Sour Cream Banana Bread Recipe
An easy Sour Cream Banana Bread recipe that’s moist and tender. Learn how to make the best banana bread ever, plus try out our favorite variations!
Moist Banana Bread with Sour Cream
Are you the kind of person that buys extra bananas, just to let them get overly ripe for making banana bread?
That is 100% me!!
I grew up on a banana bread recipe with sour cream, from my aunt Mary’s recipe box. It’s so incredibly moist and delicious, I’ve never found another banana bread I like better! Mom would make each batch a little bit different, often adding either chopped maraschino cherries or chocolate chips. Or both!
Sour Cream Banana Bread is now one of my own family’s favorite quick breads. And if our daughters had their way, every single loaf would include maraschino cherries (it’s my favorite, too!).
Of course, I believe this is the best banana bread recipe out there. Nostalgia is involved, for sure. I’ve been eating this beautiful baked treat nearly my entire life.
Sour cream adds tenderness and moistness to baked goods, and just a bit of tang. It’s no wonder why this banana bread recipe with sour cream has been a family favorite for so many years.
For more baking recipes using sour cream, I also recommend: Sour Cream Coffee Cake with Cinnamon Ripple and Rhubarb Sour Cream Coffee Cake. And my friend Liz has a Sour Cream Pear Bread recipe that I’d love to try it!
This banana bread recipe uses common baking ingredients, plus fresh bananas and sour cream. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Bananas – The best banana bread uses bananas that are overripe. They should be soft and the skin should be speckled with many brown spots.
- Butter – Soften it until it’s nearly melted.
- Sour Cream
- Cinnamon – I love a good dose of warm cinnamon flavor in banana bread!
- Baking Soda
- Baking Powder
How to Make Banana Bread
There’s nothing complicated about this recipe. Here’s how to make my favorite banana bread!
- Preheat oven & prepare three loaf pans by spraying them lightly with non-stick spray.
- Mash bananas in a medium bowl; set aside.
- Combine butter, sugar, eggs, sour cream, and mashed bananas in a large bowl.
- Whisk together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in the same medium bowl that you mashed the bananas.
- Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until there are no visible pockets of dry ingredients.
- Divide batter between prepared pans.
- Bake for 50 to 60 minutes.
Tips for the Best Banana Bread
Use butter in your banana bread:
The original recipe from my aunt calls for shortening. A few years ago, I started experimenting with subbing in butter – with different ratios of shortening and butter.
While I do like the extra denseness that the shortening gives the bread, I have since converted to using butter only. I like the flavor that butter adds.
My aunt’s recipe does not call for cinnamon. But I love this beautiful spice in baked goods, so I took the liberty of adding it. If you’re not a fan of cinnamon, I won’t be all judgy if you cross it off the ingredient list.
Use properly sized loaf pans:
These 3/4-pound loaf pans are my favorite. They’re heavy duty and always release breads perfectly. I like their slightly smaller size, just a touch smaller than a more common 1-pound loaf pan. If you only have 1-pound loaf pans, no worries. Your bread will still turn out great!
Test for doneness:
Be sure to test the doneness by inserting a toothpick in the middle of the loaf, before removing from the oven. If the toothpick is still wet with batter, the loaf needs to bake a bit more.
My Favorite Banana Bread Variations
Like I said before, my mom likes to add chocolate chips and/or maraschino cherries to her banana bread. It’s how I grew up. And it’s how I make it to this day!
Chocolate chips – Homemade banana bread was meant for chocolate! Most often when I add chocolate, I sprinkle a handful of mini chocolate chips over the top. But I’ve also been known to stir them right into the batter. Regular-sized chocolate chips work, too. Here are my favorite chocolate chips and mini chocolate chips.
Maraschino cherries – I also think that homemade banana bread was meant for cherries…but I do get some questioning looks from people when they hear this. While cherries are not so common, it is a banana bread variation that I can’t live without! I usually cut the cherries in half or quarter them, before stirring them into the banana bread batter.
The loaves are also quite stunning with cherries scattered over the top!
Chocolate. Cherries. Or plain.
What’s your favorite?!
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Sour Cream Banana Bread
- 3 c. mashed bananas from about 6 large overripe bananas
- 1 c. unsalted butter very soft (almost to the point where it wants to melt)
- 2 c. sugar
- 4 large eggs
- ½ c. regular sour cream
- 4 c. all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. cinnamon
- 2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. kosher salt
- mini chocolate chips optional – here’s our favorite!
- maraschino cherries quartered, optional
- Preheat oven to 325° F. Lightly spray three 8" x 4" loaf pans (these are my favorite pans) with non-stick spray and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, mash bananas with a fork or rigid pastry cutter. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine butter and sugar with a spatula. Add the eggs to one side of the bowl, and whisk them all on their own, without incorporating the butter/sugar mixture (no worries if a little bit gets mixed in). This is my way of not dirtying another bowl to whisk the eggs! Once the eggs are well whisked, add the sour cream and whisk the whole mixture together. Add 3 cups of the mashed bananas and stir to incorporate.
- Whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in the same medium bowl that was used for the mashed bananas. Add these dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and then fold together until there are no visible pockets of dry ingredients.
- Decide how you want your banana bread…plain, with chocolate chips, or with maraschino cherries. See "Banana Bread Options" below.
- Place pans in preheated oven and bake for 50 to 60 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the top center of each loaf. When the toothpick comes out clean, it’s done. Note that any pans that have cherries stirred into the batter will probably need to bake a bit longer than pans without cherries.
Banana Bread Options:
- *For three loaves of plain banana bread: Simply divide the batter evenly between the three prepared pans.
- *For three loaves with chocolate chips: Scatter slightly less than 1/4 cup of mini chocolate chips across the top of each pan of batter. You could also play around with stirring chocolate chips right into the batter.
- *For three loaves of banana bread with maraschino cherries: Stir 1 cup of quartered cherries into the batter, and then divide the batter amongst the three pans. Add a bit more quartered cherries over the tops of the batter if you like. Just know that the cherries will start to weigh down the top of the loaf, the more you add – possibly causing the top to sink a bit when baking. Go light on the cherries if you want a plumper looking loaf.
- *For one loaf of plain banana bread, one loaf with chocolate chips, and one loaf with maraschino cherries: Divide the batter evenly between the three prepared pans. Leave pan #1 as is, this is the plain one. For pan #2, scatter slightly less than 1/4 cup of mini chocolate chips across the top of the batter. For pan #3, stir 1/3 cup of quartered cherries into the batter, and then scatter a few more quartered cherries over the top.
- *I’ll also throw in another variation that we sometimes do. If you like chocolate and cherries together, stir both chocolate chips and quartered cherries into the batter. Or stir just quartered cherries into the batter and then scatter chocolate chips over the top.