This easy one bowl peanut butter banana bread recipe is soft, fluffy, and crazy delicious! Banana bread + PB = best combo ever.

three slices of peanut butter banana bread on white napkin

Oh hello there, January doldrums. Anyone else feeling this? January isn’t my favorite month, and I don’t know about you, but I’m glad I finally said that out loud.

But. There is banana bread to get us through. And even better: there’s peanut butter banana bread. 

Hold me. 

You guys, this peanut butter banana bread is insanely delicious…and it’s a one bowl wonder, which makes it even more loveable.

three slices of peanut butter banana bread stacked on wood cutting board

What does peanut butter do for banana bread?

Well, I’m awfully glad you asked. 

Not only does peanut butter add rich flavor, it also makes banana bread ultra-soft. Like, unbelievably soft and velvety.

The texture is amazing. 

All of the ingredients get thrown into one bowl and mixed together like a good quick bread. Meaning, don’t over mix. Just stir until those little dusty dry streaks disappear.

mixing together batter for peanut butter banana bread with chocolate chips

Chocolate Chips: Yay or Nay? 

Chocolate chips are completely appropriate and optional in this peanut butter banana bread. The bread is delicious either way.

My lil’ disclaimer is that while I’m never going to say no to chocolate chips, they do slide to the forefront of the flavor stage and the peanut butter flavor isn’t quite as prominent.

What to do, what to do?

If you want a stronger peanut butter flavor: leave out the chocolate chips.

If you are ok with a bit of flavor sharing and love a good pb + chocolate combo: throw them in. 

Also, I don’t want to encourage anyone to go outside of their moral boundaries, but I think since we can all agree that banana bread isn’t exactly health food, someone should explore the idea of ditching the chocolate chips and adding in mini or chopped peanut butter cups. Whoa. That someone should probably be me. Today.

loaf pan with banana bread batter; loaf pan with baked banana bread

Let’s Talk About Loaf Pans

One of the greatest struggles in life is baking a loaf of banana bread or other quick bread all the way through without it over browning or sinking or refusing to bake through in the center.

There are a lot of reasons why this can happen: elevation, oven temperature (every oven differs a bit in exact temp), how many times you open the oven to check on your bread (resist the urge), and on and on. 

One of the foremost factors for quick bread success is pan type. 

In my experience, dark-coated pans and glass bread pans do not bake as evenly as light colored nonstick loaf pans. They tend to bake the outside of the bread quickly leaving the inside gooey and underdone. 

If you have a dark-coated or glass pan, consider reducing the oven temp by 25 degrees (or, even better, putting some light-colored nonstick loaf pans on your wish list). This is the pan I have {aff. link} and use and love.

slices from loaf of peanut butter banana bread on wood cutting board

Smaller Loaf

This peanut butter banana bread makes a very substantial loaf.

If you want a smaller loaf, you could repurpose some of the batter for a few muffins or a mini loaf.

In fact, if you live at high elevation, you might want to go ahead and do this as I’ve heard from some of you that cakes and quick breads tend to overflow at higher elevations?

(FYI: I live at about 2,500 feet and the full amount of batter bakes wonderfully in a 9X5-inch loaf pan.) 

stack of peanut butter banana bread slices with peanut butter spread on top

Let it Rest

One last important note before I just.stop.talking and let you make this bread already

The peanut butter flavor develops and gets better with time. Warm out of the oven (come on, I can’t resist sometimes!), there’s no question that this bread is delicious. 

But the peanut butter flavor might appear a bit underwhelming if you dig in right away. Let the bread cool completely (it’s even better the next day!) and it is a whole different peanut butter ball game. 

My kids can eat an entire loaf of this peanut butter bread upon re-entry from the school day; we’ve been making it nonstop. It’s so good! 

One Year Ago: Easy Flaky Buttermilk Drop Biscuits
Two Years Ago: Quick and Easy Pork {or Chicken} Mediterranean Orzo Skillet 
Three Years Ago: Sheet Pan Balsamic Chicken + Veggies Dinner {30-Minute Meal} 
Four Years Ago: 7-Minute Spaghetti Squash {Instant Pot/Pressure Cooker}
Five Years Ago: Browned Butter Vanilla Rice Krispie Treats 
Six Years Ago: White Chocolate Oatmeal Craisin Coconut Cookies 
Seven Years Ago: Vanilla Bean White Chocolate Mousse Cheesecake
Eight Years Ago: Cinnamon Roll Sugar Cookies 

Peanut Butter Banana Bread

Yield: One 9X5-inch loaf
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
three peanut butter banana bread slices with peanut butter spread on top

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (about 8 ounces) mashed ripe bananas (about 3 medium bananas)
  • 1/2 cup (3.75 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (3.75 ounces) light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) melted butter or oil (see note)
  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) sour cream
  • 1/2 cup (4.5 ounces) peanut butter (see note)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (7.5 ounces) all-purpose flour (see note for whole wheat)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (6 ounces) chocolate chips (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. For dark-coated pans, reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Lightly grease a 9X5-inch loaf pan. You can also line the bottom with parchment paper (with overhangs on the long edges) for easy removal.
  2. In a large bowl, add the bananas, granulated sugar, brown sugar, butter or oil, sour cream, peanut butter, eggs, and vanilla. Whisk until well-combined.
  3. Add the flour, baking soda, salt and chocolate chips (if using) and stir until just combined and no dry streaks remain. Don't over mix.
  4. Spread the batter in the prepared pan and bake for 50-60 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs (but not wet batter).
  5. Let the bread cool for 10-15 minutes. Gently remove from pan to a cooling rack to cool completely. (The peanut butter flavor of this bread is better when the bread is cool - or even the next day.)

Notes

Pan Size: this makes a very full, large 9X5-inch loaf. You could also fill an 8 1/2-X4 1/2-inch loaf pan a little more than halfway with batter and use the rest of the batter for muffins or mini loaves.

Bananas: for the best banana flavor, use bananas that are spotty brown (no signs of green!).

Butter vs. Oil: I like this bread best when using melted butter, but a neutral flavored oil works well, too, like canola, avocado or vegetable. You can also try subbing part of the oil with applesauce.

Peanut Butter: I haven't tried this bread with natural peanut butter or crunchy peanut butter (both have a tendency to dry out baked goods). I also haven't tried it with a peanut butter substitute like almond, cashew or sun butter. I've only ever made it with every day peanut butter (like Jiffy).

Whole Wheat Flour: I've made this bread with 50% white whole wheat flour with really good results.

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Recipe Source: from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe (adapted from this favorite sour cream banana bread recipe)

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