Banana bread will develop a sticky top when it is exposed to air. The sugar molecules on the surface of the banana bread attract moisture from the air, causing the top to become sticky. To avoid this make sure the banana bread is completely cooked through, avoid adding excess sugar and choose a recipe that contains white sugar instead of brown.
This article will discuss why banana bread can get a sticky top on banana bread and some easy ways to stop this form happening.
Why banana bread gets a sticky top
Check out the most common reasons why banana bread can develop a sticky top and what you can do to stop each one.
1. Undercooked batter
Undercooking banana bread can mean that the batter will not form a crust on top and can remain sticky. Fan forced ovens work well as they circulate the heat around the oven helping to cook the top and bottom evenly.
When the banana bread is ready to take out of the oven, it will look brown on top and will be cooked all the way through. Poke a hole in the center of the banana bread with a skewer or butter knife and make sure there is no undercooked batter.
Place the bread in the center shelf of your oven so that it cooks nicely on top and avoids becoming sticky.
2. Storing the banana bread in a container before cooling
If banana bread is stored in a container before it has completely cooled the steam will be trapped, causing moisture to form and fall on top the bread. This will cause the top to become moist and sticky.
Make sure the banana bread has cooled completely before storing. Banana bread stores well in the freezer too but make sure it has cooled first.
3. Too much sugar
Banana bread recipes with excess sugar are more likely to become sticky on top. The sugar will attract water as the banana bread cooks as well as after it cools. This will stop the crust from staying crisp and it can become sticky.
Most banana bread recipes can have their added sugar content reduced by up to 1/3 without it affecting the recipe. This will help to reduce the stickiness on the top of the loaf.
4. Humid weather
Humid weather is more likely to cause your banana bread to become sticky on top. When there is more water in the air, it is more likely to stick to the sugars on the top of the loaf and cause it to become sticky.
If you are baking in humid weather it can be best to store your banana bread in the fridge. Humidity levels will be lower in the fridge reducing the chance that the top will become sticky.
5. Using brown sugar
Banana bread recipes that contain brown sugar instead of white sugar are more likely to become sticky on top. Brown sugar attracts more water than white sugar and therefore makes the top sticky and moist over time.
How to stop banana bread from getting a sticky top
Check out my top tips for stopping your banana bread from becoming sticky on top.
Use a fan forced oven
A great way to prevent your banana bread from being undercooked and sticky on top is to use your oven on the fan setting. This will help to circulate the heat more evenly, cooking it through and forming a nice crust on top.
Wait until the banana bread is completely cool before storing
Before you store banana bread in any container make sure it has completely cooled first. This will stop steam from being trapped and will help to prevent moisture from sitting on the top of the bread.
This will help to stop the bread from becoming sticky from the trapped steam mixing with the surface sugar.
Frost your banana cake once it has cooled
A great way to stop the banana bread from becoming sticky on top is to add frosting. Cream cheese frosting is delicious and protects the surface of the bread. You won’t be able to tell if the surface is sticky or not with cream cheese on top.
Use a banana bread recipe with white sugar instead of brown
Choose a banana bread recipe that contains white sugar instead of brown sugar if you want to reduce the chances of it becoming sticky on top.
Place a piece of paper towel in the container when storing the banana bread
Another quick and easy trick to reduce the chances of your banana bread from becoming sticky on top is to place a piece of paper towel in the container. This will help to absorb any excess moisture keeping the banana bread crisp on top.
I like to place paper towel on the bottom of my container and place the bread on top. You can also fold a piece in half and place it on the side of the bread.
Why Does Banana Bread Have a Sticky Top? | Summary
Banana bread can develop a sticky top when excess moisture from the is attracted to the sugar. While there is nothing wrong with that, it can cause the top to be soft instead of crisp. You can help to reduce this stickiness by cooking the bread all the way through, letting it cool completely before storing and slightly reducing the sugar content in the recipe.
I am an accredited practicing dietitian, experienced gardener and a dedicated cook. I love writing and sharing my experience so you can learn from my successes and mistakes.