tropical banana bread with sugared macadamia crumble

by Kristina Sloggett

in baking,Breakfast,Dessert,Gluten Free,recipes,Vegan

Tomorrow is National Banana Bread Day.

Wait, back up a minute.

Why didn’t anyone tell me today is National Margarita Day!?

I guess I can still celebrate that one. and I will.

Second only to pumpkin pie, banana bread is one of the first things I learned how to bake. I had a standard for years, a variation of recipes from my mom and my grandma. Then I learned how to bake gluten free and vegan, and methods changed again. Banana bread is always good.

Nowadays I like to make it fun, get creative, add ingredients to make it different. Since I am spending so much time with him lately, this one is for my dad. and tomorrow I am actually bringing it to him, we will enjoy it for breakfast!

My dad is from Hawaii, so the recipe I made for him is tropical – sweetened with chunks of mango and shredded coconut, with a crunch of sugared macadamia crumble on top. This is divine.

tropical banana bread

dairy, egg, soy and gluten free, vegan

makes one loaf

2 tablespoons flax seed, ground
1/3 cup
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup butter (Earth Balance soy free)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1 cup gluten free all purpose flour
1 cup brown rice flour (or use more AP)
1 teaspoon baking soda
pinch sea salt
1 mango, peeled and cubed (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup shredded coconut
sugared macadamia topping (recipe follows) 

Combine flax and water, set in refrigerator to thicken. Combine coconut milk and apple cider vinegar, set aside. Cream together butter, sugar and maple syrup. Add bananas, add milk and flax mixtures, combine. Add flours, do not stir – add baking soda and salt, mixing into flour then mixing together with wet ingredients, until just combined. Stir in mango cubes and shredded coconut, pour batter into prepared loaf pan (sprayed and or lined with parchment). Top with sugared macadamia topping.

Bake at 350 for 60-70 minutes, or until inserted toothpick comes clean.

sugared macadamia crumble

3/4 cup macadamia nuts
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon cold butter (Earth Balance soy free)

Using a food processor or knife, finely chop macadamia nuts. Combine brown sugar and macadamia pieces, cut in cold butter until crumbly texture forms. Sprinkle in an even layer over banana bread before baking.

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Happy National Banana Bread Day!

{ 59 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Cara February 22, 2012 at 3:45 pm

Tell you what, I am going to whip up some of this bread tonight and eat every last slice in your dad’s honor. This will be a completely selfless act on my part and will have nothing to do with the fact that I am presently drooling all over these pictures and counting down the minutes until I can get into the kitchen to selfishly make it for myself…at all.


2 spabettie February 22, 2012 at 5:24 pm

make this, Make This, MAKE THIS! :D to celebrate banana bread day, of course… ;) and for my dad :D XXO!


3 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table February 22, 2012 at 4:24 pm

I bet your dad is going to LOVE this. It looks so good and I really like the macadamia topping. Speaking of which… is that part of the recipe coming? :)


4 spabettie February 22, 2012 at 5:23 pm

OOPS. thank you, Laura. just added it… ;)


5 Heather (Where's the Beach) February 22, 2012 at 4:38 pm

My tummy just rumbled. YUM. Love macadamia nuts. Can you email me a slice pretty please ;-)


6 spabettie February 22, 2012 at 5:23 pm

I wish I could! :)


7 Lindsay @ biking before bed February 22, 2012 at 6:02 pm

What a perfect recipe for your dad! I’m sure the topping alone takes this bread over the top.


8 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 10:03 am

indeed it does, Lindsay! the topping is my favorite…


9 Sarena (The Non-Dairy Queen) February 22, 2012 at 6:23 pm

The bread looks and sounds amazing! I am so excited you get to enjoy breakfast with your dad! What a lucky guy!


10 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 10:01 am

thanks, Sarena. I get to spend every morning with him – sometimes I get there before he even wakes up, so I tiptoe around the kitchen, making us coffee and getting his morning meds and “feeding” ready. It really is a nice time to spend with dad. He turns on the Today Show, we sit and talk (well, he writes on his dry erase…) :) I wouldn’t change it for anything (well, except to not be in this situation at all, but you know – I’m happy to be there for him).


11 bitt February 22, 2012 at 7:18 pm

I want my slice hand delivered tomorrow morning! ;-)

hugs to you and Basil for banana bread day.


12 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 9:55 am

aw, I wish I could deliver to you, Bitt! XO


13 Ellen (Gluten Free Diva) February 22, 2012 at 7:47 pm

This looks like the kind of banana bread one might eat sitting on a beach in Maui! Love your tropical take on Banana bread. Yum!!’


14 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 9:55 am

exactly, Ellen… until I can get there again, this bread will have to do! ;)


15 Kankana February 22, 2012 at 7:49 pm

love the idea of adding crumble with macadamia. This will add such a love crunch to the bread.


16 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 9:54 am

hi Kankana! the crunchy topping is my favorite part… :)


17 Roz@weightingfor50 February 22, 2012 at 9:07 pm

HI Kris, wow…this looks delicious. Bet your Dad will love it while he gets well. Hope you are doing well while you take care of everything else around you. Hugs.


18 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 9:54 am

thanks, Roz… I’m managing to hang in there :) thank you for your support and sweet messages – they always make me smile. XO


19 Alex@Spoonful of Sugar Free February 23, 2012 at 5:52 am

Happy Banana Bread Day!!!! Love your version of the classic, too! I just made a flourless version last night :D gorgeous pics!


20 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 9:50 am

yours looks great too… love the almond butter addition. happy banana bread day! :)


21 Heidi @ Food Doodles February 23, 2012 at 7:54 am

Yum! I’m literally drooling over that macadamia nut topping. Awesome idea! Love the mango and coconut in the bread too though :D


22 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 9:46 am

I’ve had this idea in my head for a while, having spent a good amount of time in Hawaii. I am pretty happy with the result – and yes, the crumble really adds so much! glad you like, Heidi!


23 Allie February 23, 2012 at 8:57 am

This makes me happy. Very happy. My best friend makes the most amazing banana bread, and she was just asking what I wanted her to make for dinner–question answered. I may even request some added coconut–sounds divine. And yup, clearly just defined banana bread as “dinner.”


24 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 9:45 am

well, YES, banana bread could absolutely be dinner. (banana bread french toast!?!!?) :D


25 Allie February 24, 2012 at 7:19 am

So, we did end up making banana bread muffins for dinner last night! Complete with chocolate chips AND coconut (thanks for the inspiration!). So delicious! I’ll have to give the french toast option a go next time…


26 spabettie February 24, 2012 at 11:39 am

YUM – I love chocolate in banana bread. and peanut butter. perhaps I need to make another loaf, then make french toast… happy weekend Allie!


27 Genevieve February 23, 2012 at 10:08 am

I love tropical flavors in baked good and I couldn’t come up with a better combination than bananas, mango, coconut and macadamia nuts! Looks amazing!


28 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 3:47 pm

thanks, Genevieve – I’m trying pineapple sometime, too – probably even more flavorful and tropical!


29 natalie (the sweets life) February 23, 2012 at 10:36 am

you had me at SUGARED MACADAMIA CRUMBLE! practically drooling over here—tropical banana bread sounds amazing!


30 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 3:44 pm

thanks, Natalie! yep, the crumble just puts this over the top… YUM!


31 Rachael February 23, 2012 at 1:21 pm

oh my goodness… i LOVE banana bread. gotta try this!


32 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 3:44 pm

I hope you do, Rachael :)


33 Ash February 23, 2012 at 2:42 pm

I made this today, but for lack of a few ingredients I used pineapple instead of mango, and cashews instead of macadamia nuts. So delicious!


34 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 3:43 pm

I have made the crumble with cashews before – just as good! and I thought of adding pineapple – I’m definitely going to make that sometime! glad you liked it, Ash!


35 Kath (My Funny Little Life) February 23, 2012 at 4:21 pm

I’ve never baked a banana bread. I don’t eat bread, and I’m not very fond of bananas. [insert shock reaction]

On other blogs, I would comment a post that features something I wouldn’t eat. On your blog, I can do that, because I don’t have to be afraid I could come across rude. Because you know it’s not a sign of disrespect but I’m simply stating that I don’t like bananas very much. (I really don’t, never did.) In a funny way, it’s a sign of trust and friendship that I can leave such a comment here without feeling bad. :)


36 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 4:46 pm

aw, Kath, I LOVE that you said this!! yes, it is so true, you can say anything here. you know I am not easily offended anyway, but because we are friends, that level of communication is even more real – we say what we want without pretense.

but… WHAT???!?! you don’t like banana?? oh my… ;)


37 Kath (My Funny Little Life) February 23, 2012 at 5:45 pm

I know! 8O As you now know, I also don’t like dates. And quinoa (you knew that already). And peanut butter. And tofu. And salmon (actually, I really don’t). And chcolate. And coconut (just my coconut oil but I can’t taste it in the food :D). And figs. And pineapple. And melon. And millet. And cheese (I *hate* cheese). And olives or anything made from or with olives, including olive oil. And bacon (eww). And eggplant. And hazelnuts. And raisins. And sweet potatoes (gasp). And corn. And kidney beans. I could go on. :D


38 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 5:52 pm

have you tried again with the quinoa…? :) I know you bought some, right? well, we are definitely friends IN SPITE of food – I like just about everything on this list. except for melon, not so much. oh and bacon. but everything else. ;)


39 Kath (My Funny Little Life) February 23, 2012 at 6:04 pm

I did, twice, and then I gave the bag to a friend. :D She loves the stuff.

Feel free to take my lifetime share in those foods. I won’t need it. I’ll take your lifetime share in chicken instead, and everything is fine. :)

40 cassandre February 23, 2012 at 8:52 pm

i never knew there was a national banana bread day… yummmy.. looks so delicious and has all my favorite food items.


41 Tommy February 24, 2012 at 9:41 am

DANG girl, this is fabulous! You have done it again.


42 spabettie February 24, 2012 at 11:38 am

oh Tommy you always make me smile :D


43 Tiff February 24, 2012 at 10:18 am

I just found out today that I missed national margarita day earlier this week. Yes, I too was pretty bummed about this!


44 spabettie February 24, 2012 at 11:37 am

pretty sure you should make up for it tonight or this weekend – you know, same week, still works. ;)


45 Cara February 24, 2012 at 1:17 pm

I’m really annoyed that I missed out on both of those holidays too. Why does no one tell me these things in advance!


46 spabettie February 24, 2012 at 1:25 pm

I am always saying that, Cara!! I need a calendar of these things. so I can plan accordingly. my new theory is – they happened this week, right?? you can celebrate them through the weekend, I think! get on that margarita!!


47 Cara February 24, 2012 at 1:27 pm

I’ll drink to that! Actually, someone just sent me this. Now, I just need to actually plan ahead.


48 spabettie February 24, 2012 at 1:53 pm

awesome – I will try to keep up with this. thanks! :) now back to that margarita… cheers!


49 Pure2raw twins February 26, 2012 at 3:22 pm

YES!!! i wish this bread was baking away in my oven right now. i am so pinning this recipe! amazing


50 Grandma Wrinkles April 21, 2012 at 1:34 am

made for breakfast today, another perfection thank you!



51 Lora @cakeduchess November 12, 2012 at 10:10 am

exceptional bread with a tropical twist. The sugared macadamia topping takes it over the top~:)Thanks for linking up, Kristina xx


52 spabettie November 12, 2012 at 2:23 pm

this was a good one… having grown up in Hawaii, my dad loved it :)


53 Tammy March 26, 2013 at 11:40 am

Hi, I made this recipe and while I was told by everyone it was delicious, it sunk in the middle. I had baked it for 75 minutes…started checking at 60 minutes, then 65 still not done, then 70 and finally 75. You did not specify the size of the pan, and I used a 9×3 loaf pan. Perhaps I should use a larger loaf pan. The only thing I did differently was that I did not use the 2 tsp of flax seed and the 1/2 water. I don’t generally use flax seeds and did not feel like paying so much money for something I wasn’t going to use much. I do not see where that would make a difference though. May I hear from you as to any suggestions? Thank you very much.


54 Kristina Sloggett March 29, 2013 at 7:59 am

hi Tammy,

the flax and (large amount of) water in this recipe is there in place of eggs, and is a binder and thickener for the dough. I have not made this recipe without it, so if you simply omitted it, that could be the reason.

my pan is a metal loaf pan with dimensions of 8.5 x 4.5, but I have made this in a smaller glass pan as well – the smaller pan may account for the longer cook time.

I’m glad everyone said it was delicious, I hope this helps? if you want to make it in the future, in place of the flax you can use 2 eggs.


55 tammy March 31, 2013 at 11:27 am

Thank you so much for taking the time to write and for your suggestions.


56 Kristina Sloggett April 2, 2013 at 8:49 pm

you are so welcome, Tammy – I hope it helps.


57 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 6:06 pm

that sounds like a perfect plan :)


58 Kath (My Funny Little Life) February 23, 2012 at 6:08 pm

I actually think we can be even better friends *because of* food. We’ll never have food envy! And there’s still some intersection of things we both like, in case we want to share a meal. :)


59 spabettie February 23, 2012 at 6:17 pm

good point – and OF COURSE we would definitely be able to share a meal… and we WILL :D


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