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Grain-Free Hummingbird Bread

Grain-Free Hummingbird Bread is a moist, fluffy quick bread featuring ripe bananas, pineapple, nuts, and cinnamon. Made dairy-free, oil-free with no added sweetener, this healthy hummingbird bread is an ideal healthy treat!

Slice of Grain-Free Hummingbird Bread on a plate with a loaf of bread in the background

If you’ve made my Paleo Hummingbird Muffins, you’re already familiar with the concept of this grain-free hummingbird bread!

But for those of you who are new to humminbird bread, let’s just nose dive right into the details!

What is Hummingbird Bread?:

Hummingbird bread is rumored to have originated from Jamaica, and is also known as hummingbird cake or doctor bird cake. 

Legend has it, hummingbird cake was named so because it is sweet enough to attract a hummingbird (hummingbirds love their sugar!), or the yellow from the banana resembles the bird’s plumage.

While there are many approaches to hummingbird bread, the two star ingredients are banana and pineapple.

Together, they make for a marvelously sweet bread or cake that has a very tropical vibe to it.

Made popular in the southern United States, hummingbird cake is typically served as a layer cake, bundt cake, this is a classic cake to share for any special occasion.

loaf of hummingbird bread on parchment paper, cut into slices

Traditional hummingbird cake (or bread) includes plenty of oil and sugar, but we’re keeping it both oil-free and also free of all added sweeteners in this recipe.

In this sense, the ripe mashed bananas and the chopped pineapple make up the sweetness of this particular healthy hummingbird bread recipe.

Because this recipe is not as sweet as the traditional moist cake, it would perhaps not attract a hummingbird, but the lovely warm island flavors certainly attract me! It may be a lighter version, but it is still so tasty!

Let’s discuss the simple ingredients for this family favorite quick bread recipe.

Hummingbird Bread Ingredients:

Ripe Banana: Making up most of the sweetness in this bread, overripe bananas add moisture, enticing flavor, and also a nice creamy sweetness that isn’t overbearing. Use bananas that are very ripe and have a lot of brown spots for the best result! This is essentially a classic banana bread recipe with some tropical flair.

Eggs: The fluff maker. Eggs help the bread fluff up, rise, and maintain shape. I haven’t tested the recipe using an egg replacer but given my experience with flax eggs, I think the bread would turn out very dense if eggs aren’t used.

Pineapple: Fresh or canned pineapple adds little bursts of sweet, tropical joy to the bread. I simply use crushed or chopped canned pineapple and I chop it up finely to ensure the chunks are nice and small.

Vanilla Extract: Adding warmth and depth of flavor to the hummingbird bread, vanilla extract is a lovely addition but not mandatory. If you don’t have it, skip it!

Almond Flour: In keeping this bread grain-free and paleo friendly, we use almond flour for the base. This creates a light and airy texture that makes the bread so incredibly addicting. I don’t recommend replacing the almond flour with coconut flour as many adjustments would need to be made to the rest of the recipe, but hazelnut flour will work as a 1:1 replacement, and cassava flour may work as well.

Baking Soda: Used as the leavening agent, baking soda helps give rise to the bread and helps keep it fluffy without any sinkage.

Cinnamon: Ground cinnamon brings more warmth and yumminess to the bread. You can add up to 2 teaspoons or omit it altogether if you’re not into it.

Sea Salt: A little salt brings out all of the flavors in every ingredient, thereby making any baked good or savory recipe taste richer and more full bodied. Don’t skip the salt!

Optional Additions:

Unsweetened shredded coconut (or coconut flakes) and chopped pecans or walnuts are great for topping.

Add 2 to 4 tablespoons of cane sugar, brown sugar, or coconut sugar for a sweeter loaf cake.

Some recipes for hummingbird bread include dried apricots or other dried fruit, but I typically leave them out per my own personal preference.

Traditional hummingbird bread comes with a cream cheese icing or a buttercream frosting. If you love the idea of adding it, you can pick your favorite recipe, or try my Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting for a dairy-free version.

horizontal top down photo of loaf of hummingbird bread with a plate with a slice of bread

How to Make Grain-Free Hummingbird Bread:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a 9” x 5” loaf pan with parchment paper.

Mash the bananas in a large bowl until most of the chunks are out. Whisk in the eggs, chopped pineapple and vanilla extract until everything is well-combined (wet ingredients).

Add the almond flour, ground cinnamon, baking soda, and sea salt (dry ingredients) and mix until a thick dough forms.

Transfer the bread batter to the parchment-lined loaf pan and spread it into an even layer. If desired, top with shredded coconut and raw pecans so that there’s a little crunch on the top of the bread.

Bake on the center rack of the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove the bread from the oven, cover it in aluminum foil, then continue baking for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the bread is golden-brown around the edges and tests clean.

Allow the bread to cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving.

Store any leftover bread in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can also freeze this bread! To do so, slice it into individual slices, wrap it in plastic wrap, then place it in a zip lock bag and seal it up. This will allow the bread to stay fresh longer. It should keep for up to 4 months.

Close up image of slice of hummingbird bread on a plate

If you love this healthy hummingbird bread recipe, also try my Paleo Morning Glory Quick Bread, which has similar characteristics to carrot cake.

More Healthy Quick Bread Recipes:

Enjoy this moist, delicious tropical breeze bread!

loaf of hummingbird bread on parchment paper, cut into slices

Grain-Free Hummingbird Bread

Yield: 1 loaf
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

Moist, fluffy hummingbird bread that is grain-free, refined sugar-free and oil-free for a healthier treat! Make it for breakfast, snack, or dessert!

Ingredients

  • 2 ripe mashed bananas (about ¾ cup)
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup chopped pineapple*
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

For Topping:

  • 3 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut, optional
  • ¼ cup raw pecans, chopped, optional

Instructions

    1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a 9” x 5” loaf pan with parchment paper.

    2. Mash the bananas in a large bowl until most of the chunks are out. Whisk in the eggs, chopped pineapple and vanilla extract until everything is well-combined (wet ingredients).

    Wet ingredients in a mixing bowl

    3. Add the almond flour, ground cinnamon, baking soda, and sea salt (dry ingredients) and mix until a thick dough forms.

    Dry ingredients on top of wet ingredients in a mixing bowl.

    4. Transfer the bread batter to the parchment-lined loaf pan and spread it into an even layer. If desired, top with shredded coconut and raw pecans so that there's a little crunch on the top of the bread.

    Hummingbird bread batter in a loaf pan

    5. Bake on the center rack of the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove the bread from the oven, cover it in aluminum foil, then continue baking for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until the bread is golden-brown around the edges and tests clean.

    Finished hummingbird bread out of the oven

    6. Allow the bread to cool for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving.

    horizontal top down photo of loaf of hummingbird bread with a plate with a slice of bread

Notes

*I use canned pineapple that I chop more finely.

Store any leftover bread in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can also freeze this bread! To do so, slice it into individual slices, wrap it in plastic wrap, then place it in a zip lock bag and seal it up. This will allow the bread to stay fresh longer. It should keep for up to 4 months.

Nutrition Information
Yield 8 Serving Size 1 Slice (of 8)
Amount Per Serving Calories 209Total Fat 15gCarbohydrates 14gFiber 2gSugar 6gProtein 8g
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Grain-Free hummingbird bread collage for pinterest

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