The key to great banana bread is… RIPE bananas!!! If you use bananas that are hard & yellow or even worse green, they will contain too much starch and not enough natural sugars. As bananas ripen, they convert this starch into sugar. According to Wikipedia, “The greener, less ripe bananas contain higher levels of starch and, consequently, have a “starchier” taste. On the other hand, yellow bananas taste sweeter due to higher sugar concentrations”. FYI – You will know if a banana is ripe when it is soft and shows small brown & black spots on the yellow exterior of the banana.
Just to add some info I found interesting. When they call for using Quick Bread setting .. that is NOT Super Rapid cycle which is for breads with shorter rising times. However, you can use the Cake cycle which is used for NON - Yeast Breads. I am about to try a recipes that calls for all the same above ingredients except it has 1/3 melted butter and 1/2 cup milk, 1/2 cup nuts , 1/2 cup chocolate chips., only 2 Bananas. and 1/2 tsp salt. Hope it works.
Excellent! I could tell from the recipe that there would not be enough filling without the walnuts and since I planned to omit them I too doubled the cinnamon/sugar mixture. When baked and thickly sliced the texture of this bread is smooth and soft the sticky cinnamon-spicy sweetness oozes out and it creates the perfect ratio of bread to filling. The kids slathered their slices in homemade apple butter a friend gave us for Christmas but even plain this stuff is heavenly! Read More

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Oh rats! I believe it’s because you chose the “sweet bread” setting instead of the “quick bread” setting, Kindra. I did some googling and found this: “The sweet cycle on most bread makers is designed to prepare and bake sweet yeast breads. Don’t get it confused with the quick bread cycle, however. Quick breads don’t contain yeast, so they cook at a different pace, and require no rise time. An example of a quick bread would be something like a banana bread or zucchini bread, without yeast.”

Same thing happened to my first loaf. I thought I had done something wrong. I suspect bread machines vary. Mine heats while the ingredients are mixing. I suspect that is why the chocolate chips melted. My loaf was underdone and caved in the middle. As if a hunk of mashed banana didn’t mix completely. I’m really assuming the castropy happened because of the bread machine. It did smell amazing while cooking. I wanted to throw my loaf out as well but hate wasting food. Simply; I gave it to someone else. Made it again the old fashioned way… In the oven. Better result.

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Select Sweet and Light settings on your machine and add raisins as per your manufacturer’s instructions. They can be added in with everything else. Start your bread machine. After the first kneading cycle is over, the bread should be smooth and stretchy. It should feel dry when you touch it. If necessary, add flour by the tablespoon to adjust the bread.

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Optional – You can also turn this recipe into chocolate chip banana bread or blueberry banana bread. To make bread machine chocolate chip banana bread, you should add 3/4 of a cup of mini semi-sweet chocolate chips after the first mixing is finished and before the second/final mixing has started. I don’t like to use heavier regular chocolate chips because they tend to sink to the bottom of the batter (mini chips seem to spread out better). To make bread machine blueberry banana bread, you should add 3/4 of a cup of frozen blueberries after the first mixing is finished and before the second/final mixing has started. I like to use frozen blueberries because they seem to survive the bread machine mixing process better (less likely to burst) than fresh blueberries.
Optional – If you want to make bread machine banana nut bread, you can add 3/4 cup of chopped walnuts to this recipe after the first bread machine mixing cycle and before the second mixing (final mixing). I like to add the chopped walnuts after the first mixing and before the final (second) mixing in order to minimize any mixing “breakage” of the chopped walnuts. 

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