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Cranberry Banana Bread


Low Fat Cranberry Banana Bread

Low Fat Cranberry Banana Bread

Fiona Haynes
Banana bread is delicious any time of the year, and apart from making smoothies with them, it's my favorite way of using all those blackened, speckled over-ripe bananas that languish in my fruit bowl. During the holiday season I like to add a seasonal twist by using fresh cranberries in my banana bread. As you know, fresh cranberries are somewhat tart and so add a pleasing contrast to the sweetness of the ripe banana flavor in this bread.

Given that low-fat baked goods can sometimes be dry, I try and make ingredient substitutions that will minimize this. Whole wheat pastry flour makes for a more-tender quick bread than regular whole wheat flour would, and brown sugar instead of white sugar also ensures a more tender, less dry banana bread.

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes


  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 3 small-medium over-ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 cup)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped


Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Lightly coat a 9 inch by 5 inch loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray.

Whisk whole wheat pastry flour and all-purpose flour in a medium bowl with baking powder, ground cinnamon, and nutmeg.

In a large bowl, mix brown sugar, whole egg, egg whites, and canola oil together with a wooden spoon. Stir in mashed bananas and add vanilla extract.

Fold in chopped fresh cranberries.

Spoon batter in to prepared loaf pan.

Bake for 50-60 minutes.

Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes before turning out on to a wire rack.

Yields 12 slices.

Per Slice: Calories 205, Calories from Fat 49, Total Fat 5.3g (sat 0.4g), Cholesterol 18mg, Sodium 71mg, Carbohydrate 35.8g, Fiber 2.6g, Protein 3.2g

Baking Tips

  • Remember to spoon the flour gently in to the measuring cup and level with the back of a knife, rather than scooping and packing the flour in to the measuring cup.
  • You can use four egg whites or egg substitute instead of one whole egg and two whites
  • Bake for the minimum time stated and test for doneness by inserting a thin knife or toothpick in to the center of the cranberry banana bread. If it comes out clean, then it's done. if not, put back in the oven for five minute increments until it passes the toothpick test.
  • No fresh cranberries? Use dried cranberries instead, which will be much sweeter, of course.
  • Feel free to add chopped heart-healthy walnuts, too -- up to a half cup.

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