Whole Wheat- Healthy Banana Bread

Dried figs, dates, prunes… they all pretty much gross me out. You wouldn’t catch me snacking on them, and I’ve rarely used them in recipes. In my quest to cook more healthfully and revise recipes to fit into my new lifestyle, I’ve reluctantly begun to let these ugly little dried fruits make their debut as a sweetener in some of my baking experiments. My first successful attempt: Whole Wheat- Healthy Banana Bread.

Don’t let the ‘healthy’ reference in the title scare you. It didn’t taste like the dry and flavorless bread that you might imagine a healthier banana bread to be. This one is made with whole wheat pastry flour and only 3 Tablespoons of brown sugar. Besides this small amount of sugar, additional sweetness comes from dried dates, dried apricots and bananas. It’s important to buy the right apricots… the Turkish sort don’t have as much flavor as the California apricots. I always buy the CA kind. And I was happy to find that you don’t really taste the dates- they’re chopped up and added in for sweetness.

If you cut the loaf into 12 slices, you can package them in zips individually and throw them in the freezer. Each slice is 120 calories (or 3 Weight Watcher’s points).

This turned out to be a great, healthy version of banana bread. No white flour, very little sugar, and ZERO added fat made it pretty much guilt-free. Amazingly enough, it was moist. I’m very careful about not overbaking breads because there is nothing worse than dry banana bread. The family gave this one the ‘make it again Mom’ label, and I will be happy to do so!

This recipe can be found HERE.

Leave a Comment




39 Responses to “Whole Wheat- Healthy Banana Bread”

  1. 1

    Sara — February 2, 2009 @ 11:40 PM

    Oh yum! This sounds great. Banana bread is such a delicious treat and I like the idea of adding apricots and figs.

  2. 2

    Reeni? — February 3, 2009 @ 12:19 AM

    I love all dried fruits! Looks real delicious!!

  3. 3

    HoneyB — February 3, 2009 @ 12:49 AM

    Must be I’m weird ;) I would eat dried fruit in a heartbeat…even the prune! Looks delicious!

  4. 4

    Bunny — February 3, 2009 @ 12:54 AM

    I’m with you on some dried fruits, like figs, that just freaks me out thinking about eating them!I don’t know why, I just don’t care for them, but this bread looks lovely, very tempting with the fruit in it!

  5. 5

    Judy@nofearentertaining — February 3, 2009 @ 1:11 AM

    Great idea with all of the dried fruit to add sweetness. I am always looking for ways to health things up!!!

  6. 6

    Sharon — February 3, 2009 @ 1:22 AM

    Oh, I think this sounds tasty and being healthy is always a plus! I happen to love all dried fruits but I need to be careful otherwise I find myself having eaten the equivalent of a pineapple in 10 minutes…woops! :)

  7. 7

    Dragon — February 3, 2009 @ 1:32 AM

    Healthy and delicious! Another winner.

  8. 8

    Heather — February 3, 2009 @ 2:51 AM

    they looks great! dried fruit isn’t something i get excited about on it’s own, but i do like it in baked goods quite a bit. this bread looks yummy!

  9. 9

    Nina Timm — February 3, 2009 @ 3:19 AM

    I love to use dates in my sweets and desserts, but sadly none of those desserts will fall into the low-fat, low sugar category. You are amazing!!!

  10. 10

    The Duo Dishes — February 3, 2009 @ 5:42 AM

    The dried fruits really add nice natural sweeteners!

  11. 11

    VeggieGirl — February 3, 2009 @ 12:21 PM

    Fabulous!!

  12. 12

    Katrina — February 3, 2009 @ 2:17 PM

    I just made banana muffins and used agave for the sugar. They were great. This bread looks GREAT, too! Way to go, trying the dried fruits!

  13. 13

    Sandie — February 3, 2009 @ 5:32 PM

    I love using dried fruits when baking, especially dried figs and prunes—they add such amazing sweetness and moisture to the final product!

  14. 14

    Rosie — February 3, 2009 @ 5:34 PM

    I do like these fruits in bakes and your Banana Bread is just perfect for using them in! Looks delicious!

    Rosie x

  15. 15

    That Girl — February 3, 2009 @ 6:03 PM

    I can do dates and figs, but I draw the line at prunes!

  16. 16

    Shelley Jean Photography — February 3, 2009 @ 7:07 PM

    Oh, don’t you know I just made a loaf of banana bread last night?!?! BUT, it was not as healthy as yours. Next time I am definitely using your recipe.

  17. 17

    chuck — February 3, 2009 @ 7:39 PM

    Lori, when I was younger I hated dried fruit also. But, now that I’m older I love them. Prunes are my favorite. Your banana bread looks wonderful.

  18. 18

    Aimée — February 3, 2009 @ 7:54 PM

    So little sugar, this would be perfect for my playgroup! I’m a dried fruit nut,so this would be eaten up so fast around here.

  19. 19

    Manggy — February 3, 2009 @ 11:02 PM

    Hey, that’s pretty good and healthy! I tried dates for the first time last year (for baking though, not straight eating) and I kinda loved them :) I see you’re well on your way to complete fitness! :)

  20. 20

    Maria — February 3, 2009 @ 11:23 PM

    The bread looks great with all of that dried fruit! Thanks for a healthy recipe!

  21. 21

    Claire — February 3, 2009 @ 11:41 PM

    Mmmm…I love trying different banana bread recipes! i’ll tag this for later.

  22. 22

    Clumbsy Cookie — February 4, 2009 @ 12:02 AM

    This is the bread version of some cookies I make all the time. I like the “heatlynisation” you’ve made!

  23. 23

    Laurie — February 4, 2009 @ 12:10 AM

    Oh wow that looks so yummy!

  24. 24

    jillian — February 4, 2009 @ 2:37 AM

    I am a dried fruit fan and this looks really delicious!

  25. 25

    noble pig — February 4, 2009 @ 2:42 AM

    Funny but the dried fruits you mentioned…are all my faves. How could you not love them?!

    The bread sounds awesome. I know I would love it with all that stuff in there.

  26. 26

    ~Dana — February 4, 2009 @ 4:45 AM

    I love healthy recipe’s… thanks!

  27. 27

    CookiePie — February 4, 2009 @ 6:28 AM

    That looks like a perfect breakfast or snack – delish!

  28. 28

    The Peanut Butter Boy — February 4, 2009 @ 6:52 AM

    This looks good…but I still believe your Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Banana Bread is better, what do you think?

    That’s the one I’ve been making for a while using all whole wheat, skim milk, egg substitute and only 3/4 cup brown sugar but I need to experiment using honey…

  29. 29

    Lori Lynn — February 4, 2009 @ 8:07 AM

    I like those dried fruits, so this would be an instant winner for me.
    LL

  30. 30

    Robin Sue — February 4, 2009 @ 1:38 PM

    Wow that is a nice banana bread! And you said it is not dry so I will believe you. Thanks for the tip about the apricots, will stick with the CA kind then.

  31. 31

    Cheryl — February 4, 2009 @ 5:42 PM

    Great sounding recipe. Your Recipe site is amazing and so nice to find your blog. I am A Weight Watcher and I am really loving your extensive Weight Watcher collection of recipes!!!

  32. 32

    Parker — February 4, 2009 @ 8:24 PM

    Funny I was going to make a banana bread today, but feeling a bit under the weather. I like your addition of dried fruits

  33. 33

    Ellie from Kitchen Caravan — February 4, 2009 @ 8:36 PM

    This looks wonderfully healthy! I love whole wheat banana bread… and banana bread with dried fruit sounds even better.

  34. 34

    Jessy and her dog Winnie — February 5, 2009 @ 12:15 AM

    Ooo i love banana bread!

  35. 35

    Kris — February 5, 2009 @ 2:31 AM

    Can’t wait to try this! I’ve been looking fo a healthier version of banana bread…Thanks!!!

  36. 36

    Lucy — February 6, 2009 @ 3:54 PM

    I have to try it definitely !

  37. 37

    The Food Hunter — February 6, 2009 @ 8:10 PM

    This looks good. I love banana bread and I’m always looking for healthy versions. Thanks

  38. 38

    dawn — February 6, 2009 @ 11:44 PM

    I am always on the lookout for new, healthy breads. I am bookmarking this one.
    I love the new site format. Much brighter, and cleaner.

  39. 39

    Elora — December 19, 2012 @ 4:46 AM

    Such a good recipe! Instead of dates however, I used dried prunes (soaked in shallow water for 24h for moisture) and added half a cup of walnuts! Thank you so much! My family needs a healthy snack bread for breakfast and lunches.