Brown Butter Rum Banana Bread

Whisking Wolf
by Whisking Wolf
1 loaf
1 hr 25 min

Say goodbye to boring bread and hello to this brown butter rum banana bread. A moist and flavorful breakfast treat that’s so simple to make you don’t even need a mixer!

The fire alarm went off today and for once it wasn’t because of my cooking.

You see, summers in Florida are so oppressively hot that when the front door is open more than a few minutes my smoke detectors believe the air blasting in from outside is a raging inferno.

That’s one downside of living in a climate akin to a tropical rainforest. It’s not all bad though, thanks to jungle-level humidity there are enough banana trees in my yard to make a monkey go apeshit. As many as I eat myself, I’m surprised I haven’t overdosed on potassium and died. But there’s a limit to how many I can stomach straight out of the peel, which is why I like to mix the extras into quick breads.

I know what you’re thinking: the last thing the world needs now is another banana bread recipe.

People literally baked so many loaves of banana bread during COVID-19 lockdowns that it caused a freaking flour shortage. As a result, banana bread boredom is at an all-time high. But this particular recipe was made to not only to redeem banana bread, but the entire cursed year that is 2020.

In case you were wondering, the answer to both predicaments is alcohol. I know this, not because I asked a crystal ball, but because I asked a crystal decanter of rum.

The answer I got was clear. (Although a few Cuba libres later the answer grew a little fuzzy. As did everything else, but let’s not get distracted by my drinking habits.) The CDC said we have to stay six feet away from each other, but it never said we have to social distance from liquor bottles. Boom! Problem solved. If you’re barely hanging on and baking banana bread for the sake of your sanity then pour Bacardi in your banana bread and mix the rest of the bottle with Coke.

Fun fact: the pandemic can’t kill your vibe when you’re channeling a pirate.

Brown Butter Rum Banana Bread
Recipe details
  • 1  loaf
  • Prep time: 25 Minutes Cook time: 1 Hours Total time: 1 hr 25 min
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  • 2 cups all-purpose flour unbleached
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt fine
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 8 Tbsp butter unsalted
  • 1/4 cup rum gold
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 cups overripe bananas mashed
  • 2 overripe bananas sliced in half lengthwise
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla pure

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 9 x 5 loaf pan with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add rum, stirring constantly with a wooden spatula. Over the next seven minutes or so, the butter will foam, release a nutty aroma then begin to brown. To avoid burning, remove from heat as soon as brown bits form on the bottom of the pan. Stir in brown sugar and set aside to cool for 10 minutes.   
In a separate bowl, combine mashed bananas and beaten eggs with vanilla and whisk until combined.
Add the cooled brown butter mixture to the mashed banana mixture. Stir to combine. Add in flour mixture, one cup at a time and gently stir until combined, scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula as you go. Take care to not overmix.
Pour batter into parchment-lined loaf pan. Slice remaining bananas in half lengthwise. Press each half onto the top of the batter. Brush banana halves with a pinch of brown sugar and bake for one hour, checking on bread after 45 minutes. If the loaf appears to be overbrowning, cover the top with aluminum foil until baking is complete and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and dry.
Cool in pan for 10 minutes before turning loaf out onto a rack to cool completely. To keep your banana bread fresh, wrap the cooled, uncut loaf in aluminum foil or place in an airtight container. Banana bread often tastes better the second day after the flavors have had time to set up.
Banana bread will keep up to 2 days at room temperature or up to 7 days in the refrigerator. To store banana bread in the freezer, the loaf/slices need to be double wrapped. First wrap in plastic wrap then in aluminum foil before placing in a freezer bag. Remove excess air from the freezer bag before zipping shut. Bread will keep in the freezer up to 3 months.
  • My homegrown bananas were tiny—approximately the size of my hand so it took seven mashed bananas to equal two cups. Plus, I used two additional bananas split lengthwise to press into the top of the batter once it was poured into the loaf pan. If you are using normal-sized bananas you won’t need nearly as many. Just make sure the ones you use are overripe to the extreme. They should be so covered with black bruises that they look like Mike Tyson punched them.
  • Browned butter takes approximately seven minutes from the time the butter initially melts until completion. If you’ve never browned butter before, it is simple. First, melt butter over medium heat in a saucepan. Next, add rum and stir constantly with a wooden spoon, taking care not get distracted. (There’s a fine line between browned butter and burned butter. Do not cross that line or you will be buying a new saucepan.) The butter will get foamy and release a nutty aroma. After that happens, you will begin seeing browned bits forming on the bottom. As soon as that happens, remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool.
  • This recipe calls for a standard 9 x 5 loaf pan. Banana bread bakes most evenly in a shiny metal pan.
Whisking Wolf
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