We all know that mantra about breakfast being the most important meal of the day, but we also know that breakfast is often the first meal to get kicked to the curb as we hustle to get everyone to work and school. The truth is, though, eating breakfast helps kick start our metabolism, wakes up the brain, and gets us going in the morning. So it really is important to grab a bite to eat before heading out the door. Now, the other mantra that we’ve all heard is that we have to eat a meal before we get to eat dessert. So we thought, how can we say YES to both breakfast and dessert? The solution is really quite simple: banana bread brownies.
Banana bread brownies are the perfect sidekick to a cup of morning joe, and make for easy individually wrapped on the go breakfast or mid-morning snack. One way to add a little extra “umph” to banana bread – if you don’t already do this – is to add chopped nuts, like walnuts. These add not only great texture and crunch, but also a little bit of protein, as well as nutty sweetness that goes really well with bananas. We also love banana bread as a way to salvage those couple of bananas that no one wants to eat because they’ve started to “turn”. It is almost like a food recycling project – bringing new life back to a tired banana.
What makes our banana bread brownies dessert-like is a sweet and gooey layer of frosting, not a ton, but just enough to make the banana bread a little more indulgent than usual. The frosting is super simple and gets added color and flavor from a slight browning of the butter. A golden sweet frosting is almost too irresistible to pass up. We like to make this for a Sunday brunch and set aside any leftovers for those mornings when we’re running short on time and need something quick to grab on our way out the door. When breakfast feels like a treat, we’re less likely to skip it!
Banana Bread Brownies
Serves 12-16 squares
- 2 eggs
- 3 bananas, mashed
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 1 cup sour cream
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
- 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- For frosting:
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup milk
- Preheat oven to 375°F and grease a 9x13-inch baking dish or line with parchment paper.
- Mash bananas until just smooth. Add cinnamon and stir until well blended.
- In a large bowl, beat sugar, butter, sour cream, and eggs until creamy. Add vanilla extract and mashed bananas.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Slowly add dry ingredients to wet in 3 small batches. Optional: fold in chopped walnuts.
- Pour batter into baking dish, spreading evenly, and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from oven to cool slightly.
- In large sauce pan, melt butter until just golden brown in color.
- Whisk in powdered sugar one cup at a time, followed by vanilla and milk.
- Once mixture has come together and thickened, pour warm frosting over top of banana brownies, using a spatula to spread evenly over the top. Cool completely before cutting into squares to serve.
Recipe adapted from Sugar Apron