Vegan Banana Bread

For some of us, banana bread calls to mind memories of childhood and mouth-watering smells making their way throughout the home. That being said, there are other reasons to love banana bread…for instance, bananas help keep blood pressure in check because increasing potassium intake can be beneficial in its vasodilation effects (relaxing the pathways of veins and arteries). But that’s not all…check out these other benefits!

1. Asthma Alleviating: A study conducted by the Imperial College of London found that children who consumed one banana per day had a 34% less chance of developing asthma.
2. Cancer Reducing: Those who ate bananas in the first two years of life may have a reduced risk of developing childhood leukemia.
3. Healthy Hearts: The fiber, potassium, vitamin C and B6 that are found in bananas support heart health. An increase in potassium comsumption, in addition to a decrease in sodium intake, can be the most important dietary change that a person can make to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease.
4. Allevaiting Diarrhea: Bland foods like bananas are recommended for treating diarrhea. Electrolytes- like potassium and those found in bananas- are often depleted when we are ill, bananas can help replenish lost potassium.
5. Memory: Bananas contain tryptophan, an amino acid that some believe plays a role in preserving memory and boosting one’s mood.
6. Weight Loss: Bananas are naturally sweet and can help curb the sweet tooth when sugar cravings come calling.

Now are there enough reasons to amp up the amount of bananas on the menu? We think so! Give this recipe a whirl!

Ingredients:

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cups white granulated sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup plain soy milk or almond milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
2 cups mashed banana, from about 4 large very ripe bananas
1/4 cup canola oil
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
Walnuts (optional)

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly oil a 9″x5″ loaf pan and set aside.
2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugars, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the milk and cider vinegar and let stand for 2 minutes. Add the mashed banana, canola oil, maple syrup and vanilla extract, whisking until well combined. Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing until just combined. If using them, fold in the walnuts and pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan.
4. Bake for about 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted into the center emerges clean.
5. Allow the bread to cool on a wire cooling rack for 20 minutes before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Makes 1 9″x5″ loaf.

Click here to learn more!

Sources:
http://dairyfreecooking.about.com/od/breadsbakery/r/vegan_banana_bread_recipe.htm
http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/health-benefits-one-banana-day-3316.html
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/271157.php