A fresh homemade fig bread just out of oven with an appetizing aroma of cinnamon. What is a better way to start your day on a September morning? Or would you have it in the afternoon with a big mug of coffee? No matter when you have it, you will enjoy this easy, healthy and vegan treat with walnuts, figs and bananas.
Early fall is here and it comes with many tasty treats like figs. It is the best time to make most of fresh figs now, which are very nutritious. I can’t wait this time of the year because they are one of my favorite fruit and I have many recipes to enjoy this delicious gift of the season. So we enjoy figs in several ways including salads.
Obviously you love figs too because our fig recipes like roasted fresh figs and stuffed figs are getting the most visitors these days. And of course I am more than happy to fill the lunchbox of my little son with this fresh fig banana bread as a sweet snack instead of pre-packed biscuits or chocolate.
What Is Fig Bread?
It is a naturally sweetened bread that is made with fresh figs and baked in a loaf pan. It’s not too sweet, so it makes a good breakfast bread, too. Spread some butter and jam on it if you like and enjoy.
I would have definitely called it a fig cake if I had baked it in a bundt cake pan, though. Oh and I would have drizzled chocolate ganache over it.
Besides flour, salt and baking powder, this recipe has the following nutritious ingredients:
Flax Meal: Although nobody in my family is vegan, I often use it in my baking because I love the flavor it has. Also, it’s a wonderful option to substitute eggs. What’s more, flaxseed is a healthy ingredient that contains healthy fat and fiber.
Maple Syrup: It is a healthier alternative to refined sugar and a great option as a sweetener for vegans. Plus, it contains antioxidants.
Olive Oil: I use olive oil instead of butter, which makes the bread even lighter and healthier.
Figs: Figs are very healthy. First of all, they are high in natural sugar especially when dried, and used in many recipes as a healthier substitute to regular sugar. Also, figs are said to have high amounts of fiber, magnesium, potassium and calcium. It is well known that they are very good for constipation problems due to their high fiber content.
What Type Of Figs? There are several kinds of figs you can use:
- Black mission figs
- Brown turkey
- Kadota figs
- Adriatic Figs aka white figs
- Calimyrna Figs
In this fig and walnut loaf cake recipe I use fresh black mission figs for three reasons:
- They are in season now.
- They are perfect natural sweeteners because they are super sweet.
- They give also gives a nice purple color to the cake thanks to their lovely skin color.
In many fresh fig recipes this type of fig is preferred but you can definitely use the other types of fresh figs.
Bananas: They add to the moist texture of this fresh fig loaf cake. What is important is that you should use ripe bananas in your bread. So, it is also a great recipe for those bananas which are about to go bad and no one wants to eat anymore.
Cinnamon: It is almost a staple in my baking because it brings a wonderful richness to cakes, breads and cookies. And it is the reminder of the season fall.
Walnuts: And walnuts. I love walnuts in cakes and breads because of the crunchy bites and healthy fats they offer. Also, I personally think walnuts go very well with figs, but you can use different nuts instead and create your own fig nut bread.
There are some other alternatives to these ingredients if you like.
- You can substitute apple sauce for mashed banana.
- Use almond flour instead of regular flour so that it becomes gluten free.
- Pecans or another nut you like instead of walnuts.
- If you are not vegan, use regular eggs instead of flax eggs.
- You can use dried figs, dates or raisins for figs. But they are sweeter than fresh ones so maybe you use less maple syrup.
How To Make
First, make the flax egg. Mix flax meal with water and let it sit while you prepare the other ingredients.
Second, in a large bowl; combine flax egg, maple syrup and olive oil until smooth.
Third, add in mashed banana, chopped figs and cinnamon, then flour, baking powder and salt. Make sure you do not overmix it.
Finally, fold in walnuts and pour the batter in the prepared pan. Now slice one or two figs and place them on the top. Gently press them down with your fingers.
Now bake for an hour or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.
Remove from oven and let it cool for 10 minutes. Then remove from the pan and let it cool completely before serving.
Is It Vegan?
Yes, it is. I make this moist bread with flax eggs. Also, it doesn’t have any dairy products.
Is It Healthy?
Yes. First, this recipe does not have refined sugar but the natural sugar of the figs and bananas. Also, it has olive oil and flaxseed meal which contain good fats. Plus, it has nuts and cinnamon which have high nutrition values.
Is It Sugar Free?
This very recipe is sugar-free as I used maple syrup. And there are several alternatives to maple syrup if you like.
Alternatives to maple syrup:
- Honey (not vegan though)
- Dates (soak them in warm water and puree)
- Dried Figs, way sweeter than fresh figs.
How To Eat
The bread should definitely cool down before serving as it would be too sticky inside. When it cools down completely, it can be eaten at breakfast or as a snack. You can spread some jam on it. Oh and if you are into homemade jams, you should see our fig jam recipe with unripe figs.
Also, if you are not vegan, top it with cream or ice-cream. Yummm! Just enjoy this fig and walnut loaf cake in any way you want. Each version is better than the other!
Yes, but first thaw them and remove excessive water before chopping and adding them in the batter.
Yes. You can use dried figs but you need to soak them in warm water first and then puree just like we do for dates. Also, dried figs are much sweeter than fresh figs, so 4-5 of them would be enough. I sometimes use a combination of fresh and dried figs.
Yes, you definitely can. However, be careful about the amount as it is much sweeter than fresh figs. Maybe it is better to leave out the maple syrup then because the sweetness of fig preserves will probably be enough.
You definitely can. You can freeze them as slices for snacks for the upcoming days. You can freeze them in storage bags or air tight containers. It is recommended to consume the frozen bread in a couple of weeks to have a fresh taste and texture.
You can actually even freeze the batter if you want to have a fresh bread at a certain time and do not have time to prepare the batter right before. You can bake it right out of freezer.
It’s totally up to you. I peel half of them and use the other half with their skin on. The purple skin of figs gives its color to the bread. So if you don’t want it, remove all of them.
As always: If you make this recipe, let us know what you think by rating it and leaving a comment below. And post a pic on Instagram too—tag @give_recipe so we can see!
Banana Fig Bread Recipe with Fresh Figs
Banana fig bread made with vegan ingredients. It has no refined sugar, completely naturally sweetened.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 10 1x
- Category: Bread
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
- 2 tablespoon flax meal
- 6 tablespoon water
- ½ cup maple syrup
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 3 ripe bananas, mashed
- 1 and ½ cup fresh figs, stems removed and chopped into pieces
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup walnuts, crumbled
- Extra Figs for topping
- Mix flax meal with water and let it sit for 5 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350F (175C) and line a 8x4 inch loaf pan with parchment.
- In a large bowl, combine flax eggs with maple syrup and olive oil until smooth.
- Add in mashed banana, chopped figs and cinnamon.
- Add in flour, baking powder and salt. Don’t over mix.
- Fold in walnuts and pour the batter in the prepared pan.
- Slice one or two figs and place them on the top. Gently press them down with your fingers.
- Bake for 1 hour or until an inserted skewer comes out clean.
- Remove from oven and let it cool for 10 minutes. Then remove from the pan and let it cool completely before serving.
- Serving Size:
- Calories: 288
- Sugar: 16.2 g
- Sodium: 63.4 mg
- Fat: 11.9 g
- Carbohydrates: 42.6 g
- Protein: 4.8 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
Keywords: fig bread, fig bread recipe, banana fig bread, vegan fig bread, fresh fig and walnut loaf cake