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How To Fix Sunken Banana Bread

If you’re wondering how to fix sunken banana bread, then try one of these three methods to fix it. Learn why your banana bread is sinking in the middle and prevent it from happening in the future.

banana bread that was baked correctly so that it did not sink in the middle

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If your banana bread is sinking in the middle, it can be due to various reasons. Below are all the major reasons as to why your banana bread is sinking in the middle. You will learn the solutions so that this never happens to you again!

How To Fix Sunken Banana Bread

Fear not, if the banana bread you have been baking has been sinking in the middle while it is cooling down, you can fix it! Of course, the best way is to prevent this from happening to begin with (then again, you would not be here right now reading this). 

It is very hard to save an already sunken banana bread. However, if you have found that your banana bread has sunken, try the following options to fix it.

  1. Put the banana bread bake into the oven and bake for longer
  2. Cut out the middle of the banana bread
  3. Cover with Whipped Cream, Icing, or Frosting
A loaf of banana bread that was put back in the oven to stop it from sinking. It is on a cutting board.

Option 1- Bake For Longer

If you take out your banana bread and let it cool on a wire rack, only to discover that the middle of this quick bread sinks, it can be due to being underbaked. If that is the case, then place your banana bread in the oven and bake for longer. You will bake it for an extra 5-10 minutes or until the banana bread is done in the middle. Be careful, you do not want to over-bake it as that will lead to dryness.

Will your banana bread look perfect afterward? No, however, the middle should still rise a bit. 

Banana bread on parchment paper. it was baked correctly

Option 2- Cut Out The Middle

If the sides of the banana bread are fully cooked and you don’t want to risk it getting dry, then you can cut out the middle to save the rest of the loaf. 

I feel your frustration. You worked hard on making your banana bread, why waste it?! However, it is better to sacrifice a small part of it than to overbake it and have every bite completely dry. 

A slice of banana bread on a wooden plate. There is butter on it.

Option 3- Cover With Whipped Cream Or Icing

After you bake it for longer or you cut out the middle, you should cover the banana bread with whipped cream or icing. You can serve the banana bread with frosting, or whipped cream to hide the “mistake”.

This method does not fix the sunken middle. Instead, it hides the visual discrepancies of the quick bread. Best of all, adding whipped cream or icing to banana bread is so yummy. 

To do this, let the banana bread cool down to room temperature. Afterwards, place the icing on top of the bread. Let the icing harden before serving.

Banana bread that did not sink after baking

Why Did My Banana Bread Sink In The Middle

So that you never have this problem again, must learn WHY your banana bread is sinking in the middle while it is cooling. There are a ton of reasons why this occurs, from incorrect baking time to even using bad recipes! I have had this problem in the past and have been in your shoes. 

Too Many Bananas Or Not Enough Bananas

There are countless recipes out there that use a certain number of whole bananas instead of giving the measurements in cups or grams. Since bananas are not all the same size, these recipes increase the risk of the center of the bread sinking. 

For example, one large banana can be double the size of one small banana. If you use larger bananas than the original recipe, then this will lead to excess moisture in your banana bread batter. Excess moisture leads to a greater risk of your bread sinking in the middle. 

When choosing a recipe, choose one that provides the exact amount of mashed bananas in cups or in grams. This will lessen the chance that the banana bread sinks since there is less potential of having too much moisture.

Perfectly moist crumb on a cutting board. The bananas did not sink to the bottom

Incorrectly Measuring The Ingredients

If you incorrectly measure the ingredients, then your banana bread can sink. When you measure incorrectly, the ratio of the ingredients will be off. The extra moisture isn’t always a good thing! Too much wet ingredients can lead to the bread sinking. On the other hand, if the batter doesn’t have enough liquid, then it can lead to other problems. If you use too much dry ingredients, the finished product will be dry instead of that super moist interior that you were trying to achieve.

When measuring ingredients for any baking recipe, be patient! Do not try to rush the process as that can lead to incorrect measurements. For best results, use a digital measuring scale. That is the most accurate way to measure ingredients at home. If you do not have one, you can use measuring cups instead and refer to my helpful Baking Conversion Charts

Using Cold Ingredients

All of the ingredients should be at room temperature and not cold. If you use cold ingredients, then the banana bread might not be cooked all the way and can lead to a sunken center. Ingredients such as sour cream, eggs, and butter should be room temperature instead of cold. 

For any baking recipe, whether you’re baking banana bread or cupcakes, always use room temperature ingredients. 

quick bread on a cutting board. There is a slice with butter on it.

Too Many Nuts Or Chocolate Chips

Never in my mind did I think that having too many chocolate chips or nuts would be a problem. However, I was wrong! If you have too many add-ins such as walnuts, macadamia nuts, or chocolate chips, it can weigh down the batter and keep the middle from rising.

Using The Wrong Loaf Pan

Using the wrong pan can lead to disaster for banana bread recipes. When you use the wrong pan for banana bread, you risk the finished product sinking in the middle. 

For example, if you use a pan that is smaller than the pan in the recipe, there is a chance that the batter can overflow during the baking process. It can also sink in the middle. 

Next time you follow a banana bread recipe, pay attention to the pan. What size is it? Is it glass pan or a metal pan? Even the material of the pan matters! Glass pans do not get as hot as metal pans. If you are using a glass pan and the recipe calls for a metal pan, then you will need to bake your banana bread for an extra couple of minutes. 

If you want to bake banana bread and don’t have a loaf pan, I have a recipe on how to bake banana bread without a loaf pan

A slice of banana bread that is perfectly done in the middle. There are macadamia nuts next to it.

Removing The Bread Out The Oven Too Quickly

Ah, the classic underbaking the quick bread. When you take the banana bread out of the oven too quickly and the middle still has not baked all the way through, then the middle will sink.

To prevent this from happening, pay attention to the bake time. Do not be tempted to take out your bread before the time is over.

Ideally, you should also do the toothpick test. Take a toothpick and poke the middle of the banana bread. If the toothpick comes out clean with only a few small moist crumbs, then you can take the loaf out of the oven. However, if there is any wet batter on the toothpick, then your bread still needs to bake.

Instead of a toothpick, you can use a thermometer to check if your banana bread is done baking. Poke the middle of it with a digital thermometer. It is done when the internal temperature is around 200-205 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Wrong Oven Temperature

A good (or shall I say bad?) number of oven temperature dials do not show the correct temperature. The dial and the actual temperature may be off by 25 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. 

The good news is that you can buy an oven rack thermometer. These are more accurate and will tell you the correct temperature inside your oven. 

A Loaf of quick bread on a cutting board. There are sliced bananas and walnuts next to itl.
Banana Bread that was made without baking soda.

Expired Leavening Agent (Baking Soda or Baking Powder)

Most banana bread recipes use either baking soda, baking powder, or a combination of both. These leavening agents are responsible for giving rise to the banana bread. Without them, you’d end up with a sad, flat loaf.

These leavening agents have short shelf lives. Even if the expiration date has not passed yet, the product could already be expired. If the package has been opened for over six months, it is time to toss it and buy a new package. I know, we all hate wasting ingredients. However, it’s better to throw these expired ingredients out than risk getting frustrated because your next banana bread also didn’t rise.

If you find that your baking soda is expired, you can try making this banana bread recipe without baking soda.

Opening The Oven Door Too Many Times

Whenever you open the oven door, you are letting the hot air escape the oven while also letting cold air inside. This will cause the temperature inside to lower. The chances of your banana bread sinking are higher when you open the oven door too many times. Resist the urge! Do NOT open the oven door to take a peak.

A loaf of banana bread on a table that is sliced.

Best Tips To Prevent A Sunken Middle

Measure All Ingredients Correctly

This includes measuring the overripe bananas by cups or by weight and not by count. For the most accurate result, use a digital scale to measure all your ingredients. 

Use An Oven Thermometer

You can buy these for cheap! They usually cost anywhere between $5 to $10 at the local grocery store. This will ensure that the banana bread is baked at the right temperature.

Choose A Great Recipe!

Sometimes, the problem isn’t you nor your ingredients. Sometimes, the problem is the recipe that you used! Not all recipes were created equal. Some recipes were developed in a high altitude kitchen. Others were developed in a hot and humid environment. If you find that the recipe isn’t working for you no matter how hard you try, it is time to try a new recipe.

Super Moist Banana Bread Recipes

Moist Banana Bread Without A Loaf Pan

The Famous Royal Hawaiian Banana Bread Recipe

Banana Bread Without Baking Soda

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