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Paleo Banana & Chia Sead Loaf

I have tried a few different paleo banana bread recipes and this is by far my favorite.  There are many recipes available that may be gluten, dairy or grain free but many still add some sort of sweetener whether it be honey, maple syrup or another sugar substitute.  I look for recipes without added sugars and as this is naturally sweetened with dates, and of course the bananas, it does not need any other sweetening agents at all.  The Chia seeds tend to keep it really moist and add the extra nutrient value and I often throw in a handful of walnuts or pecans for some added texture and flavour.

400 g (14oz) ripe banana (4 large)
6 free range eggs
4 fresh pitted medjool dates
2 teaspoons vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
60ml (1/4 cup)  macadamia nut oil, coconut oil or cold pressed olive oil
half teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons gluten free baking powder
70 g ( 1/2  cup ) coconut flour
20 g (1/4 cup) chia seed (see notes)

Preheat your oven to 150 C. (fan forced) 170 C ( no fan)
Combine banana, dates, oil, cinnamon, vanilla, eggs and baking powder into a blender or food processor and blend until creamy and combined  – alternatively you can do this by hand in a large bowl.
Add the coconut flour and chia seeds and mix through.
Rest for at least 10 minutes to allow the chia and coconut flour to expand.
Lightly oil one loaf tin and then line with baking paper.
Spoon batter into the tin – at this stage you can decorate the bread with flaked coconut of sliced banana before baking.
Bake for  50 – 55  minutes (a skewer inserted into the centre should come out dry).
Cover the top with foil if over-browning.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool before turning out the loaf.
Keeps in the fridge covered for up to 1 week. (freezes well too).

Serving Suggestions:  Almond / Macadamia Nut Butter,  Sliced Banana + Coconut Milk Yogurt

What’s good about it?:
Bananas are a terrific energy food and a great source of potassium, an essential mineral for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function. They add moisture and sweetness to baked goods, which means you can reduce the amount of sweetener and oil considerably.  Coconut flour is packed with soluble fibre that is great for healthy digestion and helping to lower cholesterol. The chia seed pumps up the omega 3 in the bread.  Health benefits of omega 3 include helping to lower cholesterol levels, reduce high blood pressure, improve symptoms of arthritis and mental health as the brain is 60% fat and needs omega 3 to function properly.  They are also a high source of iron.  I love using macadamia nut oil when baking, it’s a delicious source of monounsaturated fats that can help support good health and wellbeing.

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