Banana bread is a classic snack for athletes, multitasking as both pre- and post-workout fuel as well as on-board fuelling during long-distance events. This version is made with wholewheat flour, olive oil and honey. It’s higher in fibre, lower in saturated fat and lower in sugar than traditional recipes, plus, it’s light, ultra-moist, infused with sweet banana flavour and takes literally ten minutes to prepare before going in the oven. It takes 60 – 70 minutes to bake in a loaf tin, taking you over the 30-minute allowance, but you can shorten the cooking time by dividing the mixture into 10 muffin cases and baking for 20 minutes. Try one of the variations below when you want to change things up a bit.
2 ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
75 ml (3 fl oz) light olive oil
100 ml (3½ fl oz) runny honey (see ‘Make it VEGAN’)
2 eggs (see ‘Make it VEGAN’)
1 tsp vanilla extract
200 g (7 oz) whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
60 ml (2 fl oz) milk (any type)
Makes 10 slices
Preheat the oven to 160 °C/fan 140 °C/gas mark 3. Meanwhile, line a 900 g/2 lb loaf tin with baking paper.
In a large bowl or food mixer, mix all the ingredients until well combined (you’ll have quite runny batter). Turn into the prepared loaf tin and level the top with a knife.
Bake until a skewer inserted into the centre of the loaf comes out clean, 55–60 minutes. Leave in the tin for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool. It will keep in an airtight tin or wrapped in foil for up to 5 days.