When the most exciting part of your day includes a thrice ran dishwasher, good banana bread is a huge thing.

Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Coconut Cinnamon Streusel I howsweeteats.com

I know. I make a good amount of recipes containing the words “banana” and “bread.”  And “good amount” probably doesn’t even do my obsession justice. It’s simply that it’s one of my favorite snacks, and I love when a dessert can be classified as a snack because it’s a quick bread. Right? It’s not a treat. It’s a SNACK. Eat as much as you want. Of your snack.

Also, this is total comfort food for me. I used to love the days when my mom made banana bread, even if we consumed it like we hadn’t eaten in four days. Seriously… it lasted about five minutes? Maybe less. We were vultures.

Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Coconut Cinnamon Streusel I howsweeteats.com

Now, this is embarrassing.

In the last year, I’ve made banana bread tres leches cake and banana bourbon cupcakes. I made two different kinds of banana muffins, another cake that is upside down and caramelized and bread containing peanut butter and bacon (whaaaaat). I’ve put bananas in cookies and in oatmeal. I put it inside more cupcakes, this time with pretzels and peanut butter and stuffed inside other cookies deemed appropriate for breakfast. My favorite might have been this banana bread snack cake that tastes just like banana bread but takes less than half the time to make. And it has whole wheat flour so it’s incredible healthy. Uh huh.

Oh yeah… and I even fried banana bread into french toast. That was amazing. And not healthy at all.

Too much?

I’d say I have an issue.

Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Coconut Cinnamon Streusel I howsweeteats.com

But really, why is it that banana bread combos never get old? They just don’t. Well, not for me at least. I could make banana bread ten ways to Sunday and it still wouldn’t be enough.

So this bread: it’s made without butter but with coconut oil. It is incredibly moist (apologies – would you rather me say clammy or damp?) and soft. Thick slices are the way to go, FYI. And the struesel… oh mylanta the streusel. It’s so… struesely. I don’t know if I can ever eat banana bread without streusel again. I’m so screwed.

Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Coconut Cinnamon Streusel I howsweeteats.com

Coconut haters, don’t cry. The bread has no actual coconut inside of it and you can easily leave the coconut extract out. The coconut oil does NOT taste coconutty. You can also take the coconut out of the topping if you so desire. If you’re in the market for loving coconut though? Like, say you enjoy the flavor but hate the texture, and would reeeeeeeally love to love coconut? I suggest trying the unsweetened flaked coconut that I use in most of my recipes. It doesn’t have quite the squeak-between-your-teeth feeling (are you cringing?) that the more common, sweetened shredded coconut does and over time, it may convert you. It might just change your life. Maybe. I don’t know.

I just know that this bread is essential to my well being now. Trouble.

Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Coconut Cinnamon Streusel I howsweeteats.com


Whole Wheat Coconut Banana Bread with Coconut Streusel

Yield: makes one 9x5 loaf

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 75-85 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours (includes cooling time)


1 2/3 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 large eggs
1 cup loosely packed brown sugar
1/3 cup canned coconut milk
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted and slightly cooled
4 bananas, mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon coconut extract

2/3 cups brown sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup unsweetened flaked coconut
2 teaspoons unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
4 tablespoons unsalted butter


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray a 9x5 loaf pan thoroughly with nonstick spray. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt, whisking thoroughly. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and brown sugar until smooth. Add in coconut milk and coconut oil, whisking until combined. Stir in mashed bananas, vanilla and coconut extracts until mixed. Slowly stir in dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Pour batter in the greased loaf pan.

Combine all the streusel ingredients in a bowl and mix with your hands until butter is easily dispersed. You want the entire mixture to be moistened. Evenly sprinkle on top of the banana bread batter. Place loaf pan on a baking sheet and set in the oven. Bake for 75-85 minutes, or until center is set. If the streusel begins to brown, tent the bread with aluminum foil.

Remove and let cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting.

[adapted from my triple fudge banana bread]

Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Coconut Cinnamon Streusel I howsweeteats.com

I’m also streuseling everything from now on. It’s a verb.

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133 Responses to “Whole Wheat Banana Bread with Coconut Cinnamon Streusel.”

  1. #
    chelsey @ clean eating chelsey — February 20, 2013 @ 8:01 am

    Thank goodness I caught that whole closed comment thing. Mainly because I have too much to say about banana bread. That’s probably sad, right? Anywhooo – my mom hates banana flavored things – HATES. I think she’s out of her mind. Needless to say, she never made us banana bread growing up. However, she did hair out of our house and one of her clients (who came every month) would bring us banana bread, zucchini bread, and cookies. It was the best day of the month.


  2. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — February 20, 2013 @ 8:02 am

    i’m on my second coconut/coconut oil recipe of…the week. I love it just as much as you do. And I did a banana bread series last summer. For 7 weeks, I had a new version each week. And lately…I have to force myself not to make it b/c like you, it’s comfort food for me, too! This looks crazy good and the streusel, oh yes!


  3. #
    Erica — February 20, 2013 @ 8:04 am

    I’m stealing all the topping- happening. Banana bread rocks


  4. #
    Alissa — February 20, 2013 @ 8:19 am

    Oh my gosh, this looks AMAZING!! Now if I could just get my husband to save me some banana’s! I can’t get over the topping, I feel I could get that by itself!


  5. #
    Jennyj — February 20, 2013 @ 8:55 am

    You win. You always do.
    You know what will take this already over the top bread…over the top (some more..)….
    Roast your bananas in the oven first…brings out the flavour. So delicious!

    I’m so making this bread this weekend!!Thank you for continually hating me and my hips! ;)


  6. #
    Annie @ What's Annie Making? — February 20, 2013 @ 9:03 am

    Oh my word! That streusel topping looks insane. I don’t think there is anything wrong with using bananas in everything. It’s kind of like using bacon in everything. It just works! Also, I certainly do not want to think of my banana bread as “damp”. Yuck!


  7. #
    Heather @ Sugar Dish Me — February 20, 2013 @ 9:04 am

    There will never be enough banana recipes.
    I’m pretty sure I need this in my life like YESTERDAY. Also… I’m kind of annoyed that my kids ate all the bananas at breakfast. This bread is gorgeous!!


  8. #
    Marissa — February 20, 2013 @ 9:05 am

    Oh man, this looks SO good!


  9. #
    Ali @ Peaches and Football — February 20, 2013 @ 9:13 am

    I’m in love with this recipe! I’m on a serious coconut buzz right now – I just can’t get enough so this recipe is perfect. Plus, I have 5 bananas that somehow went from bright green to dark yellow and black overnight. Those babies need to be whipped into some delicious bread. I love the streusel topping idea too – it really adds an elegant quality to the bread and makes it look so much more impressive. Can’t wait to bake!


  10. #
    Brittany from Counting My Cupcakes — February 20, 2013 @ 9:32 am

    I’m obsessed. The end.


  11. #
    Robyn | Add a Pinch — February 20, 2013 @ 9:38 am

    OH my word, this looks perfect!!!


  12. #
    Monica — February 20, 2013 @ 9:40 am

    I didn’t eat many banana -baked goods growing up but I totally get it now. Started with a banana nut muffin for me and then it morphed into banana-choc chip bread and cookies and different combos on all these. You’re right – it does not get old. As long as the bananas are super ripe, it is usually heavenly! Your topping here looks delicious!


  13. #
    Maria Tadic — February 20, 2013 @ 9:41 am

    I love banana bread…especially warm right out of the oven. It’s dangerous to keep in my house! I’d love to try out that topping! But I have never found unsweetened coconut flakes…where do you buy it?


    • Jessica — February 20th, 2013 @ 9:44 am

      I can find them at all of my local grocery stores – you could definitely find them at Whole Foods or a health/organic store. If not, that link above to Bob’s Red Mill is where you can buy them online!


  14. #
    Jenna — February 20, 2013 @ 9:46 am

    This sounds amazing. I die for anything with streusel toppinging


  15. #
    Jen @ Savory Simple — February 20, 2013 @ 9:57 am

    Looks incredible!


  16. #
    Brie @ Entrée the Giant — February 20, 2013 @ 10:04 am

    You won’t hear me complaining about your banana bread obsession any time soon! This one is particularly crave worthy thanks to the addition of coconut.

    Um, yum.


  17. #
    Alicia Greenrabbit — February 20, 2013 @ 10:05 am

    Now I can get rid of all those frozen banana’s in my freezer!


  18. #
    joelle (on a pink typewriter) — February 20, 2013 @ 10:08 am

    I’ve never heard of streusel on banana bread! Yum.. and dangerous for fitting in to my pants.


  19. #
    Ashley — February 20, 2013 @ 10:09 am

    You do not have issues. I could take banana bread in any form, any day of the week. And yes, next time, please describe the bread as clammy and offer it up with a stick of deodorant. ;)


  20. #
    Kelly — February 20, 2013 @ 10:09 am

    It is easy to understand – we don’t eat the bananas and then the only two thinkable things to do are…

    1 – bake
    2- freeze for smoothies

    WHO WANTS to do 2? No one! Bake, bake, bake those bananas into cakes :D

    Loves great, Jessica!


  21. #
    Julia {The Roasted Root} — February 20, 2013 @ 10:21 am

    Fresh out of the oven banana bread with melty butter on top has always been one of my favorites! Your streusel topping looks amazing and I can’t wait to try your recipe – I know my family will love it!


  22. #
    Vicki Bensinger — February 20, 2013 @ 10:24 am

    I’m a fan of banana bread and often make it when our bananas get dark. I’ve made it umpteen different ways but have never added coconut milk to it another favorite ingredient of mine. Great recipe!


  23. #
    Anele @ Success Along the Weigh — February 20, 2013 @ 10:26 am

    Banana bread (or anything) rocks. Keep ’em coming!


  24. #
    Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers — February 20, 2013 @ 10:27 am

    I love putting coconut in my breads and the combination of coconut and banana is a wonderful combination! I love this recipe!


  25. #
    Pippa @ sundaysupperswithpippa — February 20, 2013 @ 10:32 am

    This looks delicious, I want to make this now!


  26. #
    Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabbles — February 20, 2013 @ 10:34 am

    There can NEVER be too many banana bread recipes in this world, so you just keep on posting them! I bake something “banana” almost weekly, and you’re right, the numerous ways to eat it just never go old. This bread looks awesome!


  27. #
    Christine @ Cooking with Cakes — February 20, 2013 @ 10:34 am

    while banana bread isn’t one of my personal food vices, I have been lovvvving your use of coconut recently !!!! THAT is one of my favorite foods/flavors to play with :)


  28. #
    Marcie @ Flavor the Moments — February 20, 2013 @ 11:22 am

    So many of my favorite things in one of my favorite things…banana bread. I love the addition of coconut, cinnamon, AND whole wheat. I know I’m going to love this!


  29. #
    bridget {bake at 350} — February 20, 2013 @ 11:29 am

    Banana Bread…one of the greatest comfort foods EVER! Cannot wait to try this version. It looks IN-credible!

    Also, I’m so happy to see someone else struggle for a synonym for “moist.” Sometimes, you just have to say it, no matter how much people hate it. :)


  30. #
    Little Kitchie — February 20, 2013 @ 11:31 am

    No complaints on more banana bread recipes!! This looks incredible and I LOVE using coconut oil for the moist (ew) texture!!


  31. #
    Carly @ Snack Therapy — February 20, 2013 @ 11:34 am

    Banana bread with streusel?! Why is this not a thing yet. Jessica, you’re a banana bread revolutionary.


  32. #
    Angie @ Big Bear's Wife — February 20, 2013 @ 11:41 am

    This minus the coconut would be amazing! (sorry coconut lovers hee hee)


  33. #
    allie@sweetpotatobites — February 20, 2013 @ 11:44 am

    pretty much everything about this bread is amazing. now i know what to do with our extra bananas!


  34. #
    Holiday Baker Man — February 20, 2013 @ 11:53 am

    How yummy is this?


  35. #
    Morgan — February 20, 2013 @ 11:55 am

    Keep the banana recipes coming :) I am also really into coconut oil right now. I use it for everything from sautes to baked goods to salad dressing. Nom nom nom :)


  36. #
    Maria — February 20, 2013 @ 12:01 pm

    Keep the banana recipes coming! Love them all!


  37. #
    Vicki @ WITK — February 20, 2013 @ 12:19 pm

    Being a coconut lover, I will bookmark this for my next batch of spotty bananas. I haven’t made banana bread in too long!


  38. #
    Lindsay @ The Live-In Kitchen — February 20, 2013 @ 12:21 pm

    You have no idea how many brown bananas are in my kitchen right now. Only problem is, I can’t find unsweetened coconut anywhere around here! I may need to order online.


    • Jessica — February 20th, 2013 @ 12:29 pm

      you could still use sweetened in a pinch! it will probably be delicious.


  39. #
    Alexis @ Hummusapien — February 20, 2013 @ 1:11 pm

    OMG dying over this recipe but so sad I’m out of coconut oil. Probably because I use all of it up to take off my eye liner…oops. I must buy some coconut extract and get on this!


  40. #
    Amber (Sprinkled With Flour) — February 20, 2013 @ 1:15 pm

    This bread looks amazing Jessica! I love using coconut oil in quick breads, it makes it so moist and gives it something just a little bit extra. :)


  41. #
    Kari@Loaves n Dishes — February 20, 2013 @ 1:16 pm

    Love the coconut streusel. I’m thinking that coconut would make a lovely facial; any excuse to smear coconut on my face!


  42. #
    Stephanie — February 20, 2013 @ 1:27 pm

    how pathetic is it that the first thing i thought was…when did she get a normal sized loaf pan?


  43. #
    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — February 20, 2013 @ 1:49 pm

    I’d kill for this right now!!! lol


  44. #
    Erin @ The Food Doctors — February 20, 2013 @ 1:54 pm

    I’m definitely a new coconut convert – I love love love the flavor, but sometimes the texture is just too much for me. Thanks for the tip about the flaked coconut. I’m definitely going to check it out!


  45. #
    Mimi @ Culinary Couture — February 20, 2013 @ 2:22 pm

    Every day I’m streuseling.
    *insert music*


  46. #
    Jessica@ Stuck On Sweet — February 20, 2013 @ 2:31 pm

    I am now hungry for a “snack.” Looks amaaaazing!


  47. #
    Katie — February 20, 2013 @ 2:49 pm

    Made this scrumptious bread this morning. I had to make it ASAP, so I had to make a couple changes to avoid the store… 3 bananas, no coconut extract.. I assed some applesauce to make up for lost banana. 3/4 c coconut sugar in the bread, and 1/3 in topping, plus used trader joes newish sweetened coconut in the topping. Yuuuummmmm best ever.


  48. #
    Sara Shedlosky — February 20, 2013 @ 2:50 pm

    OMG, so I think I am going to make this tonight in place of watching Nashville- love ANYTHING with banana and coconut! I might even toss in a few chocolate chips…. :)


    • Sara Shedlosky — February 20th, 2013 @ 2:52 pm

      I do not have coconut oil and may or may not be too lazy to run to the store after work- can I use olive oil instead?


      • Jessica — February 20th, 2013 @ 2:58 pm

        I would use olive oil – you’d want a more neutral flavored oil, like canola or vegetables? Or you could use butter!

  49. #
    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — February 20, 2013 @ 3:04 pm

    And suddenly my little bowl of oatmeal for breakfast seems so depressing… MUST MAKE THIS!


  50. #
    Annie @ Annie's City Kitchen — February 20, 2013 @ 3:04 pm

    Thank goodness you extol the virtues and banana bread as snack, because it totally is. Banana Bread is one of those things that is pure comfort from start to finish. Making the bread is half the comfort!



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