This Elvis-inspired “Peanut Butter Bacon Banana Bread” is a divine creation that features sweet and salty elements and great texture contrasts. It bakes perfectly too, coming out tender, yet firm enough to put on a stick. Among the judge’s comments: “very clever idea, delicious, and so state fair like.” We 100% agree.
This recipe won first place in the Blue Ribbon Banana Bread Contest at the 2021 Minnesota State Fair. Karen Cope created it for the competition, trying several variations and testing them on neighbors before settling on this entry.
Karen is a perennial winner who took home her first county fair blue ribbon when she was just 9 years old. She wins a $100 King Arthur Baking Company gift card.
Step By Step Recipe Overview
The toothsome treat is fun to make with kids and is easier than you think.
First off, you fry up the bacon crisp. Or leave it out if you’re not a fan. We’ve tasted it both ways, and both are phenomenal. Next you chop the bacon into small bits and set it aside as one of the toppings.
Next, prep your pans (grease, line with parchment), measure out your ingredients and set the oven to pre-heat to 350°F.
I love my stand-up mixture as it does the “heavy lifting” so well, an in blending ingredients smooth.
In this pic, I’ve already blended the bacon grease, butter, peanut butter, and brown sugar. I’m about to mashed my bananas.
I wish my bananas were more ripe than ^these^ ones shown above, but sometimes that’s all the grocery store has.
In my opinion, this is the ^ideal ripeness^ for banana bread. You could even go a bit more ripe. The aroma is very banana-y at this stage.
On this test run, I ended up doing a banana puree with an immersion blender with mine to eliminate bigger lumps. Once you combine the bananas with the eggs, vanilla, salt, and baking soda, you only need to mix in the flour, and half your chocolate chips and peanut butter chips. (You are saving the other half for drizzling.)
Mix only until just combined. Divide mixture between the two prepared pans. Batter will be quite thick, so level it out in the pan.
Bake for 20-25 minutes, until light golden brown and edges start to pull away from the sides. Tip: if you only have 8-inch cake pans, use them, and bake about 10 minutes longer. A toothpick inserted into center should come out clean, without chocolate. Cool on wire rack.
The last step is fun. You cut the bread into 16 servings, insert the wide, wooden sticks (3/4 inch wide is ideal), then do your toppings.
- Melted peanut butter chips (with shortening)
- Melted chocolate chips (with shortening)
- Chopped peanuts (Planters, honey-roasted)
- Chopped banana chips (Trader Joe’s)
- Bacon pieces
Now you have the best-ever banana bread to enjoy: Peanut Butter Bacon Banana Bread, Elvis on a Stick!