Chai Banana Bread

I have a love-hate relationship with bananas. I love they way they taste, how easy they are to peel, and that they are a budget fruit. But I have a banana intolerance. I can’t eat a whole (or half) of a banana or I get terrible stomach pains and feel nauseous for half a day. However, my intolerance isn’t so severe that I can’t eat just a tiny bit of banana at a time . . . so I am incredibly grateful that banana bread is not off-limits for me.

I really love this recipe because it has all the flavor and texture of banana bread, plus delectable chai spices that give it a little extra complexity. Since this bread bakes for so long (one whole hour!) you get to enjoy warm banana bread smells for quite a while. Feel free to forgo the icing drizzle if you want to make this a little healthier. Just remember, life is short, and icing makes it all the lovelier.

Chai Banana Bread - an elegant twist on classic banana bread Chai Banana Bread - an elegant twist on classic banana bread Chai Banana Bread - an elegant twist on classic banana bread

5.0 from 1 reviews
Chai Banana Bread
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Chai Banana Bread is a sophisticated twist on classic banana bread. It melds together the taste of chai tea - cardamom, ginger, cloves, and cinnamon - with traditional banana bread.
Serves: Makes 1 9x5-in loaf
  • For the Bread:
  • • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • • 2 large eggs
  • • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • • ¾ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • • 1 cup ripe mashed bananas (2-3 bananas)
  • • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • For the Glaze (optional):
  • • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • • 1 tablespoon strong brewed chai tea
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350º. Grease a nonstick 9x5 loaf pan.
  2. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat the eggs in one at a time.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and salt. Add to the butter mixture and beat gently until combined.
  4. Add the bananas and yogurt and mix on low speed until combined.
  5. Pour batter into loaf pan and bake for 60-70 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.
  6. For the Glaze (optional): Once the bread is finished cooking and has cooled, whisk the powdered sugar and chai tea together in a small bowl. If glaze seems to thick, add a bit more tea/water. Drizzle glaze over cooled banana chai bread.

Adapted from Once Upon a Chef


  1. lea says

    Hi Alexa

    I just wanted to give you a wee bit of hope. I had the same problem with bananas for probably the first 25-30 years of my life. Then it was over no more problems. So try them every now and again and remember the greener they are, the harder they are to digest. Looking forward to trying out this banana bread recipe.

  2. I_Fortuna says

    I really like this recipe, however, 1 tbs. of chai (chai means tea) will not impact the flavor of this bread at all. The flavor of this tea will be masked by all the other spices added to this bread. Most of those spices are in special chai. I think replacing the yoghurt with a strong brewed chai may work better.
    The black tea, which is in most chai recipes would actually be a better flavor statement, in my opinion, rather than yoghurt. : )

    • Alexa says

      Thanks for the comment! The tablespoon of chai tea is meant to flavor the glaze, as opposed to the bread itself. The bread derives chai flavors from the cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. The bread doesn’t contain black tea itself, but is strongly flavored from spices, which are found in most chai tea blends. The consistency of yogurt is much thicker than tea (which is essentially water), so I wouldn’t recommend replacing it with strong brewed chai tea since it would make the batter far too runny. If you’d like to amp up the black tea flavor, you could grind a tablespoon or two of black tea into a very fine powder and add it to the batter (see this Serious Eats article on cooking with tea: Hope you enjoy! :)


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