Recipe: Peanut Butter-Swirled Banana Bread {Gluten-Free}

How is it Friday already? Wasn't it just Valentine's Day? I'm not quite sure where this week went - I feel like I'm constantly playing catch-up with blogging. I'm still feeling out a posting schedule but I hope to post at least one recipe a week and continue my Taiwan Tidbits series for the time being. Posting daily last week was just a bit much for me. Thanks for being patient while I figure things out!

Now, onto this banana bread. For some reason, I have a recipe for gluten-free banana donuts with caramel glaze on the blog but not plain ol' gluten-free banana bread. It was about time I fixed that. Well, it was more like I had a few browning bananas just waiting to be used in bread. My recipe for the banana donuts was essentially a quick bread recipe so I could have used that but I wanted to try a different flour blend.

I've been researching more about different gluten-free flour blends lately, and one that I've been curious about is Cup4Cup since it was developed under the guidance of renowned chef, Thomas Keller. It contains nonfat dry milk powder and xanthan gum, two ingredients I've rarely (or never) baked with. Actually, I had been avoiding xanthan gum for no real reason besides that it was a bit pricey. But once I got the milk powder in my pantry for the brownie thins, I knew I had to take the plunge with the xanthan gum as well.

So, I decided to make my own mock Cup4Cup blend and boy, am I glad I did! Why did I wait so long? This banana bread was super moist and with my addition of brown butter and peanut seriously rocked my world. This bread even got my hubs to finally come around to the idea of eating gluten-free. He's saying that he's enjoying the flavors of the gluten-free baked goods I make over wheat-based goods!

I won't bore you with the math and science behind this mock blend (heck, I'm still trying to understand it myself) but definitely check out my main gluten-free baking resource these days. There are formulas, charts and even a spreadsheet to help you figure out how to create your own flour blend to bake up some tasty gluten-free treats, like this peanut butter-swirled (brown butter) banana bread!

Peanut Butter-Swirled Banana Bread {Gluten-Free}
Using this formula as a guide, I created my own flour blend which included brown rice flour, sweet sorghum flour, potato starch, rice flour, tapioca flour, nonfat dry milk powder and xanthan gum. Feel free to play around with a blend of your own - this recipe is pretty forgiving. How can you go wrong with browned butter, bananas, and peanut butter?  

Yield: 1 loaf


2 cups (280 g) all-purpose gluten-free flour blend
1 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend contains it)
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup (133 g) sugar
8 tablespoons (112 g) browned butter, cooled
2 eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 cup (150 g) buttermilk or sour milk
2 1/2 medium (220 g) ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 cup creamy peanut butter


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch loaf pan and set aside.

To brown butter: Melt butter over medium heat in a small saucepan. Swirl butter around pan to cook evenly. Melted butter will foam, then turn a light brown - keep cooking and swirling pan until the color of the butter turns a dark golden brown and specks form at the bottom of the pan. Take off heat and set aside or pour in heat-proof bowl to cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, xanthan gum, salt, baking powder, baking soda and sugar. Stir in browned butter, eggs, vanilla and mix well. Then add buttermilk, mixing until well-combined. Fold in bananas until incorporated.

Pour batter into prepared loaf pan, and smooth the top with a spatula.

Dollop teaspoons of peanut butter over top of batter. Then, with a sharp paring knife, swirl the peanut butter into the batter by pulling through each dollop to create a marble effect.

Bake for 45-50 minutes, until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 1 hour, then flip out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Source: adapted from Gluten-Free on a Shoestring

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