Some days you really just crave something sweet like chocolate. You don’t know why, but all of a sudden your brain tells you that it needs that sweet, smooth concoction in order to continue on with the day. Other times, you don’t just crave the chocolate, but an entire cake with it in it. It’s like this controlling power that makes sure that the rest of your day is focused on this and everything you smell is that rich, deep scent of that goodness.
Well, one of those days happened to fall upon us. It was a snowy day so it was a perfect day to break open the pantry and see what we could make so satisfy that craving. We did consider that we could simply have just a piece of chocolate, but it just didn’t seem like it was enough. Not today. We looked around to see what we had and noticed that we had some bananas lying around that were well ripened. We didn’t want to make muffins with them but we didn’t want to throw them away either. After all, they weren’t to the point of being unusable.
Then the idea of making a healthier version of a banana cake came to mind. This way, the sweet tooth that was driving our need for a treat would be satisfied and we wouldn’t feel guilty for eating too much at one time. However, instead of making this cake in a regular cake pan, we wanted something that would be easier to eat after it was done. So we decided on making bars instead.
Oh, did they come out so good! Not only were these bad boys healthy, they were so moist with the right amount of sweetness that it was hard to just stop at one or two. We found that we could eat them at any time of the day as well since, even though it’s a “cake”, it just seems like something that could really be for breakfast, or a snack, or for any other time that you just need a little pick me up. They’re quite light too so you know you can feel good after having one.
As for the chocolate, you can always melt some to mix in before baking to make it a chocolate version however, for ours we waited until after the banana cake baked to put a chocolate coating on to act as a frosting. Additionally, this is a great alternative in the event someone you know or yourself can’t eat chocolate or perhaps it doesn’t sit well with you. They taste just as amazing without any additional topping!
Just make sure you have plenty of bananas for after having one of these goodies, you’ll either want to or will need to make another batch right on the spot!
• 4 Small Bananas, Mashed
• 2 Large Eggs
• ¼ cup + 2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
• ¼ cup Light Brown Sugar
• 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
• 1 cup Old Fashioned Oats, Blended Into Flour
• ½ cup Unbleached Flour
• 2 ½ tsp Baking Powder
• 3 Squares Ghirardelli 72% Dark Chocolate
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Mix your sugar and oil together and let sit for the time you mash your bananas. Mash your bananas in a separate bowl and place aside for the time being.
Blend your oats into a flour and place in a separate bowl along with the unbleached flour and baking soda.
Mix your eggs one at a time in with the sugar and oil mixture until well incorporated. Add in the banana mash and mix until well combined. Add in your flour mixture and stir until well blended.
Generously spray a 10 x 10 inch square cake pan with non-stick spray and use a paper towel to wipe the spray around to cover the whole pan.
Pour your cake mix into the prepared pan and place into the oven.
Bake for 19 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes. Prepare a cooling rack by placing a sheet of wax paper over it. Take pan after and flip onto the rack. If it sticks in the pan, use a small flat spatula to make sure the sides aren’t sticking. Be gentle with it.
Once your cake is on the rack, allow it to further cool. Once completely cooled, you will need to flip the cake over. BE CAREFUL. This cake is delicate and can break so make sure to take your time when flipping it. Place a piece of wax paper over the exposed side of the cake and if you need to, have another person help. Once you feel you have a firm grasp on it, flip it over on a counter so that the original side is facing up. Another option is to place the cake on a baking sheet and use another one to ensure that the cake doesn’t break apart.
At this point, we melted three squares of chocolate (start with 1:00 minute in the microwave and then add 30 seconds if more melting is required) and smoothed it over the top of the cake. We also added some jimmies just for fun.
Once you’ve complete decorating your cake, cut into bars (sizes will vary depending on how big or small you want them to be) and enjoy. 😀