Banana Bread Recipe + Ten Homemade Gift Ideas

Christmas is just around the corner which also means it’s time to pull it together for last minute gifting! I love to give and receive handmade gifts so I thought it would be fun to put together a list of ideas in case you’re looking for something. Banana bread is always a favorite because 1. it’s so delicious and easy and 2. it looks so festive all tied up with a pretty ribbon! But really any loaf of bread would make an amazing gift! My neighbor Natalie gave us all some sourdough bread during quarantine and I swear I will never forget it!

Handmade Gift Ideas:
1. A classic tray of cookies! We love to spend a whole day baking all different kinds of cookies, and then putting them together in smaller boxes or jars to deliver as gifts.
2. Homemade hot chocolate stir spoons or hot chocolate bombs if you have the skillz.
3. Handmade Christmas ornament. I also love these copper frame ornaments that would be perfect for a sentimental photo!
4. Popcorn bark or popcorn balls! Did your grandma used to make these when you were little?!
5. A festive wreath or garland.
6. Room or pillow spray.
7. Homemade vanilla extract.
8. Homemade peppermint marshmallows. We’ve been dying to make these!
9. DIY Sugar scrubs or sea salt scrubs. These are super easy to make & put together in a mason jar. All you need is equal parts sugar or salt & cold pressed coconut oil, then you can add in a few drops of your favorite essential oil, like peppermint or vanilla.
10. Loaves of bread, of any kind! Banana bread, pumpkin bread, sourdough bread, anything goes! Tie it up with bakers twine or put it in a bread bag with a pretty satin ribbon. Don’t forget to include the recipe.

Do you have a favorite handmade gift you’ve given or received?!

Also sharing my banana bread recipe, which is adapted just a bit from a recipe sent to me by my friend Jaclyn years ago. I can’t count how many times I had to text her to get the recipe, but finally have made it enough times we know it by heart!

Banana Bread Recipe
Prep time: 15 mins. Cook Time: 60 mins. Total Time: 1 hr. 15 mins
Serving Size: 2 medium sized loaves or 4 mini loaves

Ingredients:
2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 cups sugar
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large ripe bananas
Optional Toppings & Ingredients: walnuts, chocolate chips and additional 1/4 cup sugar

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Whisk the dry ingredients together (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and sugar) and set aside.
  3. In another bowl, combine the eggs, oil, and vanilla extract.
  4. Mush the bananas with a fork and stir into the wet ingredients.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and whisk together until batter is smooth.
  6. Time for optional add-ins: chocolate chips or walnuts! 
  7. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pans. Optional: sprinkle granulated sugar on the top of each loaf for a sparkly, crispy topping!
  8. Bake for 50-60 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean.
  9. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
  10. Slice and serve warm with butter.
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