To kick off sugar-free January I am bringing you one of my FAVORITE recipes. I am a banana bread stan! I find it funny because I don’t necessarily love a plain banana, but there is something about banana bread that just makes me weak. The subtle cinnamon spice, the vanilla, bananas, and dark chocolate chunks just sing when they are paired together. I eat this recipe on the reg even when I am not participating in sugar-free January!
I love dark chocolate, but I haven’t always been a fan! I use to love a nice creamy piece of milk chocolate but then I became lactose intolerant with age and boy I can’t even think about eating milk chocolate now. There are so many incredible options for low sugar, dairy-free chocolate options that are delicious and so rich. Here is a list of my favorite sugar-free and dairy-free chocolates to eat and bake with, also a little discount for you as well! I get all of my specialty foods on Thrive Market and save those big bucks – truly – save so much money! Use this link for your discount and shop my list here.
Kick off of 2021
I don’t think I need to be the one to say this but…what a year 2020 was. There were extreme highs, and some crazy lows, add in a pandemic, and what a recipe for a year. One, thing that I focus on every day is the positive things that I love. A few of those things are being able to move my body (workout or take my doggie on a walk), how does my head feels (I have chronic cluster headaches – some days they are debilitating and other days I can push through), is my mood good? or what can I do to help my mood? These things may sound small but I really focus on the little victories every day that got me through each day. This year especially, I have had to focus on the little wins rather than the hardships that came with the year. This time last year, came with many challenges, sugar-free challenge aside.
I wrote a little bit about my career here, but 2020 was really a year of running and running and running! Between starting my graduate degree, working a full-time job, and maintain Front Paige Bakes along with my freelance clients – oh and starting a business, I needed a moment to breathe and reflect. I knew that I needed a moment to breathe when I moved down to Texas. And I have been doing just that. It has been glorious! I needed some time to adjust to my new schedule, house, and area down here as well as let some of the stress from the last year wash away. I am not good at allowing myself time off or less of a go-go-go routine, but this new season of life has given me clarity on the unsustainability of this lifestyle. A big goal of mine for 2021 is to allow me to have weekends off. This is HUGE for me…more on this later ;)!
Arguably the most baked recipe in my kitchen! Gluten-free and sugar-free but not short of sweet banana flavor or soft texture. Plus, this loaf is refined sugar free but full of rich sugar-free dark chocolate chunks.
- 1/3 cups of melted vegan butter
- 3/4 cups of maple syrup
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- 1 tsp of baking powder
- 1 tsp of baking soda
- 1 tsp of ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp of salt
- 1 egg or flax egg
- 2–3 large ripe bananas (preferably with brown spots)
- 1 1/2 cups of gluten-free flour
- 1/2 cups of sugar-free dark chocolate chunks or chocolate chips
- Pre-heat your oven to 350°f and grease your loaf pan with vegan butter
- Melt your vegan butter and add to a bowl with your maple syrup
- Next add in your vanilla extract, baking soda, baking powder, salt and ground cinnamon
- Whisk your egg into the mixture until the egg or flax egg has been full incorporated
- Peel your bananas and add them to your bowl, gently break apart your bananas with your whisk but leave large chunks of the banana
- Add in your gluten-free flour using a folding motion to keep the banana chunky in the batter
- Chop your sugar-free dark chocolate into chunks or add your dark chocolate into the batter
- Pour your banana bread batter into your prepared loaf pan
- Bake your loaf for 45-55 minutes
* you can use honey rather than maple syrup – usee 1/2 cup of honey 1/4 cup of almond or dairy free milk
* you can use a flax egg rather than a chicken egg
*and you can always omit the chocolate – but it is delicious!
How’s it going?
How is sugar-free January going for you so far? I have had so much fun baking and creating delicious treats in the kitchen. I have made a huge batch of sugar-free banana bread and haven’t had many sugar cravings. I have found like I do every year, that when I am hungry and need a quick bite, I reach for a small handful of candy, a cookie or something sweet rather than something nutritious to fight my hunger. Those moments are the exact reason that I LOVE sugar-free January! I feel like I am reteaching my hunger queues and feeling my body rather than filling space while I make a meal.
Let’s continue on together and don’t forget to tag me in your yummy creations!