Gluten, Sugar, and Dairy Free Banana Bread (2 Ways!)

whole30 banana bread

Well hello!  I feel like I have a lot to catch you guys up on, but for now I'll focus on the banana bread many of you have requested.  During quarantine, husband and I have definitely slacked on nutrition.  Despite having literally no social obligations or ever leaving the house for that matter, I simply did not feel inspired to cook.  When I did, it was something easy, and when I didn't DoorDash was a primary source of sustenance.  At first it was easy to make excuses because this was unprecedented times and it was reasonable to feel overwhelmed and just generally "meh", but after a few months passed, we definitely realized this was a new normal.  

Whole30 Banana Bread

So in the interest of reminding myself that I do indeed like cooking, that vegetables do indeed exist, and just generally resetting our systems, we kicked off an "almost Whole 30" at the start of August.  And by almost Whole 30, I mean we're limiting our diet to only the allowed foods, but I've taken some liberty with things like cassava flour tortillas or biscuits, or in this case banana bread.  We are still very much eating primarily vegetables, but particularly on weekends, a fun baking project is welcome. I made this for the first time last week, and was shocked how enjoyable it was given everything it does not include.  Just to make sure it wasn't a fluke I made a double batch today.  It was just as good.  So if you're gluten, dairy, or sugar free, or just looking for a cleaner sweet treat, give this a go!

Whole30 Banana Bread


  • ~13oz very ripe bananas (about 4 small bananas or 3 large ones)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted and cooled (still liquid)
  • 1 3/4 cups blanched almond flour [6 oz] (I get this at Trade Joe's or Costco)
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour [2 oz]
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • For Traditional : 1 tsp cinnamon and an extra banana
  • For Chocolate Swirl: 2 Tbs almond milk or water and 2 Tbs cocoa powder (I swear by this cocoa powder, depending what type you use the chocolate swirl won't be as dark)


Heat the oven to 350°. Spray or grease a loaf pan, then cut a strip of parchment paper the length of the pan to serve as a sling when removing your loaf.  I like to use binder clips to hold in place (see below).  Spray or grease the paper.  The bread photographed used this 1.25lb loaf pan (9.5x5x2.75), but I actually prefer using this 1lb loaf pan (8.5x4.5x2.75).

Paleo Banana Bread

Whisk or sift together your dry ingredients and set aside.  This step actually matters because almond flour is very clumpy. 

In a mixing bowl, mash your bananas into a smooth mush. Add your melted coconut oil and vanilla extract and stir. This will help cool the coconut oil to ensure your eggs don’t scramble. Add your eggs. (I like to crack them into a separate bowl to ensure they’re all good and no shells sneak in, and whisk gently to combine before adding to my other wet ingredients.) Add your dry ingredients (including cinnamon if using) and stir gently to combine. 

If doing the chocolate swirl variation, in a small mixing bowl (I use the same bowl I cracked the eggs into because dishes) add the cocoa powder and almond milk. Stir with a small whisk or fork until a paste forms. It might look like it won’t come together, but be patient. Add about half of the batter to the bowl and mix until it turns a beautiful, uniform chocolate color. Then, rotate dolloping the plain and chocolate batter into the prepared loaf pan. Once you’ve utilized all the batter, use a knife/kabob stick/fork to swirl the two batters together into a pleasant marbled pattern. 

For the traditional version, transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan, and cut a banana in half lengthwise (so you have two banana shaped halves with the center “seeds” exposed). Gently lay the bananas, inside facing up, on the top of your loaf. This is totally optional, but the caramelized  banana is delicious and makes it feel special so I do it. If you don’t care about using refined sugar this is also a good time to liberally sprinkle Demerara sugar or raw sugar on the top for some extra pizazz. It lends a very nice crunch and almost sparkles. 

Bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes (I'd suggest 50 for the 1.25lb pan and closer to 60 for the 1lb pan).  Remove from the oven and leave in the pan to cool on a cooling rack for 15-20 minutes.  Remove from pan and continue to cool until room temp, about an hour.

Store loosely wrapped at room temperature.  If you added the banana on top, I would suggest refrigerating after the first day if there's any left :) 

Whole30 Paleo Chocolate Swirl Banana Bread
Adapted from Paleo Running Mom

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