Banana Bars

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It sounds so basic, and honestly, not quite tasty, but Banana Bars is what I’m calling them and trust me, when you taste the Browned Butter Frosting, you will be hooked!

 

Recently had a bunch of bananas that I had left over from homemade banana pudding (it was really a fake homemade recipe using a pudding mix, don’t judge, I was desperate lol).

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I needed to use the bananas before they went bad, but I really wasn’t in the mood for banana bread. It seems that I always make banana bread.

I didn’t want cookies either.

Pinterest to the rescue!

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The actual recipe came from the Babycenter website; I was pleasantly surprised myself.

I followed the  recipe as is, but I have a few changes that I will try for next time (and there will be a next time).

These bars were a huge hit; everyone, and I mean everyone loved them. It will be sad when these babies are all gone; I have already been asked to make them again.

The hubster even loved them, and thought the frosting was great. He said it’s not too sweet, but packs in the flavor and enhances the banana taste of the bars.

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I didn’t follow the frosting recipe exactly, and I have a change I will do for next time, too, just to see how the consistency differs.

But seriously, you have to use this recipe for the bars; the browned butter provided such an amazing pop of flavor. Yummy!!

This recipe is super easy, and trust me, you’re going to wonder if you messed it up; my batter was lumpy and somewhat runny. I really didn’t have high hopes when I stuck it in the oven, haha. But I was very pleased with the result.

 

Banana Bars (original recipe can be found here.)

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla flavor
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375.°
  2. Grease and flour a jelly roll pan.
  3. In medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt and stir to combine.
  4. In stand mixer bowl, beat butter and sugar together; add in sour cream and eggs, continue to beat until creamy.
  5. In medium bowl, mash bananas (it is alright for them to be lumpy).
  6. Add bananas and vanilla to sugar mixture.
  7. Slowly add flour mixture and mix on low speed until thoroughly combined.
  8. Pour batter into pan and evenly spread throughout edges of pan.
  9. Bake 20-25 minutes (I actually baked mine for 27 minutes, just because my oven is awful!).
  10. Let cool completely before frosting.

 

Browned Butter Frosting

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened to room temperature
  • 4 cups powdered sugar (I only used 3 1/2)
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in small saucepan over medium heat, allowing to cook for 4 minutes, stirring frequently. The butter will lightly brown and there will be brown bits on the bottom of the pan (this is good!). Once butter has reached your desired brown-ness (is that  a word?), remove from heat and allow to cool.
  2. In mixing bowl, combine powdered sugar, cream cheese and vanilla extract; add in browned butter (bits and all).
  3. Beat until smooth.
  4. Spread frosting over cooled bars.

After frosting, cut into bars and store in refrigerator (the frosting has butter and cream cheese, so you don’t want it to sit out!).

There were a few small changes I will make next time – in the bar recipe, I think I would like to add some nuts (crushed pecans or walnuts) to the batter to give it a slight crunch as well as to enhance the flavor.

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With the frosting, I will add a bit more milk or brown up more butter; the frosting was very thick (I can’t imagine how thick it would’ve been if I had used the whole 4 cups of sugar!), and I like a softer/fluffier frosting, so my next batch will possibly have 1-2 tablespoons of milk.

Other than that, this recipe was fabulous!

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