Vegan Banana Cranberry Bread

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During cranberry season, I can't stop myself from adding them to every recipe I can, and this Vegan Banana Cranberry Bread is no exception. This delicious breakfast option is wonderful during the cold winter months.

Vegan Banana Cranberry Bread

I love a good banana bread recipe since it is so easy to make and so deliciously sweet yet filling. If plain old banana bread gets boring, I just switch up my recipe and add different ingredients, such as in my Strawberry Banana Bread, Peach Banana Bread, Blueberry Banana Bread, and now this Vegan Banana Cranberry Bread.

Like I mentioned in my original banana bread recipe, making and eating banana bread is such a comfort food for me that reminds me of my childhood. The smell of banana bread cooking is such a delicious aroma that reminds me of home. This cranberry banana bread is vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free.

The smell is such an important part of my cooking, making every step in the process a full-body experience. The sweetness of the bananas, the tartness of the cranberries, and the warmth of the vanilla is like a hug to the senses.

My sense of smell and taste being such an integral part of my process really came to mind while making this recipe. It has made me think of the victims this year who have lost their sense, even temporarily. I can’t imagine losing what feels like another limb to me, and my heart goes out to them.

Vegan Banana Cranberry Bread

For banana bread, the riper the banana, the yummier the bread. If you have spotted bananas with black spots that your kids don’t want to eat, or bananas that are mushy that you don’t like to eat, they are absolutely perfect for baking.

In addition to being softer and easier to combine into your dough, they are also naturally sweeter. This makes your bread even sweeter and more flavorful, without you actually needing to add extra sugar!

Bananas are also low-medium on the glycemic index, which means that it doesn’t cause a blood sugar spike when eaten by healthy people, making bananas a great sugar source. They also are high in fiber, and lots of other nutrients, all listed here.

ingredients for cranberry banana bread

What Is In Vegan Banana Cranberry Bread?

  • Almond Milk 
  • Coconut Oil
  • Vanilla
  • Ground Flaxseeds (egg substitute) 
  • All-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour
  • Cane Sugar
  • Baking Powder
  • Salt
  • Bananas
  • Cranberries
  • Walnuts

Recipe Ingredient Substitutions and Variations

  1. Almond Milk – you can substitute with other non-dairy milk like oat milk, cashew, rice, coconut milk.
  2. Coconut Oil – any neutral-tasting oil can be used as a substitute, such as avocado or grapeseed oil.
  3. Vanilla – excellent flavoring, you can substitute or add cinnamon, allspice, too.
  4. Ground Flaxseeds – substitute with chia seeds 1:1
  5. Cane Sugar – feel free to use coconut sugar as a healthier option instead.
  6. Spices – you can add cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, and allspice for a lovely warm holiday flavor.
  7. All-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour – If you don’t have a flour mix to use, you can also use 1 ½ cups brown rice flour plus ½ cup almond flour.
  8. Walnuts – Substitute with pecans, pistachios, pumpkin seeds, or sunflower seeds. Other nuts and seeds also work, the sky is the limit!
  9. Cranberries – If you don’t like or have cranberries, you can also try strawberries, raspberries, cherries, or blueberries.

How To Make Gluten-Free Banana Bread?

  1. Preheat the oven to 375℉. Line a baking pan with parchment paper, spray with oil, or brush with oil, and set aside. 
  2. In a large bowl, add almond milk, coconut oil, vanilla, and flaxseed, and stir. Add gluten-free flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Mix well until the batter is smooth. Stir in mashed bananas, cranberries, and walnuts. 
  3. Scoop batter into the prepared pan and bake for 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.

cranberry banana bread batter in a white bowl with a blue spatula on a white background

Can I Use Frozen Fruits For My Vegan Banana Cranberry Bread?

Yes, you can. Just thaw your cranberries and bananas, drain the liquid before adding the fruits to your recipe.

How Long Can I Keep Banana Bread?

The shelf life of your banana bread depends on how it is stored. After it is done baking, let it cool completely before you store it. It can also stay out a day or so just covered with a clean kitchen cloth.

If you are wanting to keep it for more than a day, or it is not finished by then, you can put your cooled loaf into a sealed container or wrap in plastic wrap. This will keep at room temperature for about 3 days, or refrigerated for about a week. 

How To Freeze Banana Bread?

Banana bread also freezes beautifully, making it perfect to bake ahead in bulk for quick breakfasts.

  1. Make sure to completely cool your bread 
  2. Wrap either individual slices or the whole loaf in plastic wrap, or put into a freezer bag, making sure it is sealed to prevent freezer burn.
  3. Keep for about 3 months, if it can last that long!

close up sliced cranberry banana bread

How Can I Save Stale Banana Bread?

Slice and heat in the oven for 5 minutes, or in a toaster oven. If it is really dry, wrap in a damp paper towel. Spread with a little vegan butter to really bring it to the next level!

What To Do With Banana Bread?

If you’re bored with eating plain old banana bread, there are certainly some things you can do to dress it up. As mentioned before, you can toast and spread on some vegan butter. You can also eat with your favorite nut butter, jelly, or any other spread you like. 

Another way to use banana bread is as a base for Vegan French Toast. This is such a delicious idea you and your family will love.

More Delicious Breakfast Bread Recipes

holding a slice of cranberry banana bread in my hand

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Categories

Nutrition

(Per serving)
  • Energy: 250 kcal / 1045 kJ
  • Fat: 12 g
  • Protein: 5 g
  • Carbs: 31 g

Cooking Time

  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 1 h 10 min
  • Ready in: 1 h 25 min
  • For:
  • 10 Servings

Ingredients

Wet Ingredients

Dry Ingredients

Mix-Ins

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven 375℉. Line a baking pan with parchment paper, spray with oil, or brush with oil, and set aside. 
  2. In a large bowl, add almond milk, coconut oil, vanilla, and flaxseed, and stir. Add gluten-free flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Mix well until batter is smooth. Stir in mashed bananas, cranberries, and walnuts. 
  3. Scoop batter into the prepared pan and bake for 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
Recipe author's Gravatar image

Dev Marie

Hi there, I’m Dev, a Jersey girl now residing in Florida, and a first generation Jamaican immigrant. As a passionate foodie adventurist, I love to create comfort dishes using exotic ingredients from all over the world.

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15 Comments
  1. Hillary
    December 31, 2020

    I came across this recipe in early December and I have made quite a few loafs….can’t remember how many. My husband get excited every time he sees me making it and then gets a little sad when I say I am giving to a friend.. I added some unsweet coconut flakes. Everyone loves it!!
    This is a hit!!! Thanks!! I went to get more fresh cranberries to freeze for the rest of the year but sadly they were all gone. Will stock up next year.

    • Michelle Blackwood, RN
      December 31, 2020

      Hiliary, I’m so happy you, your hubby and everyone you shared it with enjoyed it. I love how you added the coconut flakes. Did you try Whole Foods Market? I saw fresh ones there recently. Happy New Year.

  2. Frazer
    December 10, 2020

    Michelle, you did it again. This was very moist and delicious, my family ate the entire loaf!

  3. Jill
    December 5, 2020

    Hello Michelle! I’m not familiar with gluten free flour and want to bake this as a gift. Do you have a GF flour that works well for you? Thanks!

    • Michelle Blackwood, RN
      December 5, 2020

      Hi Jill, Krusteaz brand and Pillsbury brands work great but more than likely any gluten-free all-purpose flour will work. This recipe is very forgiving, I have used the base over the years with many different all-purpose gluten-free flour brands. I hope you enjoy it. Just make sure it baked until a fork inserted in the middle comes out clean.

      • Jill
        December 5, 2020

        Thank you! I’ll give it a try. :)

      • katie
        December 13, 2020

        Hi! I’d like to make this today but don’t have any GF flour. I do have regular AP flour, whole wheat flour, almond flour and oat flour (just oats that I pulverized). What would you suggest? Also, when you mentioned brown rice flour above, could I just put brown rice in a blender and make that into the “flour”? Thanks!

        • Michelle Blackwood, RN
          December 13, 2020

          Hello Katie, my suggestion would be to use 1 1/2 cups AP flour with 1/2 cup almond flour. If you have a high-speed blender then it is easy to make your own brown rice flour, just sift it and reblend until it’s fine. I usually purchase mine from the Health Food Store. Hope this works, make sure to bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, if the batter is too runny add extra flour, if too dry then add more liquid.

          • Katie
            December 13, 2020

            Thank you! Do you think it would be more soft and fluffy using the AP flour than the brown rice flour? And, re: the brown rice — do I add brown rice to the blender, blend, then sift, then re-blend? Thank you! So excited to try this and so glad I happened upon your site!

          • Michelle Blackwood, RN
            December 13, 2020

            Yes, I think so, because the AP flour will be lighter, the Brown rice flour will be coarser in texture. Yes, blend, sift, reblend the ones that don’t pass through a strainer with a fine mesh.

          • Katie
            December 14, 2020

            Thanks! Lastly — If I’m trying to be oil-free, do you think I could substitute the 1/3 cup coconut oil for applesauce?

          • Michelle Blackwood, RN
            December 14, 2020

            Katie, I’m warning you that based on the various changes you are making to the ingredients, the recipe obviously would not come out the same way I have listed. Yes, you can use applesauce instead of oil. I would love to know how it turns out.

  4. Laurie
    December 4, 2020

    Should the fresh cranberries be cooked before adding?

    • Michelle Blackwood, RN
      December 4, 2020

      Laurie no you don’t need to cook them, they will soften after being in the oven for 70 minutes. They are tart so I added 1 cup of cane sugar plus 2 very ripe bananas in order to balance the tartness.