared baking tin and bake for 45-50 minutes. This will vary slightly based on the size and type of your tin. With a smaller, higher tin, you’ll probably need about an extra five minutes, so the toothpick test is the best way to check.
Cool the banana bread for about ten minutes in the tin before removing to cool fully on a rack. This is best when fully cooled. Store in a sealed container at room temperature for up to three days, or wrap well and freeze up to a month.
Tips and Notes
The ripeness of the bananas contributes significantly to the sweetness and flavour of the loaf, so go for spotty, brown bananas. If you prefer less sweetness, then using slightly less ripe bananas is an easy way to reduce it.
I ground my own buckwheat flour for this recipe, which is easy to do with a higher powered food processor (or a grain mill). It has to be finely ground, though, so I would generally recommend buying buckwheat flour instead.
I recommend the immersion blender method because it makes for a very nice smooth batter and light crumb. If you prefer chunks of banana, go with the fork method.
My bread tin is a little longer and lower than standard (26×10.5cm / just over 10 inches long) which means a slightly shorter cooking time. There are a number of variables, including true oven temperature, type and size of baking tin, any substitutions, using volume vs weight, etc. so doing a toothpick or skewer test is what’s going to ensure your banana bread is fully baked.
For a nut-free option, use sunflower seed butter instead of peanut butter. Alternatively, tahini is a great seed based option – and if you just want to change the nuts up, any runnier nut butter will work well. Avoid the dry bottom-of-the-jar stuff.
I usually bake with olive oil because I always have it on hand. There isn’t a noticeable flavour of it in this loaf, but if you prefer, you can use another oil that’s liquid at room temperature. I found coconut oil made it a bit dense after cooling fully.
As always, maple syrup is used interchangeably with honey, so if you’re not fully vegan, feel free to use honey. Arrowroot flour can be subbed with tapioca or cornstarch. The cinnamon and nutmeg are recommended, but any spices can be used based on your preference.
Walnuts, hazelnuts, mixed seeds, raisins, chopped dates, and so on, are all great additions here. Use them in place of or in addition to the chocolate, adding within reason. If you use way too much it’ll alter the structure of the loaf (I wouldn’t go over about 3/4 cup total). You can also add a little shredded coconut if you like – here’s a coconut banana bread if you love that combination.
More Gluten Free Bakes
More Recipes with Ripe Bananas
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Vegan Gluten Free Banana Bread
- 3 large ripe bananas about 250g / 9 oz., weighed when peeled
- 180 ml oat milk
- 100 grams natural peanut butter
- 60 ml olive oil
- 60 ml maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 125 grams Bob's Red Mill gluten free oat flour
- 120 grams buckwheat flour
- 2 tablespoons arrowroot flour
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 100 grams dark chocolate, chopped, or chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 180C (350F) and line a bread tin with parchment paper.
- Add the bananas, milk, peanut butter, olive oil, maple syrup, and vanilla to a large bowl. Use an immersion blender to mix until smooth. Alternatively, blend in a standing blender, or mash the bananas with a fork before whisking in the other ingredients.
- Add the oat flour, buckwheat flour, arrowroot, cinnamon, baking powder and soda, salt, and nutmeg to the bowl. Mix until well combined and no visible streaks of flour remain.
- Stir the chocolate into the banana bread batter, mixing until it’s evenly incorporated throughout.
- Pour the batter into the prepared baking tin, topping with additional chocolate if desired.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick or skewer inserted into the centre of the loaf comes out clean. The top of the loaf should be quite golden in colour.
- Cool the banana bread in the tin for ten minutes before removing and cooling fully on a rack. This keeps well for 3-4 days in a sealed container at room temperature and freezes well.