Double Chocolate Banana Muffins
These moist and fluffy double chocolate banana muffins are a delicious start to your day! Chocolate and bananas, with cinnamon and ginger spices, are superb and classic flavour combinations, but even more divine with added dark chocolate chunks. You’ll find it really hard to stop at just one!
Double chocolate banana muffins… mmm…
These are not just your regular muffins.
Oh no… these are double chocolate banana muffins made with cocoa and chocolate chunks. Which can only mean you’re in for a whole lot of extra chocolatey, banana-ey goodness with melty, gooey chocolatey bits!
Now, for those of us who are true-blue banana lovers, don’t you worry.
I’ve made sure that there’s more than enough banana flavour to come through, achieving a delicate yet perfect balance. You’ll truly have the best of both flavours in this combo.
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I know I’ve probably said it before, but for someone who loves chocolate, I haven’t been very diligent at working on more chocolate desserts.
But what I can say of the few chocolate recipes that you’ll find here, they’re among my best desserts.
Now I’m excited to have these double chocolate banana muffins join that company because they’re so very, very good.
These muffins come before you after adjusting and test-baking the recipe three times.
UntiI I was super satisfied that these muffins hit all the right taste notes, and had all the moistness and tenderness of a respectable muffin.
How to get the best baked double chocolate banana muffins
These muffins are really easy to make.
That’s because they’re a mix-and-stir batter, which happens to be my favourite method (and I’m thinking yours too?) for baking up easy and fuss-free sweets.
There’s just a couple of things you need to bear in mind to get your perfect baked muffins.
- Don’t over-mix the batter. If that happens, you may end up with tough and chewy muffins. Trust me, not pleasant.
- Don’t over bake. It’s a sure way to getting dry muffins… ughhh.. the worst. Watch the time closely, especially towards the last 1 – 2 minutes of baking. The suggested time for baking is a guideline.
Baking times will vary depending on the size of the muffin moulds or cups, as well as oven conditions.
I should know. When I first started baking, I really excelled at making tough and chewy muffins that were… gasp… drryyy. Oh, the sorrows!
But I’m going to save you the worry, because I’m going to show you how to get the best baked muffins ever.
The proof is in both the recipe as well as the method, and these double chocolate banana muffins are it.
Ingredients for double chocolate banana muffins
These ingredients can be generally grouped into the dry (powdered) ingredients and the wet (moist) ingredients.
Dry (powdered) ingredients
- plain or all-purpose flour. I like using plain flour though you can make this recipe with cake flour or pastry flour. Using lower-protein flour will yield muffins with a more tender crumb, but also a tendency to crumble more easily like cake. I prefer my muffins a little denser, sturdy, but still moist and light.
- natural cocoa powder (not Dutch-processed). I use Hershey’s cocoa powder and I love it!
- baking soda. Used as a leavening agent, baking soda creates lift, tenderness, and deepens the colour of cocoa so they look super chocolatey!
- baking powder. Also leavens the batter and gives additional lift and rise during baking.
- ground cinnamon, optional but highly recommended. Bananas and cinnamon are like two peas in a pod.
- ground ginger, optional but also highly recommended. I really love a chocolate and ginger combination too. These are warm flavours and go wonderfully well together.
- salt. Cuts through the sweetness of the bananas and sugar, and makes the flavours pop! Omit if using salted butter.
Wet (moist) ingredients
- unsalted butter, melted. I highly recommend using a butter that has at least 80% fat, as some butters have a lower fat to water content.
- light or dark brown sugar. Brown sugar is more moist and flavourful than regular sugar.
- egg. I use one large egg, about 56 – 60 grams.
- oil. A neutral-flavoured vegetable oil or coconut oil works well.
- vanilla extract, optional. I choose to omit vanilla extract but you can always add it in.
- mashed, over-ripe bananas. The riper the bananas are, the more flavourful. Yes, you want those that have lots of black spots or patches on their peels! If you have some on hand now that aren’t quite ripe yet, here’s how you can ripen bananas in a matter of minutes.
Stir-in (added last)
- dark chocolate chunks. Semi-sweet or bitter-sweet chocolate is fine. I prefer cutting into a chocolate block so I can get my chunks to the size I want. You can replace with chocolate chips if you’d like to skip a step.
Step-by-step: How to make double chocolate banana muffins
- Steps 1 & 2. In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Stir thoroughly with a whisk to mix everything together and break down any clumps. Set aside.
- Steps 3 & 4. In another mixing bowl, combine melted butter, sugar, egg, oil, and vanilla extract (if using). Stir vigorously with a clean whisk. Do as much stirring as you need at this stage to get it smooth.
- Steps 5 & 6. Stir the mashed bananas into the wet mixture until well mixed.
- Steps 7 & 8. Make a well in the centre of the dry mixture. Gently pour the wet mixture into the well.
- Step 9. Using a spatula or wooden spoon, gently fold to combine the two mixtures. Use as few folds as possible. Scoop the dry mixture off the bottom of the bowl as you fold, because it’s easy to miss in the first few folds.
- Steps 10 & 11. Lastly, fold in the chocolate chunks. Again, do this with just a few folds.
- Step 12. Using a cookie scoop or spoon, fill the muffin liners until ¾-full. There’s enough batter to make 12 muffins, if you use muffin liners measuring 2 inches (base) x 1¼ inches (height).
Do not over-mix once you add the wet mixture to the dry mixture. The key is to do it by hand and only fold until you barely see any specks of the dry mixture. It’s okay if you missed a spot or two. The mixture should be thick and lumpy. Lumpy is good!
Bake on the middle rack in the oven at 215°C (420°F) for 5 – 6 mins. Then lower the temperature to 180°C (356°F) and bake for another 12 minutes.
Test with a bamboo skewer by inserting into the center of the muffin. The muffins are done baking once it comes out barely clean. It’s okay if you’ve a bit of moist (not wet) crumbs on the end.
When doing the skewer test, it can be tricky to tell if you’ve hit melted chocolate or muffin batter. One can easily be mistaken for the other.To be sure, test a few muffins so you can be certain that the muffins, as a whole batch, have baked through.
Once out of the oven, let the muffins sit in the tray for no more than 2-3 minutes. You want to get them out of the hot tray as soon as possible, otherwise they’ll continue to bake.
The muffins will be hot so use an offset spatula to help you lift them out of the mould, and set on a wire rack to cool.
How to make the best muffins
Measure ingredients accurately
As a general rule, I measure ingredients by weights in most of my recipes, save for some that are flexible enough to afford you a bit of leeway.
Using weight measures always, always yields reliable and consistent baking outcomes.
It also takes a lot of uncertainty out of a recipe, and helps avoid common problems that can arise.
For example, if you scoop flour with a measuring cup right out of the bag, you’re always going to have much more flour.
Sometimes, you can end up with 50% more or 1.5 cups of flour instead of 1 cup! Too much flour in this example, affects the ratio in a recipe and your muffins may end up tough and dry.
Follow the recipe exactly
I know the feeling and the temptation to change things up when we look at a recipe!
We’re all guilty of it at some point, wondering what if I subbed this for that, or added this with that… etc., etc.
Now, I always encourage my readers to take any of my recipes and turn them into their own. But understanding first how the recipe was originally intended is really helpful for when you do want to get creative.
I highly recommend making the recipe exactly as it’s written the first time. You’ll then know what you like (or didn’t like as much) about these muffins, you can then tweak the recipe with your own substitutions, additions and adjustments.
Have ingredients come to room temperature
Unless otherwise stated, work with ingredients that have come to room temperature.
I keep certain foods chilled, like eggs, butter (obviously!), milk and even certain flours chilled. When you’re ready to make this recipe, be sure to have these ingredients out in advance.
Avoid over-mixing the batter
I say this at the risk of sounding like a broken record, but I see this as the most common mistake when making muffins.
The key is to only fold until you barely see any specks of the dry mixture. Some bakers go as far as to suggest a guideline that you should aim for 12 folds (or less).
I can’t really substantiate this because it’ll depend on a few variables. How much batter is involved, the width and size of mixing bowl used, even how you fold makes a difference. We’ve all got our natural swing or movement of our hands, right?
But if you’re not sure, then try to get the mixtures to come together in as few folds as possible (12 or less, by the experts’ word).
It’s okay if you missed a spot or two. The mixture should feel thick and lumpy. Trust me, lumpy is good!
Bake at two temperatures
Having tested with baking at one temperature throughout the baking time, and alternatively at two temperature settings, the latter always results in beautifully shaped muffins.
The initial extra-hot temperature helps the muffins puff up and rise tall to achieve their optimal height and rounded dome tops, with a slight crust that gives muffins its delicate crunch.
These first few minutes are brief, but critical to getting these muffins into the best possible shape.
Then switching to a lower, but still hot temperature allows the insides to bake through without over-cooking the outside.
This way, you’re guaranteed a soft and tender muffin crumb that won’t run the risk of drying out.
How to store muffins, the right way
These double chocolate banana muffins will keep well at room temperature for up to 3 – 4 days max.
Wherever possible, do not refrigerate muffins as it can alter the texture and dry them out even faster than if kept at room temperature.
The best way to store these muffins is to use an air-tight container with a good seal. Emphasis on good seal, because I’m so guilty of hoarding containers with rubber seals that aren’t quite as effective as they should be. Please tell me I’m not the only one…
Line the base of the container with a sheet of paper towel (fold if you need to, to fit the base). Then place the muffins in a single layer, cover with another sheet of paper towel and seal tight. The extra paper towel will absorb excess moisture, preventing the crunchy tops on the muffins from turning soggy.
How to freeze these muffins
These muffins are freezer-friendly! Once the baked muffins have completely cooled, wrap each muffin in cling wrap, sealing it well.
I like to wrap at least two times all around each muffin with cling wrap, but that’s just me.
Place the wrapped muffins in a single layer into a ziploc freezer bag. Label the bag with the date, and freeze immediately.
These muffins can keep for up to two months in the freezer. Thaw or microwave for a few seconds before serving.
I hope these easy muffins motivates you to baking these up real soon, and brings you enjoyment.
Have fun! – xx Celia
Here are more recipes you may like:
Tried this recipe? I’d love to see! Remember to share your pics on Instagram and tag @foodelicacy or #foodelicacy.
- 120 g plain flour
- 40 g cocoa powder, (not Dutch-processed)
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp salt
- 80 g unsalted butter, melted
- 125 g brown sugar
- 50 g oil, use neutral-flavoured vegetable oil, or coconut oil
- 1 egg, large (56 – 60 g each)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract, optional
- 150 g mashed bananas
- 200 g dark chocolate chunks
- Preheat oven to 215°C (420°F) with a rack positioned in the centre of the oven. Line a muffin tray with muffin liners. Note: I used 2 inches (base) x 1¼ inches (height) muffin liners which makes 12.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Stir thoroughly with a whisk to mix well and break down any clumps. Set aside.
- In another mixing bowl, combine melted butter, sugar, egg, oil, and vanilla extract (if using). Stir vigorously with a clean whisk. Do as much stirring as you need at this stage to get a smooth mixture.
- Add the mashed bananas and stir until well combined.
- Make a well in the centre of the dry mixture. Gently pour the wet mixture into the well.
- Using a spatula or wooden spoon, gently fold to combine the two mixtures,using as few folds as possible. Scrape the bottom of the bowl as you fold, 'cos this tends to get missed in the first few folds. The mixture should feel thick and lumpy. Note: Do not over-mix. Only fold until you barely see any specks of the dry mixture. It's okay if you missed a spot or two.
- Lastly, fold in the chocolate chunks. Again, do this with as few folds as needed.
- Using a cookie scoop or spoon, fill the muffin liners until ¾-full.
- Bake on the middle rack in the oven at 215°C (420°F) for 5 – 6 mins. Lower the temperature to 180°C (356°F) and bake for another 12 – 14 minutes. Baking time will vary depending on the size of muffin moulds/cups. Test with a bamboo or metal skewer by inserting into the center of the muffin. When it comes out barely clean, the muffins are done (a bit of moist, but not wet, crumbs sticking is fine).Note: Melted chocolate can be mistaken for uncooked batter if it sticks to the skewer. Test a few muffins just to be sure that the batch as a whole has baked through.
- Once out of the oven, let muffins sit in the tray for 2 – 3 minutes only. Then remove – they will be hot so use an offset spatula to lift them out of the mould. Set on a wire rack to cool. Best eaten slightly warm.