I adapted my low fat banana bread recipe to be a little more lactogenic based on what I’ve learned about possible substitutions, and I was really surprised that it was moist, and that it actually baked through (I’ve often made disaster quickbreads where the center never sets and remains gooey, especially when I’ve substituted applesauce for eggs, so this chia seed egg concoction is impressive). I would venture to say it’s slightly healthy and a good choice for anyone and not just nursing moms. I even let baby Winter have a few bites. The molasses actually made it quite sweet and moist, to the point where I really don’t think it needed the two squares of bakers chocolate I included… and I’m always the gal that throws chocolate into her baked goods. 

INGREDIENTS - Lactogenic ingredients are marked in pink.

  • 1/2 cup milk less 5 Tbsp
  • 1 &1/2 tsp white vinegar
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar (I used 1/2 cup a brown sugar, but I would venture to say 1/3 cup would be enough)
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1 tbsp butter or coconut oil, softened
  • 1 cup mashed bananas
  • 2 eggs (or flax seed eggs*)
  • 1 cup oat flour**
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1&1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp ground fenugreek seeds***
  • 1 -4 Tbsp brewer’s yeast
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup millet
  • 1/4 cup flax seeds (optional)
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Combine milk and vinegar to make buttermilk. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat sugar with butter. Beat in bananas and eggs.
  4. Combine dry ingredients except millet and stir into banana mixture, alternating with milk mixture, making three additions of dry and two of milk.
  5. Stir in millet.
  6. Pour into greased 9×5″ loaf pan. Bake in 350 F oven for 45-50 minutes or until wooden skewer inserted in center comes out clean. I invested in a cast iron pan when I was pregnant to try and glean some more iron in my diet without supplementing and I use it to make my quickbreads and it takes much longer. I would say this took 70 minutes in a convection oven.

*Flax seeds can replace eggs. To make the equivalent of one egg, whisk 3 Tbsp of water into a small bowl containing 1Tbsp of freshly ground flaxseeds. Leave the refrigerator for 15 minutes to set. You can do the same thing with chia seeds, but I can’t find any non-anectodal sources to say they are also lactogenic. I made this loaf with makeshift chia eggs, but I don’t know if it contributed to the dense moistness, so I’m going to try real eggs next time. It didn’t rise a tonne, but it didn’t sink either, which is always a plus.

**I ground rolled oats (aka old fashioned oats) in a few batches with my coffee grinder to make the oat flour and it worked perfect. You can also use a food processor.

***Fenugreek seeds are available at Indian markets. You might be surprised how close you probably live to one – I live in a tiny suburb and I have one less than 5 minutes away. I ground them with my coffee grinder. I say coffee grinder, but really it’s my dedicated spice grinder.

A good trick I learned for measuring molasses is to grease the measuring cup with a bit of cooking oil, and then every last drop of molasses easily makes its way into your mixing bowl. When adding molasses you’re supposed to take out 5 Tbsp of liquid, add an extra 1/2 tsp of baking soda and omit the baking powder. I anticipated that the loaf would need more leavening with the oat flour so I had already thrown in 1 1/2 tsp of baking powder along with 1 tsp baking soda, and it seemed to work fine. I also completely spaced out and forgot to add the brewer’s yeast. I made another batch a week later and used 1 Tbsp of brewer’s yeast and it definitely needed the extra sugar and chocolate chips I had originally put in. Add as much brewer’s yeast as you can handle! I also omitted the baking powder like is recommended for using molasses and I feel like it tasted baking soda-y.

To me this looked like a much better lactogenic recipe than the banana bread I had found in a lactation book which involved the following:

  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup mashed bananas
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 3/4 cup chopped nuts
  • 1 tsp butter or vanilla flavoring