Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The Best Gluten Free Banana Bread

I finally have something I feel like posting about - FOOD!  I even briefly considered starting a new blog to share recipes but then decided against it since I've already started 4 blogs and that is enough.  This one will do fine.

Baking has been something I've always enjoyed but haven't done that much of it since having kids, mainly due to not having time and not wanting to make a mess.  I mean I did bake from time to time, but wouldn't say I was a weekly baker.  That is not until recently.  With both boys starting school full time I decided I wanted to try and make lots of baked good we can use for breakfasts, lunches, and snacks.  I was tired of constantly buying store bought cookies, cereal bars, and other snacks.  Plus I also have a wicked sweet tooth of my own, so I figured if we're all going to be eating 'treats' then I might as well be making them, and trying to make them as healthy as a baked treat could be.

My first challenge is making gluten free stuff.  My second challenge is also making much of it nut free so the kids can take it to school.  This was especially hard since my main go to for gf baking was almond flour.  I still use nut flours and butters for the treats we eat at home, but needed some nut free option for school snacks as well. 

I'm going to post my successful recipes here (individually so they're easy to search for again), starting with this gluten free banana bread recipe that I have been working on.  Not to toot my own horn or anything, but it is pretty awesome.

(This recipe is NOT nut free)

In a food processor, process dry ingredients:
1 cup almond flour
1/2 cup gluten free flour mix (I have been using Namaste Perfect Flour Blend with great results)
1 tsp each - cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder
1/4 cup cacao nibs
3 tbsp chia or hemp hearts

Remove dry ingredients from processor, then process wet ingredients:
4 bananas
1/2 cup nut butter
4 eggs
4 tbsp coconut oil
4 tbsp raw honey
1tsp vanilla

Mix dry and wet ingredients together.  Add chocolate chips if desired.
Originally I was making this recipe in my cast iron skillet, but most recently I doubled the recipe and put it in two standard bread pans (greased and floured).  When using my skillet I baked for 45 minutes at 350.  When I made it last I accidently turned the oven off at some point and had to turn it back on again, so I'm not 100% sure how long they needed to be baked for but I would start with 45 minutes and check them, then bake for longer if needed.

I tend to be experimental with my baking so it's hard to write down exact recipes, but this is the gist of it.  I have also played around with converting this recipe into a gf carrot cake one, using a similar format as above but substituting shredded carrots instead of bananas, and applesauce instead of nut butter (and omitting the cacao nibs and chocolate chips of course, plus adding extra spices).  It still needs a bit of tweaking but it did taste good!


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