Photo courtesy Smitten Kitchen.  My loaves have just not lasted long enough to be photographed.
Photo courtesy Smitten Kitchen. My loaves have just not lasted long enough to be photographed.

I love banana bread. This might explain why I have so many banana bread recipes up on this blog but this one, this one is the absolute pinnacle of banana bread perfection. The ULTIMATE, the very tippy top of delight. Maybe it’s the indiscriminate addition of chocolate. Maybe it’s because Deb from the Smitten Kitchen is a genius but in any event, you know a recipe is good when you start using it once a week for about a month.

Now I’m just a little sad because I don’t know if it’s even worth it to try other banana bread recipes. I just can’t bring myself to believe there can be anything more delicious.

The only thing better than baking this? Getting someone else to do it for you.

Serves 4

Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen

What you’ll need:

3 to 5 very ripe bananas
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup brown sugar (I’ve used white sugar as well but dark brown sugar will give you the most depth of flavor)
2 eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp table salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chunks or chips


How to:

1. Heat your oven to 180°C. Butter a 9×5-inch loaf pan and set aside.

2. Mash bananas in a large bowl. (You should have a little over 1 cup of mashed banana)

3. Whisk in melted butter, then brown sugar, egg, and vanilla.

4.Place baking soda, salt, cinnamon , flour and cocoa powder in a sifter or fine-mesh strainer and sift over wet ingredients. This is super important because cocoa powder often gets lumpy.

5. Stir dry and wet ingredients with a spoon until just combined. Stir in chocolate chunks or chips.

6. Pour into prepared pan and bake until a tester or toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

7. Cool in pan for 10 to 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edge and invert it out onto a cooling rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Store the bread wrapped in foil. It should last up to 4 days in the fridge.