Hazelnut chocolate chunk banana bread – If you’re crazy about my buttermilk banana bread (a fan’s favorite!) and the olive oil chocolate chip banana bread, then you’re now ready to explore further and try this hazelnut chocolate chunk banana bread. A very nutty banana bread with hazelnut flour, toasted hazelnuts and big dark chocolate chunks.
It’s no secret I’m obsessed with banana bread. It took me years to perfecting the ultimate banana bread recipe (soft, ultra moist and straight-forward) and now that you’re all crazy about it – let me rephrase CRAZY about it! – I’m exploring around this amazing recipe to create more banana bread versions. And yes, I’m all excited about it, and if you’re with me in this project I promise you are going to love 2021!
I started in January with the olive oil chocolate chip banana bread, a no-butter banana bread recipe, and I’m now back with a hazelnut and chocolate version. But let me tell you right away: there is more than just hazelnuts and chocolate to my recipe (that would be too easy, almost cheating actually!). Read below to find out the mystery ingredient that adds all the nutty flavor to this banana bread recipe.
The secret to this hazelnut chocolate chunk banana bread
Without further ado, here’s what makes this banana bread SO special: the use of ground hazelnut meal.
While you may be more accustomed to the use of almond flour in your baking recipes, you’ll be happy to know that ground hazelnut meal works too. It actually brings a stronger, hearty and nuttier flavor to your baked goods than almond flour does.
How to make ground hazelnut meal from scratch?
Now the question is: where do I get hazelnut meal? If you live in France (where I’m originated from), you know that it’s no big deal and you will find it in pretty much every grocery store. If you live in the US however, that’s a different story. For some obscure reasons, you hardly find it while almond flour is on the contrary pretty common.
But did you know that you could make ground hazelnut meal from scratch in just a few easy steps? This will spare you some precious time hunting for it in the grocery stores around. To do so, simply pulse raw, unsalted hazelnuts to a food processor a few times until finely ground.
Raw versus toasted hazelnuts
Now that you have your ground hazelnut meal ready, don’t forget to add the chopped hazelnuts to the batter. You can use them raw, roughly chopped with a large knife, or you an toast them to have a slightly smoky flavor and a crunchier bite.
To make toasted hazelnuts, you basically have 2 options: one in the oven, the other in a pan. Both are equally easy and give great results but I like the pan version better simply because you don’t have to preheat your oven beforehand and can pretty much do it right away. Here’s how to:
- Place the whole hazelnuts (not chopped) in a medium skillet placed over medium heat and toast until golden brown and fragrant, about 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Transfer the hazelnuts to a clean kitchen towel and let cool slightly for a couple of minutes to make it easier to handle. Using the towel, gently rub the nuts to release their skins.
- Chop the hazelnuts roughly and add to the banana bread as instructed in the recipe.
It’s all about the chocolate!
And then of course, you’ll need to add the chocolate! If you ask me, chocolate and hazelnuts are the ultimate combo. But then again my French childhood may have influenced me in this regard since I grew up with this worldwide famous hazelnut chocolate spread brand I wouldn’t name here. Anyways, if you’re baking this hazelnut banana bread, you have to have chocolate too!
My favorite way to use chocolate in this recipe is to use dark baking chocolate with a high cocoa percentage (look for 70% dark chocolate) that I roughly chop with a large knife before adding to the batter. For a quicker version, you may consider using chocolate chunks or even chocolate chips. Then, for the final touch, why don’t you drizzle some melted chocolate here and there? Just in case you would miss a few pieces of chocolate in your slice 😉
Can I make an almond meal version?
Absolutely! If you’re looking for a nutty texture but not necessarily are into hazelnuts (too strong in flavor, too unfamiliar to you, you name it), just go for almond flour instead! There is absolutely no other change to the recipe than replacing the ground hazelnut meal with ground almond meal or flour in the same proportions, and proceed exactly the same in the recipe. Also feel free to replace the chopped hazelnuts with chopped almonds if you would like to!
What does this hazelnut chocolate chunk banana bread taste like?
The use of both the ground hazelnut meal and the chopped hazelnuts (toasted or raw) adds some rustic and nutty flavor to the banana bread. Wholesome, hearty, generous, this hazelnut chocolate chunk banana bread is the perfect quick bread to cheer you up in a rainy day.
Also, expect a moist and crunchy bite at the same time, the moistness coming from the use of buttermilk while the crunch naturally comes from the nuts and the big chunks of dark chocolate.
My favorite banana bread recipes:
- The Ultimate Buttermilk Banana Bread
- Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
- Double Chocolate Greek Yogurt Banana Bread
- Perfect Vegan Banana Bread
Try these chocolate-hazelnut desserts:
- Hazelnut Chocolate Lava Cookies
- Coffee Chocolate Hazelnut Granola
- Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
- Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
Lastly, if you make this Hazelnut Chocolate Chunk Banana Bread, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating, letting me know how you liked it. And of course, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Thank you and enjoy!Print
Hazelnut chocolate chunk banana bread is a very nutty banana bread prepared with hazelnut flour, toasted hazelnuts and big dark chocolate chunks.
- 1 cup (120g) all-purpose flour
- ½ cup (60g) ground hazelnut meal*
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
- 1 pinch of salt
- ¼ cup (60g) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
- ¾ cup (150g) caster sugar
- 1 large egg
- 3 very ripe bananas
- ½ cup (120ml) buttermilk**
- 3.5 ounces (100g) dark chocolate, roughly chopped
- ½ cup (75g) whole hazelnuts, roughly chopped***
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease bottom and edges of a 9×5-inch (23×13 cm) loaf pan. Set aside.
- Sift flour, and add it to a large mixing bowl together with ground hazelnuts*, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Add hazelnuts and set aside.
- In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar. Mix in the egg. Puree the bananas with a fork and add them to the mixture. Pour in the buttermilk.**
- Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, alternating until incorporated. Do not over mix.
- Fold in the chocolate chunks and bake for about 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack and cool completely before serving. For an additional final touch, drizzle with melted chocolate and sprinkle extra chopped hazelnuts all over.
* You can either use finely ground hazelnut meal or make your own hazelnut meal. To do so, simply process raw hazelnuts in a food processor until finely ground. Easy, right?
** Make your own buttermilk is very easy. Just measure one Tablespoon of fresh lemon juice (or apple cider vinegar), and cover with milk until you reach ½ cup. Stir, and let sit for 5 minutes before using.
*** For a more sophisticated version, you can toast the hazelnuts before using. In this case, place the whole hazelnuts (not chopped) in a medium skillet over medium heat and toast until golden brown and fragrant, about 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer the hazelnuts to a clean kitchen towel, then, using the towel, gently rub the nuts to release their skins. Chop them roughly and add to the banana bread as instructed in the recipe.
Keywords: Hazelnut chocolate chunk banana bread