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Classic Sourdough Banana Bread

Sourdough starter adds a mild tang to a classic banana bread recipe that's moist, sweet, and delicious.

One of my most popular recipes (both online and in real life!), you’ll come back to this soft and sweet loaf over and over.

sourdough banana bread on cooling rack next to blue and white tea towel

❤️ Why you’ll love this recipe

  • No more wasting your starter! One of my favorite sayings it “use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.”  Not that I am able to live by it, but I love the sentiment and I think it’s a worthy goal.  And that is one of the frustrating parts of keeping a sourdough starter… you have to discard some of it every day!  So any recipe that can use up that discard starter is always welcome.
  • No sourdough flavor (picky eater approved) By the way, I know the word “sourdough” can be off-putting when we talk about sweet baked goods.  But this recipe tastes just like the sweet, moist, classic banana bread we all know and love.
  • Super-versatile. It makes a great snack, dessert, or breakfast

This is an overview of the ingredients. You’ll find the full measurements and instructions in the printable recipe at the bottom of the page.

bananas, sourdough starter, flour, sugar, and other ingredients for sourdough banana bread

You’ll need the following for this incredible banana bread:

  • softened butter
  • white sugar
  • vanilla
  • egg
  • ripe bananas 
  • discard sourdough starter
  • all-purpose flour
  • salt
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • 8.5 x 4.5 x 2.5 loaf pan
  • Mixing bowl
  • Hand mixer or stand mixer

🍴Instructions

Step One: Make the batter

grid of 4 images- beating butter and sugar, adding sourdough and bananas, and finished banana bread batter

You can use either a stand mixer or hand mixer for this, whichever is easier for you. 

It is a quick and easy recipe, so go ahead and preheat the oven to 350 degrees before you get started.  

Beat the butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl until fluffy and well combined.  It should look light yellow.

Add the mashed banana and discard sourdough starter and gently mix them in. In a separate medium bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Gently add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, stirring until just combined.

Step Two: Bake!

Pour into a greased loaf pan, smooth out the top with a spatula, and bake for one hour. The top usually splits. A toothpick inserted should come out clean or with just a few moist crumbs.

(Here are good guidelines on how to tell when quick bread is done.)

Cool completely before slicing.  

🥫 Storage instructions

Homemade banana bread will keep well at room temperature, tightly wrapped in plastic wrap, for 1-2 days.

For longer storage, it freezes very well. Wrap in plastic wrap and then again in in aluminum foil, then freeze for up to 3 months. It defrosts perfectly right on the counter.

🔍 FAQs

How can I make this recipe vegan?

Many readers have done it successfully! Replace the egg with a 1/4 cup of applesauce and the butter with coconut oil or another vegan substitute.

Can I reduce the sugar?

Well, you CAN, but part of what makes this a great recipe is that there’s plenty of sweetness. Try substituting some for light brown sugar, honey, or maple syrup, or cutting back a little.

Can I make muffins with the batter?

Yes, it will make 1 dozen. Start checking them for doneness around 20 minutes.

Do I need to feed my starter beforehand?

Nope, that’s the beauty of this recipe. You can use it straight from the fridge. If your starter is already fed and bubbly, that works just fine too. 😊

👩🏻‍🍳 Expert tips

  • Try adding chocolate chips to the batter or sprinkling the top with cinnamon sugar.
  • Don’t have any overripe bananas? You can bake them at 200 degrees until they turn brown and soft. (About an hour.)
  • Add 1/4 cup of peanut butter in with the starter.

📘 Related Recipes

🍅 make it along with me

Follow along step by step. The slides will turn every 7 seconds, or you can click ahead.

Looking for sourdough recipes that WORK, written in a language you understand? Sign up for my sourdough email series that takes you from making a starter to baking all kinds of sourdough recipes! You can grab it here

Some variations

sliced loaf of sourdough banana bread on wooden board

📖 Here’s the recipe

loaf tin with banana bread
4.70 from 23 votes

Classic Sourdough Banana Bread

Print Recipe
Sourdough starter adds a mild tang to a classic banana bread recipe that’s moist, sweet, and delicious.
Prep Time:15 mins
Cook Time:1 hr
Total Time:1 hr 15 mins
Click here to grab a free seasonal e-cookbook!

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup softened butter
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 3 bananas mashed
  • 1 cup discard sourdough starter stirred
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350.  Prepare a loaf pan by greasing with vegetable oil spray or butter.
  • Beat the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed.  Add the egg and vanilla, mixing until combined. Add the mashed banana and sourdough starter, mixing on low.
  • In a separate medium mixing bowl mix the flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Add it to the wet ingredients and mix on low until just combined.
  • Pour into loaf pan, smoothing out the top with a spatula, and bake in preheated oven for 1 hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean.  The top will split. Allow to cool before slicing.  Store at room temperature, tightly wrapped, for up to three days,

Notes

To freeze, allow to cool completely and wrap in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil.  Keeps in freezer for 2 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 211kcal | Carbohydrates: 39g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 14mg | Sodium: 195mg | Potassium: 127mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 264IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: banana bread using sourdough discard, sourdough banana bread, sweet sourdough recipes
Servings: 12 slices
Calories: 211kcal
Author: Katie Shaw
Did you make this recipe?Tag me @heartscontentfarmhouse so I can see!
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55 thoughts on “Classic Sourdough Banana Bread”

  1. 5 stars
    Toasted with na little vegan butter, this is the most aromatic and flavorful bread! Not the moist banana bread for dessert but a bread that has banana flavors! Be sure to add a little nutmeg!!

    Reply
  2. 5 stars
    This recipe makes a fantastic banana bread! I’ve made it several times in the last 4 months and it has become my favorite way to use my sourdough starter. So good!

    Reply
  3. 5 stars
    This is just the very best BB I have made, ever and I am an old person.
    I, like many people these days, have been making banana bread for my husband until I want to scream “No More!” However, I just started making sourdough breads and feeding my starter, etc. Just dumping the discard seemed like such a waste.
    Not only does the recipe use up some of that discard and those freckled bananas, but it is absolutely delicious. It will probably have to be made at least once a week.
    Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
  4. This recipe is AMAZING and is now on regular rotation in my house. In fact, I make 2 at a time and share with friends, neighbors and street folk. It is a very versatile recipe. I add 1 tsp of mixed spice and/or half to 3/4 cup of mixed seeds

    Delicious!! Thank you so much!

    Reply
  5. Once sourdough is established and stored in refrigerator how often should i feed it? Should it be fed on the counter at room temperature and left out overnight? What will be the flour water ratio to maintain active starter.

    Reply
  6. 5 stars
    This is delicious! Nice and tangy. I used 1/2 cup white refined sugar and 1/4 cup maple syrup instead of the full cup of sugar. I also sprinkled cinnamon sugar on top before baking.
    Thanks so much!

    Reply
  7. 5 stars
    This was excellent. I made some substitutions to accommodate being gluten free. So I used a gf mix of cassava, coconut, and oat flour, leftover starter, and used powdered stevia and only 1/4 sugar. I also threw in some pecans and some sugar free choc chips and put it in my muffin tin. DELICIOUSNESS- wow! My hubby was thrilled and immediately pulled out the butter. Thank you for this delightful recipe!! It was a happy weekend treat for sure!!!

    Reply
  8. This was delicious!!Thank you for the step by step instructions and tips! I love the airy, chewy taste. I used Sourdough starter discard I had collected in the freezer then thawed in fridge. So happy to not waste any of it. My butter and sugar didn’t cream very well as the butter was too soft I think and it still turned out beautifully!
    I used the starter right from the fridge. Should it have been at room temperature?
    Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  9. This looks so good! I want to try this out, but help me out on one thing – what is the equivalent of that sourdough discard (1 cup) in grams? 🙂

    Reply
      • Thanks Katie, I did this a few weeks back and here I am again wanting to recreate the magic. The family loved it and it was gone in less than a few hours! I’m just about to bake this again, and for the benefit of those who have been asking if this recipe can be done with half the sugar, the answer is a resounding YES! That’s exactly what I did it and it was sweeter than what we’re used to eating (I mean, isn’t the whole point of baking at home is so that you can you make it the way you want it?) I am actually thinking of reducing it a little bit more, but just make sure your bananas are really ripe (as Katie noted in one of the comments below)

        Thank you so much for this awesome recipe, and it is a keeper!

  10. 5 stars
    This was delicious. I will definitely make it again. I made a couple of changes to make it vegan. Substituted vegan butter for dairy and 1/4 c of applesauce for the egg. I also added 2/3 c vegan chocolate chips. Thanks for a great recipe!

    Reply
  11. A quick question. I am new to sour dough (only one day 4 of starter) is the discard your talking about the 1/2 you take out before the feed each day?

    Reply
  12. 5 stars
    This is my first time using my sourdough starter discard and it turned out soooo delicious. I am a banana bread snob so I am so happy to find a sourdough version that is delicious!

    Reply
  13. 5 stars
    I have made it twice now, both times with excellent results. Perfect way to use both discard starter and over ripe bananas, my two top pet peeves when it comes to throwing away food. Thank you for sharing this recipe with us!

    Reply

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