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Healthy Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread

This Healthy Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread is positively packed with banana flavor as well as the generous warm presence of cinnamon swirl running throughout each slice. This delicious and unique banana bread recipe combines the familiarity of classic banana bread with the coziness of cinnamon coffee cake for an epic treat.

Sliced loaf of cinnamon swirl banana bread.

We’ve all had an unforgettable slice of banana bread…but have you ever tried cinnamon swirl banana bread??

I first introduced the topic with my Paleo Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread, and now I’m back with an oatmeal version.

So we’re here with a gluten-free banana bread that is also dairy-free, refined sugar-free and low in oil with the most amazing cinnamon sugar swirl.

You see, I’ve noticed most people (myself included) really love the combination of oats and bananas. So what we have here is a healthy banana bread recipe that is made using rolled oats instead of flour.

We add a lovely little ribbon of cinnamon sugar throughout the bread because let’s call a spade a spade: we’re great at life.

The thick cinnamon swirl adds that coffee cake vibe to the banana bread and provides little pockets of crunch for a fun textural element. 

Slices of banana bread.

If you want to make someone swoon, just give them a warmed up slice of this beauty!

Ingredients for Cinnamon Swirl Oatmeal Banana Bread: 

Rolled Oats: Replacing all-purpose flour, we blend whole rolled oats into a flour to make this flourless bread. This results in a fiber-rich bread that contains a good source of complex carbohydrates.

Plus, the nutty flavor of oatmeal is just so delightfully delicious! I use gluten-free sprouted oats, which are also glyphosate-free.

Ripe Bananas: Overripe bananas are what make up the majority of the sweetness in the bread portion of the recipe. When they’re ripe enough, bananas provide so much flavor and sweetness that we don’t need to add any additional sweetener.

Nevertheless, you can easily adjust the sweetness by adding up to ½ cup of coconut sugar, cane sugar, brown sugar, or maple sugar. Be sure to use spotty bananas with plenty of brown spots for the best results.

Eggs: Used to make the bread nice and fluffy, eggs do a great deal of heavy lifting. I haven’t tested the recipe using an egg alternative like flax eggs yet.

Vanilla Extract: Bringing warm flavor to the bread, vanilla extract adds lovely nuance. Skip it if you don’t have any on hand.

Avocado Oil: A little avocado oil or melted butter helps keep this bread nice and moist. It also adds flavor and richness to the loaf. Vegetable oil or olive oil work here too.

Baking Soda & Lemon Juice: A little baking soda is used as the leavening agent to ensure the bread gets a nice rice and holds together nicely.

Sea Salt: Salt brings out all of the magnificent flavors in the bread and allows them to jive together nicely in a warm little loaf relationship.

For the Cinnamon Swirl: Coconut sugar (or cane sugar) and ground cinnamon is all you need for that delightful cinnamon mixture! You can also use brown sugar if it’s what you have on hand.

Coconut sugar is lower on the glycemic index than cane sugar and is also less processed, making it ideal for healthy banana bread recipes like this.

Optional Additions:

If you love chocolate chip banana bread, add up to 1 cup of chocolate chips to the bread.

Add up to 1 cup of chopped raw walnuts or pecans to the banana bread or the cinnamon swirl mixture for banana nut bread.

If you’d like to swap out half of the oats for almond flour, simply blend up one cup of oats and use 1 cup of almond flour.

horizontal photo of a sliced loaf of banana bread with cinnamon ribbon in the middle.

Now that we’ve discussed the ingredients for cinnamon swirl banana bread in detail, let’s bake a loaf!

How to Make This Healthy Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread Recipe:

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

Transfer the oats to a blender and blend for 20 to 30 seconds on high, until a flour forms.

Add the rolled oats to a blender and blend into flour

Mash the ripe bananas in a large mixing bowl until they’re nice and creamy.

Mashed bananas in a mixing bowl

Mix the eggs, oil, vanilla extract, and lemon juice in with the mashed banana until the wet ingredients are well-combined.

mashed bananas in a mixing bowl with eggs.

Add the oat flour to the mixing bowl, along with any granulated sweetener you’d like to add, baking soda, sea salt, and ground cinnamon (the dry ingredients).

Wet ingredients in a mixing bowl with dry ingredients on top.

Mix until well-combined and a banana bread batter forms.

Healthy oatmeal banana bread batter.

Mix together the ingredients for the cinnamon swirl (coconut sugar or sweetener of choice) and ground cinnamon in a small bowl until well-combined.

Cinnamon and sugar mixed together in a measuring cup

Pour half of the batter into the prepared baking pan.

Half of the batter in a loaf pan.

Sprinkle all of the cinnamon sugar mixture over the banana layer evenly.

Cinnamon and sugar sprinkled on top of banana bread layer.

Pour the remaining batter over the cinnamon swirl layer and spread it into an even layer using a rubber spatula.

Use a butter knife to draw a large S shape into the batter. This is what creates the cinnamon swirl.

butter knife drawing an S shape into the banana bread batter.

Bake on the center rack of the preheated oven for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown on top and tests clean. You can insert a toothpick in the middle of the bread to test if it is baked through.

Finished loaf of cinnamon banana bread in a loaf pan fresh out of the oven.

Allow the bread to cool for at least 40 minutes before slicing and serving.

Serve the bread warm with a pat of butter for the best results!

To store the banana bread, cover the loaf pan tightly with plastic wrap and store at room temperature for up to 2 days. Transfer any remaining banana bread to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days longer.

You can freeze the banana bread by first slicing the remaining loaf into individual slices then storing in a large zip lock bag in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Slices of cinnamon swirl banana bread on a sheet of parchment paper.

And that’s it! A lovely sweet breakfast, a healthy snack, a delicious after dinner treat that you can enjoy anytime the hankering strikes.

This delicious cinnamon banana bread recipe is one of those feel-good recipes the whole family can enjoy and it’s perfect for entertaining guests for breakfast or brunch. It is truly the best banana bread when you’re craving something comforting and health-conscious at the same time.

If you love banana bread recipes like this, also try my Flourless Oatmeal Banana Nut Muffins and my Flourless Oatmeal Banana Pancakes

If you love banana-sweetened treats, also try these gems!

More Banana-Sweetened Recipes:

Enjoy this delicious healthy cinnamon swirl banana bread with a mug of coffee or tea!

Slices of banana bread.

Healthy Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread

Yield: 1 (9-inch) Loaf
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Ultra moist and flavorful Healthy Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread is one of those feel-good treats you'll want to keep on hand for any time the craving strikes. A lovely breakfast or snack for any occasion!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 4 large ripe bananas
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 Tbsp avocado oil or melted butter
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lemon juice or cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar, optional*
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

For the Cinnamon Swirl:

Instructions

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

    2. Transfer the oats to a blender and blend for 20 to 30 seconds on high, until a flour forms.

    Add the rolled oats to a blender and blend into flour

    3. Mash the ripe bananas in a large mixing bowl until they’re nice and creamy.

    Mashed bananas in a mixing bowl

    4. Mix the eggs, oil, vanilla extract, and lemon juice in with the mashed banana until the wet ingredients are well-combined.

    mashed bananas in a mixing bowl with eggs.

    5. Add the oat flour to the mixing bowl, along with any granulated sweetener you’d like to add, baking soda, sea salt, and ground cinnamon (the dry ingredients). Mix until well-combined and a banana bread batter forms.

    Wet ingredients in a mixing bowl with dry ingredients on top.

    6. Mix together the ingredients for the cinnamon swirl (coconut sugar or sweetener of choice) and ground cinnamon in a small bowl until well-combined.

    Cinnamon and sugar mixed together in a measuring cup

    7. Pour half of the banana bread batter into the prepared baking pan. Sprinkle all of the cinnamon sugar mixture over the banana layer evenly.

    Half of the batter in a loaf pan.

    Cinnamon and sugar sprinkled on top of banana bread layer.

    8. Pour the remaining banana bread batter over the cinnamon swirl layer and spread it into an even layer.

    butter knife drawing an S shape into the banana bread batter.

    Use a butter knife to draw a large S shape into the batter. This is what creates the cinnamon swirl.

    9. Bake on the center rack of the preheated oven for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown on top and tests clean. You can insert a toothpick in the middle of the bread to test if it is baked through.

    Finished loaf of cinnamon banana bread in a loaf pan fresh out of the oven.

    10. Allow the bread to cool for at least 40 minutes before slicing and serving.

    horizontal photo of a sliced loaf of banana bread with cinnamon ribbon in the middle.

    Serve the bread warm with a pat of butter for the best results!

Notes

*You can also use maple sugar, brown sugar or cane sugar in place of coconut sugar. The sweetener is optional in the bread since we’re adding sugar to the cinnamon swirl.

To store the banana bread, cover the loaf pan tightly with plastic wrap and store at room temperature for up to 2 days. Transfer any remaining banana bread to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days longer.

You can freeze the banana bread by first slicing the remaining loaf into individual slices then storing in a large zip lock bag in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Nutrition Information
Yield 10 Serving Size 1 Slice (of 10)
Amount Per Serving Calories 220Total Fat 7gCarbohydrates 37gNet Carbohydrates 33gFiber 4gSugar 18gProtein 5g

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Jerry Inkastado

Saturday 22nd of October 2022

Sorry but I could not get this to work. Both times it was a gooey mess, even though I let it cook an extra 10 minutes and then 15 minutes the second time. I let it rest about an hour. I do bake a fair amount and am thinking the batter was just too wet. How much banana, in cups, is 4 bananas?

Julia

Monday 24th of October 2022

Hi Jerry! I'm sorry to hear the recipe didn't work for you! When I measure it, 4 bananas equates to just under 2 cups. What type of oats did you use? Have you checked your baking soda to be sure it isn't expired?

Cathy

Saturday 22nd of October 2022

I have oat flour from the store already....how much of that would i use?

Julia

Monday 24th of October 2022

Hi Cathy! You can use oat flour. I would use 1 3/4 cups and see if the batter looks thick enough. If it seems too thin to hold the cinnamon sugar layer, I would add 1/4 cup more. Let me know how you like it! xoxo

Lana

Wednesday 19th of October 2022

The instructions left out the oil (unless I overlooked it?) so might want to edit them. Hoping my bread doesn’t come out like a cracker since its already in the oven 😕

Julia

Thursday 20th of October 2022

Apologies for that, Lana! I just edited the recipe, and thank you for catching that! I mix the oil in with the rest of the wet ingredients. The first time I made the bread, I made it without oil and I thought it still turned out great. I simply add it for more richness but for me, the bread is fine without it as well. Hope you ended up enjoying it! :)

Caroline

Tuesday 18th of October 2022

Would almond flour work or

I also have oat fiber that has the consistency of flour. How much flour does 2 cups of rolled oats become when it is run through the blender?

Julia

Tuesday 18th of October 2022

Hi Caroline! You can follow my Paleo Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread recipe for an almond flour version: https://www.theroastedroot.net/paleo-cinnamon-swirl-banana-bread/

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