Strawberry Banana Muffins

April 24th, 2008

I cannot tell you how excited I am to share this recipe.  This bread is not just shockingly delicious, incredibly easy to make, and looks quite lovely as a little loaf.  But it is also good for you. Really good for you.  Almost fat free and made with whole wheat flour good for you.  No white sugar in the entire recipe (just a bit of honey) good for you.  And yet so tasty that you could happily eat it for dessert, I swear.

But first, let me discuss one of the things I love so much about spring.  Usually, when I’m making a baked good that involves fruit, I make it using frozen fruit.  This is mostly for two treasons: first, fresh berries, for most of the year, are very expensive.  Second, fresh berries, for most of the year, are not of very high quality, since they have probably been shipped to New York from China or Australia.  I know how fresh I felt after getting off an 18-hour flight from Shanghai this summer, and frankly, I wouldn’t want to put my fruit through that.

But it’s spring, as the 78 degree weather outside is screaming into my ear.  And fresh fruit is starting to pop up all over the place — and it’s cheap.  With all the talk of rising food prices, I found strawberries at my grocery store on sale for $1.50 a pound (seriously).  And what did it inspire?  Muffins.

“Hmm, Katy,” I know you’re thinking.  “That loaf in the first picture doesn’t look much like muffins.”

But the fact is, I had so much batter from this recipe, that I ended up with a small loaf of strawberry banana bread, six regular sized muffins, and twelve mini muffins.  See?

But back to the recipe.  I have been on a mega muffin/quickbread kick recently (breakfast, dinner, midnight snacks…).  But you will pretty much never catch me buying a muffin in a bakery or coffee shop.  Those things are usually the size of my head, and are generally nothing more than a dessert, packed with sugar and white flour and vegetable oil and I’m frightened to think what else.

And the same goes for lots of muffin recipes I looked at — many of them called for a cup of sugar, half a cup of oil or butter, and all purpose flour.  Sure, every once in a while I stumbled across a “sugar-free” recipe, but those all used sugar substitutes like Splenda, which I loathe.  Have you ever made a baked good with Splenda that’s actually tasty?  I haven’t.

So here is my alternative.  Healthy and natural and delicious: Fresh fruit, 100% whole wheat flour, a smidge of honey for sweetness, and some sour cream.  It doesn’t get any more simple than that, and trust me, these are shockingly good.  Twelve hours later, I’d be embarrassed to show you how little of that yummy loaf is left.

Strawberry Banana Muffins (or Bread)

2 large ripe bananas, mashed
2 tbsp honey
1/2 cup nonfat sour cream
1 egg
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons 100% whole wheat flour
2 tbsp water (eliminate this ingredient if you’re making one large loaf)
Pinch of salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cups chopped strawberries (about 1/2 pound)

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, combine mashed bananas, honey, sour cream, egg, and salt and beat until combined.
3. Add 1/2 cup of flour and beat until incorporated.
4. Add remaining 3/4 cup of flour and baking powder, along with 2 tbsp of water, and beat until incorporated.
5. Stir in chopped strawberries gently.
6. Pour batter into lightly greased muffin or loaf tins.  Bake for 25 minutes (for muffins), or 35 minutes (for small loaves).  Allow to cool, and serve.

Makes about 15 muffins, three small banana strawberry loaves.

UPDATE: I just took my second batch of these muffins out of the oven, after following the directions written here exactly, and I’m pretty sure I know why people have been having trouble with this recipe.  Those sneaky little words “or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean” have screwed everyone up, myself included.

This muffin/bread recipe doesn’t taste nearly as good if you try to get the bread to cook all the way through — it will be tough on the outside and far too dry.  So if you wait for a toothpick to come out clean, the outside of your bread will probably be leather.  Forget about that silly toothpick.

Instead, bake muffins for 25 minutes and bread for only about 35.  The inside won’t look “done” but it’s set enough to hold it’s shape, which is really all you want — that gooey goodness from the cooked strawberries hitting the undercooked muffin dough is what I loved about this recipe in the first place.  If you’re worried about eating undercooked dough with egg in it (although I have a hard time believing that any bacteria would survive 25 minutes in a 350 degree oven), cut your muffin in half and throw it into the toaster oven before eating it — it’ll cook off quickly and you’ll get a crispy and delicious muffin.

Also, one more bit of advice — don’t use cupcake papers to line your muffin tins, because you won’t be able to get them off!  Just bake them in the muffin tin, well greased.

Tags: breads · Breakfast and Brunch · food

92 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Diane // May 6, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    That sounds fantastic! Any extra fruit you can slip into their food helps!
    I’d serve this with some decidely unhealthy jam and cream though!

  • 2 Deb // May 8, 2008 at 9:31 am

    Hi, I’m glad to read the updates.  I first made the muffins in paper, and they totally stuck to the paper.  I’ve got to give this another go with just greasing the pan. =)

  • 3 gwen // May 9, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    this recipe is awesome! i’ve already make 4 loaves! i take a chunk of bread as a snack, or bigger slice as breakfast and it keeps me going.

    even refrigerated, it smells and tastes great!

  • 4 anna // May 10, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    Unfortunately, even with the adjustment, this recipe didn’t work for me.  I took the muffins out at 25 minutes, but they promptly collapsed, and are really doughy still.  ๐Ÿ™ They’re still edible, but I’m glad I didn’t try to make them for guests….

    I’ve loved your other recipes, though, Katy!

  • 5 Candy // May 11, 2008 at 7:02 pm

    I tried the bread for girls weekend. I think the “girls” were kind saying they liked it.  Baking a bit longer would have been better.  I also think I would add a bit more honey. The taste was a little harsh to me.  I will try it again with riper bananas and a smidge more sweetner

  • 6 Anonymous // May 13, 2008 at 11:56 am

    this is bomb-shizzzlen :]

  • 7 janet // May 13, 2008 at 11:57 am

    this is bomb-shizzzle:]

  • 8 Anonymous // May 13, 2008 at 11:57 am

    this is bomb-shizzzle:]

  • 9 Heavenlymayday // May 17, 2008 at 9:35 am

    Read, appreciated, made and linked :D:D

  • 10 healthy banana bread // May 17, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    […] Banana BreadHealthy, all natural strawberry banana bread! Mange la Ville ? Really Good and Pretty Healthy Banana BreadMar 10, 2008 … 4 Responses to […]

  • 11 Shauna // Jun 6, 2008 at 9:48 am

    You should check out this contest for the best banana bread recipes.  You could win a $50 gift card!!

    There aren’t very many recipes competing either, so you could probably win it pretty easily!!  I could just copy your recipe and win it myself, but that would be cheating.  Plus I’m the one sponsoring the contest!!! ๐Ÿ™‚


  • 12 banana bread // Jun 11, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    […] Banana BreadHealthy, all natural strawberry banana bread! BreadLearn how to make banana bread in this kid-friendly […]

  • 13 RPO // Jun 25, 2008 at 10:10 am

    I like the combination of the two fruits in a smoothie. I wonder if its the same great taste in bread!

  • 14 Andra // Jul 16, 2008 at 5:09 pm

    I just tried this recipe last night and, I hate to say, but–IT WAS AWFUL.  I got the muffins to cook just fine, and they were done all the way through when taken out of the oven.  However, despite following the ingredient list to a T, the overall consistency of the muffins was gummy and they had virtually no flavor.  Kinda like baked balls of glue.  I got about halfway through eating one muffin and chucked the rest of the batch in the trash.  ๐Ÿ™

  • 15 Plenty Of Eatings « Lighter Portions // Jul 18, 2008 at 11:44 pm

    […] to finish off our big container of strawberries that were starting to go bad, so I opted for this tasty and healthy sounding recipe. The only changes I made to this Strawberry Banana recipe, which I […]

  • 16 Stephanie // Jul 23, 2008 at 6:45 am

    I love the taste of these, although they didn’t rise which was a bit disappointing – where could’ve I gone wrong?

  • 17 RPO // Aug 4, 2008 at 4:35 pm

    I love strawberry banana smoothies, Im extra excited to try the bread!

  • 18 Heather // Sep 22, 2008 at 9:54 am

    I’m sorry to say this but, as a few others my loaf didnt rise and i was left with crusty banana and strawberry goop.
    Any solutions

  • 19 Candy // Sep 22, 2008 at 8:10 pm

    Heather, my suggestion to you, from my own experience, use muffin tins and the ripest bananas you can find. The loaf I made was not good. Muffins were much better.

  • 20 Jason // Feb 14, 2009 at 11:06 am

    This recipe is terrible!
    NO sugar?
    NO butter?
    never gets cooked evenly!
    Back to the drawing board for you!!!
    Thanks for screwing up my V-Day dessert plan.

  • 21 Cathy // Jun 12, 2009 at 11:46 am

    just tried these muffins, they sure look good, but taste awful.  If you are used to no sweetness in your baked goods, you can get by, other wise sprinkle sugar on top before you indulge

  • 22 Ariella // Jun 27, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    im out of sour cream! can i use applesauce or vanilla yogurt instead?

  • 23 Banana Blueberry Muffins « Mozzarella & Merlot // Jul 15, 2009 at 11:20 am

    […] knew I liked from one of my favorite food bloggers over at Sugarlaws.ร‚ย  I originally made her Strawberry Banana Bread because my family had picked two pounds of delicious Jersey strawberries around Memorial Day and we […]

  • 24 Katie // Jul 15, 2009 at 11:27 am

    Man, some people were really brutal on this recipe! I mean, if you were concerned about its success with no butter or sugar, perhaps you should’ve tried it BEFORE making it for a Valentines Day? Perhaps Jason is trying to tell his girlfriend to lay off the sugar? 

    Regardless, I have made this twice (once as a loaf w/ strawberries, and once as muffins w/ blueberries) and had delicious results both times.  Thank you for posting a breakfast recipe that is both healthy AND tasty!

    I featured it on my blog here ( if you’d like to check it out.


  • 25 carmen // Jul 26, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    awesome recipe! i googled the ingredients i wanted to use “whole wheat strawberry banana muffins” and look what i got.  how did you know i wanted muffins with no sugar, too?! my mom is gonna be sooo happy when i email this to her. your blog looks legit… so many yummy recipes! i will definitely bookmark you and try a bunch more of your recipes.

  • 26 10 things to do in your free time « Taydor Tott // Sep 18, 2009 at 11:13 am

    […] baked some strawberry banana sour cream bread muffins (I really need to buy a loaf pan) using this recipe. Didn’t turn out nearly as good as the last recipe I used. ร‚ย These were beyond mushy and kind […]

  • 27 Jenn // Mar 1, 2010 at 7:20 am

    Do you think I could substitute fat free plain yogurt for the sour cream?

  • 28 Jenna // Mar 10, 2010 at 8:39 am

    Ive made recipes with ingredients list like this before (ie, delicious choc cake…surprise, no butter or sugar!) and I thought the negative comments here might be from ppl used to high sugar sweets, but this recipe is truly flawed. Take heed of all the bad results. These are half pudding, and leaving them longer they’ve started to burn. There really is zero flavor to these, except wet bites of strawberry.

    It seems that 75% of the comments here are people announcing their plan to make these (thanks for the info!), rather than any real commentary on the recipe.

    I would be embarrassed to serve these.

    Wish I still had all my strawberries and bananas to eat.

  • 29 Taryn // Apr 6, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    I just made these for my 11 month old daughter to have for breakfast! I didn’t use any honey and they’re delicious. I can’t wait till tomorrow morning to give her one. She’s going to love them!

  • 30 Lori // Apr 13, 2010 at 10:23 am

    I just made 12 muffins with this recipe.  25 minutes and tooth pick came out slightly moist.  Perfect consistnecy when cooled.  Tried one and wondered if my whole wheat flour was bad (is this possible?).  They are a bit “tart” for lack of a better term.  After reading all of the other comments, some pretty nasty (unbelievable), I’ve decided it’s the lack of sugar which is just fine with me.  I did sprinkle some unrefined sugar on before baking just incase so I suggest if you need sweet, sweet you should do the same.
    Otherwise………….. yummy.

  • 31 Jenny // May 5, 2010 at 10:40 am

    I started making a triple batch of these (to freeze for breakfasts and snacks on the go for my toddler) and then read the comments, which made me nervous.

    They turned out fine, though.  The flavor was a bit muted, so I think next time I’d add some vanilla and maybe cinnamon (or maybe orange extract…mmmm).  The middle was done, but a little on the moist side (though any strawberry muffins that I’ve made have been a little moist…I suspect that’s why blueberry muffins are more common–the juice is “contained” while baking).  All in all, will definitely work for my little fruit lover!

  • 32 Glucometer Reviews // Dec 16, 2010 at 2:48 pm

    Oh wow! That looks absolutely delicious, I love how you took an old favorite and added your own twist. You also did an amazing job with the pictures, I will definitely try this recipe over the weekend.

  • 33 Maria Emรญlia // Mar 20, 2011 at 10:46 am

    The other day I tried some apple muffins, I baked 6 of them, and then a loaf… just like you.
    I had already the toothpick experience, this is common with raw sugar and some other ingredients. So, I allowed some moisture on the toothpick (a fork also works), turned the oven off and I let the muffins inside until cool, about 15 minutes. It worked fine.

  • 34 amy // Apr 14, 2011 at 10:59 am

    I tried this recipe with a few modifications.  I used regular sour cream instead of fat free added an extra tbs of honey and 1/4 graduated sugar with tsp cinnamon.  I know take some of the healthy factor away, but I feel like even with the modifications they are so much healthier than any other alternative I’ve tried and the kids actually love these where the healthy recipes I’ve tried they have disliked and refused to eat.  I doubled the recipe because I’ve got 5 kids and they dint last long.

  • 35 Marilyn // Jun 7, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    It said to use 2 large bananas and I used 3 medium and they were too gooey – never got done in the middle.

  • 36 Char // Jun 20, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    I printed this recipe a few months ago without reading the comments. Big mistake. I made the recipe today and it was a total flop. Moist is one thing, but its total mush inside. I can’t even get the bread out of the mini loaf pans. The bread has a crust on top, but the inside is like oatmeal. Even after cooling. I even tried to re bake in the oven for another 30 minutes, checking on it ever 10. Still like mushy oatmeal inside. This was just a waiste of good fresh strawberries.

  • 37 amy // Jun 21, 2011 at 8:18 am

    Responding to Char’s comment posted 6/20/11…..
    Char I made these muffins a few months ago and they were a success!  I’m not sure what went wrong for you, but I am a nanny for 5 kids and the recipe made about 60 mini muffins and they only lasted for 2 days.  Not only did the kiddos gobble them up but the mom and dad I work for also really enjoyed them.  You should really give it another try.  If you decide to try it again, I suggest using mini muffin liners and I sprayed them with a smidge of olive oil cooking spray.  While I realize that spraying them with oil takes away a bit of the “healthiness” factor, I didn’t want to have 5 disappointed children.  Mine took a little longer to cook than the recipe said, but I just kept a super close eye on them and stuck a toothpick in them until it came out clean.  It probably warrants stating that I am NOT usually a successful baker.  I’m a great cook, however, baking is a huge challenge for me but the success of this recipe gave me hope and I felt super proud after having success with it!  I might add, I DID NOT make a bread loaf, only mini muffins.  Something else I feel is note worthy, and probably bad judgement on my part, I put a dozen or so of the muffins in a ziploc and the tops got yucky.  They got sort of mushy on the tops only, but I probably didn’t let them cool long enough before placing them in the bag.  I also added about double the amount of honey for some extra sweetness.

    I really hope you give this recipe another try.  Maybe something was mismeasured or accidentally left out.  I’ve bake with wheat flour before and usually end up with something that’s really dry, definitely not too moist.

    Good luck to you if you choose to try the recipe again.

  • 38 Ali // Sep 5, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    This is just what I need! I’m going on a sugar fast for a month and my sisters were making some muffins with loads of sugar. This is perfect!!! Just what I needed for my own muffins! ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks!!!

  • 39 Carrie // Sep 5, 2011 at 10:56 pm

    Hey this looks great but I was wondering if there was a way to use all purpose flour. I’m too lazy to go buy whole wheat. Thanks:D

  • 40 katy // Sep 6, 2011 at 9:14 am

    Yup — shouldn’t be a problem!  Just cut out the water, which is mostly to moisten the whole wheat flour.

  • 41 Carrie // Sep 21, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    thanks so much ๐Ÿ˜€ I will definately be trying this

  • 42 Anom // Apr 1, 2012 at 8:02 am

    These were awful. The muffins looked weird. They were dry and tasteless.

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