Banana Nut Bread with Parsnips

Honey, Date & Parsnip Bread5bThis banana bread recipe is full of good things like almonds, bananas, coconut oil, and a sprinkling of pecans. And it’s sweetened with dates, so there is no refined sugar. 

If you’re looking for the perfect banana nut bread- this is it!

Recipe below.

Banana, Date & Parsnip Loaf CakeHoney, Date and Parsnip Bread

I’m always confused by a banana bread recipe. Is it a dessert? Is it breakfast? Is it meant to be eaten while drinking tea in china teacups with one pinky in the air?

This banana nut bread can be eaten anytime of the day you want. Because it’s a super healthy banana bread- packed with whole foods and sweetened naturally. And did I mention that it has vegetables in it? VEGETABLES! (Don’t worry- you won’t notice, I promise.)

The combination of flavors might seem a teensy bit odd (go on- you were all thinking it!), but I guarantee you’ll love the delicious result. I originally developed this recipe when I was experimenting with eggless grain-free baking. I did lots of baking with bananas as an egg replacement, and desperately searched for flavors that played well with bananas. It turns out that parsnip is a big winner!

Think about it like this: we all carrot cake and think that is totally normal, right? Carrot cake. So….why not share the love and try out parsnips. I swear- parsnips in cake is totally normal. Or, I’m determined to make it a “thing.” Because it tastes awesome.

Incidentally, if you’d prefer to make this banana bread recipe eggless, it is possible. If you remove the eggs, the banana bread will not rise quite as much and will be a bit denser but still very yummy.  Honey, Date and Parsnip Bread

Date, Parsnip and Banana Loaf Cake

  • Servings: 1 large loaf
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

2/3 cup cooked, drained & mashed parsnip (approximately 1 large parsnip)
15 dates, pits removed (or date syrup-see below)
1/2 cup mashed very-ripe banana
1 tbsp coconut oil
2 cups almond meal
1/4 cup ground pecans
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a standard loaf pan (8 1/2″ by 4 1/2″) with coconut oil.

If you haven’t already done so, cook your parsnip by dicing it and cooking it in a small saucepan with just enough water to cover it. Bring to boil and simmer until soft. Mash and set aside.

Place dates in a small saucepan with just enough water to cover them. Gently heat and stir until the dates have dissolved into a smooth paste, adding water as needed. This takes approximately 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine almond meal, ground pecans, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda. Mix thoroughly.

Once the dates are completely dissolved, add the mashed parsnip, banana and coconut oil to saucepan, stirring to dissolve the coconut oil.

Add the date mixture to the dry ingredients. Add the eggs. Mix thoroughly to combine the ingredients.

Pour into greased loaf pan and bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until very golden and a skewer comes out completely clean. Allow to cool completely before transferring to rack. 

Date Lady Date Syrup*Time-saving tip: Pre-made date syrup can be used instead of cooking your dates to create a smooth paste. Substitute 1/2 cup date syrup for the dates and heat gently in a small saucepan before adding the parsnip, coconut oil and banana. I like Date Lady syrup- no additives whatsoever.

Feb 16, 2015 update: This recipe was featured on Date Lady’s site! Check it out here.


3 thoughts on “Banana Nut Bread with Parsnips

  1. RR says:

    I made this last night using Date Lady’s date syrup and it is surprisingly good! My fiancee, who usually doesn’t go for vegan or gluten free stuff, loved it too. I love the texture that almond meal brings to this cake-like bread and the richness of the date syrup which I think is better than what regular sugar would bring. I had it plain warm and he had his with a spread of butter. Delicious! Thank you for sharing this. Any idea of the calorie/nutrition value of this recipe?


    • Lauren says:

      Hey there! Thank you SO much for taking the time to come back and let me know how the recipe turned out for you. I LOVE hearing feedback- it can be scary to put recipes out there and wonder if readers are enjoying them! ;)

      Re: calorie/nutrition value: I apologize that I don’t have that info. Thanks for the suggestion, as I will consider adding that feature to my recipes in the future.

      In the meantime, you could try entering the recipe in to an online calculator such as


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