I am a strong believer that bananas were put on this planet for one reason and one reason only: muffins. I am fully aware that any time a banana reaches a point of ripeness that makes it too mushy for snacking, everyone is quick to proclaim that it’s time for banana bread. Yes, I hear that sentiment, and while it is a valid one, I’d argue that heading down the muffin route is the better option. Sure, this might be the road less traveled, but I am convinced that banana muffins are superior to banana bread any day of the week.
What sets a banana muffin apart from banana bread, you ask? Well, many things. First of all, muffins are quicker. Sometimes great things require patience, but these muffins are ready for snacking in 30 minutes. Now that’s my kind of baking! Aside from bake times, muffins have one thing that quick breads do not...a crumble! Sure, you could, in theory, throw a crumble atop a quick bread, however I think that defeats the purpose, given that the best part of a loaf of banana bread is the crispy top (this is a fact). This is why these muffins are the solution—a buttery, salty crumble is the perfect complement to a sweet muffin.
The crumble on these muffins is worth raving about—crunchy pistachios plus a generous addition of cardamom make for a tasty topper that makes it nearly impossible to eat just one of these guys. If that wasn’t enough of a selling point, let’s talk about this buckwheat flour. If you don’t have it, you can definitely substitute whatever flours you have stocked in your pantry (ain’t no shame in your all-purpose flour game!), however the addition of buckwheat provides a subtle nutty, toasty flavor and a gorgeous, dark brown color.
Listen, if banana bread is your jam, I would highly encourage you to try these muffins out for size. They’ve got the same sweet flavor of a hearty quick bread, but they also boast a floral, nutty crumble that’s next to irresistible. Whip ‘em up for a delicious brunch spread or because you’ve just got baking on the brain. The great thing about baking muffins is that you definitely don’t need an excuse to make a batch!
For the Muffins:
- Coconut oil cooking spray, as needed
- 3/ 4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/ 4 cup buckwheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/ 4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 large, ripe bananas, mashed
- 3/ 4 cup light brown sugar
- 1 large Handsome Brook Farm Pasture-Raised Organic Egg, slightly beaten
- 1/ 4 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons whole milk
- 1 teaspoon Simply Organic Vanilla Extract
For the Crumble:
- 1/ 3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/ 4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/ 3 cup shelled unsalted pistachios, chopped
- 1 teaspoon Simply Organic Cardamom
- 1/ 2 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature and cubed
Preheat oven to 375°F. Spray a 12-muffin pan with coconut oil cooking spray.
In a large bowl, whisk flours, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In a medium bowl, mix bananas, brown sugar, egg, butter, milk and vanilla extract. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
Make crumble: In a medium bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, pistachios, cardamom and salt. Using your fingers, knead butter into dry ingredients until mixture resembles wet sand.
Fill each muffin tin about ⅔ of the way and top with crumble. Bake at 375°F until crumble is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean, 18-20 minutes. Let cool and serve. Muffins will keep in an airtight container for up to 5 days.