Nigella's Chocolate Tahini Banana Bread recipe

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A gorgeous chocolate banana bread made with tahini. Keeps for up to 5 days without drying out, thanks to the bananas.

  • Prep20m
  • Cook50m
  • Total1h 10m

Ideally you’d bake this then leave it until the next day but I don’t think it’s possible. It comes out of the oven looking so squidgy and irresistible I defy you not to eat a slice.

I recently bought a 450g/1lb loaf tin from Lakeland to replace one on its last legs. It’s much smaller (it fits inside my old tin) but this recipe makes a small loaf. I would hesitate to bake some of my other 450g loaves in it though.

I go against advice and use the spoon-bendingly thick supermarket tahini rather than the liquid kind. Don’t be put off if that’s all you have; this is a great banana bread. As soon as I get through my current jar I’ll buy the recommended tahini and update this recipe.


You’re supposed to weigh the bananas with their skins on but I made several loaves before I realised this. I’ve listed the original ingredient quantities but I use 250g of overripe bananas (weighed without the skins). Because of this, I reduce the sugar to 55g (35g caster, 20g dark brown) otherwise the loaf is quite sweet.

The original instructions advise wrapping the loaf in parchment paper and foil before storing in an airtight tin. I don’t wrap the loaf and it still remains moist.

To make this recipe vegan:

  • Leave out the egg
  • Increase the bananas to 350g
  • Increase the tahini to 75g

The loaf won't rise as much but it'll still taste great.

Small note, just for my fan oven: bake at 170°C instead of the advised 150°C, for 45-50 minutes.

Recipe credit

Nigella Lawson


Nigella's Chocolate Tahini Banana Bread

  • Prep20m
  • Cook50m
  • Total1h 10m
Serves: 10


Chocolate tahini banana bread

  • 2 large ripe bananas (around 250g with skin on, overripe is best)
  • 50g tahini
  • 60ml vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 35g soft dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 60g rice flour (or plain flour if this doesn’t need to be gluten-free)
  • 25g cocoa powder (I use unsweetened)
  • ¼ tsp fine sea salt
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 100g dark chocolate chips
  • 1-2 tsp sesame seeds (I use black and white)

You will need

  • a 450g/1lb loaf tin


  1. Preheat your oven to 170°C (150°C fan). Line a 450g/1lb loaf tin with greaseproof paper.
  2. In a large bowl, peel and mash 2 ripe bananas (approximately 250g when weighed with the skins on). Mix in 50g of tahini, followed by 60ml of vegetable oil, 1 large egg, 50g of caster sugar, 35g of soft dark brown sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (see notes about increasing the banana and reducing the sugar).
  3. In a medium bowl, add 60g of rice flour (or plain flour if gluten is okay), 25g of cocoa powder, ¼ teaspoon of fine sea salt and ½ teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda. Mix well then combine with the banana mixture. Fold in the majority of 100g of dark chocolate chips (I reserve a few for the top).
  4. Transfer the batter into the prepared tin, level the top then scatter over the remaining chocolate chips and 1-2 teaspoons of sesame seeds.
  5. Bake for 45-50 minutes until a skewer comes out mostly clean or a thermometer measures at least 93°C (200°F).
  6. Let the loaf cool in its tin (although I’ve removed it when still warm and it was fine). Remove then (ideally) store it in an airtight tin to be eaten the next day. The loaf will keep for up to 5 days and can also be frozen.

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