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Vegan Chocolate Chip Banana Nut Bread

This vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread is my ideal banana bread. It’s soft and tender and perfectly moist cake studded with chocolate chips, walnuts, and pepitas. The bittersweet chocolate breaks up the sweetness of the vegan banana bread, while walnuts and pepitas add a nutty tasting, textured counterpoint. All the mix-ins complement the banana bread perfectly.

loaf of vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread on a cutting board

The recipe is adaptable, and you can choose to use only walnuts or only pepitas, but I personally love the combination of the two. Walnuts are a classic banana bread choice, but if you’ve never added pepitas to your banana bread you are in for a treat!

Pepitas, a type of pumpkin seed without a husk, have a delicious robust nutty flavor taste and hold their texture when baked. They’re tender but not as soft as a walnut. And personally I think they make for a really pretty loaf of banana bread!

Pair slices of vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread with a cup of coffee or tea for a delicious afternoon treat, slightly indulgent breakfast, or a sort of eat-your-fruit post dinner dessert.

close up shot of a slice of chocolate chip, walnut, pepita banana bread on a plate

What do you need to make vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread?

Making vegan banana bread is easy, because banana is actually a pretty good egg replacer. So what do you need? Just a few pantry friendly ingredients and some very ripe bananas.

ingredients measured mis en place for vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread
  • Bananas
  • Granulated sugar
  • Soy milk, or your choice of plant-based milk (oat milk is another good choice)
  • Canola oil, or your preferred neutral flavored oil (i.e. safflower oil, sunflower oil)
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Vanilla extract
  • All purpose flour
  • Salt
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Cinnamon
  • Chocolate chips (I love mini chocolate chips in this recipe!)
  • Chopped walnuts
  • Pepitas

The leavening comes from baking powder and baking soda, while apple cider vinegar works to create a more tender crumb.

view of the banana bread sliced showing the texture of the cake

Tips for the best banana bread:

For the best banana bread use very ripe bananas, the kind that are black all over and too mushy to eat. They should smell very sweet and be nice and soft to mash with a fork.

Mash up the bananas before measuring, you don’t have to be a perfectionist here, little pieces of banana are ok to mix into the batter! If however, these little chunks annoy you, use a handheld immersion blender to quickly blitz the bananas smooth. If measuring by volume, then measure out the bananas for the recipe after you’ve mashed them.

For consistent results when you bake, measure by weight and not volume. A small kitchen scale (such as this oxo kitchen scale I use or a less expensive version like this other oxo scale, affiliate links) is one of my favorite kitchen tools. Not only will it measure more accurately than your cup measures, but it also means less clean up! Win-win.

Whisk up your dry and wet ingredients separately, then add dry to the wet and mix in until it’s mostly combined but some dry spots remain before adding in the chocolate chips, walnuts, and pepitas. Folding these add-ins in at this step keeps the bread from being over mixed. Though, when it comes to vegan baking you don’t have to worry as much about this as with egg-based baking. Your vegan cakes are not as likely to get tough from over-mixing.

chocolate chip banana nut bread in a loaf pan before baking

Lining you loaf pan is optional, however it does make for easier removal and cleanup. If you want to line your loaf pan you can buy pan liners (such as these loaf pan liners, affiliate link) or cut parchment paper to fit. Spray with the loaf pan with oil then place the parchment liner down so that it overhangs on the sides and let it stick to the oil. It’s up to you if you just want to cut a piece to go across the width and overhang on the long edge, or if you want to cut a second long strip to go under length wise and cover the short edge.

How to bake banana bread with frozen bananas:

You can store ripe bananas in the fridge for a couple days before making your bread. If you’re more than a few days out time, you can freeze them instead. Peel the bananas and stick them in a freezer bag and freeze them for longer storage.

When you’re ready to bake the vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread then take the bananas you need for the recipe out of the freezer and leave at room temperature to defrost, or microwave to speed the process up.

overhead shot of chocolate chip banana nut bread sliced

As the bananas defrost the water content of the fruit will separate from the “meat” of the fruit. It’s not pleasant to look at, but when the fruit has come to room temperature you can mash it up and it will incorporate the liquid back into the mash.

Go ahead and use this mashed banana the same way you would a ripe fresh banana!

slices of vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread stacked on a plate

More vegan banana bread and vegan loaf cake recipes:

Turns out I have a thing for banana bread muffins, and if you do too you can make these classic bakery style vegan banana nut muffins and my vegan double chocolate banana muffins.

For some other flavors of snack cake try my vegan chai spice loaf cake.

If you make this vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread, leave a comment below and rate the recipe on the recipe card. And please share your photos with me on Instagram, tag @thecuriouschickpea and #thecuriouschickpea. I love seeing your recreations!

loaf of vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread on a cutting board

Vegan Chocolate Chip Banana Nut Bread

Yield: 1 loaf
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes

This vegan chocolate chip banana nut bread is soft and tender and studded with a generous amount of chocolate chips (I love using minis here!), chopped walnuts, and pepitas.


  • 1 cup mashed (240 g) ripe bananas (~3 bananas)
  • 2/3 cup (145 g) granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup (157 g) plant milk
  • 1/4 cup (52 g) neutral flavored vegetable oil (e.g. canola)
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups (235 g) all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup (55g) chopped walnuts, plus extra to top muffins
  • 1/2 cup (70g) pepitas, extra to top
  • 1 cup (180g) mini or regular chocolate chips, extra to top


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 ºF and prepare a standard sized loaf pan by spraying it with oil and optionally lining it with parchment paper cut to size, letting some hang over the edges for easy removal (alternatively use parchment liners). Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl combine the mashed banana, sugar, milk, oil, apple cider vinegar, and vanilla together. Mix together until fairly smooth.
  3. In a second mixing bowl combine flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon and whisk until fluffy and combined.
  4. Add dry ingredients to the wet and mix with a wooden spoon combined, some lumpy dry spots are ok. Fold in the chocolate chips, chopped walnuts, and whole pepitas, mixing until no dry spots remain.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and then sprinkle some chocolate chips, chopped walnuts, and peptias overtop and lightly press them into the batter.
  6. Bake at 350 ºF for 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes, or until a tester comes out without wet batter sticking to it (it won't be clean when done because it will still have melted chocolate on it). Let cool for 10 minutes, then remove the loaf from the tin and cool on a wire rack.


I use a standard 8.5 inch x 4.5 inch loaf pan. if you use a slightly larger 9 x 5 loaf pan the bread may quick faster so check on it starting at the one hour mark.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 216Total Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 489mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 2gSugar: 12gProtein: 5g

Nutrition is calculated automatically and should be used solely as an estimate.

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Tuesday 28th of November 2023

I definitely want to try this very soon. It looks delicious. If I wanted to omit the oil, do you think apple sauce would work as a substitute?

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