Banana Gingerbread with Molasses

Rich and moist, this banana gingerbread is full of warming gingerbread spices, bananas, and molasses. Perfect for the holiday season.

close up of sliced banana loaf.

An easy banana bread recipe is always a hit, but sometimes a change to a classic is nice. This spiced banana bread is a gingerbread banana loaf combination.

It contains the texture of classic moist banana bread, combined with the warming spiciness of an old-fashioned gingerbread loaf. It’s deliciously decadent.

Try this brown butter banana bread next!

About this bread

This is a quick bread because the batter can be mixed up in less than 10 minutes!

However baking time takes a little longer. It’s baked in a loaf tin, which, because of its restricted size, means it takes its time to cook right through.

It has the taste and moist texture of banana bread but it’s also spicy and super flavorful thanks to deep molasses, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. The perfect bread to bake over the winter holidays and it will make the house smell wonderful.

side view of sliced loaf.

The ingredients

The ingredients are listed in the recipe card below but here is a run-through of them with a few extra details. 

  • Large bananas – Mashed bananas are an obvious must-have in a banana gingerbread loaf. Overripe bananas are best. They provide natural sweetness and flavor to the recipe as well as add moisture to the bread.
  • Soft brown sugar
  • Unsalted butter – melted butter provides flavor and moisture.
  • Eggs – Large eggs provide some of the structure.
  • Vanilla – Always a good idea.
  • Spices – ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves give the warming gingerbread flavor.
  • Molasses – Unsulphered molasses. This gives a rich dark color and adds moisture.
  • Flour – an all-purpose flour is the base of the loaf.
  • Baking soda – The rising agent needed in the loaf.
  • Salt – a flavor enhancer
  • Boiled water – Adding hot water to the batter creates a more moist loaf. 

Equipment

You’ll need a 9x 5-inch loaf pan (23x16cm.)

The method 

Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C) and line a 9×5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, spices, salt, and baking soda until no clumps remain. Set this aside.

Melt the butter in a large microwave-safe large bowl. Add in the bananas and mash them well.

eggs, molasses, sugar in butter.

Add in the sugar, vanilla, eggs, and molasses.

brown batter.

Whisk until combined.

hot water poured onto batter.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk together. Pour over hot water.

Birds Eye view of batter.

Stir it together carefully until combined into a pourable cake batter. 

batter being poured in a pan.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

sliced banana on batter.

Slice the extra banana lengthwise and place the sliced banana on top of the batter.

Baking

Bake in a preheated oven for approximately 60 minutes until the center of the bread is cooked through. The cooking time will depend on your oven and the pan used. A skewer inserted into the center of the loaf should come out clean.

Remove the banana gingerbread loaf from the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for 5 minutes.

Lift it from the pan and allow it to cool further on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes before slicing.

sliced banana bread.

Serving and storing

This makes a lovely afternoon treat, or enjoy with a cup of tea or your morning coffee.

This delicious loaf cake stays fresh at room temperature for up to 3 days. It can also be wrapped tightly and frozen for up to three months.

Additions and substitutions

Banana bread is a great recipe that can easily be adapted to suit your tastes. Texture can be added with seeds and nuts, flavors can be changed with spices and fruits. Sugars and flours can be switched up too. 

  • Walnuts, pecans, or almonds can be chopped and added to the batter. In the case of nut allergies, seeds can be added instead. Pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds give a great crunch to the moist bread.
  • Stir in finely chopped candied ginger for extra spice.
  • Swap the spices with 2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice.
  • Spices, fruits, chocolate – This gingerbread banana bread is already full of spices, but these can be changed too. Cardamom and all-spice can be added, or orange zest too. Dark chocolate chips are a delicious addition too, especially when the bread is still warm and the chocolate has melted.
  • ½ the all-purpose flour in this recipe can be switched to whole wheat flour for a healthier touch. 
sliced banana loaf.

Related recipes

Want more sweet bread recipes? Try this cinnamon glazed apple bread or these delicious brioche cinnamon rolls.

Homemade cultured butter is another great thing to try to make and spread on your loaves.

close up of banana bread slices.

Banana Gingerbread with Molasses

Yield: 1 loaf
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Thick and moist with rich flavor, this ginger banana bread is full of warming spices, bananas and molasses.

Ingredients

  • 113g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
  • 240g (2 large) extra ripe bananas
  • 2 large eggs
  • 150g (¾ cup) soft brown sugar
  • 95g (⅓ cup) unsulphured molasses
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste or extract
  • 250g (2 cups*) all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 240g (1 cup) hot boiled water

Topping

  • 1 banana (optional)
  • Turbinado sugar (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 356 °F (176°C). Grease and line a 9x5-inch (23 x 16cm) loaf pan.
  2. Melt the butter in a large bowl. Add in the bananas and mash them well. Add the sugar, vanilla, egg, and molasses and whisk until combined.
  3. Whisk together the flour, spices, salt, and baking soda in a separate bowl.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the banana mixture and whisk together until combined.
  5. Pour over the hot water and stir it carefully until combined into a pourable cake batter. There will be lumps from the mashed banana and that's okay.
  6. Pour the batter into a prepared loaf pan.
  7. Slice the extra banana lengthwise and place the sliced banana on top of the batter. Sprinkle with a little turbinado sugar.
  8. Bake in a preheated oven for approximately 60 minutes until cooked through and a knife inserted in the loaf comes out clean.
  9. Remove the loaf from the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for 5 minutes.
  10. Lift it from the pan and allow it to cool further on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes before slicing.

Notes

*The cup sizes given are for US cups. Note that these are smaller than metric cup sizes. For best results, use grams.

The banana gingerbread stays fresh at room temperature for up to 3 days. It can also be wrapped tightly and frozen for up to three months.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 168Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 194mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 1gSugar: 6gProtein: 3g

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10 Comments

  1. The ingredients mention light brown sugar, but the instructions don’t. Is this added to the dry ingredients?

  2. This turned out beautifully! I used turbinado sugar but I might try light brown sugar next time. But it’s has a wonderful fluffy texture and flavor.

  3. Do you mean boiled water that has been cooled which seems to make more sense than adding freshly boiled water. Can’t find any reference to water temp so will go with cold water if I don’t hear back.

    Do like the metric measurements BTW.

    1. Oops. I used cool water from the kettle but glad to say it came out delicious. Even banana bread haters in the family ate it.
      I’ll give it a shot your way next time.
      Baked it in a 9×11 pan because no bread pan handy. Cooked in 40 minutes.

  4. Hello,
    I am using frozen bananas. The bananas have given off a lot of water/liquid as they have thawed. Do you recommend I weigh out 240g of just banana pulp. And use the liquid they have given off as part of the one cup of water I am supposed to add? If i don’t have a whole cup of banana juice, I will add the remaining as water? Or should I count the banana+banana liquid as part of the 240g banana. And still add a whole cup of water as directed by the recipe?

    1. Hey I would use 240g banana pulp and strain out the banana liquid. 🙂 Then continue with the rest of the recipe (and add the hot water)

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