Banana Bread Bars with Vanilla Bean Browned Butter Glaze

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Glazed Banana Bread Bars — Banana bread in bar form with a glaze that soaks in and is just so darn good! Dense enough to be satisfying, but still perfectly light, fluffy, and packed with rich banana flavor!

Glazed Banana Bread Bars — Banana bread in bar form with a glaze that soaks in and is just so darn good! Dense enough to be satisfying, but still perfectly light, fluffy, and packed with rich banana flavor!

Glazed Banana Bread Bars Recipe

I love banana bread anything and could eat it every day and not get sick of it. I have 40+ banana bread and banana recipes but no banana bread bars. What? Time to change that.

The banana bread bars combine two of my favorite recipes into one: Cream-Cheese Filled Banana Bread and Fudgy Banana Bars with Vanilla Bean Browned Butter Glaze.

It’s a fast and easy recipe that uses melted coconut oil so there’s no butter to cream and no mixer to dirty. Oil keeps bread softer and springier than butter, and I prefer the taste. 

Banana Bread Bars with Vanilla Bean Browned Butter Glaze - Banana bread in bar form with a glaze that soaks in and is just so.darn.good!!!

Sour cream (or Greek yogurt) is extra insurance for a soft, springy, bouncy, fluffy loaf. Using sour cream, Greek yogurt, or buttermilk in quick bread and muffin recipes ensures more tender results.

The glaze makes the banana bread bars go from great to out-of-this world amazing and I’ve been topping everything I can with it. Browned butter and glorious specks of vanilla beans can do no wrong.

After pouring the glaze over the warm bars, it seeps down and soaks in, and makes the bars even moister and softer. The rippled appearance that’s created as it sets up is unadulterated homey comfort food.

The banana bread bars are dense enough to be satisfying but is still perfectly light, fluffy, and packed with rich banana flavor. And that glaze. Oh my. I hoarded these.

Banana Bread Bars with Vanilla Bean Browned Butter Glaze - Banana bread in bar form with a glaze that soaks in and is just so.darn.good!!!

What’s in Banana Bread Bars? 

To make these banana bars with sour cream, you’ll need: 

  • Egg
  • Light brown sugar
  • Coconut oil
  • Sour cream 
  • Vanilla extract
  • Bananas
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter
  • Confectioners’ sugar
  • Vanilla bean paste
  • Cream or milk

Banana Bread Bars with Vanilla Bean Browned Butter Glaze - Banana bread in bar form with a glaze that soaks in and is just so.darn.good!!!

How to Make Banana Bread Bars

First, you’ll need to make the banana bread bars themselves. Whisk together the egg, brown sugar, coconut oil, sour cream, and vanilla extract. Then, stir in the mashed bananas followed by the dry ingredients. 

Pour the batter into a 9×9-inch baking dish and bake until the center is golden and set, springy when touched lightly, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter.

Then, it’s just a matter of whisking together the browned butter glaze and pouring it over the banana bread bars (it’s okay if they’re not cool yet). Allow the banana bars to cool in the pan, uncovered, for at least 2 to 3 hours before slicing and serving so the glaze can set up.

Can I Double This Recipe? 

Of course! You’ll need to bake the banana bread bars in a 9×13-inch pan when doubling the ingredients. 

Glazed Banana Bread Bars — Banana bread in bar form with a glaze that soaks in and is just so darn good! Dense enough to be satisfying, but still perfectly light, fluffy, and packed with rich banana flavor!

Tips for Making Banana Bread Bars

Coconut oil adds a nearly imperceptible undertone that’s sweeter and more fragrant than canola or vegetable oil, but substitute if you prefer.

If you’ve never browned butter, read this tutorial. The 5 minutes it takes to do is the best 5 minutes you’ll spend all month.

I used vanilla bean paste in the glaze but scraping the seeds of a vanilla bean works too. Vanilla extract is okay, but won’t be as flavorfully intense as paste or seeds.

Glazed Banana Bread Bars — Banana bread in bar form with a glaze that soaks in and is just so darn good! Dense enough to be satisfying, but still perfectly light, fluffy, and packed with rich banana flavor!

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Yield: 12

Banana Bread Bars with Vanilla Bean Browned Butter Glaze

Banana Bread Bars with Vanilla Bean Browned Butter Glaze

Banana bread bars with a glaze that soaks in! Dense enough to be satisfying, but still perfectly light, fluffy, and packed with rich banana flavor!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 27 minutes
Cooling Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 37 minutes

Ingredients

Bars

  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup liquid-state coconut oil (canola or vegetable may be substituted)
  • 1/4 cup cup sour cream (lite is okay; or Greek yogurt may be substituted)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas (about 2 large/3 med bananas)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch salt, optional and to taste

Glaze

  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 of 1 stick) unsalted butter, browned (how to brown butter tutorial)
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or seeds from 1 large vanilla bean; 1 tablespoon vanilla extract may be substituted)
  • pinch salt, optional and to taste
  • about 1/4 to 1/3 cup cream or milk, or as necessary for consistency

Instructions

    Make the bars:

    1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9-by-9-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
    2. To a large bowl, add the egg, brown sugar, coconut oil, sour cream, vanilla, and whisk to combine.
    3. Add the bananas and stir to incorporate.
    4. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, optional salt, and fold with spatula or stir gently with a spoon until just combined; don’t overmix.
    5. Turn batter out into the prepared pan, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula and pushing it into corners and sides as necessary.
    6. Bake for about 27 to 28 minutes (start watching closely by 25 minutes) or until the center is golden and set, springy when touched lightly, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Baking times will vary based on moisture content in bananas; bake until your bars are done.
    7. Place pan onto of a wire rack to cool while you make the glaze.

    Make the Glaze:

    1. Brown the butter. Cook butter over medium-high heat in a small saucepan until it’s amber to brown in color, about 5 minutes depending on pan size, but watch it closely so it doesn’t burn. I swirl the pan in the last minute or so to make sure I can really see the color changes. Butter will go through stages of hissing, sputtering, and making noise until the water cooks off at which point the browning occurs. Butter will smell nutty and aromatic.
    2. Transfer butter, including brown bits at the bottom of the pan (they’re flavor powerhouses, keep them) from pan to large mixing bowl which stops carryover cooking.
    3. Add the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla bean paste, optional salt, and slowly add the milk, whisking until smooth.
    4. As necessary, add additional cream (or confectioners’ sugar) to reach desired glaze consistency. Glaze should be of medium thickness and easily pourable.
    5. Evenly pour glaze over bars (they don’t have to be cooled first), smoothing it lightly with a spatula if necessary, but glaze will likely just slide into place.
    6. Allow bars to cool in pan uncovered for at least 2 to 3 hours, (or overnight and cover with a sheet of foil) before slicing and serving so glaze can set up.

Notes

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 279Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 37mgSodium: 162mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 1gSugar: 28gProtein: 3g

More Banana Bread Recipes:

ALL OF MY BANANA BREAD RECIPES!

Upside-Down Banana Bread Cake — Don’t settle for making another loaf of plain banana bread when you can have caramelized banana slices on top of soft banana cake!! A decadent spin on banana bread! The BEST use for your ripe bananas!!

Upside-Down Banana Bread Cake

Cream Cheese-Filled Banana Bread — Banana bread that’s like having cheesecake baked in! Soft, fluffy, easy and tastes ahhhh-mazing!

Cream Cheese-Filled Banana Bread

Six-Banana Banana Bread – Six bananas in one loaf of bread means an extremely soft, moist, and richly flavored bread

Six-Banana Banana Bread 

Browned Butter Buttermilk Banana Bread with Strawberry Butter – The browned butter and buttermilk add richness, softness, and moisture, and the strawberry butter makes it that much better

Browned Butter Buttermilk Banana Bread with Strawberry Butter



About the Author

Welcome to AverieCooks! Here you’ll find fast and easy recipes that taste amazing and are geared for real life. Nothing fussy or complicated, just awesome tasting dishes everyone loves!

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Comments

  1. These are amazing, but … Did anyone else have trouble with their glaze? Mine tastes good, but it’s more the color/consistency of brown butter snot (sorry for the imagery). I used a bit of milk instead of cream; maybe that’s where I went wrong? It didn’t set up overnight, so I’m trying some time in the fridge.

    1. It’s a very loose glaze but does set up. Milk probably was the issue since it’s so much thinner than cream or half-and-half, therefore you’d need less. And/or add more sugar. Now you know for next time :) Glad the bars themselves are amazing!

  2. okay I’m sat here at like 3am looking through all these baking blogs and I’m hooked, ahhh want some of this right now! cannot wait to try it out :D

  3. Saw these on Foodgawker and practically ran to the kitchen to make them. I added 1/2 cup cinnamon chips and made a cream cheese frosting for the top with some chopped pecans to strew over. Can’t wait to cut into them tonight. If the taste of the batter is any indication, they will be awesome. =)

    1. Thanks for finding me on FG and for running right over and for literally getting in your kitchen and making them! And just WAIT til you add the browned butter glaze. Truly takes them to the next level (don’t skip it!). LMK what you think after you’ve sampled them!

      1. I just cut into them (still a bit warm) and oh my goodness….SO good. They are so light and springy. This is such a great alternative to banana bread and I imagine I’ll make several variations with peanut butter chips/frosting, butterscotch chips/browned butter glaze, etc. I really loved that they were done in 25 minutes. THANK YOU!!

      2. Glad that you love them and that you’ll make several versions! And being done in 25 minutes, I know, so nice as compared to a big fat loaf of banana bread that takes an hour+!

  4. Wow these bars look so incredibly moist! Bananas disappear so fast over here, cause it’s the only fruit my bf actually likes hahaha.. I’ll be sure to hide a couple for browning next time we do groceries tho’ ;)

  5. Averie, these bars look so divine!! You can just tell how moist they are, oh and that glaze – yummy!!!

  6. Well I’m glad you’ve rounded out your banana bread collection with these bars ;) They look AWESOME!!

    1. I am still thinking about those rosemary nuts of yours! Although I did really enjoy these banana bars :)

  7. These look so good and moist I love bars with an icing makes it feel like your eating a fancy cake…I see a banana cookbook in your future…

    1. I see a banana cookbook in your future… <--- that would have been a logical choice, huh! But...I am SO DONE with writing cookbooks. I need to get my life back :)

  8. These bare look so good! I love banana bread and I’m sure browned butter takes it totally over the top!

  9. I love that you use coconut oil in most of your bars, Averie. And that glaze! How did you not just eat it with a spoon!?

  10. We love banana bread here too. Love the idea of turning it into a bar, and of course anything with glaze calls my name. Pinned!

  11. I just had a kid come to my house yesterday and he gave me 4 bananas (yes really. yes, weird.) I guess I should take that, plus this post, as a sign to make some banana bread bars!

    Maybe I’ll be nice and make a big batch to share at work on Monday. Or….maybe I won’t. :D

    1. Loved these…the ease of bars but the taste of banana bread (minus wondering if/when the whole loaf would cook through in the center!)…and yes, what a sign!

  12. My mouth is definitely watering. I love banana bread but haven’t had it for a while. These bars look fantastic.

  13. I’m a sucker for banana bread so these bars look heavenly! I love the vanilla browned butter glaze! Such a fabulous idea, Averie! Pinned!

  14. Another delicious looking banana recipe! I love the way the glaze sets up–all those little ripples across the top with the vanilla bean flecks. I like making quick breads in square pans–the baking time isn’t as long as for a loaf and I worry less about the center getting done ( without the top getting too brown).

    1. nd I worry less about the center getting done ( without the top getting too brown) <---TOTALLY agree and understand! That's why I often bake things in 2 8x4 pans rather than 1 big 9x5 or I go very skimpy with how much batter I will put in a 9x5 for that very reason!

  15. We always have browning bananas on our counter top after a few days and I’m always trying to think of ways other then “momma, not banana bread again?”. I will have to stick this one up on the fridge for the next browning batch.

  16. I bought coconut oil a month or so ago to try in a recipe. After all, if Averie recommends it, it must be good. :) Maybe this is the recipe to try (although I’m pretty addicted to your recent chocolate banana muffin recipe!).

    1. Glad those muffins are a hit for you and if you cheat on them with your ripe bananas, these bars are easy and you’ll love them!

  17. Oh these bars look so good. I mean, brown butter glaze – hello. That’s a win! Thanks for sharing!! XO