Cream Cheese-Filled Banana Bread

With over 40+ banana Bread and banana recipes I don’t know why I’ve never incorporated cream cheese.

I don’t know what I was thinking because I was really missing out.

The bread is soft, moist and the cream cheese layer is like having a layer of cheesecake baked into banana bread. No complaints here.

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I had ripe bananas and cream cheese getting ready to expire and knew I needed to do something with both. And voila, this bread.

I essentially halved my most recent and favorite banana bread recipe to date, Peach Mango Coconut Oil Banana Bread. I love everything about that recipe except it makes two loaves and I knew one loaf of cream cheese-filled banana bread would be plenty. It’s swimsuit season.

It’s an easy, no mixer recipe that goes from bowl to oven in minutes.

I use 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. Coconut oil adds a nearly imperceptible undertone that’s sweeter and more fragrant than canola or vegetable oil, but substitute with them if you’d like.

I love baking with coconut oil for muffinscakesbreadcookies and more. I used Nutiva Coconut Oil from iHerb.com. Code AVE630 at checkout saves you $10 off your order. I love iHerb for everything like probioticsbulk cinnamonpumpkin pie spiceliquid vanilla stevia dropsbulk white stevia powdermedicinal fancy-grade honeychia seedsface cleansernutritional yeast, and mini chocolate chips.

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

The big river of cream cheese reminds me of the cream cheese in Blueberry and Cream Cheese Muffin Top Bread but this is a thick, bold, unmistakeable layer. It really makes this bread out of this world.

I had intentions of making French toast with extra slices from the loaf, but we loved this bread a little too much and it disappeared in a day.

Have a happy, safe, and great Fourth of July holiday weekend to everyone celebrating.

Cream Cheese-Filled Banana Bread

The bread is soft, moist and the cream cheese layer is like having a layer of cheesecake baked into banana bread. It’s an easy, no mixer recipe that goes from bowl to oven in minutes. I use melted coconut oil so there’s no mixer to dirty and oil keeps bread softer and springier than butter. Coconut oil adds a nearly imperceptible undertone that’s sweeter and more fragrant than canola or vegetable oil, but substitute if desired. Sour cream (or Greek yogurt) is extra insurance for a soft, springy, bouncy, fluffy loaf. The big river of cream cheese is thick, bold, unmistakeable, and really makes this bread out of this world.

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Ingredients:

Bread
1 large egg
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup granulated sugar
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 bananas)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2  teaspoon baking powder
1/2  teaspoon baking soda
pinch salt, optional and to taste

Cream Cheese Filling
1 large egg
4 ounces softened brick-style cream cheese (lite is okay)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray one 9×5-inch loaf pan with floured cooking spray, or grease and flour the pan; set aside.
  2. Bread – In a large bowl, add the egg, sugars, coconut oil, sour cream, vanilla, and whisk to combine.
  3. Add the bananas and stir to incorporate.
  4. Add 1 cup flour, baking powder, baking soda, optional salt, and fold with spatula or stir gently with a spoon until just combined; don’t overmix; set aside.
  5. Turn about two-thirds of the batter out into the prepared pan, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula and pushing it into corners and sides as necessary; set aside.
  6. Cream Cheese Filling – In a large bowl, add all ingredients and whisk to combine. Alternatively, mix with a hand mixer.
  7. Evenly pour filling mixture over the bread, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula and pushing it into corners and sides as necessary.
  8. Top with remaining batter, smoothing the top very lightly with a spatula as to not disturb cream cheese layer and pushing batter into corners and sides as necessary.
  9. Bake for about 48 to 50 minutes or until the top is domed, golden, and the center is set, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Note this is tricky because the cream cheese never gets totally solid so the toothpick test isn’t the most accurate. Tip – Tent the pan with a sheet of foil draped over it at the 30 minute-mark if you feel the tops and sides will become too browned before center cooks through. Baking times will vary based on moisture content of bananas, cream cheese, climate, and oven variances. Bake until done; watch your bread, not the clock.
  10. Allow bread to cool in pan for about 15 minutes before turning out on a wire rack to cool completely before slicing and serving. Optionally, serve bread with Honey ButterCinnamon-Sugar Butter, Blueberry ButterStrawberry Butter, or Vanilla Browned Butter Glaze. Bread will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 6 months.
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Edited to add August 8, 2014 – A pumpkin version of the banana bread.

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