Will Run For Cherry, Banana, Coconut Butter Bread

by Angela (Oh She Glows) on June 28, 2010

Enter, bait:


Cherry, Banana, Coconut Butter Bread.

Now we’re talking.

I think I should add FOOD to my list of inspiring workout tips. Some days, it’s just about the food, isn’t it?

Today you could slice the air with a knife. We get all kinds of sickening humidity in Southern Ontario. However, I say, when life gives you brown bananas, make banana bread.

I had a scheduled long run planned for today and as the clocked ticked it got hot, hot, hot. Morning workouts are really hard for me now because I am in the bakery around 6:30am and I am rushing to get out orders by noon. Getting up before 6 is not really an option since I am up until around 11pm most nights, so most of my workouts have been over lunchtime or in the evening! This makes for some sticky workouts in the summer I am finding.

As I went on my run tonight, this cooked in the oven…while I cooked outside.


Visions of sugarplums cherries danced in my head.

Some days, food just equals motivation. Wait, make that all days. VOO parfaits are what get me up in the morning!


The run:

  • Distance: 3.5 miles
  • Time: 30:06
  • Avg Pace: 8:35 min/mile
  • Avg heart rate: 161 bpm
  • Max Heart rate: 178 bpm


Mile Splits:

  • Mile 1: 8:48
  • Mile 2: 5:20
  • Mile 3: 9:01
  • Mile 3-3.5: 4:01 (GET HOME TO BANANA BREAD!)


PS- Mile 2 is a joke! I am just checking if you are reading this and not glazed over at the eyes in a heaping puddle of drool right now.  :tongue: Mile 2 was actually 8:14!

I also have to ask you, Does it count as a long run if the run FELT really long?  I say yes!!!!

All that mattered was this…


I was pretty much the happiest girl alive during the moment this bread touched my lips.


Not only is this bread everything I hoped it would be, but it was also the perfect post run snack and it didn’t need any Earth Balance spread. It was moist and dense but not overwhelmingly sweet.


Summertime Cherry, Banana, Coconut Butter Bread

I wanted to make a tropical and moist healthy vegan banana bread that would be perfect for summer. I adapted this recipe from my Tropical Balmy Bliss Spelt Muffins. If you are a fan of dense sweet breads you will love this recipe. This is not a light and fluffy bread!


  • 1 cup + 3/4 cup of whole grain spelt flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder (I use aluminum-free)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon + 1/4 tsp ground ginger + 1/4 tsp nutmeg OR 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tbsp Chia seeds
  • 4 small bananas or 3.5 medium ones
  • 2 tbsp coconut butter (Warmed slightly)
  • 3 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1/2 cup pure Canadian maple syrup (I use Medium/#2 grade)
  • 6-8 Cherries, pitted and chopped, for garnish
  • unsweetened coconut, for garnish


Directions: Preheat the oven to 350F. Take the dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, sea salt, spices, chia seeds) and whisk in a large bowl. In a small cup, place 2 tbsp of coconut butter in the microwave for just 10-15 seconds to warm. In a medium sized bowl, add the wet ingredients (banana, coconut butter, maple syrup, sunflower oil), reserving 1 small banana or 1/2 a medium banana for later, and mix very well, making sure to break up the clumps of coconut butter. Now take the banana you set aside and chop into 1 inch chunks. Stir into the wet ingredients. Now add the wet to the dry ingredients and stir until the flour is incorporated. Try not to overmix as spelt flour can become tough with too much mixing. Pour the batter into a pre-greased loaf pan. Take your pitted and chopped cherries and add them on top. Sprinkle with shredded coconut. Bake for approx. 45 minutes or until golden brown. Note: My loaf fell a bit in the centre and wasn’t cooked in the centre, so next time I might cook it longer at a lower temp (perhaps 325F for 60-70 minutes). Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 15 minutes before serving.

Possible substitution ideas:

  • Sub Extra Virgin Olive Oil for Sunflower Oil
  • Sub whole wheat or white flour for spelt flour
  • Sub ground flax for chia seeds
  • You could also add in pecans or walnuts! I made it without, but they would add a nice crunch!


I think the coconut butter was the WOW factor in this bread. While the bread did not have a distinct coconut flavour, it was moist, buttery, and luxurious! I am in LOVE!  :heart:


I will be making this again and again and again. Possibly for the market on Saturday!?


So what did the man of the house have to say?

“I think this is the best sweet bread you have ever made, but I’m not positive I remember all of them.”

Can you handle him?


He also said, “If you ever made a banana bread with chocolate chips then that was probably my favourite, but if not, then this is my favourite.”

He kills me, he really kills me.


In conclusion: Make this bread. Stuff your face with a slice of it after a very hard, sweaty run. If you love moist, delicious, dense, and super healthy sweet bread you will love this summertime snack!


Tonight’s question: Does food ever inspire you during a workout? What food could inspire you to workout on those days when nothing else could?

Have a great night! I’m off to go freeze half of this loaf before I eat it all. :biggrin:

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{ 37 comments… read them below or add one }

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Heather (Heather's Dish) June 29, 2010 at 9:08 am

DROOLING has commenced! way to have some self-control on freezing half of the loaf, i would have probably stuffed it in my face :)


Lindsay June 29, 2010 at 9:09 am

oh.my.word…that bread looks like heaven!!


Jen June 29, 2010 at 9:18 am

The bread looks great! I think I might make some today but I will have to make some substitutions. What do you think you could use instead of coconut butter? Would a nut butter work?


Angela (Oh She Glows) June 29, 2010 at 10:57 am

yes I think nut butter would work…awesome idea!


Jen June 30, 2010 at 7:50 am

I just made a loaf with substitutions: natural peanut butter, ground flax, evoo, and regular flour since that’s what I had in the kitchen. It’s in the oven now! The batter was really yummy so I’m sure the bread will be too! ;)


Angela (Oh She Glows) June 30, 2010 at 7:53 am

mmm sounds awesome!


Beth @ DiningAndDishing June 29, 2010 at 9:29 am

I work out in the morning. When the going gets tough I dream of what to have for breakfast when I get home. Today it was a wheat bagel with mashed banana, maple almond butter and cinnamon. THAT kinda brekkie inspires me to keep pushing on!


Christa June 29, 2010 at 10:21 am

That loaf looks RIDICULOUSLY yummy!! I need to make it asap… will any type of gf flour work? buckwheat, sorghum, brown rice? my hubby bought a half loaf of banana bread the other day, and I was SO jealous of it (of course it was not gf, so he didn’t have to share!)… I definitely deserve to make this loaf of yours :)


Angela (Oh She Glows) June 29, 2010 at 10:57 am

im not sure about the other types of flour, might be worth a shot.


jassy June 29, 2010 at 10:31 am

hi…good thing i have some banana bread left over with me :)

that just looks so delicious :)


sassy molassy June 29, 2010 at 11:46 am

Mmm…sounds and Looks amazing!


Triathlonbabe aka Grace June 29, 2010 at 1:14 pm

My mouth is salivating as I read this blog…..bwwwaaahhhhh! I am in love I believe with this good looking bread. Gonna have to make this ASAP!!! I have a huge bag of fresh cherries, the only way I will eat them, so there you go, just gotta figure out how to get that coconut butter. Ahhh, I know, I’ll make homemade coconut butter…yea that’s the ticket!

Hmmm, I’m with Michelle on Will Run For BEER! LOL! On a more serious note, you have gotten me hooked on juicing, so that is what I think about when I do my long runs on Saturday early morning with my group. I pre-cut my veggies for my juice and just remember how colorful they looked the night before and how delish they will be going down. My AM runs during the week, I usually do not fuel up as I am out the door at 5am, I just look forward to my breakfast once I get to my office. Yummy, usually VOO or a green monster! Yahooo!

Now, I just printed off the recipe for this bread and that shall be my dessert this weekend!


Lindsey @ Foodie on the Rocks June 29, 2010 at 2:30 pm

dang, I am definitely an engineer. I sat there for at least 2 miuntes trying to figure out how those splits came out to a ~8:30 min pace. Haha, I was like, “wow, that’s obviously a typo!” ….and then I kept reading. nerd alert.


Fueling for Fitness June 30, 2010 at 3:34 pm

Do you know if you can use coconut oil in place of coconut butter in baking? I know they are different (I looked it up and was disappointed to see that they were!) but I was just wanted to know your opinion as well! I really want to make this bread, but alas, I have lots of coconut oil begging to be used, and no coconut butter…



Fueling for Fitness June 30, 2010 at 3:35 pm

Okay, I see you’ve already answered this already in someone else’s comment! Nevermind :)


Angela July 4, 2010 at 11:28 am

This is currently in the oven, I think I made a mistake!

For the wet ingredients I was supposed to mush the banana before I incorporated it in the dry ingredients right? doh!
Because I cut it into chunks instead, t’was an early morning for me. I am bringing this dish to work. In the directions it said to mush the coconut butter, maybe you meant banana?

Can’t wait to try it either way, I’ll just be getting more chunks of banana! :)


angela....again July 4, 2010 at 11:42 am

Angela! it still came out great! yum!


Stephanie July 5, 2010 at 8:33 pm

I am making this bread now! I used coconut oil instead of coconut butter, so I hope it comes out!!


MaryZ July 8, 2010 at 4:59 pm

I have to tell you, I have been dreaming about this bread! I need to make it soon. My husband officially thinks I have lost my mind when I said I was dreaming about this bread I saw on Oh She Glows! I’m buying the stuff and making it this weekend!


Angela July 16, 2010 at 4:30 pm

I really want to make this, but I can’t afford to use that much maple syrup. If I used sugar instead, would I have to add more liquid or, say, soy yogurt in place of the maple syrup to make up the moistness?


Kelsey @ CleanTeenKelsey July 18, 2010 at 9:57 pm

I just made this tonight! It’s not quite as dense and moist as yours is.. I ended up cutting the maple syrup (I used honey) by more than half, because my bananas were SUPER ripe. I also used Cacao Bliss (which has agave) in place of the coconut butter. My last substitution was a tablespoon of ground flax in place of the chia seeds. Do you think the lack of honey/maple syrup caused it to be a bit drier or the flax?


Angela (Oh She Glows) July 19, 2010 at 8:35 am

Hmm did you use spelt flour? I have heard of a couple ppl who used whole wheat and it turned out drier. My guess is that it would have been due to cutting the maple syrup (or in your case honey) in half. Perhaps you would also have to reduce the cooking time when making those adjustments (cook it for less time?).


Ellani July 19, 2010 at 1:19 pm

I tried out your recipe for Cherry Banana Bread this weekend and it was fabulous. I thought you might be interested in some changes I made:

I left out the oil (since I try to cook as fat free as possible), though I did use the coconut butter (which I made myself…great idea of yours!!!).

I also modified the baking soda and baking powder amounts to 3/4 tsps each and mashed up all the bananas with a potato masher.

I added a lot more cherries to the batter: scooping half of the batter into the bread pan, layering in some pitted cherries; scooping the other half over and arranging pitted cherries on top.

The bread was fabulous and not gooey in the least. Great Recipe!


Anna July 24, 2010 at 9:05 am

Hi Angela,

this bread is great! I have made it 2 times now, and thought you might be interested in a substitution I made: We have a similar cake/bread recipe in our family (cherry-cinnamon-cake) and it becomes extra moist and light at the same time by subsituting half of the flour with rolled oats! So that’s what I did, and the bread turned out fabolous. And because I’ve read that some people have been wondering about other types of flour: I had to use whole wheat flour, and if you do that you need to add quite a bit of liquid (apple sauce/water/milk) and reduce the baking time.


Satu August 19, 2010 at 11:09 am

I made this the other day and it was the most delicious thing ever! Thanks a million for the recipe, love it!


jessica August 25, 2010 at 11:55 am

Hi, this recipe looks fantabulous and I am excited to try it! Could I sub the coconut butter for something else if I needed to though? Also, what other recipes would you recommend for freezing. I am having a baby in October and need to get on the freeze train! :o) Thanks!


Gen April 15, 2012 at 7:11 am

Hi Angela, just wondering if I can sub the sunflower oil for another oil and if so which one ( i have oile, grape seed, canola) and do the chia seeds need to be in powder or whole ( i heard when you put them in poder it releases more proteins…)

Thanks! it looks great! can’t wait to make it!


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 15, 2012 at 6:56 pm

Hi Gen, you could sub canola and grapeseed probably (I havent used grapeseed oil but I heard it’s light in flavour?) I use whole chia seeds, but either should work.


Chrissy May 8, 2012 at 7:11 am


I just discovered your blog and made this bread yesterday. WOWWWWW!!! My best friend and I ate half the loaf in one sitting! I live a Paleo lifestyle, so I made some substitutions, but man, it was super moist and AMAZINGLY delicious!! I’m officially a huge fan of your recipes! & I can’t wait to try your Pumpkin Butter Swirl Butternut Pecan Bread- that sounds absolutely phenomenal! Anyways, for those who would like to know, I used the same amounts of almond flour, coconut oil, and dried cherries. I’ll say it again- AMAZING!!!




Angela (Oh She Glows) May 8, 2012 at 7:35 am

Glad to hear that Chrissy!!


Ester November 15, 2012 at 4:48 pm

I just tried this recipe. I used strawberries instead of cherry. I also follow your advice to bake at 325F, mine was done around 70 minutes. it tastes so yummy! Thanks Angela


Ester Pasaribu January 11, 2013 at 12:20 pm

I really like this recipe. The first time I used Spelt flour, using strawberry instead of cherry (that was what I had with me). The second time I used All purpose flour (King Arthur). Surprisingly the result is different. Using spelt flour will result a nice moist n very soft bread, using All purpose flour made the bread to rise fully n the result isn’t a moist bread. But both ARE really GOOD. I’m new to baking. Thanks Angela, your blog has helped me a lot!!


Preena @ A Teaspoon of Turmeric July 16, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Hi Angela, hope you’re well!
I’m excited….going to try this recipe today with the boatload of overripen bananas I have from the summer heat!
Thanks, it looks yummy!


Preena @ A Teaspoon of Turmeric July 17, 2013 at 8:24 am

I made this last night, Angela! It was yum. THANK YOU!!


Elyssa December 21, 2013 at 6:29 pm

I LOVE your recipes. They are full-proof. I made your stuffed shells last night for the third time and made sure this time to double the recipe and freeze a bag of “ricotta” stuffing for later! When I came home from work the whole dish from last nights dinner was empty.
My boyfriend goes nuts for those shells every time.

This afternoon I decided to make this banana bread but I tweaked the recipe a bit.
Instead of coconut butter and sunflower oil I used earth balance and grape seed oil.
I also ran out of maple syrup at 1/4 a cup and used 1/4 cup honey. (Half honey, half maple syrup.)
To make it more grainy, I used whole wheat flower and 3/4 cups oats and bran, and added some flaxseed in addition to the chia seeds.
Finally, I substituted blueberries for cherries and added chocolate chips.
The batter is BOMB diggity.
I followed your instructions and adjusted the temp and baking time. I can’t wait until it comes out of the oven! Only 30 minutes to go!


Natalie May 19, 2014 at 9:01 am

Could I use frozen cherries instead?? I just so happen to have some and would love to try this!


plasterer bristol February 29, 2016 at 11:06 am

mmm yummy. One of my favorite recipes. Thanks for sharing this.



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