I Love Chrissy Teigen, but Bethenny Frankel Makes the Best Banana Bread

(Image credit: Photo: Gilbert Carrasquillo/Getty Images; Design: Susanna Hopler)

I make banana bread every week. This is mostly because of a brown banana hand-off situation I’m currently in with my bulk-banana-buying landlords, but also because banana bread is awesome. And because I make banana bread every week, I have the opportunity to branch out into the magical world of banana bread recipes.

Should I pour banana bread batter into a loaf pan or a Bundt pan? Should I fill it with peanut butter swirls or jam drizzles? Or should I take a cue from one of my favorite joyful food humans, Chrissy Teigen, and bake her new banana bread recipe that’s laced with vanilla pudding and toasted coconut?

I’m sure it’s amazing! But when it comes to banana bread, I’m diehard loyal to one recipe.

My banana bread secret: I will never stray from Bethenny Frankel’s Boo Boo Banana Bread.

I’ve made it hundreds of times and it’s always flawless: perfectly moist and deeply decadent without being chock-full of butter or vegetable oil. It is a compliment magnet.

“I’ve never had banana bread this good!” is a sentence often uttered in its presence.

“You have to give me the recipe!” friends say between bites.

And then there’s the pause, when they think I’m going to pull out an Ina Garten reference or a much-loved family recipe … and I give them a link to Bethenny Frankel’s website.

Listen, I know this is weird. Typically the Real Housewives are not my go-to source for food inspiration. I don’t remember how I stumbled onto this recipe; I imagine it was a goof, taste testing a reality TV star’s recipe. Why would this be good? Why would a recipe from a book with “Skinny” in the title taste like a rich, velvety cake with a tender, sweet crumb?

I’m not alone: The extraordinarily funny ladies of the Bitch Sesh podcast can back me up. In an early episode, a guest brings Danielle Schneider and Casey Wilson a pan of Boo Boo Banana Bread and they are blown away by how non-ironically delicious it is (unlike the many other housewives’ products they sample on the show which, other than wine, seem terrible).

Why Bethenny Frankel’s Banana Bread Is the Best Banana Bread

There are a few things at play here. The oat flour, which I make by blending raw oats into a powder, gives it a really light texture and keeps the bread gluten-free. It’s also packed with bananas. The recipe recommends two to three, but I see three as a minimum and have taken it up to four. I also tweak the sugar, which I reduce from 1 cup to 2/3 or even a 1/2 cup. But I think the real secret is steaming the bread inside of a loose, tinfoil lid.

Trust me: Bake this banana bread. Then maybe bake Chrissy Teigen’s recipe and tell me if I should jump ship? I never will, but it’s nice to know my options.

Have you tried Bethenny’s Boo Boo Banana Bread? Do you love it as much as I do?