Cranberry Cinnamon Banana Bread

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Ok, so I know I’m about a week late for banana bread day but I just HAD to share this recipe with you. Work has been chaotic for the past two weeks and all I wanted to do last weekend was crash. I don’t think I even turned on my laptop. Now that I completed my part of a super big project, I can get back to blogging.  Soooo, you get a special treat this week with back-to-back recipes. First things first, this sweet, fluffy and tart bread is perfect for a snowy morning breakfast or anytime snack.

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I adapted the recipe from one of my favorite food bloggers, Sally’s Baking Addiction.  If you haven’t read her blog, you must.  Especially her cookies, oh my yummy goodness. That was how I found her site about two years ago.  I was looking for a soft peanut butter cookie recipe for my Christmas tins and there it was.  Oh were they soft! Just how I like them.  As I read other posts of hers, it was like I was listening to an old friend over coffee. I’ve been hooked ever since.

There are a couple differences with my banana bread and Sally’s. 1) I use more baking soda.  I like more lift to my bread. And 2) I habitually use less butter than recommended. I usually replace with unsweetened applesauce, pumpkin, Greek yogurt or fat-free sour cream. This time I reduced the butter by a tablespoon, swapped out the yogurt with applesauce and added another banana. It was still very moist. Also, believe it or not, I used frozen bananas.  I let them thaw out just a little bit as I prepped everything else for the recipe, about 5-10 minutes.

20140103_133534_HDRAfter adding the batter to the pan, don’t forget to make the top pretty with a handful of cranberries on top.

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And maybe some cinnamon sugar. 😉 #cinnamonlove

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After about an hour in the oven, let it cool in the pan for about 15 minutes or until the pan is easy to handle without oven gloves. Now starts the most painful part of the process; the waiting….. It feels like forever! Once you take a bite and savor the sweet from the cinnamon and the tart of the fresh cranberries, it will be all worth it.  My only problem now is to find more cranberries! I’m out! Nooooooooo.

I hope you enjoy!

Cranberry Banana Bread
Adapted from: Sally’s Baking Addiction – Dark Chocolate Raspberry Banana Bread
Makes one loaf

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (or 1 cup white and 1 cup whole wheat)
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened Apple sauce
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 3-4 very ripe bananas
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp orange extract
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1/2 cup cinnamon chips
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries (plus a handful more for top of bread)
  • cinnamon sugar, to sprinkle on top

In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, salt. In a separate bowl blend the butter and sugar with a stand or handheld mixer until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time until fully incorporated. Add the bananas, vanilla, orange zest and orange extract. Mix until blended.

Slowly incorporate the flour mixture with the banana mixture until half way combined.  Fold in the cranberries and cinnamon chips until the mixture is fully combined. ***Don’t overmix*** Pour into a prepared loaf pan carefully, it will be very thick. Decorate the top of the loaf with reserved cranberries, cinnamon chips and cinnamon sugar, if desired.

Bake at 350 deg F for 60-70 minutes, depending on your oven.  Check after 60 minutes and go in 5 minute intervals until a toothpick comes out dry. Let cool in the pan for about 15 minutes and let it cool completely on a wire rack. Slice and enjoy!

Try other fresh fruit like blueberries, raspberries, strawberries. Hopefully when they are in season or frozen.  (I know we’re out of luck currently with it being the middle of winter but look around.)

Copyright: The Trial and Error Kitchen

Notes:

I try to buy local as much as possible. These cranberries I used in this recipe are from my dear friend at Simon’s Berry Farm. They are perfectly tart and juicy for this bread.  I tried to use dried cranberries and it did not give the save result. Fresh is best!

You could swap the cinnamon chips for white, dark or milk chocolate chips. I felt the cinnamon chips didn’t overpower the orange or cranberry flavors, which is what I was looking for.

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