Orange-Spiced Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Orange Spiced Chocolate Banana Bread Recipe on

Lately we have been gardening fools, geeked out over little projects and garden clean-up days. Our souls feeling rejuvenated as the garden get cleaned up and prepare for Winter citrus to explode in the garden.  We’ll photograph with a client in our studio from 7 until 4 and then come home and stretch out every last ounce of daylight in the garden with the birds, bugs and plants. Sometimes working even longer with the help of our headlamps. Our hands have gotten sore and blistered. Muscles have ached a bit. But it is all worth it.

Video Orange Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Recipe


Orange Spiced Chocolate Banana Bread Recipe on

Orange Spiced Chocolate Banana Bread Recipe on

Yes, it is a beautiful time in Southern California and the rock stars of the show are the citrus. This is the triple-play time of year for so many of our citrus. Much of the fruit is getting close or perfectly ripe. The branches are sending out a ton of new growth. And the flowers are going absolutely crazy, filling the air with their sweetness and the lacing the ground with their fallen petals.

Back in the kitchen, not wanting to waste a speck of the citrus glory, we’ll often zest the oranges before juicing them. There is so much goodness in the rinds. And when we recently had a load of leftover “hero” bananas after shooting nearly 60 banana recipes for a client, we came up with this gem of a loaf. An orange-spiced chocolate chip banana bread.

The base of the banana loaf was from one of my grandma’s favorite cookbooks. She had given the recipe her top-notch four “x” rating and it has been our go-to recipe ever since we first made it. We added a bunch of fresh orange zest, finely grated with a microplane zester, and then whisked in some complimentary spices to the flour. Add a bit of orange bitters for a special pizazz and some chocolate chips because, like bacon, they tend to make just about everything better. The end result was extraordinarily delicious.

Hope you enjoy!

-Todd & Diane

More Sweet Recipes:


This recipe was originally published in 2014 and re-published in 2018 with a new video.

5 from 1 vote
Orange-Spiced Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
Total Time
1 hr 30 mins

For best results use really ripe bananas. As in, too ripe to eat but not yet funky enough to throw out. They'll make the loaf more moist and sweet compared to a loaf made with bananas which are just "eating" ripe. 

The orange bitters in the recipe give the loaf a little extra pop of flavor, but if you don't happen to have any in the house, the recipe is still great without it. If you happen to have fresh tangerines, their zest is an amazing substitute for the orange zest in this recipe.

Makes one 4.5x8.5-inch loaf.

Servings: 8 servings
  • 1 1/4 cups (160g) Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated Nutmeg
  • 1 cup (200g) Sugar
  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted Butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Orange Zest
  • 4 medium ripe Bananas (@1 1/2 cups when mashed)
  • 2 Eggs , beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon Orange Bitters optional
  • 1 cup (175g) Chocolate Chips
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Lightly grease a 4.5"x8.5" loaf pan. Line the bottom of the loaf pan with parchment paper

  2. Whisk or sift together the flour, salt, baking soda, cinnamon and nutmeg until well blended. Set aside.

  3. In a large bowl or mixer, cream together sugar, butter and orange zest until light and fluffy. Add bananas and mix together until bananas are mashed and well blended into the butter mixture. Beat in eggs and orange bitters (if using) until combined.

  4. Stir flour mixture into banana mixture until just combined. Be careful not to over mix. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  5. Pour batter into the prepared loaf pans. Bake for about 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean (chocolate on the toothpick doesn't count). The house should be filled with the scent of fresh banana bread.
  6. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before removing the loaf from the pan. Loosen the edges, then pop loose the bottom. 
{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }
  1. Sweet and Simple Magazine-April

    This looks amazing! I love sweet breads for breakfast with an americano. I will be making this orange banana bread for Sunday brunch. xo

  2. Jeff @

    This is a very unique bread recipe. The orange zest and the chocolate chips goes well together and makes this banana bread very delicious!

  3. Lucy

    Oh how I love banana bread and you have just made me crave THIS banana bread. Orange and chocolate–what a great addition. Of course, chocolate is a great addition to anything!

  4. dervla

    oooh gorgeous, i’m making this tonight. Perfect weeknight treat (and breakfast!). I bet your garden is incredible right now. Some day I’ll make it out there! 🙂

  5. P Cox

    Yup, have to make this!

  6. Helen @ Scrummy Lane

    I know that orange goes very well with chocolate (I made some orange truffles last week and was very pleased with them), and chocolate goes very well with banana bread so … why not put all 3 together? Great idea and the photographs are wonderful. Love that deep blue colour as a backdrop to the bread.

  7. AKM

    Just curious, since the instructions don’t specify, when do you add the chocolate chips? Do you coat them with flour, and add with the dry ingredients? (Some folks think this prevents them from sinking to the bottom of the batter, right?) Or do you add them right at the end? I love your blog, thanks so much for sharing all these wonderful recipes and stories!

    1. White on Rice Couple

      Sorry, I missed adding that step. It is after the flour gets mixed in.
      Thanks for the kind compliments!

  8. keeratiz

    Great post,
    It’s simply stunning picture also awesome recipe.
    Thank you for sharing this! and waiting for next recipe 🙂

  9. Terry Covington

    This just sounds like the most inspired, flavorful loaf — I can’t wait to make it. Every recipe of yours I have tried has turned out perfectly. Your granola cookies are in great demand at a local nonprofit board meeting I attend every month (I don’t bake them every month, but I should — they disappear!). Your savory recipes are mouthwatering. Enjoy your new studio and that lovely garden, as I know you do!

  10. Vickie

    You mentioned there are blueberries in your garden. What variety do you grow? I’m also in California, up the road from you in Santa Barbara. I would love to try growing blueberries.

    1. White on Rice Couple

      We have 3 different varieties and all have fruited well, each giving a slight different fruit. I can’t say we have one preference over the other. We grow the Misty, Sunshine Blue, and the Bountiful Blue. Double check with your local nurseries though. Each area, even though it is close by will have a different microclimate. The local nurseries usually know best.

  11. cheri

    What a great combination of flavors! and the pics are so beautiful, makes me want to reach right in the computer and pull out a slice.

  12. Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic

    I love orange and chocolate together but never thought of combining them in banana bread. What a great idea! Definitely giving this one a try.

  13. Andi

    Looks almost too pretty to eat!

  14. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    Oranges, bananas, choc chips, in one bread….oh, sounds heavenly & I bet smelled so good while baking! Pinned

  15. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    I love the look of this bread! Orange and chocolate are perfect together!

  16. Vickie

    sounds absolutely amazing 🙂

  17. Belinda@themoonblushbaker

    Citrus from my father garden is about to give us a lot of fruit. I am keen to try your adaption of that delicious fave of chocolate chip. I can not fathom how grateful I was to get your book in Australia; I read it every day.

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