Gluten-Free Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips

Gluten free banana chocolate chip bread
Gluten-free banana chocolate chip bread. Yum.

Score one for banana bread lovers. After more than a few banana-induced mishaps (who knew baking egg-free gluten-free casein-free banana breads would prove so harrowing and unappealingly gummy and well, just plain spirit crushing?) Steve and I produced a sweet and tender banana loaf worthy of a mention.

A shout of big thanks goes out to my buddy Clare from Massachusetts (you remember Clare- she generously shared her brownie recipe with me back in the day). Clare posted her banana bread recipe on the Celiac Listserv last week. I veganized Clare's ingredients to make this recipe egg-free and dairy-free. And then, well, I simply had to add chocolate chips. After all, chocolate is goddess food.

And what's a banana without a little chocolate?

Just another naked banana.

And when you have a partner/husband like Steve (who, by the way, as you would expect, has been a champ through my hip healing process- hefting laundry, dusting (yes, that's right, dusting), bringing me mugs of hot apple cider (with a cinnamon stick!) and just plain cooking up a storm on my famished behalf)- who sweetly asks, Would you like me to grill your slice of Banana Chocolate Chip Bread?--- you blush, Dear Reader, and realize (once again) you've married the right man.

The man who knows you like your chocolate dark and melty and warm on your tongue. For breakfast.

Beautiful gluten free banana bread with chocolate chips
Banana chocolate chip bread- with or without eggs- you choose.

Banana Chocolate Chip Bread Recipe

As any woman of experience knows, bananas come in all shapes and sizes. Well, within a pretty close range, anyway. We used average, medium-sized bananas for this recipe. If your bananas are exceptionally large, Babycakes, you may want to adjust your recipe, and cut back to three. You need about a cup of puree.

Note: If you bake at higher altitudes, you may need to cut back on the baking powder (the baking powder basically replaces eggs for leavening). Follow the usual guidelines for your altitude.


3 ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 cup puree)
1/3 cup light olive oil
1 cup organic light brown sugar
2 teaspoons bourbon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups gluten-free flour blend or gluten-free baking mix*
1/4 cup flax seed meal
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
1 rounded teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup vegan dark chocolate chips (or use chopped walnuts or pecans)


Combine the wet ingredients a mixing bowl.

Add the dry ingredients into the banana mixture and stir until smooth. If the batter looks too thin and wet, add more gluten-free flour, a tablespoon at a time, to thicken the batter.

Add in the chocolate chips and stir by hand to combine.

Preheat your oven to 350ºF. Lightly oil the bottom of a standard bread loaf pan and dust with rice or corn flour.

Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake in the center of a preheated oven for an hour, until the loaf is firm, a bit crusty, and a wooden pick inserted into the center emerges clean.

Cool the loaf on a wire rack. Easiest to slice when cool. If you can wait.

Slice and wrap each slice in foil; bag and freeze.

This bread is tasty as is, but- it is truly sublime when grilled in a hot iron skillet with a touch of light olive oil. The chocolate chips melt and the banana fragrance intensifies and your taste buds- well, they get very, very happy.

Cook time: 1 hour

Yield: 8 slices

This recipe is blissfully gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, soy-free, nut-free, and corn-free (if you check the source of your xanthan gum and baking powder).

Recipe Source:

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Karina's Note:

Flavor Options: Chai it up! Thanks to reader Maya who wrote:

Last week I made your banana and chocolate chip bread, but added cardamom, cinnamon and a pinch of cayenne to give it a chai kick. It was pure heaven. I am eternally grateful to you for all the wonderful recipes you create and share.



  1. Ooooh, Can't wait to try this one! Perfect for those extra browning bananas on my kitchen counter.
    And may I just add, wow!, grilled banana bread slices from your husband, you are one lucky goddess.

  2. Karina-

    An inspiration as always! Grilling is a great idea!

    Do you know of a xanthan gum that is corn-free?


  3. Looking great. I love pan toasting my gluten free breads and waffles in butter (or whatever grease allowed!), it tastes so much better.

    And, I always have to adjust the recipes for the size of banana, here they always seem big. :D

  4. Hey Jess! Yes- grab those ripe bananas and bake, Baby!

    Yeah- feeling pretty darn lucky these days. Any man that grills you a slice of banana chip bread for breakfast is a mensch in my corner of the world. ;)

    Hi Natalie! Thanks- try the grilling trick- one of Steve's ideas. I would look into either Authentic Foods or Bob's Red Mill on the xanthan gum issue- I personally don't have an allergy to corn- it's one of the few grains I can handle- so I have not looked at this issue closely.

    That said, I just googled it and found out that xanthan gum is grown on a cabbage family cellulose, and fed with corn sugar; the bacteria eats the corn sugar; and there is no corn protein in the final bacteria based gum.

    I'm no scientist- ha!- so please check on it- but several companies apparently say their xanthan gum is "corn-free". Good luck! :)

    Hola SM!

    GF bread-stuffs do taste better grilled, don't they? So, you're a big banana girl, eh? ;)

    banana kisses,


  5. hey karina, can't wait to try this one!
    do you think it's worth using agave instead of the brown sugar, or do you think that would make it too moist? thanks!

  6. This is so crazy there must of been something in the air this weekend. Before checking out your recipe I was in the same mood for chocolate chip banana bread gave it my best attempt. I too am trying to rotate my flours, so I used soy and buckwheat.I thought a little cognac would add to the taste. Texture was good but taste was a little bitter. I guess it may have been the soy flour or cognac ? not sure. I will try again, this time using your lovely looking recipe. thank you !

  7. Hi ByeByeGluten!

    From my experience, it's tough to rely solely on a liquid sweetener with banana-based baking recipes- though- that said- it could be done.

    You'd need to increase the flour content--- little by little until the batter developed some body.

    I might try looking up similar vegan banana bread recipes made with agave, and check the amount of flour to liquid ratio in those recipes. That would give you a place to start. Good luck- and please let us know how you do with your experiment. :)

    Hi Mary! Cool- we're on the same chocolate-banana wavelength. ;)

    Soy flour definitely has a strong taste. I find it very *metallic*. That alone might do it.

    Did you taste test the batter first? I always do- and note the sweetness.

    I also find that batters taste *less* sweet when baked; so if it tastes bitter or metallic when raw, I'd add some sweetener and/or extra vanilla to offset the aftertaste.

    Isn't allergen-free baking more fun than a barrel of monkeys?

    [Who decided a barrel of monkeys was fun, anyway? I ask you?] :)


  8. Well, what size bananas are those monkeys packing?

    Sorry, all the discussion of banana size just got to me! The banana bread looks to die for and...a husband who dusts? I didn't know ANYBODY did that anymore! Wanna trade? ;-)

  9. Anonymous21:30

    Dear One!
    Thank you for this ... however I plan to replace the
    sugar with Agave Nectar. Most gluten-free desserts
    have way too much sugar in them, and while I haven't
    been diagnosed with Celiac, I need to abstain from
    sugar ...

    Cynthia : Mount Shasta CA

  10. You ARE a Goddess. I am SO all over this!! YUM-o!!!!!!!!!!! And yes, the chocolate is a MUST who likes naked bananas???!

    PS - If I send you my honey will Steve let him shadow for a day and send him back with a duster??!

  11. The Goddess once again proves her rightful claim to the title! I can't believe you use light olive oil to bake. I have been doing it for years and everyone looks at me funny, it works great though.

    I must confess, I love chocolate, but I can't stand it in bread of any kind for some reason. I think I am alone on that one : )

  12. This is totally going on my to-make list for my December new activity, which is gluten-freej, allergen-free baking. YUM. Thanks!

    And I love how sweet your husband is. He reminds me of mine, and your relationship gives me hope we can keep going this strong for a long time.

  13. Your banana line made me laugh!

  14. I am so making banana bread this weekend.

  15. Miss Susan V! Big smooches for the belly laugh! (Steve even laughed...) Ah. Humor is my favorite brand of medicine. And as far as the dusting episode- it was quite impressive. ;)

    Hi Cynthia- What ever floats your banana- er- boat. Be happy! ;)

    Dear Claudia, You know, there a times when only a naked banana will do! ;) Kisses...

    Hola Alisa- Yes- I love light olive oil in baking. It feels healthy and tastes fab.

    But no chocolate in bread? See...the one thing I really, really miss after six years gluten-free? Chocolate croissants. Warm. Melty in the middle...

    My son Alex and I are also big fans of chocolate chip pancakes. Bring 'em on.


    Hello Sally! Well, after twelve plus years- he's still as sweet as day one. [But he's my second husband, you know. The first time around? Not so much. I learned a thing or two, though, and got it right this time. ;) Mazel tov on your marriage!]

    Hey there Celiac Chicka! Yay- I love making people laugh. ;) xoxo

    Enjoy, Becky! :)

    big banana kisses,


  16. I just happenned on your blog. I love it! If you don't, I would love to link it to mine as a helpful site. My blog is "FrugalCeliac" on livejournal. I'd also love to have your permission to link over to specific recipes I like when I give them a shot. I'll check back and hopefully see a response, or you can check out my blog at livejournal. Just type in the user name in the search area. (Don't want to put the direct link here, out of respect.)

  17. Welcome, Frugal Celiac!

    I will be honored when you link to recipes. Thank you!

    And please add yourself to my GF links (see the I Blog Gluten-Free button in the sidebar? click and add your blog)...

    Be well!


  18. Help! What exactly is Arrowroot Starch? Can I use a different kind of starch in place of it if I don't have any on hand? Thanks, Maureen

  19. Hi Maureen-

    I like adding the arrowroot to egg-free recipes for binding. It's a starch that works well for thickening sauces and gravies, too.

    You can find it in the baking supply section- or even spice section- of most markets.

    Health food stores (like Whole Foods) carry larger bags of it (I use Bob's Red Mill). Check near the baking powder/baking soda/tapioca/salt/sugar section. Check the gluten-free section as well.

    Good luck!


  20. Juliette, Montreal, Quebec (Canada)12:51

    hi K ! I found your gorgeous banana bread while googling a recipe. I've been 90 % gluten-free for about a year, and i 'd like to bake instead of buying processed GF. Could you give me more details about your flour mix ? Proportions ? thanks so much for this really cool site !

  21. Hi Juliette!

    My flour mix changes.

    When I have buckwheat on hand, I use 1/4 buckwheat, 1/4 rice or sorghum flour, 1/4 tapioca starch, 1/4 potato or cornstarch.

    I used to love: 1/2 rice and/or sorghum flour, 1/4 almond meal, 1/4 tapioca.

    Basically- heavier flours like brown rice, buckwheat, almond and quinoa flour- I use for 1/4 of the total.

    Then I use a lighter flour for another 1/4, such as rice flour or sorghum; and two different starches at 1/4 each- like tapioca, arrowroot, potato or cornstarch.

    Or- lately- I use a mix of flour from Whole Foods. It's mainly white rice with some starches.



  22. I can't seem to find the "I Blog" link you mentioned...

  23. Hi Frugal-

    It's the I Blog Gluten-Free graphic in the right hand sidebar. Just click on it.

    You can also find the link on my Links page (click Blogs I Savor in the link list, upper left sidebar). See: They Do It Gluten Free: More GF Blogs-click to add yours...


  24. Mandee04:58

    Vegan AND GLuten-Free Banana Bread! I am so glad I started googling because I found your blog. I've been gluten free for years but would sometimes bake wheat based goods but I have started to want to make my own pastry/cakes/muffins and have been experimenting. It's great to see some successful recipes! Keep it up, Mandee xox

  25. Beth21:00

    Another fabulous, easy recipe from Karina that works beautifully! Here's my blow by blow: I substituted cornstarch for arrowroot (because I have lots of the former and none of the latter), I halved the sugar, and I threw in a handful of cranberries which I had chopped in the food processor. It's important to chop them because they're sooo tart, but they add a lovely counterpoint to the sweetness of the cake, not to mention a really cool splash of red. I used 2.5 big, overripe bananas. I think on the next round I'll add a tsp of banana extract because I like my banana bread over the top in banananess. My flour mix was 1/2 cup rice flour, 1/4 cup sorghum flour, and 3/4 cup potato starch. I baked them in 3 mini loaf pans and they took exactly 40 minutes. And of course they came out wonderful! Thanks, Karina. (And remember, people, when you're using chocolate, make sure it's Fair Trade! Slavery ruins the taste of baked goods.)

  26. I made this last week for some kids with celiac's that I was babysitting and it was a hit. I sent the rest of the loaf and the recipe home with their mom and she sent an email back saying that she could hardly tell it was gluten-free! I used 1/2 rice flour (I think it was brown but can't remember) and 1/2 Bob's Red Mill All-purpose baking flour mix. I was a little worried about the bean flours in the baking mix, but I couldn't tell a difference in taste. I only used 3 bananas but next time will use 4. This is a great recipe that I will definitely use again. Thanks!

  27. Mandee- Glad you found me. Stop by again and let me know how you're doing. ;)

    Beth- Adding the tart cranberries sounds delicious! Thank you for sharing your tweaks. Yes on fair trade chocolate. ;)

    Corrie- Excellent- glad it was a hit. If three bananas worked, why not stay with it? Four might take a bit longer to bake through the center.

    Thanks for sharing your tips!



  28. thank you thank you thank you!!! i feel i have stumbled upon a treasure to have found you. my one year old is allergic to peanuts, wheat, eggs, soy, dairy, rice and a strange hand-ful of fruits and veggies(i mean, who's allergic to sweet potatoes and apples for goodness sake??)i cannot wait to treat him to some banana bread or any of the otherwise seemingly forbidden goodies i thought he was destined to do without! i will visit here daily!!!

  29. Christine10:17

    Hi! I tried this recipe, but it didn't turn out for me. It tasted wonderful, but the center stayed soupy. I think its because of my flour blend. I tried an amaranth/quinoa blend since I am allergic to gluten, corn and rice. I am tentative about sorghum because I heard it can cause reactions in people with corn/rice allergies. Any ideas on how to make an amaranth/quinoa blend work? So far, I haven't had any luck finding one.

    Thanks for all of your great recipes!

  30. Hi Christine- Ah- I am going to baking with quinoa and millet flour very soon. I just bought both. So I'll have more experience to share.

    That said- it might also be other factors.

    If the bananas were large, maybe three would work instead (one less). Also- did you use eggs or Egg Replacer? Was your flour mix only those two flours?

    I'm thinking: What if you added buckwheat flour to the mix? I have had good luck using 1/2 cup buckwheat flour in my baking mix.

    The other possible factor might simply be your altitude/humidity and oven temperature. If you test the center with a toothpick and it comes out wet, bake it for ten minutes longer; test again. The size of the pan also influences how fast it bakes.

    Flours get damp with summer humidity, too. Sometimes you need less liquid when it's humid.


  31. know, I used 4 bananas and they were fairly large. I actually did not use any eggs. My flour mix was 50/50 of the 2 flours plus 2 tablespoons of tapioca starch.

    I forgot to mention that I am sadly allergic to buckwheat too! Gluten-free baking was so much easier before I found out that I am allergic to rice!

    I will keep experimenting. Looking forward to hearing about your quinoa/millet experience! I haven't tried millet before.

  32. Hi Christine- Okay- I bet it was the banana size issue- I'll make a note in the recipe. I really appreciate reader feedback like this.

    Sometimes vegan recipes can get gummy and dense in the center if the baking temp/pan size etc is not the perfect combo. Eggs would have helped in this case, I think; but no worries. I bet there was simply too much banana puree for the amount of flour.


  33. Hi Karina, first off, thank you so much for your wonderful site, it has given me so much hope, and courage to bake for my GF. egg, dairy and soy free four year old whose favorite food is "cake"! Until your site I had not attempted anything but the boxed GF baking mixes or premade almond -
    rice bread, but somehow it's so empowering to do it on your own! so thank you- thank you. Our family will be attempting to go totally GF, so each of your recipes become dear. We just made this banana bread, and love it! so I went to make it again, and sadly realized that I was out of bananas- but all my stuff for baking was out already so I substituted (crossing my fingers) canned pumpkin, and it was wonderful! pumpkin and chocolate are fabulous together, I ate more than my little cake eater!

  34. Lisa11:47

    This is AMAZING bread! I fed it to gluten eaters and abstainers alike and everyone adored it! I used half white rice flour, half brown rice flour, and the results were phenomenal. I wonder if I could make a loaf bread like this? I am dying for good bread, but would like to stay in the vegan range.. we're in trouble because dh is allergic to bananas, and we're vegan, so we don't use eggs! ack! help!

  35. Davis- Thank you so much for sharing the change to pumpkin tip- I'm going to add your tip into the recipe post. How much pumpkin did you use? Thanks!

    Lisa- Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed it. I am experimenting with making savory breads like this, too.

    I do have a good soda bread recipe posted, and a Pueblo Bread you could check out- but I am now working on a yeasted bread. Stay tuned (yeasted breads without eggs are tough- but I think we can come up with something).

    Perseveration pays off. :)


  36. I was searching for a GF chocolate-pumpkin cake recipe and landed here. Any thoughts on substituting pureed pumpkin for the banana? You might have some insights about texture, etc.

  37. Steph- Funny you should ask. ;) I just posted my Pumpkin Chai Bread recipe- based on this recipe. I also have several pumpkin cake recipes- look for them in my index. (And I love adding chocolate chips to pumpkin.) Sweet!


  38. Karina,

    You have another winner! A new favorite! I am so happy that my cheeks hurt from smiling (or is it from stuffing super hot banana bread into it...) I had three large leftover uber-ripe bananas and instead of making your banana cake (my usual standby), I went for this bread since I have a new beautiful nonstick loaf pan. I think it's wider than yours, so my loaf is a little more squat but it tastes phenomenal! Yay for wedding presents!

    I used 1/2 cup each Arrowhead Mills buckwheat flour, Authentic Foods superfine brown rice flour, and Tapioca Starch and used grapeseed oil as my oil. I liked that I could stir the batter by hand, so as not to disturb my husband, who is studying diligently for his fall semester law school exams.

    Of course, though, the wonderful smell started driving us bonkers. So after cooking for 30 minutes in a 360ºF oven (but my oven runs about 10º cooler), I checked it and it only needed about 6 minutes more cooking. This is definitely a recipe, in my opinion, for which you need some cooking background - there's the size of the bananas, the liquidiness of the batter, the type of pan, how long to preheat the oven (I find that waiting 10-15 minutes after the preheat beep goes off leads to a hotter oven and better baked treats), how long to bake, etc. But with your help and longtime mentoring, I did it! Woo hoo! I especially love the brown sugary slightly crunchy outside crusts. And the fact that the loaf fell right out of the grapeseed oil-sprayed loaf pan!

    Thank you SO much! I can see the headlines now: brown bananas become a blessing :P

    Happy T-day!

  39. Hi Karina,

    I just wanted to share that I made this recipe as muffins this evening and that they took 20 minutes to bake in my pregreased silicone muffin "tin" at 360ºF (my oven runs ~10ºF cool). They smell divine!

  40. hey karina, this looks perfect for bringing to brunch this weekend. i don't have arrowroot, do you have any suggestions for subs or am i ok rootless? thanks!

  41. ~M- Thanks for stopping back. I used this recipe to make some muffins, too; just posted the tweaked version.

    Erin- Hi- rootless, eh? ;-) It basically replaces an egg or two; so you could either use 2 TB potato starch, or use an egg, or Ener-G Egg Replacer.


  42. Anonymous13:43

    Hi Karina,
    I made this bread today and while it looked good going in, it fell in the middle about halfway through the baking time. Any idea why? I followed your recipe, using a mix of buckwheat/millet/sorghum and tapioca and cornstarch. I also used coconut oil instead of olive... It tasted wonderful.

  43. Magda- It might be too mush moisture/heaviness from the mashed bananas. Perhaps the bananas were larger than the ones I used? Next time try keeping the banana puree to 1 cup. I'm going to make a note in the recipe about this.


  44. Hi,

    I had the same problem with the bread falling in the middle. I measured the banana going in (1 cup) and used the Arrowhead Mills All purpose GF flour. I've used this before as a sub in pumpkin bread.


  45. wishihadatail - So many factors it could be- too much moisture (humidity? Flours have more moisture than mine). Perhaps try 1/2 teaspoon less baking powder- maybe too much leavening for your altitude? Oven temps, kind of pan all factor in.

    In the end, I suspect too much moisture, too wet, then rises too fast (try less leavening).


  46. This might be the best banana bread recipe I've ever made or tried, hands down. And I don't eat chocolate, so it's even without the chocolate chips. My mom brought stuff to make banana bread 4th of July weekend, and we used this recipe. I like it so much I've made two more loaves of it in the past week.
    We eat it warm with vanilla ice cream. YUM.

  47. Chocolate!!!! Looks sooooo nice.

    Must be yummy...

  48. Hey Karina,

    I hope you're settling in California! What are your thoughts on transforming this AMAZING recipe to pumpkin bread by subbing 1 cup canned pumpkin puree for the banana and pumpkin pie spice for the cinnamon? Would you make any other changes? Pumpkin + chocolate is SO good!

  49. Hey ~M! I actually converted my big banana muffin recipe to a pumpkin bread by switching out the puree and spices. Delicious! Will post it when we get settled in our new place. xox


  50. Judie20:09

    Hi Karina: I live in Ontario, Canada, and I tweaked this recipe to use (El Peto in the green box) all purpose gluten free flour. It needed 2 cups instead of your one and a half, plus I added a half cup of chopped pecans, baked it for an hour at 350 and it is wonderful. My husband, who has no food restrictions loves it. Hope this helps other Canadians with limited access to other flours.

  51. Anonymous14:08

    For those that don't want to use brown sugar, try date sugar. It is ground dried dates and measures and pours like a dusty granulated sugar. I use it in baking to avoid the processed sugar. It does change the flavor just a little, but we haven't found the change offensive in any way.

  52. Oops, I had no arrowroot starch, so looked up a substition, rice, corn or potato starch, which i have all three, but for some reason, used tapioca starch instead, and it still worked out!
    Very very yummy! Thanks for another successful (me recreating) recipe!

  53. Anita08:41

    I'm so glad to have stumbled across your site. I'm new to the world of allergies and it's because of my very allergic breastfed baby that I've gone GF. I thought I would never be able to survive this diet when I made your banana bread. It fed my soul (and hubby's as well, he couldn't believe it was vegan as well) and I've made it twice in one week!

    My substitutions, because it is what I had on hand: Flour (1 part brown rice, 1 part tapioca, 1/3 quinoa), guar gum instead of xanthan, tapioca starch instead of arrowroot and I chai-ed it up with cardamom. The first time I did it, it came out a bit too sweet for my taste but that was probably because I used a cup of packed brown sugar. The second time I just scooped it up and the sugariness was perfect. Both times the bread rose and baked beautifully. Next time I'm going to use more than a cup of bananas because I like my b-breads to be dense.

    Thanks so much for this recipe and for your blog! It often makes my day.

  54. Another fabulous recipe! It just came out of the oven & I had to sample it right away. It is light, fluffy and full of flavor. I used coconut oil instead of olive oil, used 2 eggs, guar gum instead of xantham & omitted the arrowroot starch. Yummy! Thank you!

  55. Karina, may I just state that you are beyond fabulous! Absolutely. I am a devout carnivore. My diet would give you nightmares. As I age and mature, God sees fit to bless me with friends who have different lifestyles and sensitivities. To show my warm heart (through my passion of baking) I often send homemade treats to the ones I love. Yours are THE BEST recipes I've been able to find online. I made your banana bread, substituting real chocolate. It was not bad at all. In the future I will use your recommended dose of 'nanas. I used only two and realize why your recipe calls for five (hanging-on to non-gluten rules...). Please keep cooking. Your palate erodes my skeptism, brings me closer to my loved ones and proves that vegan is not vulgar. Darling, it's vanguard! ;)