Hawaiian banana bread

If you’ve ever been to Hawaii, then you are well aware that the islands boasts about their banana bread. You’ll see countless roadside stands selling this baked delight. This is a copycat version of one of those.

hawaiian banana bread

This month, I was fortunate enough to visit my favorite place on earth – Hawaii. My family and I spent a few weeks there for vacation and to work remotely. I am lucky to have the flexibility to do my job from anywhere in the world, so I took advantage of that and chose to work from the beautiful island of Oahu.

Every time we hopped into the car to drive somewhere, we would see little roadside stands (and grocery stores) selling their famous banana bread. What makes Hawaiian banana bread different from the ones we’d normally baked at home on the Mainland is the types of bananas that are used. The bananas in the Hawaiian version are of a different variety – usually the apple banana. These bananas are shorter and sweeter than their mainstream grocery counterpart.

hawaiian banana bread

Since we were staying in a rental home, I had access to a kitchen and baking supplies. I tried baking a banana bread but it turned out horribly. I didn’t have enough bananas (only 4 of the smaller, apple banana), and I could only find a very small mixing bowl. Unfortunately, that meant that my bread was dry and very dense.

I tried it again the following week and thankfully this time it went better. I used the recipe below but found that my bread batter still appeared too dry (even after adding 7 apple bananas) so I had to add some oil to it.

Remember, this banana bread is not meant to be healthy. There is a lot of sugar and butter (and possibly oil) in it. But man, does it taste good! While this isn’t an exact replica of what you’d find in roadside stands, it’s a pretty good alternative.

Please excuse the lousy photos – I took this with my phone since I didn’t bring my normal (food) camera with me.

Husband’s rating: 4 out of 5
Addie’s rating: 4 out of 5
My rating: 4 out of 5

Hawaiian banana bread

One of Hawaii's most famous baked items is banana bread. You'll see them being sold at little stands on the sides of roads throughout each island. This is a copycat recipe.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time40 minutes
Total Time55 minutes
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Hawaiian
Keyword: Bread, Breakfast
Servings: 8
Author: Eva Bakes


  • 3 and ½ cups self-rising flour I didn't have any so I made my own. I added 1 and ½ teaspoons of baking powder to 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups light brown sugar packed
  • 1 cup unsalted butter or margarine melted and very hot
  • 5 large overripe bananas mashed (I used about 7 Hawaiian "apple" bananas, which are smaller and sweeter than typical bananas)


  • Preheat your oven to 330°F (note that this does NOT say 350°). Generously grease or line a standard 9"x5" loaf pan and set it aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, salt, and brown sugar.
  • Add the mashed banana and mix until everything just comes together - do not over mix.
  • Pour the HOT melted butter and fold it in. Do not over mix.
  • Transfer the batter to your prepared pan and bake in your preheated oven for 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean. I baked mine for about 35 minutes since my oven ran hot.
  • Allow the bread to cool before slicing and serving.


Leftover bread should stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and will keep several days. If you keep this at room temperature, it will start to go bad after 24 hours due to the high moisture content.
Source: Kim + Kalee

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