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Vegan Mocha Banana Bread. Made with Tigernuts, Oats, & Spelt Flour

Ladies and gentlemen, may I present to you the tastiest, heartiest, most nourishing, and guilt-free banana bread I have ever baked! This beauty is made with whole grain spelt flour, oats, overripe bananas, and a very special ingredient––tigernuts.

I know what you may be thinking––what in the world is a tigernut?

I have been wanting to share this glorious food with you for months! Way back in summer 2014 one of my clients handed me a bottle of tigernut horchata to try. She promised me I would love it, and right she was. It was a slightly sweet chilled beverage reminiscent of the best creamy almond milk ever. I was even more impressed by this mystery tigernut when she told me it wasn’t actually a nut, but a tiny tuber. A tuber, you know, like a sweet potato!

I sipped and savored that first bottle of tigernut horchata for an hour. Trust me, it was so hard not to gulp it all down in one sitting, but I really wanted to hold on to all that goodness.

Vegan Mocha Banana Bread. Made with Tigernuts, Oats, & Spelt Flour
The tigernuts are those little brown balls in the picture.

What the heck are tigernuts?

To my surprise, after googling tigernut horchata I discovered it is a popular drink in Spain that originated in Valencia. There it’s called horchata de chufa. Chufa being the Spanish word for tigernut. My first reaction was, WHAAAAT?!?!?! I spent a semester in Spain in college, and never touched the horchata. I can’t even remember hearing about it. Was I really that consumed with partying and sight-seeing that I overlooked one of Spain’s greatest culinary possessions? I guess so…

Like Mexican horchata, which Americans are more familiar with, horchata de chufa is made by soaking then blending the starchy rice (Mexico) or tigernut (España), and straining the liquid––which is sweetened and chilled before serving. Traditionally they use sugar, but I’m a fan of sweetening it with a date or two. Even banana is a welcome addition.Vegan Mocha Banana Bread. Made with Tigernuts, Oats, & Spelt Flour

Okay, so what’s the 4.1.1. with tigernuts? And why are they in my banana bread?

First off, like I said before, tigernuts are not nuts at all. They’re starchy little tubers that are harvested in Spain and Africa, then dried before being used to make horchata. The company Organic Gemini, who is responsible for leading the movement to popularize tigernuts in the U.S., sent me a goodie box of their products. I received a big bag of the “nuts”, tigernut oil, and even flour made from it! I used up the oil for cooking in about a month, but that bag of flour sat in my cabinet until I had the idea to use it in my banana bread.

Another fun fact about tigernuts is that they’re very good for you. They are packed with resistant starch (a prebiotic) that helps support the healthy bacteria in our guts, which equates to good digestion. Or, in my case, the key to happiness. The resistant starch is also different from most starches because it acts as a fabulous source of dietary fiber. Other foods that include resistant starch are beans, and jeruselum artichokes. Yummy!

Tigernut milk––which I’ll share on the blog soon––is  a great alternative to other non-dairy and dairy milks. Actually, of all the non-dairy milks, it is my favorite. If you’re looking for a vegan coffee creamer, tigernut milk is the answer! So rich and delicious, with a natural sweetness similar to almonds. Remember, tigernuts are not nuts at all. They’re allergen free!

Vegan Mocha Banana Bread. Made with Tigernuts, Oats, & Spelt Flour

Vegan Mocha Banana Bread

I’m so happy to, 1.) finally be sharing my new favorite banana bread recipe with you, and 2.) finally getting around to using this tigernut flour. Now that I’ve seen it shine in my banana bread I’m planning on using it in pancakes, cookies, muffins, crusts, and whatever else my brain shoots out.

This banana bread is truly delicious. The recipe is adapted from Minimalist Baker’s gluten-free recipe. I swapped out the flours, added chocolate chips and coffee (mocha style), and added some southern girl soul (duh)! I’ll go ahead and warn you now, you may eat the whole loaf in 24 hours. Be sure to enjoy every bite!

Do you have a favorite banana bread recipe? Or have you tried tigernut or tigernut horchata?

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Mocha Vegan Banana Bread

By: Jenné
I haven't made this loaf gluten-free but I think it would be fine if you swapped out the spelt for a gf flour blend. Let me know if you do! If you don't have spelt on hand you can use whole wheat pastry, or all-purpose flour. Make sure your bananas are nice and ripe 🙂
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 6


  • 1 tbsp ground flax seed + 2 tbsp water
  • 3 very ripe bananas
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp coconut, canola, or tigernut oil
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar, or cane sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp instant coffee powder
  • 3/4 cup non-dairy milk, soy, almond, or tigernut
  • 1/2 cup tigernut flour
  • 1 1/4 cup whole grain spelt flour
  • 3 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 cup old fashioned oats or Trader Joe's rolled grain blend
  • 1/4-1/2 cup vegan dark chocolate chips


Wet Ingredients

  • In a large mixing bowl combine the flax seed and water. Stir and allow it to thicken for 2 minutes.
  • Add the banana to the bowl with the flax, and mash until nearly liquified.
  • Stir in the vanilla extract, oil, sugar, coffee, and non-dairy milk. Stir well to combine.

Dry Ingredients

  • In another large mixing bowl add the tigernut flour. Be sure to break any clumps of the flour with a fork or your fingers
  • Add the spelt flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon, and whisk to combine.
  • Stir in the oats, and whisk again.
  • Stir the wet ingredients into the dry.
  • Fold in the chocolate chips.
  • Pour the batter into the lined loaf pan, and bake for 50 minutes.
  • Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before devouring.
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

About Jenne

I’m a Georgia Peach living in Los Angeles (by way of NYC), with an insatiable love of sweet potatoes, travel, animals, and cooking. On Sweet Potato Soul you’ll discover hundreds of delicious and easy-to-make vegan recipes.

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  1. Thank you for all your replies Jenne. All helpful and I really enjoy this site. I learn so much from all you bloggers and it would have been so useful to have you all around 50/60 years ago!

  2. I cannot get any tiger nuts in Southern Ireland… What could I use instead. I think I will not be able to get near the taste you describe. The bread, and the drink, sound delicious!

  3. Hi Jenne. Banana Bread is awesome. It is the perfect pick me up on a long day. It is nice to see a healthy version with new ingredient. What else can you use tigernuts for?

    1. Thank you!! Sure, just sub more spelt for a denser bread, and eliminate it all together for a lighter version.