Chocolate Banana Bread

12 servings
1 hr 10 min

Banana bread was one of the first things I learned to bake. I immediately fell in love. The sour cream and mashed bananas make banana bread almost foolproof. You’re guaranteed to have a beautifully moist loaf. If you’re a chocolate lover like me, you’re going to love this chocolate banana bread even more than the original.

Tips for making chocolate banana bread

My number one tip with all baking unless specified otherwise: make sure your ingredients are at room temperature. For the longest time I thought I could get away with not letting my ingredients come to room temperature. And oh did my baked goods pay for it. Eventually, I started letting my butter come to room temp because cold butter was pretty hard to cream. But just in the past year I realized you truly need to have all of your ingredients at room temp so they can emulsify (combine) better.

Another tip: properly cream your butter and sugar

Another mistake I made for the longest time: I didn’t realize how long I needed to cream the butter and sugar. I would mix just until the sugar granules disappeared into the butter. That only takes about 30 seconds and isn’t nearly long enough. When you beat the sugar into the butter, the sugar cuts through the butter and creates small air pockets. These air pockets are what the baking soda/powder need to produce lift. They release gases into these pockets while baking. This will give you a more even and tender crumb. Cream your butter and sugar for about 3 minutes on medium speed, taking the time to pause the mixer and scrape the sides and bottom to make sure you’re getting everything.

What bananas should you use to make the perfect chocolate banana bread?

This is where I disagree with 99% of the internet. A lot of people say “the browner the better”. I’d say, you want anywhere from heavily speckled to brown blotches. You do not want to wait for the bananas to get completely brown. I have found that the bananas start to have a fermented flavor when you wait that long. Waiting for heavily speckled still gives you that great sweet flavor. Whatever you do, don’t use lightly speckled or yellow bananas. The texture and taste just isn’t there yet.

Want to try original banana bread?

See the recipe here.

Recipe details
  • 12  servings
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 50 Minutes Total time: 1 hr 10 min
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  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups (156 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (42 g) cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup mashed bananas (about 2 1/2 bananas)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9" x 5" loaf pan.
In a medium sized bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
Using an electrix mixer, cream together the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add in one egg, and beat on medium-high until completely incorporated. Pause the mixer and scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add in the next egg and vanilla and beat until completely incorporated.
Add half the dry ingredients. Beat on low spead until just combined. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl, then add the other half of the dry ingredients. Beat on low spead until just combined.
Add the bananas and sour cream and beat on low spead until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.
Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs. Cover the bread loosely with aluminum foil about 35 minutes into baking to prevent excess browning.
Let cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove and let cool for 30 minutes on a wire cooling rack before slicing and serving.
  • Other pan sizes: You can bake this chocolate banana bread in muffin tins as well. Just be sure to keep a close eye on the baking time. This highly varies depending on how much you fill your muffin tins.
  • Jumbo muffins: 30-35 minMuffins: 20-23 minMini muffins: 10-12 min
Elle | SimpletoScratch
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  • Eileen Eileen on Sep 07, 2021

    I’m lactose intolerant. Is there a substitute for sour cream?

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    • Eileen Eileen on Sep 10, 2021

      Thank you! I hadn’t thought of that and will definitely give it a try!

  • Gigi Gigi on Sep 18, 2021

    I covered it loosely with foil 35 minutes into it as suggested but don't think this is a good idea. The pan is hot and you lose the heat from the oven by opening it. Also, unless you spray the foil ahead of time, it sticks to the top of the bread as it rises. It peeled off the top of the bread when I took it off.

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    • Gigi Gigi on Sep 20, 2021

      And now that I have tried it I also wanted to add that it is delicious! Thank you! I am going to try it again without the foil and see what happens.