Peanut butter and bananas are a classic combination - one that brings to mind lunchbox sandwiches, field trips, and joyful romps through the wilderness. Another staple of outdoor exploration is trail mix. Many a hungry hiker has happily gobbled up handfuls of bittersweet chocolate, crunchy nuts, and dried fruit.
Thanks to my husband, peanut butter banana bread has become a staple in our house. It was his idea to try adding chocolate peanut butter chips to our usual recipe. And I have to admit, it's a pretty amazing upgrade.
We are almost never lacking in overly ripe bananas, so we whip up batches of banana bread fairly often. Lately, even the addition of peanut butter chips wasn't alleviating the repetition. So I started experimenting with additional add-ins. It wasn't long before peanut butter and chocolate led my mind to trail mix. A quick trip to the bulk department of my grocery store, and magic was made - sweet, crunchy, and mult-flavored treat that much like it's namesake, is perfect portable food for adventuring.
You can easily swap out any of the dried fruit for other varieties based on personal preference or availability. Dried apples, cranberries, or dried strawberries would all be great choices. If you can't find peanut butter chocolate chips, you could use m&ms or reeses pieces instead. Little Secrets makes all-natural, dye free varieties of both.
Trail Mix Banana Bread
Makes 1 loaf
- 2 ripe bananas
- 1/3 cup butter, melted
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cups sugar
- 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cups oat bran flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup peanut butter chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
- 1/4 cup dried blueberries
- 1/4 cup dried cherries
- Preheat oven to 350F and grease a loaf pan.
- Peel and mash bananas in mixing bowl. Add melted butter, egg, and vanilla. Whisk until mostly smooth. Add sugar and mix again.
- In second bowl, combine flours, baking soda, and salt. Whisk together.
- Add wet ingredients to dry and mix until just combined.
- Fold in peanut butter chocolate chips, almonds, and dried fruit.
- Transfer batter to greased loaf pan and bake for about 60 minutes, or until firm and golden brown. To check doneness, insert toothpick into center of bread. The bread is done if the toothpick comes out dry. (Unless you hit a chocolate chip!)