Banana Cookies

published Mar 4, 2022
Banana Cookies Recipe

These banana cookies only require one banana and take about 30 minutes start to finish.

Makes24 cookies

Prep10 minutes

Cook20 minutes to 27 minutes

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four banana cookies stacked on top of each other
Credit: Meleyna Nomura

I absolutely adore a good banana bread. It’s a total classic and one of the very first things beginner bakers learn to make. However, needing three or more overripe bananas can sometimes be a barrier to banana bread bliss. Plus, the hour bake time for a loaf is an awfully long time to wait. These banana cookies deliver all the same vibes with just one banana in about 30 minutes, start to finish — no electric mixer needed.

How Do I Avoid Cakey Banana Cookies?

Adding in mashed banana to a standard cookie recipe can leave you with a baked good that resembles a muffin top more than a cookie. To maximize chewiness, this cookie starts with melted and browned butter. A balance of white and brown sugar, and a good measure of whole-wheat flour and toasty walnuts add a toothsome quality to this cookie that bakes up with a soft and tender top, chewy center, and crispy edges.

Do I Need Super-Ripe Bananas for Banana Cookies?

Sugar-rich blackened bananas are ideal for baked goods. Their intense natural sugars and flavor make for delicious cakes and cookies. While an overripe banana is not 100% necessary for these cookies, you’ll get a much more pronounced banana flavor the riper your banana is. A firmer, less ripe banana will work, but the flavor won’t immediately read as “banana.” At the very least, you’ll want a few freckles on the peel. The best part of these cookies is that they only need one banana — perfect for when you’ve got one sad-looking straggler left from the bunch but not enough for banana bread.

Credit: Meleyna Nomura

Are Banana Cookies Healthy?

These banana cookies straddle the line between over-the-top-treat and health food. Banana, whole-wheat flour, and walnuts bring more extra fiber and nutrients to the party than your typical chocolate chip cookies, while the browned butter and sugar still ensure they’re a sweet treat. It’s the best of both worlds.

Banana Cookies Recipe

These banana cookies only require one banana and take about 30 minutes start to finish.

Prep time 10 minutes

Cook time 20 minutes to 27 minutes

Makes 24 cookies

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 1 cup

    chopped walnuts

  • 8 tablespoons

    (1 stick) unsalted butter

  • 1 cup

    all-purpose flour

  • 1 cup

    whole-wheat flour

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 3/4 teaspoon

    ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    baking soda

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    freshly ground nutmeg

  • 1

    medium ripe banana

  • 1

    large egg, cold from the refrigerator

  • 1/2 cup

    granulated sugar

  • 1/2 cup

    packed light or dark brown sugar

  • 2 teaspoons

    vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Arrange 2 racks to divide the oven into thirds and heat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

  2. Heat a medium skillet over medium heat. Add 1 cup chopped walnuts and toast, stirring frequently, until golden-brown and fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool.

  3. Cut 1 stick unsalted butter into small cubes and add to the skillet. Melt over medium heat, then continue to cook until the butter is browned and nutty smelling, 3 to 5 minutes. Carefully pour into a small heatproof bowl, making sure to scrape in any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Set aside to cool slightly.

  4. Meanwhile, place 1 cup all-purpose flour, 1 cup whole wheat flour, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg in a medium bowl and whisk to combine.

  5. Mash 1 medium banana in a largebowl. Add the browned butter and cold 1 large egg and whisk to combine. Add 1/2 cup packed brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract. Mix with a spatula or wooden spoon until combined.

  6. Add the flour mixture and mix firmly until mostly incorporated. Add the walnuts and mix until no dry streaks remain. Let rest for 5 minutes.

  7. Scoop the dough out in 2-tablespoon portions onto the baking sheets, spacing them about 2 inches apart, 12 per sheet.

  8. Bake for 8 minutes. Rotate the baking sheets from front to back and between racks, and bake until the bottoms are golden brown, 5 to 8 minutes more. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.

Recipe Notes

Storage: The cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.