Moist, fluffy, and refreshing blueberry bread with a sweet and tart maqui berry frosting. This banana blueberry loaf is gluten-free, vegan, oil-free, and packed with antioxidants! Not to mention that it’s also super simple to bake. This blog post is kindly sponsored by SUNFOOD; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Moist Blueberry Banana Bread
Yes, it’s true- this banana blueberry bread really does taste as good as it looks. I think we’ll all be coming out of 2020 as banana bread making experts with all this extra time we’ve spent at home, so it’s definitely good to have lots of fun ways to jazz up your baking and find new favorites.
This cake blends the creamy sweetness of banana, with the subtle freshness of blueberries and the tart and sweet flavor of maqui berries. The results – a banana blueberry cake that hits all the right flavor spots! Plus, with lots of fruits involved, this recipe also packs a whole lot of nutrition (and a healthy dose of antioxidants) too. Who says you can’t have a nutritional cake?
The Ingredients & Swaps
This healthy, blueberry banana bread recipe contains only 12 plant-based ingredients.
- Oat Flour
- Almond flour
- Chia Seeds – or flax seeds
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Maple syrup – or another liquid sweetener
- Coconut milk
- Lemon Juice – or lime juice
- Erythritol – or regular powdered sugar
- Maqui berry powder
Gluten-free baking can sometimes be a bit tricky for those not used to working with gluten-free flours. However, this vegan blueberry bread recipe couldn’t be much more straightforward. I’ve combined homemade oat flour (which is as simple as blending oats into a flour consistency) and almond flour (blanched and ground almonds) as my gluten-free base.
Ingredient swap: If you aren’t gluten-free, you could use spelt flour.
Instead of almond flour, you could use another finely ground nut/seed—for example, hazelnuts, hemp seeds, or shredded coconut etc. However, avoid coconut flour as it absorbs moisture, with a low fat content.
As an egg substitute, I used ground chia seeds, which bind to the liquids in the recipe and create a gelatinous substance that works incredibly well in the place of an egg.
Ingredient Swap: Flaxseed meal works just as well as chia seeds. However, the bananas also work as an egg substitute in this particular recipe. As well as adding sweetness and various vitamins and minerals.
I love to use canned (or homemade) coconut milk due to its higher fat content and thicker consistency. Avoid using any watered-down carton milk such as oat, rice, and almond milk.
Ingredient Swap: Oat cream, soy cream, or even homemade cashew milk will work as a coconut milk substitute. Each will adjust the flavor of the cake slightly. Alternatively, you can use any plant-based milk with the addition of 2 tablespoons of oil.
Read the recipe tips & variations section for more ingredient swaps and recipe notes!
The Superfood Glaze
If there’s the opportunity to add additional nutrients and health benefits to a sweet treat while not ruining the flavor – well, you’d have to, right? It’s why I love to add veggies to my baked goods too. Like my Sweet Potato Brownies, my Best Vegan Brownies (with peas!), or this Chocolate Zucchini Cake.
It is also why I topped this banana blueberry bread with a superfood Maqui Berry and lemon glaze. I used raw, organic Maqui Berry Powder from SUNFOOD , which I absolutely love; The color is a vibrant purple, the flavor is tangy and sweet, and it’s absolutely packed with incredible health properties.
Maqui berry powder contains tons of antioxidants, such as healthful anthocyanins and polyphenols. In fact, they contain up to 3x more antioxidants than blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries. They also contain several essential vitamins and minerals, including Vitamins A, C, B1, B3, magnesium, calcium, and potassium.
Maqui Berry Health Benefits
The combination of the antioxidants, vitamins & minerals in the maqui berries lead to a long list of potential health benefits, including:
- Reduced risk in certain chronic diseases, including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, etc.
- Anti-inflammatory benefits – particularly benefiting and combating diseases, including heart disease and type 2 diabetes.
- It can help to control blood sugar levels by affecting the way our bodies use carbs.
- Some research shows that the berry extract may also help to reduce harmful LDL cholesterol levels.
- And it can even help to improve gut flora and overall gut health.
Sunfood’s Maqui Berry powder, in particular, is raw, non-GMO, and freeze-dried to maintain its superfood power and enzymatic activity. Plus, it is just the most gorgeous purple color!
This Recipe Is:
- High in antioxidants
- Refined sugar-free
- Easy to make
How To Make Banana Blueberry Bread
If you want an easy bake that packs tons of flavor, then look no further than this banana blueberry oatmeal bread. In fact, the entire recipe (glaze included) is made up of just five steps!
Step 1: Begin by placing all the dry ingredients into a bowl and stirring until thoroughly combined, with no clumps.
Step 2: Next, process all of the wet ingredients (apart from the blueberries) in a food processor/blender and pour it into the bowl with the dry ingredients. Stir to combine and, once smooth, fold in the blueberries.
Step 3: Line a loaf pan with parchment paper (my tin was 8x4x2.5″) and pour or spoon the mixture into the pan.
Step 4: Bake in the oven for around 40 minutes as 180C/356F. You can check that the blueberry banana loaf is ready by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. It should come out almost clean (but definitely not ‘wet’).
When ready, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool.
Step 5: Prepare the maqui glaze by first processing the Erythritol into a fine powder (the same consistency as confectioners/icing sugar). Mix in the lemon/lime juice, maqui berry powder, and a splash of plant-based milk and whisk. If the frosting is too thick, then add more milk or lemon/lime. If it’s too thin, then add more Erythritol.
Pour or spread the glaze over the blueberry bread and leave to chill in the fridge once more until set.
For the full ingredients list, ingredient measurements, and nutritional information, then please read the recipe card below.
How To Serve & Store
This blueberry banana bread is a truly versatile offering. Serve it up at events, birthdays, for dessert, or even breakfast! If you decide to omit the glaze, then you could serve warm with lashings of vegan butter, jam, or nut butter.
- Store this lemon blueberry bread in the fridge for up to five days.
- It is also freezer-friendly before frosting/glazing, for up to three months.
I prefer to slice mine up and place on a tray to freeze, before transferring to an airtight container. That way, you can grab out individual slices as needed. Simply allow thawing and eat cold or pop into the toaster for a warm and fruity treat!
Recipe Tips & Variations
- You can use fresh or frozen blueberries for this lemon blueberry bread recipe. Just note that frozen blueberries can affect the color of your batter and add extra moisture to the batter. Leave to thaw, rinse, and pat dry, to avoid this.
- To make the oat flour, simply process in a blender or electric spice/coffee grinder into a flour consistency.
- You can substitute the maple syrup for any liquid sweetener of your choice in the batter.
- This recipe can be used to make gluten-free blueberry muffins or mini muffins. However, the baking time will vary.
- Feel free to add some pureed blueberries to the glaze. You’ll likely not need the plant-based milk as the berries will provide moisture and extra flavor.
- You could also make a vegan cream cheese frosting with the maqui berry powder instead of a glaze.
- There is no need to soak the chia seeds/flaxseed in water to create an ‘egg.’ I’ve tested both versions and found it to works fine by just adding the ground seeds to the batter.
- Instead of the glaze, you could use a ‘crumble topping,’ as I used for these Apple Crumble Muffins. And/or sprinkle with some toasted almond flakes or shredded coconut.
- If you have issues with the blueberries sinking to the bottom of the lemon blueberry bread, mix them with a tablespoon or two of cornstarch. Otherwise, pour a thin layer of cake batter into the cake tin before folding in the blueberries to the rest of the batter.
- Strawberries and raspberries can replace the blueberries if they are all you have to hand.
If you give this delicious lemon blueberry bread recipe a try, I’d really appreciate a comment and rating below. Also, don’t forget to tag me in re-creations on Instagram or Facebook with @elavegan and #elavegan.
Blueberry Banana Bread
- Add all dry ingredients to a bowl and stir until there are no clumps. Preheat oven to 360 degrees F (180 degrees C).
- Process all wet ingredients (except the blueberries) in a food processor or blender and pour the mixture into the dry ingredients. Stir with a whisk, then fold in the blueberries.
- Line a loaf pan with parchment paper. My pan measures 8 x 4 x 2.5 inches. Spoon the mixture into the pan.
- Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes. The bread is ready when a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out almost clean (crumbly is fine but not wet). Let it cool completely.
- For the maqui berry frosting: Process the Erythritol in your food processor or electric spice/coffee grinder until it's very fine like icing sugar. Add it to a small bowl and combine with the plant-based milk, the lime/lemon juice, and the Maqui berry powder. If the frosting is too thick add more milk or lime/lemon juice. If it's too thin, add more Erythritol. Spread the frosting over the bread and place it in the fridge until the frosting hardens. Enjoy!
- Simply process oats (regular oats or gluten-free oats) in your dry blender or food processor to make oat flour. You can also use spelt flour if you're not gluten-free.
- Instead of almond flour (100% ground almonds), you can use any other finely ground nuts/seeds of choice. For example ground hazelnuts, ground hemp seeds, etc. I don't recommend coconut flour (as it absorbs a lot of moisture and the fat content is low). Shredded unsweetened coconut is a better option since it has almost the same fat content as ground almonds which makes the bread moist.
- Instead of canned coconut milk, you can use any other plant-based milk or cream (the higher the fat content the better will be the taste) with the addition of 2 tablespoons oil. Homemade cashew milk or almond milk etc. works too (don't use too much water though).
- Nutrition facts are for one piece of the bread if you cut the loaf into 10 pieces.
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