Fat-Free, Naturally Sweetened Date Bread

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Christina Ross
Christina Rosshttps://www.healthyfoodforliving.com/
I'm a human being on planet earth. I've lived hundreds of lifetimes. In this incarnation I'm here to advance medicine.

Don’t get me wrong, I neither promote nor follow a fat-free diet. Olive oil, nuts, seeds, avocados, cheese, peanut butter, chocolate, salmon, and 2% greek yogurt are all staples in my eating regime. That being said, in an attempt to eat a bit lighter during the interim between holidays, I am being extra cautious of gobbling down rich baked goods.

I will continue to enjoy a spoonful of peanut butter melting into my morning oatmeal, pecans sprinkled over oil & vinegar-dressed salads, 2% yogurt topped with granola, and the occasional square of dark chocolate, but I’m sticking to my plan of lightening homemade baked goods when possible.

NameFat-Free, Naturally Sweetened Date Bread
Prep Time20 minutes
Cooking Time40-45 minutes
Total TimeApproximately 1 hour
Servings10 servings
Yield1 standard-sized loaf
Fat-Free, Naturally Sweetened Date Bread

I made many alterations to Ina’s original recipe (linked below). I subbed in 1 cup of whole wheat pastry flour, completely eliminated the refined sugar, swapped mashed banana for the butter, and opted for the addition of pumpkin pie spice. The lack of nuts in my version was simply due to a pantry bereft of pecans, of which I have been eating in abundance (note to self: re-stock pecan stash ASAP!).

The generous amount of chopped dates lent the perfect amount of natural sweetness, and the mashed banana kept the bread tender and moist. The lovely flavor of citrus permeates the bread beautifully, thanks to the triple threat of orange liqueur, orange zest, and orange juice. I’m sure the original recipe yields a sweet and buttery dessert bread, but my version is better suited for breakfast or a mid-afternoon snack. The bread is best when served warm straight out of the oven, (what baked good isn’t?), but a quick re-heat in the toaster oven does the trick for leftover slices.

Fat-Free, Naturally Sweetened Date Bread


  • 2 cups coarsely chopped pitted medjool dates
  • 1/3 cup orange liqueur
  • 1/4 cup mashed overripe banana
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp grated orange zest
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (3-4 oranges)
  • canola oil cooking spray

Estimated Nutrition Per Serving

Calories: 190 kcal

Total Fat: 0g

Saturated Fat: 0g

Cholesterol: 0mg

Sodium: 220mg

Total Carbohydrates: 46g

Dietary Fiber: 2g

Sugars: 32g

Protein: 2g


Prepare the Dates

Start by preheating your oven to 350°F (175°C) and greasing a standard-sized loaf pan. Then, in a medium-sized bowl, combine the chopped dates and baking soda. Pour the boiling water over them, ensuring they’re well-covered. Let this mixture sit for about 15-20 minutes. The baking soda helps soften the dates.

Mix Dry Ingredients

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. This step ensures even distribution of leavening agents and salt.

Blend Wet Ingredients

In another bowl, mix together the applesauce, honey (or maple syrup), and vanilla extract. This combination will serve as a natural sweetener and moistener for the bread.

Combine Everything

Once the dates have softened, use a blender or food processor to puree them into a smooth paste. Add the date paste to the wet ingredients and stir until well combined.

Mix Wet and Dry Ingredients

Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture, stirring until just combined. Be careful not to overmix; a few lumps are okay. If you’re including chopped nuts, fold them in at this stage.


Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan and spread it evenly. Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Cool and Serve

Once baked, allow the date bread to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes. Then, transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely. Slicing the bread is easier when it’s completely cooled.

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