After playing with the Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Banana Bread to keep the texture and look but cut the overpowering sweetness, we got to a more banana-y Low Sugar Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Banana Bread. I still thought we could limit the sugar content further, though, and use the chocolate chips, or a drizzle of honey or some jam to add sweetness and depth of flavor. Belle’s brother Buddy is eating solids and I’m trying to avoid added sugar in his food.
With yet another batch of overripe bananas, we set off to test the recipe.
Belle’s fine motor control has really improved over the past few months (from 2 1/2 to almost 3), which allows her to do a lot of the two-handed coordinated movements without me as a stabilizer. A measuring cup of yogurt holds a pretty good sticky substance that requires one hand to stay stable and the other to be moving in and out while twisting. Pretty complicated. So long as the cup rests on the edge of the mixing bowl, I can be fairly certain the yogurt will make it into the bowl. Then, I refer back to our sequencing work, and have her “scrape, tap (into the bowl), and check” to see if she got it all.
Similarly, she’s able to get the eggs and flour into the mixing bowl without assistance or (much) spillage, and she’s able to grease a pan fairly well. My challenge is to step back and let her, only swooping in after to make sure we got the yogurt fully scraped or the pan fully greased.
Belle is still a two-year-old, so impulsivity is hard to control. When she spotted eggshells that needed to be cleaned up, she got distracted by how easily they broke. Instead of ripping them out of her hands, we started talking about what she was doing and describing how it felt: crunchy, icky, sharp, so gross, crackly, fun.
Skills worked on:
- following directions
- kitchen safety
- asking for help
- fine motor (scooping, scraping, and pouring)
- food prep!
- mixer (stand or hand)
- mixing bowl
- small bowl (for eggs)
- loaf pan
- measuring cups
- measuring spoons
We’re pretty happy with this recipe and like the sweetness level. It could easily handle nuts or chocolate chips. It’s also pretty flexible – margarine can sub in for butter, regular or Icelandic yogurt can substitute in for Greek yogurt, and if you’re short a banana it doesn’t much matter.
Recipe (40 min prep, 50 min bake, yield 1 loaf):
- 3 bananas
- 1/2 c. butter, melted
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 c. 2% Greek yogurt
- 1 1/3 c. whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Optional: 3/4 c. chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 325°F and grease a loaf pan.
- Melt one stick of butter in separate bowl.
- Beat together melted butter and bananas, leaving it chunky.
- Add 2 eggs, 1 tsp vanilla, and 1/2 c. Greek yogurt to butter/banana mixture. Mix well.
- Mix in 1 1/3 c. whole wheat flour, 1 tsp baking soda, and 1/2 tsp salt. Optionally, fold in 3/4 c. chocolate chips.
- Scrape batter into prepared loaf pan and spread it even. Sprinkle extra chocolate chips on top (optional).
- Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs.
- Let cool completely before removing from pan. Store at room temperature or in refrigerator in an airtight container.
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