Banana as a leavening agent?

Joined Sep 8, 2015
Mrs. Hank is making a bar cookie recipe (below) and a variation is to add banana and leave out the baking soda.  What's the deal?  Will the banana act as a leavening agent?  

Bar Cookie Basics
Line a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides; coat the foil with cooking spray. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (unless making no-bake bars, Nos. 44 through 50).
Prepare your batter or dough. Spread in the prepared pan or press in using damp or oiled fingers.
Bake as directed, then transfer to a rack and let cool completely in the pan. 


1. Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars Beat 2 sticks softened butter and 1 cup each granulated and light brown sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy; add 3 eggs and 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla. Reduce the speed to low. Add 3 cups flour and 3/4 teaspoon each baking soda and salt; beat until combined. Stir in one 12-ounce bag chocolate chips. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes.

6. Banana-Chocolate Bars Make Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars (No. 1), adding 1 mashed large overripe banana with the eggs; omit the baking soda and chocolate chips. Dollop 1/2 cup chocolate-hazelnut spread onto the batter in the pan and swirl. Bake 30 to 35 minutes.
Joined Oct 10, 2005

Basically, you have only two types of leavening, chemical and mechanical.

Chemical is pretty obvious, baking pwdr, baking soda, and yeast all form gas.

When you beat eggs or eggwhites, you increase the volume by adding air. If you fold this into a batter or dough and bake, the trapped air expands as it is heated. Thats mechanical leavening.

Bannanas and baking soda? No idea....

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