A finer lunchbox filler ne'er there was (Photo: Emma Boyd)

Recipe: Gluten-free banana bread

A one-pot energy boost that’s as good for breakfast as it is afternoon tea. 

I find packing lunches a challenge so am always on the hunt for inspiration to keep the kids’ lunchboxes both interesting and nourishing. What I love about this recipe is that it’s all made in one pot – fewer dishes once the loaf goes into the oven! The nuts make it wonderfully moist and add an energy boost, while the sesame seeds on top lend a lovely crunch. Over the weekend we ate slices of this for breakfast that I’d fried in butter and then dolloped with yoghurt and blueberry compote. It’s also great, as in the photos above, toasted and smothered with butter, then dotted with honeycomb for a delicious afternoon treat. 

GLUTEN-FREE BANANA BREAD

Makes 1 loaf

  • 100g butter, cubed
  • 50g sugar (of your choice)
  • 3 ripe bananas (the riper the better)
  • 3 eggs
  • ¼ cup milk (of your choice)
  • 200g gluten-free flour* (you can also use regular white or spelt flour)
  • 100g almonds, ground (I use my spice grinder)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon allspice
  • 60g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 5 medjool dates (or 15 regular dates), finely chopped (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds

Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease a loaf tin with butter.

In a large saucepan melt the butter, then remove from the heat and stir in the sugar. Peel the bananas and break them into the butter mixture, using a fork to mash them up before adding the eggs and milk and whisking with the fork until well combined.  

Add the flour, ground almonds, baking soda, allspice, chocolate and dates and using a spatula, fold together until just combined.  

Pour into the loaf tin, sprinkle with the sesame seeds and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack.    

*I use Nicola Galloway’s recipe for gluten-free flour from her Homegrown Kitchen cookbook. If you don’t own it, buy it! It’s a goodie.  


The Spinoff’s food content is brought to you by Freedom Farms. They believe talking about food is nearly as much fun as eating it, and they’re excited to facilitate some good conversations around food provenance in Aotearoa New Zealand.

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