Banana pecan muffins are my favorite kind of muffin, and this is the best version I have found by far. They are perfectly moist and packed with banana flavor. Follow these tips, and add one extra (easy) step, and you’ll turn an average banana muffin into a spectacular one.
These banana pecan muffins stay fresh for days and are the perfect breakfast on the go. Here’s how I make them.
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The Best Bananas for Banana Pecan Muffins
First of all, it’s important that you start with the right bananas. Many recipes will tell you to choose “overripe” bananas. You can tell when bananas are past their prime. The stem is black, dried, and wrinkly, and the flesh is mushy and mealy. The peel comes off too easily and the flavor when baked has an odd metallic taste to it. Contrary to conventional wisdom, I do not think these bananas are ideal for anything, much less the best banana muffins.
Instead, I like to use bananas that are very ripe – deep yellow, not green, with a few black spots. The flesh should be moist and the scent should make you want to eat it on the spot. If your bananas are too green, give them a couple more days on the counter. You won’t regret it.
One Extra Step for the Best Flavor
Once you have the right bananas, just add one extra little step to really boost the flavor of these muffins. Take half the bananas and whip them with the brown sugar for a few minutes until you get a smooth mixture. This way you will ensure that the batter is fully permeated with amazing banana flavor, without those big mushy chunks of banana ruining the texture.
My final tip is totally optional and is really a matter of personal preference. I like to toast the pecans first, and sprinkle them on top of the muffins before baking, instead of mixing them into the batter. I absolutely love the flavor combination of bananas and pecans, but I find that they can take away from the texture when baked into the muffins. This also makes it easy for those who don’t like nuts at all to simply pick them off. Of course, if you are a banana muffin purist, you can leave them out entirely.
I love these “tulip style” brown muffin wrappers by the way. Makes them look just like bakery muffins! I sometimes find them in kitchen supply stores or you can order them here.
So go get yourself some ripe bananas and make these amazing banana pecan muffins as soon as possible!
Hmmm and while you’re at it, if you love muffins as much as I do, give these fresh cranberry orange muffins a try. The cream cheese glaze is awesome :).
Banana Pecan Muffins
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 very ripe large bananas
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 3/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12-cup regular-sized muffin tin with paper liners.
Cut two of the bananas into pieces and place in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Add the brown sugar and whip on medium high speed for around three minutes or until pretty smooth.
Add the melted butter, eggs and vanilla to the banana sugar mixture, and keep whipping for another 2 - 3 minutes, until well combined.
Mash the remaining two bananas in a small bowl until mostly smooth, with only small chunks remaining.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and fold in the flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined. Fold in the mashed bananas.
Divide the batter evenly in the muffin cups. Sprinkle the tops with pecans and bake for about 18 to 20 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.