I have a few thank-yous to toss out there for this recipe. First of all, a thank-you to Michelle of Lucky Taste Buds for masterminding the Peanut Butter Jelly Banana Bread recipe that I changed only slightly (I added vanilla and cinnamon, used half the amount of sweetener, and opted for unsweetened varieties of both vanilla almond milk and applesauce). More on the magnificent bread in a bit.
I must also – belatedly – thank Elina of Healthy and Sane for hosting a giveaway for NuNaturals Stevia products a while back. I was one of the lucky winners, and have been experimenting with the company’s NuStevia Sweetener Stevia Baking Blend in a variety of baked goods and desserts.
My take on this 100% natural, low-calorie (15 per Tbsp), preservative- and artificial sweetener-free sugar substitute is as follows:
- My first choice of sweetener will always be of the non-refined variety (date sugar, pure maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, etc.).
- Just as I do with all forms of sugar, I use conservative amounts of the Stevia Baking Blend in my baked goods… all sweeteners are best consumed in moderation!
- Even though there is some controversy surrounding the nutritional profile of Stevia, I would much sooner consume it than any of the artificial sweeteners on market shelves.
- Although it has a slightly distinctive flavor when tasted straight from the container, the Stevia Baking Blend melds right into batters once baked.
If you’re looking for a low-calorie, all-natural sugar substitute, give this product a try!
Ok, back to the grub…
I cannot sing the praises of this tender, flavorful quick bread loudly enough! In every bite the rich peanut butter flavor is complimented by the subtle sweetness from the bananas and strawberry jam. Everything I love about a PB&J and banana sandwich is jam-packed into one hearty slice of drool-worthy bread.
I typically freeze half of whatever batch of baked goods I’ve most recently made, but something tells me this loaf won’t get the chance to see the inside of our freezer. In fact, I bet it won’t even last a week in the fridge.
PB & J Banana Bread
slightly adapted from Lucky Taste Buds
yields 10-12 slices
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp salt
- 1/4 cup NuNaturals Stevia Baking Blend (or other sweetener of your choice)
- 1 Tbsp baking powder
- 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 2 Tbsp ground flaxseed meal mixed with 4 Tbsp water (or 2 eggs, lightly whisked)
- 1 cup all-natural smooth or chunky peanut butter (I recommend chunky for a nice crunch!)
- 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 medium banana, mashed
- 2 Tbsp canola oil
- 1/3 cup jam of your choice
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a loaf pan with canola oil cooking spray. Line the prepared pan with parchment paper.
- Stir together dry ingredients (flour through baking powder) in a large bowl.
- Combine wet ingredients (milk through canola oil) in a medium bowl.
- Pour wet ingredients into dry and combine until just moistened.
- Pour one half of the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Spread a layer of jam over the top of the batter. Pour the remaining batter on top of the jam.
- Bake in oven for 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of bread comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then remove the loaf with the parchment paper (this allows for easier cutting). Let cool another 10 minutes or so before slicing and devouring.