These popular, healthy, delicious banana protein muffins taste like classic banana bread your mom made. However, they’re low in added sugar, PACKED with protein, easy to make, and a kid-requested favorite!
*This post was originally posted in February 2019, but I’m republishing it with updated photos and information*
I remember my Grandma making banana nut bread when I was a kid. She would make it often and give it to my sister and me as a snack.
Oh, it was so good. And the memories I have of it are filled with love.
Do you have childhood memories of banana bread (or another special dish)?
If you love muffins as much as we do, be sure to check out some of our reader favorites: Zucchini muffins, Strawberry muffins, or no-fail Pumpkin muffins!
Converting classic banana muffins into healthy banana protein muffins
I love banana nut bread (probably because of my Grandma). But I wanted to create a healthier version with lower added sugar and more protein. This protein banana muffin recipe had to be healthy enough to give to my kids for snacks.
And tasty enough for dessert too!
Any healthier banana protein muffins recipe HAD to taste amazing – like classic banana bread. I want my kids to have the same association with it that I do.
I often don’t make quick bread recipes into bread loaves, but instead, put the batter into bite-sized muffins (or full-sized, it doesn’t matter to me).
Because, in full disclosure, I enjoy muffins way more than bread! Don’t you?
I mean, c’mon! Bite-size bread is cuter, easier to portion out, and less messy to give to the kids. Plus, I love freezing them more in muffin form than bread.
This healthier version makes me feel good about giving these protein banana muffins to my kids with breakfast, lunch, dessert, or even as a snack.
Who wouldn’t want to eat a protein-packed version of (any) bread (in much cuter muffin form?!) These protein banana muffins are easy to make, super delicious, and contain healthy ingredients you’ll feel good about!
Grab these kid-favorite recipes and save time in the kitchen too!
Ingredients for banana protein muffins
Here are the key players in this recipe and how they come together to create a filling and delicious bread you can use for bread, snacks, or dessert!
- White whole wheat flour – whole wheat flour provides more protein and fiber than all-purpose flour.
- Sugar & brown sugar – there is a little sugar added to this recipe to give it that classic banana bread flavor, but it’s reduced from classic banana bread.
- Superfood protein powder (vanilla flavor) – vanilla protein powder adds a boost of protein, and I recommend this brand because it’s a plant-based protein and tastes amazing.
- Ground flax seeds – add fiber and a terrific nutty flavor.
- Greek yogurt (plain) – adds protein and moisture to the recipe
- Overripe bananas – add sweetness, moisture, and flavor.
- Milk (or rice milk) – adds moisture, great flavor, and even more protein. I’ve tried it using rice milk and it worked well.
- Vanilla extract – a flavor enhancer.
- Chopped walnuts (optional) – these are optional, but I usually leave them out.
**You can grab the full recipe and instructions in the printable recipe card down below!
How to make healthy banana protein muffins with yogurt
Follow these instructions to make your own muffins. They’re simple to make!
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray muffin pan with cooking spray (or add muffin liners to your muffin tin).
Combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
Combine wet ingredients in a medium mixing bowl, including walnuts (if adding them).
Add wet ingredient mixture to dry ingredient mixture.
Bake for 8 minutes, then turn muffin pans 180 degrees. Bake another 7 minutes. Check muffins.
If they’re done, remove them from the oven. If they aren’t done, check them again in 2 minute increments to ensure they don’t burn.
Protein banana muffins notes & tips
Here are a couple of banana muffin recipes & variation ideas (and tips) to try.
- Peanut Butter Protein Banana Muffins – If you want to add a delicious nutty flavor, you could add 1/4 cup of peanut butter (or almond butter).
- Chocolate Chip Banana Protein Muffins – Do you crave a little chocolate? Add 1/3-1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips to make chocolate chip banana muffins!
- Blueberry Banana Protein Muffins – Add some superfood antioxidants to this recipe by adding blueberries (1/2 cup should be plenty)! A combination of a blueberry muffin and a banana muffin? YUM!
- Nutty High Protein Banana Muffins – If you love texture and crunch, try adding some chopped walnuts or sunflower seeds for an extra protein boost.
- Banana Pumpkin Protein Muffins – In the fall, add about a 1/3-1/2 cup of pumpkin puree for a seasonal favorite with a fluffy texture.
- Chocolate Protein Banana Muffins – If you want a chocolatey version, try using chocolate protein powder instead of vanilla protein powder.
- Banana Oat Protein Muffins – Use oat flour instead of wheat flour OR add about 1/3 cup of quick oats to your muffin batter before baking.
- Gluten-Free Protein Banana Muffins – Substitute gluten-free flour for the wheat flour. I’ve had good luck with Bob’s Red Mill and King Arthur brands!
Banana protein muffins FAQs
You’ve got questions…I’ve got answers!
I don’t have overripe bananas. Can I still make this recipe with bananas that have some green?
Yes! Overripe bananas are yellow with brown spots. They are great for making banana bread because they are moister, softer, sweeter, and have more banana flavor.
However, if you are itching to make this recipe but your bananas don’t have those telltale brown spots yet, stick your yellow bananas into the microwave for roughly 20 seconds to make them easier to mash.
How long will protein banana muffins last?
I put our healthy protein muffins in a resealable plastic bag (or airtight container) and then put that in the fridge. These muffins will last up to 7 days in the fridge and make the perfect snack for busy afternoons!
Note: I don’t recommend storing them at room temperature because they’ll get moldy FAST.
Can I freeze these banana protein muffins?
Yes! In fact, if you don’t plan to eat them within about 2-3 days, I highly recommend freezing these healthy banana protein muffins.
They freeze (and thaw) really well! Since I have 3 kids, I tend to package them in batches of 3, put them in a freezer bag, and thaw them out one batch at a time when I plan to use them.
Can I use honey instead of sugar?
Yes! When using recipes that call for up to 1 cup of sugar, you can substitute an equal amount of honey, pure maple syrup, or even agave nectar in place of the sugar.
Since this banana bread protein muffin recipe calls for 1/4 cup of sugar, you can substitute an equal amount of honey (1/4 cup) instead.
Note: these natural sweeteners have a different flavor than granulated cane sugar does. If you think your muffins are too sweet (or not sweet enough) when you use these natural sweeteners, feel free to adjust the amount to your liking.
Why add protein to these muffins?
Protein is a huge component of a healthy diet. In addition to building and repairing body tissues, protein is an essential building block for muscles, bones, skin, cartilage, and blood.
By converting this recipe into a fluffy banana protein muffins (or bread) recipe, you create healthy muffins that you’ll feel good about feeding your family any time of the day (even as a healthy breakfast option)!
What makes Greek yogurt protein banana muffins healthy
I took my grandma’s recipe and made a few tweaks to it to make these muffins healthier but still incredibly yummy.
They’re low in added sugar
With only 1/2 cup of sugar for the entire recipe, these muffins get a lot of their sweet flavor from the natural sugars in the overripe bananas. You can totally cut the sugar down even more, if you prefer!
Added protein punch
Muffins are usually loaded in sugar and carbs and have little to no protein in them. This recipe has Greek yogurt and superfood protein powder in it which makes these muffins moist and filling!
I Love the Vanilla Superfood Protein Powder from Amazing Grass, and we also love using vanilla Orgain Organic Superfood Vegan Protein Powder!
Here are some key benefits of plant-based protein powder:
- 20g+ grams of protein from plant sources.
- Additional servings of fruits & veggies in each serving.
- USDA Organic, Non-GMO, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Grain-Free.
Whole wheat flour
While you can definitely use regular white flour, I highly recommend using white whole wheat flour. It will add more nutritional value while not impacting the flavor of the muffins.
Contain healthy fats
Instead of butter, I used olive oil in this recipe. You can also add the optional walnuts to give these muffins even more healthy fats!
Tools needed for easy banana protein muffins (or bread)
- Basic Muffin Tins – You can use the classic version
Grab these kid-favorite recipes and save time in the kitchen too!
Try Making Banana Protein Muffins when you (or your kid) want a sweet treat – your kids will BEG for them!
More sweet treats with a healthy twist
If you love these Protein Banana Muffins, you’ll LOVE these other healthy recipes too!
- Chocolate Chip Cake
- No-Bake Berry Cheesecake Parfait
- Best Darn Healthy Apple Crisp Ever
- Slow Cooker Peach Crisp
Pin for Later!
|18 muffins||15 minutes|
|Cook Time||Passive Time|
|15-20 minutes||5 minutes|
These popular, healthy, delicious, protein-packed banana muffins taste like classic banana bread, but are low in added sugar and way more filling!
- 2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup loosely packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 scoop Superfood protein powder (approximately 2 Tbsp)
- 3 Tbsp ground flax seeds
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 cup Greek yogurt (plain)
- 1 egg
- 4 small overripe bananas (or 3 medium), mashed
- 1/4 cup milk (or rice milk)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray (or add muffin liners to) your muffin pans.
- Combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
- Combine wet ingredients in a medium mixing bowl, including walnuts (if adding them).
- Add wet ingredient mixture to dry ingredient mixture.
- Bake for 8 minutes, then turn muffin pans 180 degrees. Bake another 7 minutes. Check muffins. If done, remove from oven. If not done, check in 2 minute increments to ensure they don't burn.
Thanks for the recipe! I substituted Kodiak protein pancake mix in place of the flour and protein powder and it’s AMAZING!
I did do the loaf pan and ended up cooking it closed to 40 minutes.
So fluffy and has the best taste!
Hey Keri! That’s a great substitution! Thanks for letting me know about that! So happy to hear you liked it 🙂
These did not turn out for me. Left them in over 10 mins more but the didn’t brown and never got to the muffin consistency.
Hi Susan! I’m so sorry to hear that! That’s always disappointing when we make something and it doesn’t turn out. I’ve made the exact same recipe dozens of times and have given it directly to friends and family, and none of us have ever had what you describe happen. Is it possible that your oven doesn’t actually cook at the temp it says it does? Or possibly you didn’t realize it at the time but left the leavener or another ingredient out?
These are SO good! I tweaked it a bit based on what I had, so for future reference:
White unbleached flour works just fine.
I omitted the flax seed ( didn’t have it, didn’t want to risk chia seeds).
Added chocolate chips.
I used a full scoop of Orgain vanilla plant protein powder.
It made a dozen full-size muffins and a 24-count tray of mini muffins.
Thank you for a banana muffin recipe that doesn’t have oats but is still moist and high in protein and fiber. My daughter doesn’t like oats (i know, i know), but we need something she can grab in the morning when she first wakes up to stave off the hangry.
Hey Haley! I’m so glad you loved the recipe! Your changes sound amazing, and I completely understand about those morning hangries! We have them here too!
we love making banana bread and muffins often and this combination sounds good!will try it out soon
definitely going to be trying this recipe!
I love how they’re so easy to make! Yummy snack for my toddler.
I love cooking with bananas!
Gervin Khan says
I really like this type of recipe because it’s delicious, healthy and most especially it’s easy.
Samantha Laycock says
Adding ground flax seed is a great idea. I never even thought of that.
Cyndi Buchanan says
Yum! I’ll have to give these a try. I think my kids might even like these.
Ohhh this looks so yummy and healthy. Gonna try it. Thanks for sharing
Sarah Mahmoud says
That looks healthy and great for my son.
These are a great idea! We love banana bread, and this would work with me trying to get more protein into my diet while still feeding the minions. Thank you so much!!
I’m going to make these for my toddler! I have a hard time getting her to eat much of anything so I have her drinking Carnation with whole milk o just get in some nutrition and calories! But she does like bananas so fingers crossed!
This was easy to follow and the line “Bite-size bread is cuter” cracked me up. I also happen to agree.
This looks so good! I need to try this!
Can you taste the superfood protein? My husband is so finicky about healthy food
Hey Tina! No worries – I get it! No, we couldn’t taste the powder at all. My kids are super picky about tasting it too so I intentionally kept the amount that I added small to avoid that problem. If he’s a super taster maybe he would taste it a little bit, but I think the banana flavor helped to prevent us from tasting it!
If it makes you feel better, leave the powder out and just use the Greek yogurt – still more protein than most muffins and without the risk of tasting the protein powder.
I am so glad to know about this banana protein muffins and try this out at home. This would be a huge help. Thanks for sharing this one!
Banana muffin is really what makes my day good.
Can you use almond milk?
Hi Tabitha! Yes, I think you could. I’ve never personally tried it, but especially for the small amount that’s needed for this recipe, I think almond milk would work just fine…and it would probably add a slightly nutty flavor!
I made these today. This recipe is SPOT-ON; even the bake time, which I often struggle with. I first baked a dozen “regular” ones and then had the perfect amount to fill a 24 mini-muffin pan. I baked the mini ones for about 9-10 minutes. Thanks for a delicious and healthy recipe!
Hi Nicole! I am SO glad to hear this! Thanks for coming back and letting me know how the recipe worked for you! We LOVE these muffins – they are very flavorful and yet I feel really good about giving them to my kids! I hope to see you again soon!
Sagar Sahay says
I have never realized I can use protein in muffins, great idea and will be healthy too.
Yes! Healthy, filling AND delicious – those were all the requirements!
Thoughts on using coconut flour in place of the wheat flour?
Hey Kaleigh! Thanks for stopping by! Coconut flour can be tricky to work with when converting a recipe from a wheat flour recipe to a coconut flour recipe. Here’s what I would recommend doing: You can’t substitute coconut flour on a 1:1 ratio for all-purpose flour. Instead, use 1/4 to 1/3 cup coconut flour for every cup of wheat flour the recipe calls for. In addition, every 1/4 cup coconut flour typically requires one egg for both moisture and structure. You may also need to increase other liquids in the recipe or make small adjustments to baking times. Keep in mind that the batter will likely be thicker as a gluten-free batter than it would normally be.
I love that you added flax to this recipe. My kids would love these and not realize they were getting so many good nutritional values. I am definitely going to try this recipe.
Flossie McCowald says
Thank you for this great idea! My more rotund child is forever complaining about being HUNGRY, so I love this healthier/more filling snack idea for her, vs. some of the emptier carbs she gravitates toward. And LOVE the banana microwave hack, too!
Amy Gougler says
These look so tasty! We’re big fans of muffins around here and I always want to make sure there is more protein in them so my kids get the nutrition they need. Pinned for later!
Flossie McCowald says
I LOVE your microwaving hack for not-yet-overripe bananas! Will have to remember that. Should def make this recipe soon for my “always hungry” kid who could use a few more filling, healthier snack swaps!
I had never thought to sneak protein powder into our muffins. So smart, we could definitely use that extra boost!!
I can’t wait to try this! i LOOOOVE banana bread but don’t make it often for this exact reason- way too much sugar. I’m vegetarian as well so I’m always looking for more ways to add some protein into our meals. This is fantastic!
Since I have started eating healthy, I go all out for high protein foods. This sure looks like a pretty yummy protein packed treat!!
Cathy L says
What is the nutritional content without walnuts? Need the carbs and protein per serving.
Hi Cathy! Each muffin has approximately 19.1 grams of carbs and 4.1 grams of protein. I updated the recipe to include the nutritional content in the notes so you can see 🙂
These look delicious.
Thanks Angela! My kids (who can be picky at times) absolutely LOVED these! They were eating them as snacks and even asking for them in their lunches as “dessert”!
janice sisemore says
sounds really good. Also very healthy