Put Brown Bananas to Use: Chai Banana Bread | Fresh Tastes | PBS Food

Put Those Brown Bananas to Use: Chai Banana Bread

mini chai banana breads-2

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Banana and chai spices are one of the best food combinations I think ever paired together. The spices and warm banana flavor scream comfort. I like to bake these in a mini loaf pan but in case you don’t own one (understandable!), it can be made in an 9×5 or 8×4-inch loaf pan. These are pretty standard loaf pans and both will work great.

mini chai banana breads

I can make renditions of banana bread any day of the week because I feel like I always have three or four suspicious looking bananas always lurking on my counters. I’m not one of those people that can eat super ripe bananas but they are PERFECT for this application. They are even better the browner they are. I don’t think you could pay me to eat a fully browned banana. But I love them in any banana bread ever.

mini chai banana breads-3

Banana bread is usually the first thing people ever bake and that’s because it’s a super easy thing to make. It requires no fancy equipment and can be baked in about an hour. This iteration is extra special because of the spices. It’s delicious and moist and perfect for a fall day.

Chai Banana Bread

chai banana bread horizontal

No fancy equipment needed, just the basics and an hour of your time. Voila! Chai banana bread for a snack. (Recipe Credit: Adrianna Adarme of Fresh Tastes)



  • Dry Mix:
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 
  • Wet Mix:
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup white granulated sugar 
  • 3 ripe bananas, smashed 
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Frosting (optional):
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Pinch of salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Butter and flour an 8 ½ x 4 ½ inch loaf pan or you can use mini loaf pans (like I did).
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, walnuts, baking soda, spices and salt until combined. In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter and sugars. Crack in the egg, add the mashed banana and vanilla; whisk until combined.
  3. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture, stirring just until the speckles of flour disappear. Be sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl to get any bits of flour that might be hiding. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Give the pan a couple of moderate smacks on the counter to even out the batter.
  4. Transfer to the oven to bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until the center (s) has risen, the edges are golden brown, and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow the bread to cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then invert the loaf and cool it on a rack, or leave it in the pan and eat it warm. The banana bread loaves will stay delicious and moist for 3 to 5 days when wrapped tightly in plastic wrap.


Can be baked in mini loaf pans or an 9x5 or 8x4-inch loaf pan.

Adrianna Adarme - PBS Food Fresh Tastes BloggerAdrianna Adarme is a food blogger and author living in Los Angeles, California. She writes the blog A Cozy Kitchen, where she shares comforting, everyday recipes from her kitchen. She recently authored her first cookbook, PANCAKES: 72 Sweet and Savory Recipes for the Perfect Stack. She’s a lover of breakfast, pie (and sometimes even pie for breakfast), corgis and cute things. You can find her on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.

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