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Chocolate Cherry Skillet Banana Bread

A classic banana bread never needs tweaking but it doesn't hurt to give it a summer spin with fresh cherries...and chocolate makes everything better. 
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword quick bread, banana bread
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Author Jean | Lemons + Anchovies

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup medium ground corn meal
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • I cup fresh cherries, pitted and quartered
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas about 3 large bananas
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt I use low fat but full or nonfat would work
  • 2 large eggs, beaten lightly
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Turbinado sugar for topping
  • Baking spray or butter for coating the pan

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350ºF. Spray a 10-inch cast iron skillet (or 10-inch round baking pan) with baking spray and set aside. (See note)

  2. In a large bowl whisk all the dry ingredients together from the flour to the kosher salt. 

  3. In another bowl stir together all the wet ingredients from the mashed bananas to the vanilla extract. Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Stir in the cherries and chocolate chips.

  4. Pour the batter into the skillet and sprinkle a light layer of turbinado sugar on top of the batter. Bake until the top of the bread is crisp and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Note that this baking time is for my oven which has a convection feature. I preheat at 350ºF and bake at 325ºF with a total baking time of 40 minutes. If using a conventional oven, keep the baking temperature at 350ºF--the baking time will require an additional 10-15 minutes, depending on your oven. 

Recipe Notes

If you want a crispier edge on this bread put the skillet in the oven while it preheats but don't spray the baking spray until the skillet is hot and you're ready to pour the batter in. You can also use butter instead of baking spray.