A year and a day ago, everything changed. Yesterday was the one year anniversary of when COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic by the WHO. The OKC Thunder were about to tip off against the Utah Jazz when the game got suddenly cancelled. My undergraduate University said we would be remote the rest of the semester and all students needed to be moved off campus by the end of the weekend. A lot was unknown in March of 2020, “how bad will this be?”, “should we be masking?”, “where did all the toilet paper go?”, “will we be back in the office by Easter (HA)”. A lot has changed in the last year. We understand the COVID virus much better, we’ve seen the devastating effects it has had, and we also have several effective vaccines available (woohoo!). But some things haven’t changed. I am still taking remote graduate classes. We’re still wearing masks (don’t stop yet!). And we still can’t go to indoor athletic events or concerts.
Another thing that hasn’t changed, at least for me, is the love of banana bread. Not to mention the ultimate combo of peanut butter and chocolate. Earlier during the pandemic I tried out this marbled banana. I recently retested the recipe and couldn’t wait to share it with you all! No matter whether we’re in a pandemic or back to “normal life”, there is always a good time for banana bread. And this peanut butter, chocolatey goodness hits all the right notes.
Banana Bread Frenzy
In the beginning of the pandemic banana bread had a resurgence among the American public. As people stocked up on groceries, bananas turned brown on counters, and baking seemed like the only past time, banana bread got the glory it has always deserved. It may have been the circumstances that put the light on banana bread, but it has always been one of my favs. Banana bread is not only easy to make and hard to screw up. It it also versatile in its flavors and add ins, never failing to make a delicious breakfast, dessert, or snack.
Marbled Banana Bread
There’s not a banana bread I won’t eat. Hundreds of banana bread recipes are out there, including several on this blog. It can be altered to fit your dietary needs, whether it be vegan, gluten free, paleo, or sugar free.
This marbled chocolate peanut butter banana bread combines two of my favorite things: chocolate and peanut butter. This combo has been highlighted multiple times in recipes. If there’s peanut butter and chocolate its gotta be good. I decided to make this bread a little ~fancy~ by creating a marbled batter. This requires a little extra work, dividing the batter into two adding separate ingredients and spooning the batters into the loaf pan. But the result is delicious!
Let’s Make it
Start with mashing up some extra ripe bananas. The riper the better when it comes to banana bread, especially when you are trying to cut out added sugars. This recipes features only 2 Tb of added sugar in the form of maple syrup. The rest of the wet ingredients include coconut oil, peanut butter, vanilla, and eggs. I’ve used both real eggs and flax eggs with good results! Next comes the flour base. I used a mixture of almond flour and whole wheat flour. You can substitute these flours at your own risk (the beauty of banana bread!) At this time also add baking powder/soda and salt. Once this batter is fully mixed together, now comes the fun part.
Separate the batter into two equal parts. To one, you will add powdered peanut butter. While I don’t think powdered peanut butter is a great substitute for the real deal, it works great in this recipe as a flour substitute! It also is great added to smoothies or oatmeal. PB Fit is a common name brand, but there are also generic versions out there including simple truth organic powdered peanut butter from Kroger/King Scoopers. If you don’t have powdered peanut butter you could also sub more flour or protein powder. To the other half, add cocoa or cacoa powder and chocolate chips.
Now to assemble, in your loaf pan, intermix spoonfuls of one of the batters across the bottom of the pan. Keep layering the batters until all has been added. Then, using the tip of a knife, gently swirl the batter together. This will create the marbled look! If desired, add some extra chocolate chips on top.
Time to bake, cool, and enjoy this delicious and decadent marbled chocolate peanut butter banana bread!
I am hopeful after a year of dealing with the pandemic, we will soon be able to resemble some sort of normalcy. I am excited for concerts, game nights, bar hopping, basketball games, movie dates, weddings, and more. But I hope we as a country have also learned a lot through this year. For me this includes:
The importance of family (and how blessed I am to be close to my parents and siblings)
That remote school and work IS possible, and maybe this will provide more flexibility for those who need it in the future.
The importance of strong, trustworthy leadership (or sometimes lack thereof).
You can have fun at home, and you don’t need to spend dollars on end to have a good time.
Keep your loved ones close.
Life is short- never take your life, your experiences and opportunities, or the people you care about for granted.
And we have learned that banana bread may not solve all your problems, but it doesn’t hurt either 🙂
Marbled Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread
This banana bread highlights the ultimate combination of peanut butter and chocolate, in this healthier yet rich and decadent quick bread
1/2cupwhole wheat flouror AP, oat flour, or gf flour
1/4cup powdered peanut butteri.e. PB Fit or something similar
1/4cupchocolate chipsplus more for topping
Preheat oven to 350 and prepare a 9 or 10in loaf pan with parchment paper or grease
Prepare the Batters
Mash bananas in a medium mixing bowl
Add the rest of the wet ingredients and thoroughly combine.
Add the flours, baking powder/soda, and salt. Mix together until fully incorporated.
Equally separate the batter into two mixing bowls. In one bowl, add the powdered peanut butter and combine. In the other, add the cocoa powder and chocolate chips and combine.
In the prepared pan, alternate adding spoonfuls of each batter across the bottom of the pan so there is a mix of batters throughout. Continue to layer the batter on top of each other until all the batter has been added
Using a butter knife, stick the tip into the batter and gently swirl the batter together to get a marbled effect
If desired, add extra chocolate chips on top
Bake and Eat
Bake the loaf until a the top is starting to turn slightly brown and a sharp knife or toothpick comes out clean. For a 10in load pan this will be about 45-50minutes. For a 9in, skinner pan this bake time will be longer.
Let cool, slice, and ENJOY! Store in an airtight container for 4 to 5 days, or stick in the freezer for up to a month