This is an old favorite recipe for saving slimy, overripe bananas from death. When a banana gets that “yuck” texture–that’s when it’s at its best for banana bread. It’s part of the “Recycled Food Series” aimed to get us to rethink a lot of what we throw away.

America wastes up to 40% of our food–estimates say 25% of the food we buy goes into the trash, and 40% of food from farms and fields goes to waste.

There is no way on God’s green earth my son will eat a banana that looks brown. It’s a shame, because “baking bananas” really are the best for many things–I use them to flavor yogurt, make oatmeal, blend and freeze them for smoothies, and for banana bread and muffins.

Here’s one of my favorite “coffee shop at home” recipes for using up dead and dying bananas.

Banana Bread

  • Servings: Depends how hungry you are
  • Difficulty: easy
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INGREDIENTS
  • 3 bananas, more or less. Old, gross, squashed ones.
  • 3/4 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 c melted butter
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • nuts (optional)
DIRECTIONS
  1. Squash the bananas.
  2. Add sugar, eggs, vanilla melted butter.
  3. Sift flour, salt, and baking soda together, add in (if you’re a real baker… if not, skip sifting, just make sure your baking soda doesn’t have lumps. I get complaints on that one).
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes to an hour. It’s done when the middle is springy and a butter knife comes out clean.

This same recipe can be used for bread (45 minutes–1 hour in the oven) or muffins (25-30 minutes).

VARIATIONS:
  • Add some walnuts or pecans
  • Dump in rum and make it an adult bread. 1/4 cup will flavor it. If you want some NSFW, make rum glaze using rum, melted butter, and confectioner’s sugar. Poke small holes in the bread while it’s still warm, and let the glaze soak in.

COST: $  Nearly free. You have butter, flour, eggs, etc on hand, and you’re rescuing overripened bananas that no one in their right mind will eat. This is a Poser Homestead win.

PRO TIP:
  1. Slice and freeze the bread for single-servings that won’t be stale.
  2. Forgot to slice and freeze? Facing down stale bread? Make it into bread pudding or banana bread French Toast.
  3. Any time you have a ton of brown, yucky bananas and don’t feel like banana bread, freeze them in batches of three and defrost for this recipe.
  4. Tired of banana bread? Pureé and freeze up your bananas in ice cube trays. Take them out for smoothies.