Gluten-free baking can be challenging enough on its own. Take away the eggs and dairy too, and you can definitely expect some monstrous kitchen disasters. Trust me … I’ve had many of them. I can only imagine how many loaves of bread were churned out to create one of this year’s new cookbooks, The Allergy-Free Cook Bakes Bread. All of the recipes in this simply laid out book are gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free, (I believe soy-free), and vegan to boot!
Now for the real question … is the bread any good? I’m happy to report that I’m just one recipe in and already very pleased with this cookbook. Based on the author’s flour guide, I made several flour substitutions to her Banana Chocolate Chip Quick Bread recipe, and it still turned out beautifully. If you have any experience with gluten-free baking, then you know there are like fifty-bajillion different gluten-free flours. I keep several on hand, but still didn’t have the exact ones for this recipe. Fortunately, Laurie makes substitutions easy, so I was able to churn out this delicious bread, and use up some fast-ripening bananas, without having to go to the store!
This banana bread turns out perfectly moist, with a texture much like you would expect from any good, hearty banana quick bread. It is a heavy loaf that doesn’t rise a ton, but don’t let the weight fool you, this is still a nice dessert-like indulgence (not a nutritious door stop!). The flavor is just sweet enough, and the maple, banana and chocolate combo is of course divine. The gluten-free flours add some flavor nuances that are “different” (this isn’t wheat flour after all), but we really liked the change.
I’ve included below my version of the recipe, including notes and tips on what worked for me. Enjoy!
Special Diet Notes: Maple-Sweetened Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, optionally soy-free, vegan, and vegetarian.
- ¾ cup brown rice flour
- ½ cup buckwheat flour
- ¼ cup potato starch (or tapioca starch)
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed (I ground about 2 teaspoons of whole flaxseed in my spice grinder)
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking doda
- 1-1/2 teaspoons xanthan gum (or Guar Gum for corn-free)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅔ cup dairy-free semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1-1/2 cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 medium)
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons oil (I used grapeseed, but feel free to use your favorite baking oil)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (can sub white vinegar in a pinch)
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF and grease and flour (I used a little brown rice flour) an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan.
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine the flours, starch, flax, baking soda, xanthan gum, cinnamon, and sea salt. Stir in the chocolate chips.
- In a large bowl, blend the banana, maple syrup, oil, vanilla, and vinegar.
- Stir in the dry ingredients until just combined.
- Scrape the batter into your prepared loaf pan (it will be thick), and smooth out the top.
- Bake for 45 to 55 minutes (mine was perfectly cooked at 50 minutes).
- Let the loaf cool for 10 minutes in the pan and then pop it out (since you floured the pan, it should slide right out) and place on a cooling rack to let it cool completely before slicing.