Banana Pecan “Muffin” Bread with Streusel Topping

who doesn’t love banana bread? it is so moist, sweet, satisfying and easy to throw together. there are 1000 recipes out there for it but i have a tried and true recipe for my favorite “traditional” banana bread (Sour Cream Banana Bread which i don’t have up here yet but will in the future) but once in a while i like to stray from it and try out something new. this recipe is a compilation of about 4 different recipes i have either used or just read through. one of the main inspirations was a muffin recipe in Sarabeth’s Bakery: From my Hands to Yours. I thought, why not make this into a loaf? the texture of this is not quite as dense as your traditional banana bread but still very moist and tender; i would say the crumb is a bit larger and softer. the flavor is a bit more delicate but not lacking in any way. this loaf is full of banana goodness and is accompanied by the tang of sour cream, the nuttiness of toasted pecans, a touch of spice from the cinnamon and a brightness that you can’t quite place- lemon zest (an unusual ingredient for banana bread). and to top this off is an irresistible, crumbly, sweet streusel (seriously i could just pick it off and eat it all by itself). something else that makes this recipe unique is the fact that the majority of the bananas are sliced and folded into the batter (rather than mashed and mixed in) so that when you slice the loaf you will see intact pieces of banana. these make the loaves even “creamier” when you are enjoying a slice. this bread is wonderful the next day as well. i love quick breads and the like best the next day once the flavors have all married together a bit more. however, i can never resist sneaking a slice almost immediately after dumping it out of the loaf pan… nom nom. awesome plain or even better toasted with some butter on top!

banana pecan streusel muffin bread (that's a mouthful lol)

banana pecan streusel muffin bread (that’s a mouthful lol)

Banana Pecan “Muffin” Bread with Streusel Topping

ingredients for the streusel:

  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tbs superfine sugar
  • 1/4 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup chopped, toasted pecans (or walnuts)
  • pinch of fine kosher or sea salt

ingredients for batter:

  • 3 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp fine kosher or sea salt
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup superfine sugar
  • grated zest of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature and beaten
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 medium very ripe bananas, one mashed and three cut into 1/4-inch-slices
  • 3/4 cups chopped, toasted pecans (or walnuts)


  • preheat oven to 375 degrees F and position rack in center of oven
  • grease two loaf pans with butter or baking spray (7X3 or larger pans, if larger, batter won’t fill pans as much and cooking time may be shorter. i had two different sized pans which took slightly different amounts of time to cook)
  • make the streusel: mix the flour, superfine sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, butter, and vanilla with your fingers in a small bowl until combined and crumbly. set aside for later use
steusel topping

streusel topping

  • sift the flour, baking powder and salt together into a medium bowl.
  • beat the butter in the bowl of a stand-mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on high until smooth
  • gradually add the sugar and continue beating until it is very light and fluffy, scraping down the bowl occasionally (about 5 minutes)
  • beat in the lemon zest and vanilla
  • beat in the eggs and milk gradually
  • reduce the mixer speed to low
  • add in one mashed banana
  • add in one third of the flour, followed by half the sour cream, then one third of the flour etc.
  • stop beating right before fully incorporated
  • fold in the pecans and sliced bananas with rubber spatula (you will finish mixing it during this step)


  • divide dough between loaf pans and smooth the surfaces
  • divide and sprinkle the streusel onto each loaf
  • bake for 10 minutes and drop temperature to 350
  • bake for an additional 40 to 60 minutes (depending on the size of your pans). rotate the pans from front to back and side to side halfway through. begin checking for doneness about 45 minutes in and if the tops are getting too dark, tent loosely with foil
  • check for doneness by inserting a cake tester into the center of the loaf and when it comes out clean the loaf is done
  • remove from oven and cool in pan for about 15 minutes
  • turn out onto cooling racks and allow to cool about 30 minutes before wrapping tightly in plastic wrap to store. refrigerate if desired or store at room temperature
love that topping!

love that topping!

mmm banana bread

mmm banana bread

*the bread will look almost underdone in the middle due to the banana slices. what you are seeing are the slices which are the same color as the batter; it isn’t uncooked dough!

*you could make these into muffins of course! bake for 10 minutes at 400 then reduce temperature to 375 and bake until tops are golden brown

6 responses to “Banana Pecan “Muffin” Bread with Streusel Topping

  1. Jess, you know I’ll have to make this, don’t you. And you know I’ll have to eat it all myself, don’t you. And you know I’ll gain a ton, don’t you. But I still love your blog anyway, and love the recipes. Just wish I didn’t love to cook.

    • i swear i’m not plotting against you! i feel the same way though; i love cooking too much not to feel the constant need to do it- and cookin lowfat is no fun lol.

      • Unfoirtunately I know that. Hey, I got thru. Maybe my problems have been worked out. Made butter yesterday and today. So much better than the lowfat stuff.

  2. Pingback: Banana Bread French Toast | therapy bread·

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s