This moist and delicious raisin banana bread is packed with the sweet flavors of banana, raisins, brown sugar, and cinnamon. All you need is a bowl and whisk to pull this easy banana bread recipe together in less than 15 minutes. Having a slice for breakfast is the perfect way to start the day!
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The best cinnamon raisin banana bread
After a few rounds of testing and tweaking, today I come to you with what I think is the best banana raisin bread. It’s moist, tender, and full of delicious flavors. Taking a bite, you can taste the aromas of bananas and sweet raisins, laced with hints of warming molasses and cozy cinnamon.
Whether you want to make a loaf for breakfast, snacking, or just a sweet treat to have with coffee, I know you’ll love this easy quick bread recipe as much as we do.
And the best part? Raisin banana bread is super easy to make and takes a little over an hour from start to finish. Plus, it’s a great way to use up those spotty bananas you have sitting in your fruit bowl.
Is there anything better than warm, buttery banana bread? If you are a banana bread lover like me, you’ll have to try out these other recipes next: condensed milk banana bread, Bisquick banana bread, and lemon banana bread!
Let’s break down the ingredients that make this moist banana raisin bread so scrumptious. Please scroll down to the recipe card below to find the exact measurements.
- Very ripe, brown spotted Bananas: My recipe calls for 4 large bananas to add lots of lovely banana flavor as well as moisture to the bread. Bananas become more aromatic and sweeten as they ripen, so overripe, spotted bananas work best.
- Raisins: Regular raisins are perfect here. They plump up during baking and become soft and succulent. You can substitute golden raisins if that’s what you have in your pantry.
- Light brown sugar contributes to the moisture and infuses the bread with a subtle molasses flavor that highlights the taste of the raisins.
- Butter: I always opt for salted butter in my baking. If using unsalted butter, add 1/2 teaspoon salt.
- Eggs: 2 large eggs are the binding ingredient. Bring them to room temperature so they incorporate effortlessly into the batter.
- Sour cream keeps the bread moist and succulent. You can substitute Greek yogurt if preferred.
- All-purpose flour gives the bread good structure without being too dense or heavy. You can use white whole wheat flour if you prefer a whole grain alternative.
- Baking powder is the leavening agent and makes the loaf rise.
- Ground cinnamon gives the banana bread a warm, cozy taste. Feel free to use pumpkin spice instead for a fall twist.
How to make raisin banana bread
All it takes is a large bowl, a whisk, and a loaf pan to get this homemade banana bread mixed together and ready for the oven. Here are the steps you want to follow:
#1: Mix wet ingredients
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the softened butter and brown sugar until fluffy and light in color, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix until just combined before adding the next. Next, add the mashed bananas and sour cream. Mix until combined.
#2: Add dry ingredients and raisins
- Add the all-purpose flour, ground cinnamon, and baking powder and stir until combined. Don’t overmix the batter, or you’ll end up with dense banana bread.
- Combine the raisins with 1 tablespoon of flour until well coated. The flour ensures that the raisins stay in the batter and don’t sink to the bottom of the pan during baking. Using a spoon or spatula, stir in the raisins until evenly distributed throughout the batter.
#3: Bake banana bread
- Pour the batter into a greased, lined baking pan and bake for 55 to 65 minutes. To check the doneness, insert a toothpick or skewer into the center of the loaf. If it comes out clean, the bread is done. But if you still see liquid batter, the bread needs to bake longer.
- Let the banana bread cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Then transfer the banana bread onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Cut the banana raisin loaf into slices and serve when ready.
If you’re just getting into baking banana bread is a good place to start. Here are a couple extra tips that will help you get the best banana raisin bread on your first try:
- Overripe bananas are key: The more brown spots your bananas have, the better. Browning indicates that the bananas are ripe and sweet. Either buy yellow bananas a few days ahead and let them ripen on your kitchen counter, or ask your grocer if they have a reduced produce rack. This is an area where they offer produce past its prime.
- Measure mashed bananas: Rather than relying on the number of bananas called for, use measuring cups or a kitchen scale to measure your mashed bananas. Bananas vary in size, and properly measuring will ensure accuracy and consistent results every time.
- Room temperature ingredients: Take the butter and eggs out of the fridge ahead of time to bring them to room temperature.
- Mix well: Beat the butter, brown sugar, and eggs really well. This will ensure a light banana bread and make it a bit taller.
- Line the pan with a piece of parchment paper: This makes removing the bread from the pan easier without breaking the loaf.
- Cover bread: Check on your raisin banana bread halfway through the baking time. If it starts browning already, carefully tent the loaf tin with a piece of aluminum foil to keep the bread from burning.
- Let cool completely: Allow your raisin banana bread to cool completely, for at least 2 hours. The bread is very soft and gooey while still warm and will fall apart if you slice it too early. Plus, the longer it sits, the more the ingredients can blend together, creating a rich, flavorful bread.
This banana bread recipe with raisins can be made with a few variations:
- Other dried fruit: Try swapping in dried cranberries (craisins), dried blueberries, Turkish apricots, or dried cherries.
- Nuts or seeds: Chopped, slightly toasted walnuts, pecans, sliced almonds, or sunflower seeds give the bread extra crunch. You can add 1/2 to 3/4 cup.
- Chocolate chips: Stir 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips into the batter.
- Apple: A diced tart apple tastes delicious in this sweet bread.
- Pineapple: A small can of well-drained pineapple chunks or tidbits adds extra fruitiness and sweetness.
- Cinnamon sugar topping: Mix 1/4 cup granulated sugar with 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon and sprinkle on top of the batter before baking.
- Cream cheese glaze: Whip 4 oz softened cream cheese with 1 cup powdered sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 3 to 5 tbsp milk. Drizzle over the cooled raisin banana loaf.
How to store raisin banana bread
Wrap up your bread well or place it inside of an airtight container. It will stay fresh for up to 3 days at room temperature or 7 days in the fridge. To reheat, pop a slice in your toaster.
Freeze raisin banana bread
You can freeze individual slices or the whole loaf of raisin banana bread. Wrap the loaf or slices in plastic wrap, then put them in a large freezer bag or wrap in aluminum foil. It will keep for up to 3 months in the freezer.
Thaw the entire bread overnight in the fridge or at room temperature. Individual slices take less than an hour to defrost.
Can I use frozen bananas for this recipe?
Yes, you can use frozen bananas to make banana bread. In fact, frozen bananas are even more aromatic because the flavors from the banana peel seep into the fruit during freezing.
Just thaw your frozen bananas in the refrigerator overnight before adding them to the batter.
Can I make raisin banana muffins using the same batter?
You sure can. To make muffins, simply divide the batter equally in a 12-cup muffin pan and bake in a preheated 375° / 190°C / gas mark 5 oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
Reasons to love raisin banana bread
- Delicious taste: This easy banana bread is full of sweet fruity flavors. Bananas and raisins are such a flavorful pairing, perfectly rounded out with brown sugar, butter, and a hefty dose of warming cinnamon.
- Moist texture: My cinnamon raisin banana bread incorporates plenty of bananas and raisins, as well as butter and eggs to make a succulent loaf with a moist, tender crumb.
- Everyday ingredients: If you enjoy baking often, you probably already have all the ingredients on hand. Otherwise, a quick trip to your local grocer should be sufficient.
- Easy to make: All you need is a bowl and whisk -no special equipment or baking knowledge is required. If you can mash bananas, you can whip this up.
- Stores well: I like to have different sweet breads on hand for a quick breakfast, easy snack, or last-minute entertaining. Slices of brown sugar bread, Libby’s pumpkin bread, and cranberry walnut bread make a beautiful platter for a brunch buffet.
More banana bread recipes
Once you’ve made this wonderful banana bread with raisins, you’ll have to try these other recipes as well. They are super simple to make and filled with so much delicious, sweet flavor.