Banana loaf

Prep: 1 hr, 30 mins - 1 hr, 45 mins Includes 1¼ hours baking.


Makes 12 slices
A tasty way of using up overripe bananas

Nutrition and extra info

  • Without icing

Nutrition: banana loaf

  • kcal285
  • fat11g
  • saturates5g
  • carbs44g
  • sugars16.1g
  • fibre1g
  • protein5g
  • salt0.52g
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  • 100g softened unsalted butter
  • 140g light muscovado sugar
  • 2 large eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 3 large ripe bananas, mashed (about 450g/1lb total weight)



    Probably the best known, most popular tropical fruit, their name probably derives from the…

  • 50g pecans, roughly chopped
    Pecan nuts



    Related to the walnut, pecans are native to America, and grow enclosed in a glossy, browny-red…

  • 50g raisins
  • 150ml buttermilk
  • 280g plain flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 50g icing sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to fan 160C/ conventional 180C/gas 4. Butter a 20 x 13cm loaf tin and line the base with greaseproof paper.

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the butter and sugar with an electric whisk until creamy. Beat in the eggs one at a time (don’t worry that the mixture looks curdled). Stir in the mashed bananas, pecans, raisins and buttermilk.

  3. Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda on top of the banana mixture, then fold in until evenly mixed, taking care not to overmix. Spoon into the prepared tin and level the top.

  4. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes until a skewer pushed in the centre comes out almost, but not quite, dry. Remove from the oven and leave for about 10 minutes, then turn it out of the tin on to a cooling rack to cool.

  5. For the icing, mix the icing sugar with 2-3 tsp cold water to give a smooth, runny consistency. Using a dessertspoon, drizzle the icing in lines across the loaf.

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Comments (70)

dee2dum's picture

Awful - baked exact to recipe save substituting buttermilk for yoghurt. Baked for almost 2 hours and still came out raw inside, a stodgy mess. I will never stray from Mary Berry again!

Ktjd's picture

I made this exactly as per the recipe except I had to use medium sized eggs as I didn't have any large (nearly added 3 mediums but thought better of it!) and gluten free flour as got coeliacs and it came out far too wet. Not just moist but heavy and not remotely cake like in texture...

If I made it again I would not use buttermilk (or milk) in it, 3 large bananas more than enough for a moist loaf! I would also use chocolate chips or chopped dates instead of raisins and maybe cinnamon or mixed spice for flavouring!

tasty_foodie's picture

This recipe came out so moist and flavorful. I made some changes to make use of what I already had I used turbinado instead of muscovado, plain yoghurt instead of buttermilk and dark chocolate chips and dried cherries instead of the pecans and raisins. I added a pinch of salt as well and skipped the drizzle. So good!

shantal's picture

This cake was a lovely afternoon surprise! I left my brother, a novice baker (!!), to the task of making it and it worked a treat! He used milk instead of buttermilk and it didn't seem to make too much difference! I would definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a quick and simple recipe... the results are most impressive! We've saved this to our cake folder and are hoping to make it for our parents when we go back home in a few weeks! :D

jugs116's picture

Just made this. I swapped banana chips for pecans as don't like nuts. Split mixture into two small loaf tins so cooked quicker. Family loved it and ate the first one still warm. Hopefully second one will last longer but I doubt it. Definitely will make this again

joannewall's picture

Made this loaf to use up some over ripe bananas. Like some of the other reviewers I swopped the pecans for hazelnuts, as that is what I had in the cupboard. I didn't use the buttermilk. Only a splash of ordinary milk to make the mixture more of a dropping consistency. The loaf needed less time than stated - 1hr 7/10mins or so. All in all it is an ok loaf. Not sure I would rush to do it again. I have a banana and walnut recipe which is lighter and takes less time. Worth trying though.

caameli0n's picture

Absolutely delicious - very moist and flavoursome. Everyone loved it!

maidincornwall's picture

Was looking for a cake recipe to use up some fruit left over in the fruit bowl, and thought I'd give this a try. What a winner! Added 3 mashed bananas, 1 chopped pear, 1 chopped apple, 6 chopped dried apricots and a handful of dried up sultanas, no buttermilk so used whole milk instead, also only had dark muscovado sugar lurking back of cupboard so used that. What I got was a delicous moist cake that everyone loves. So simple and great result. Will definitely be using this one again.

kamalasb's picture

I haven't tried any other recipes for banana bread/loaf so maybe there are better ones. However this recipe was fantastic in my opinion, it was moist and succulent. A really tasty recipe that I can't wait to try out again.

bburr568's picture

This loaf is absolutely beautiful! It smelt gorgeous, stayed super moist, and tastes as amazing as it looks! I will definately be making this again, and again!

kitchenwhizkid's picture

I too had no buttermilk to hand, so after reading Dara's comment decided to do the same and just omit the buttermilk.
I also have a nut allergy sufferer in the family, so substituted the pecans for chopped prunes.
Came out a delicious and moist cake that keeps very well in a cake tin. I made it 3 days ago and am just tucking in to a nice slice for my breakfast this morning!
I can see this recipe becoming a firm favourite and would highly recommned.

sazzyk66's picture

I modified the recipe and used a mixture of golden caster sugar and dark muscavado sugar (100 grams to 40 ratio). I also substituted muesli for the raisins and pecans. I will definitely make it again, but next time I will add more sugar, it wasn't quite sweet enough. Also it was perhaps a little too moist. Worth making again though.

pinkice's picture

This recipe is absolutely gorgeous. I substituted the buttermilk with skimmed milk and the butter with soft margarine, it made no difference to the taste, it's still extremely more-ish.

stooboy's picture

Very Tasty and Easy

domgod's picture

I had some dark rum left over from Christmas, so I soaked the raisins overnight in this....perfect with banana and muscovado sugar..delicious

blueypie's picture

Thanks Alex :)

lyndsayworn's picture

I did this recipe last night and had to increase cooking time by 1 hr due to the oven i think but in the end it came out and it delicious. first time trying it as well and will deffo make again :)

plummy's picture

Just made this for my work colleagues in Copenhagen and there wasn't a crumb left! Can't find buttermilk over here so used normal milk just reduced to 100ml. Also put a small handfull of chocolate drops in which was a nice surprise. Fantastic way to use up over ripe bananas which I hate to throw away when food costs so much over here.

angelica30's picture

Very nice,moist cake although a bit too sweet for me and the family however i will make this cake again.

NickkiT's picture

I first made this banana loaf when it appeared in Good Foood magazine a good few years ago..I was very new to baking then and a little unconfident but my family absolutely loved it. It is very moist and flavoursome. Lovely recipe.


Questions (1)

DGZ's picture

Can this be made gluten free? What would the flour be swapped for and how much (GF flour is much more absorbent). Many thanks in advance.

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