This Vegan Chocolate Chip Banana Bread is incredibly moist with a soft, tender texture. Look no further for the perfect gluten free banana bread! It uses buckwheat flour, which gives it almost a nutty flavor and irresistible texture.
Listen, if you know me IRL, then you are probably a little shocked by this post, but a pregnant woman’s cravings are not to be reckoned with. And I have been craving buckwheat banana bread like you would not believe. I LOVE all banana bread, which you can tell based on the volume of banana bread recipes that I’ve posted on CLF.
I love Old Fashioned Banana Bread with a hint of lemon zest, Nutella swirled banana bread, pumpkin banana bread or even peanut butter banana muffins. No need for me to make a distinction. However, let me tell you, this vegan gluten free chocolate chip banana bread is going to change your life!
You’re all, “stop it!’ And I will not. Because I am right.
Table of Contents
Why is this the best ever vegan gluten free banana bread?
- Buckwheat & Spelt: I use a combination of buckwheat and spelt flours for a subtly nutty flavor and a delicate crumb. While spelt flour is generally tolerated by those with gluten-intolerance, to make this fully gluten free use a combination of buckwheat and oat flours.
- Coconut Oil: There is just enough coconut oil to make it moist and tender but not so much to make it fatty or taste like coconut. We are here for the banana, chocolate and buckwheat.
- Just enough banana: There is just enough banana to add the perfect banana flavor and create a moist loaf without making it gummy.
- Unsweetened Almond Milk: For the moisture and the slight nuttiness without any of the calories! Hooray! *Reaches for second slice.*
- Bananas: In an ideal world, I choose bananas that are ripe but only just beginning to spot. I find this to be the peak flavor for banana bread.
- Sugar: I use granulated sugar for my muffins. It is here for the more obvious flavor reasons, but also to aid in leavening, moisture, texture and stability.
- Coconut Oil: I use organic extra virgin coconut oil in quick breads like this Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Bread because it makes the moistest tender crumb! It keeps the bread moist longer than vegetable oil and has all the added health benefits. Winning.
- Almond Milk: I use unsweetened almond milk for the moisture and subtle nutty flavor. Depending on what I have on hand, I will use vanilla flavor almond milk or original almond milk interchangeably. Any alternative milk will do. Just make sure you like the flavor!
- Vanilla Extract: Vanilla Extract adds a beautiful flavor itself but it also boosts the flavor of other ingredients around it like chocolate and banana!
- Buckwheat Flour: I use "whole grain" Bob's Red Mill Buckwheat flour, which means they process the whole seed. That retains more nutrients and also makes the flour a purple grey. It has a better flavor and will hit all those nutty, buckwheat high notes!
- Spelt Flour: I use spelt flour because of its slightly nutty flavor. Spelt is an ancient ancestor of modern-day wheat, so while spelt is generally tolerated by those with a gluten intolerance, it is not gluten free. To make it GF, use oat flour.
- Baking Powder: Double acting baking powder will react instantly when it is mixed with an acid and then again when it is heated. Because it is double acting, it has a slower, more stable rise than baking soda alone.
- Baking Soda: Do check the freshness of your baking soda! It does lose potency over time. If it's not fresh, send it to the back of the refrigerator to absorb some odors, or clean your marble countertops with it!
- Kosher Salt: Kosher salt is lass salty than table salt and a teaspoon weighs less than other finer ground varieties. It heightens the flavor here and will keep your bread from tasting dull or flat.
- Dark Chocolate: Dark chocolate pistoles, or fèves, like the ones I used in the Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Bread video come in large quantities, which is a challenge to store in addition to being expensive. The best substitute here would be to chop a semi-sweet chocolate bar into larger pieces. This will give you the same chocolate sheet effect.
Variations on Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
- Muffins: This recipe makes 8 muffins. I use the tulip liners so that they can rise extra tall and be proud, bakery-style muffins.
- Butterscotch: Substitute the chocolate for butterscotch chips. A totally different vibe.
- Small Batch Muffins: I was hit by a serious craving and only had ½ banana, so I divided the whole recipe by 4 and made 2 Mini Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins. Strongly recommend.
Substitutions for Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
- Almond Milk: I used unsweetened almond milk but any alternative milk will do.
- Coconut oil: Coconut oil does magical things for quick bread texture, but you can use any oil you choose.
- Sugar: I don’t have anything other than refined sugar on hand in a pinch, but you can use coconut sugar. Sadly, you cannot just omit and use monkfruit or stevia because sugar has other functions in quick bread like leavening, moisture, texture and stability.
- Alternative Flours: You can use all buckwheat flour but it will impact the taste. Buckwheat is very intense and too much will be overpowering. I would not suggest substituting any other type of gluten free flour because they each have different hydration needs and each their own textural differences. To make this bread completely gluten-free, use a combination of buckwheat and oat flours.
Frequently Asked Questions
Generally speaking gluten free banana bread will be gummy with too much moisture or too much banana. It sounds counterintuitive but that mashed banana we adore, who is the star of this show, can make the texture gummy.
This is 100% the fault of rice flour or the rice flour that is in your Gluten Free All Purpose flour. All brands have a different proprietary mixture and some include more rice flour than others. Take a little peak at the ingredients and see where one the list rice flour falls. Or just make this Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Bread instead and use buckwheat and spelt flours instead!
The most common two reasons vegan banana bread is dense is there is too much liquid or not enough leavening. Too much banana can also be the culprit. Don’t forget that bananas vary greatly in size, so 1 banana might be the equivalent of 2! It is best to mash them and then measure or weigh.
This banana bread will stay moist for days when wrapped up tightly in plastic wrap and stored at room temperature. It is best consumed within 5 days at room temperature. For longer storage, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze up to 3 months. I like to pre-slice the loaves and then I can defrost a piece at a time!
Chef Lindsey's Recipe Tips
Always measure or weigh your mashed bananas because every banana is different and some are double the size of others! Too much mashed banana will cause the texture to be dense and gummy.
Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Banana Bread
- 1 cup Bananas (mashed (about 2 bananas))
- ½ cup Sugar
- ⅓ cup Coconut Oil
- ¾ cup Almond milk (unsweetened)
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
- ½ cup Buckwheat flour
- 1 ½ cups Spelt flour (or oat flour for fully gluten-free)
- 2 teaspoons Baking powder
- ½ teaspoon Baking soda
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1 cup Chocolate pistoles (or chocolate chopped)
- Pre-heat oven to 325°F (not convection). [Convection will over-brown the outside while the center remains raw.]
- Spray a loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray. For the easiest removal, line one side with a piece of parchment paper that extends past the top of the pan. Simply cut a piece of parchment to fit the long side of the loaf pan.
- In a large bowl whisk together the mashed bananas, sugar and coconut oil until mixed. Whisk in the almond milk and vanilla.
- In a separate bowl whisk together flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- Whisk into wet mixture.
- Fold in chocolate.
- Pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Arrange additional cut bananas on top, if desired.
- Bake 45-50 minutes or until a cake tester or toothpick comes out clean.
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