Marbled Chocolate Banana Bread

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Everyone loves banana bread! This marbled chocolate banana bread is a gorgeous spin on the classic recipe. Although it looks complicated, I promise – it is simple to create these beautiful chocolate swirls in your banana bread. Perfect for your next brunch.

Bananas are a hot commodity in my house these days with a toddler around. However, whenever I happen to have a few extra bananas on the counter at the end of the week – they are most likely destined to become this pretty marbled chocolate banana bread. Cutting into this loaf after baking is so fun because the pattern of the swirls of chocolate is never the exact same from loaf to loaf.

Although the marbled effect may look hard, it’s actually very easy to do! Not only is this banana bread pretty to look at, but it’s naturally sweetened with just maple syrup and is vegan too. Honestly, it’s become my go-to banana bread recipe.

We love baking up treats with bananas around here! (You might also like these banana oatmeal muffins, double chocolate banana muffins, and this vegan chocolate walnut banana bread.)

Ingredients You’ll Need

marbled banana bread ingredients in small bowls with text labels on a white background.
  • Flax Egg: if you’re new to egg-free baking (or vegan baking) the flax egg is my favorite way to add structure and moisture to baked goods without eggs. It’s super simple to make by stirring together ground flaxseed and water, wait a couple minutes and then it will gel up and be ready to use!
  • Bananas: the best bananas for banana bread are on the extra ripe side. The more brown spots the better! Overripe bananas are sweeter and much easier to mash for banana bread.
  • Oil: use any neutral flavored oil you have in the pantry like canola oil, avocado oil, or vegetable oil. I also use olive oil and coconut oil sometimes too because I love the subtle flavor they add.
  • Maple Syrup: add natural sweetness to this banana bread with maple syrup. Bananas add so much sweetness, you don’t need to add much more to banana bread.
  • Milk: add some moisture to this bread with some milk. I prefer to use soy milk in baked goods, but you can use your milk of choice (dairy milk, or non-dairy milk options like almond milk, oat milk all work well!).
  • All Purpose Flour: the standard flour for quick breads like this one. You can also use whole wheat flour – I’ve made it many times with it!
  • Baking Powder & Baking Soda: we use this combo to add lift and lightness to this vegan banana bread.
  • Chocolate Chips: to create the marbled effect for this marble banana bread recipe, you’ll melt some chocolate chips and mix into the batter. For a non-dairy banana bread, we used vegan chocolate chips.

How to Make Marbled Banana Bread

wet ingredients for banana bread mixed together in a bowl.

Mix the Wet Ingredients: make your flax egg in a small bowl and set aside. Mash your bananas and add to a large bowl. Add the flax egg (once gelled), milk, oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract to the mashed bananas and stir well with a wooden spoon.

banana bread batter in a large mixing bowl with a wooden spoon.

Mix the Dry Ingredients & Combine: in a separate medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir the flour mixture into the wet ingredients – mixing just until combined.

chocolate banana bread batter in a small bowl with a spoon.

Make the Chocolate Batter: place chocolate chips in a separate bowl and melt them in the microwave. Scoop one cup of the batter into the melted chocolate and stir until well mixed to make the chocolate banana bread batter.

chocolate and plain banana bread batter spooned into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper.

Layer into Loaf Pan & Bake: spoon the two batters into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper – alternating between the two. I usually do two layers of spooned batter. Use a butter knife to swirl them together and create the marble effect. Top with chocolate chips (if desired) and bake for 45-60 minutes or until center of the loaf is cooked and a toothpick comes out with just a couple of moist crumbs. Allow bread to cool to room temperature on a wire rack before slicing.

Tips for Making Marbled Chocolate Banana Bread

Making a Flax Egg: You’ll need ground flax seed as a vegan egg replacer for this recipe. I haven’t had too much trouble finding ground flax at the store, usually you can find it in the bulk foods or baking sections. If you can only find whole flax seeds, you can grind them in the blender or a coffee grinder. You want to make sure they are ground because they need to be broken apart to absorb the water and form a gel.

Use Extra Ripe Bananas: Really ripe bananas make for a sweeter banana bread, so wait until your bananas are basically all dark brown with little to no yellow skin anymore.

Line Your Loaf Pan: I like to line my loaf pan with a sheet of parchment paper when baking. That way, I can just lift the bread out of the pan once cooled which makes it a lot easier to slice and serve.

thick slices of marbled chocolate banana bread on a cutting board.

Storage

  • Countertop: allow bread to cool to room temperature, slice, and store in an airtight container on the counter for up to 5 days.
  • Can you freeze this Banana Bread? Yes! this banana bread freezes well. I pre-slice it and freeze in an airtight container with parchment between the slices to prevent them from sticking. When I want to have a slice, I just defrost it for 30-60 seconds in the microwave. You can also tightly wrap the loaf in plastic wrap and freeze the entire loaf together.

FAQs

Why use mushy bananas for banana bread?

Extra ripe bananas with lots of brown spots (ie. mushy bananas) are better for banana bread since they are much sweeter and have a stronger banana flavor. It’s also easier to mash them into a puree for the bread.

Should I grease my banana bread pan?

Yes – you want to make sure your banana bread doesn’t stick to the pan so make sure to grease the loaf pan with non-stick spray or some oil. You can also line it with parchment paper instead of greasing it. I prefer this method since you can easily lift the loaf out of the pan in one piece after baking.

Can I use frozen bananas in banana bread?

Yes! If you have frozen bananas stashed in the freezer that need to be used up – they can be used in banana bread. Just thaw your bananas in the microwave or in the fridge overnight before using in the recipe.

More Vegan Recipes with Bananas

  • vegan double chocolate banana muffins close up

    Double Chocolate Banana Muffins


  • Banana Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

  • chocolate walnut banana bread

    Chocolate Walnut Banana Bread

  • Vegan Banana Bread Baked Oatmeal

    Vegan Banana Bread Baked Oatmeal

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slices of marbled chocolate banana bread on a white marble board. Print

Vegan Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread

Everyone loves banana bread! This marbled chocolate banana bread is a gorgeous spin on the classic recipe. Although it looks complicated, it is simple to create these beautiful chocolate swirls in your banana bread. Course Baked Good, BreadCuisine American, VeganDiet Vegan Prep Time 10 minutes minutesCook Time 55 minutes minutesTotal Time 1 hour hour 5 minutes minutes Servings 10 slices Calories 245kcal Author Deborah Murphy

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seed
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons warm water
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup soy milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease 5″ x 9″ loaf pan or line with parchment paper and set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the flax seed and water to make your flax egg. Let sit 2-3 minutes to form a gel.
  • Add the bananas to a large mixing bowl bowl and mash well with a fork.
  • Add the flax egg, oil, maple syrup, milk, and vanilla extract to the bowl with the mashed bananas and stir well.
  • In a small mixing bowl, add the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt) and whisk to mix them together.
  • Stir dry ingredients into wet ingredients just until mixed, it’s ok to have some lumps still.
  • In a small bowl, add the chocolate chips and microwave for 1 minute. Stir and heat another 30 seconds or so until melted. Measure out 1 cup of the bread dough and stir into the melted chocolate.
  • Pour 1/2 of the banana bread mixture into pan. Use spoon to add 1/2 of the chocolate dough. Create a swirl pattern with butter knife. Repeat with the rest of the dough, swirling again.
  • Top with a few extra chocolate chips if desired.
  • Bake for 45-55 minutes or until tooth pick interested into center of loaf comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before slicing.

Video

Notes

  • Storage: Store bread on the countertop in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days.
  • Freezing: wrap entire loaf tightly in plastic wrap to store in the freezer for up to 6 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge. You can also slice and freeze slices in an airtight container with parchment paper between slices to keep them from sticking together. Thaw slices in the microwave for a few seconds.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice | Calories: 245kcal | Carbohydrates: 32.5g | Protein: 4.5g | Fat: 11.5g | Saturated Fat: 8.5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 240mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 11g

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