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Jul 14, 2011 07:58 AM

"Baking" without an oven?

I have some family visiting from India and they have taken to a couple of little treats I've made for them, including banana bread. They've asked for the recipe, but they don't have an oven at home (not uncommon in Indian kitchens). Anyone know how to make banana bread (or an approximation) in an oven-less kitchen? They do have a microwave and a range. Any suggestions would be appreciated - thanks!

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  1. You can bake in a microwave. A quick google came up with this and more:,1729,...

    1. Perhaps you could send them home with one of these. It's quite versatile.

      1. You could steam it, though it would be a different consistency and you won't get the nice crunchy crust:

        Or you could do pancakes:

        With girl scouts, we lined a box w/ aluminum foil and baked a cake in that but it's probably more trouble than your friends want.

        3 Replies
        1. re: chowser

          +1 to steamed cakes. I've done this before a few times, and I'd actually aver that the texture of the finished product is often spongier, moister and more even than for one baked in the oven. I'd suggest reducing the total moisture in the mix very slightly to accommodate the lack of evaporative drying that will occur in the steamer, though, and don't forget to cover the cake (or else drips of water are likely to ruin it).

          1. re: chowser

            I've never commented on a recipe before, but today I made the banana bread pancakes, which are more of a flat cake than a banana bread, but still pretty good. They don't need syrup because of the large amount of sugar.

            1. re: GraydonCarter

              Especially when making the batter by the 'muffin method' (combine dry, combine dry, combine both), there's a lot of overlap between a quick bread batter and pancakes.

          2. I don't see a duplication happening without an oven. I say switch it up and come up with a pan banana naan recipe. I'm guessing it'd be close to the original recipe, with more of the type of fat you used to brush the dough and maybe a change in the hydration level.

            1. That is what Dutch ovens and their ilk are for!
              Here is a recipe for Banana bread