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Can You Freeze Bananas?

by insanelygood
Can You Freeze Bananas

Who doesn’t love bananas? I can’t get enough of them. I use them for everything from smoothies, milkshakes, and ice cream to pancakes, muffins, and bread. And of course, they also great all by themselves!

The only problem I have with bananas is how quickly they go bad. Ripe bananas last for only a few days at room temperature and around 5 to 7 days in the fridge.

That’s not a lot of time, especially if there are only a few people in your household. 

But did you know there’s another way to preserve bananas apart from refrigerating them? 

Freeze bananas the right way and you’ll never have to compete with time ever again. Bananas will keep well in the freezer for up to 6 months.

And while frozen and thawed bananas are not as appealing as fresh bananas, they still have a ton of other uses.

So the next time you go to the supermarket, don’t be afraid to go bananas! As long as you have space in the freezer, you’re all set.

How to Freeze Bananas

There are several methods to freeze your bananas. In fact, you can freeze them whole, sliced, or mashed.

Here’s how:

Method 1: Freezing Them Whole

  1. Peel the bananas.
  2. Place them in an air-tight container or freezer bag. If you’re using the latter, squeeze out as much excess air as you can before you seal the bag. 
  3. Label the container or bag with the current date so you know how much time the bananas have left.
  4. Freeze for up to 6 months.

Method 2: Freezing Sliced Bananas

This method is good for your smoothies or shakes.

  1. Peel the bananas. 
  2. Slice them into ¼- to ½-inch rounds.
  3. Place the banana slices onto a lined baking sheet in a single layer.
  4. Freeze the bananas for 2 hours.
  5. Take the frozen bananas out of the freezer and transfer them into an air-tight container or freezer bag. If you’re using the latter, squeeze out as much excess air as you can before you seal the bag. 
  6. Label the container or bag with the current date so you know how much time the bananas have left.
  7. Freeze for up to 6 months.

Why Is Flash-Freezing So Important?

Picture this scenario: you’re in the mood to make a banana smoothie and you remember that you’ve got a bunch of bananas chilling in the freezer.

Great! You open the freezer and take out the bag you’ve stored the bananas in, only to realize there’s no way you can pull out a few pieces because they’ve already clumped together into one giant frozen banana blob. 

That’s the importance of flash-freezing. This method freezes bananas in individual slices, so you can easily pull out exactly how much you need when you’re ready to use them.

Method 3: Freezing Mashed Bananas

This method is great for banana bread and other baking.

  1. Peel and mash the bananas.
  2. Place them in an air-tight container or freezer bag. If you’re using the latter, squeeze out as much excess air as you can before you seal the bag. 
  3. Label the container or bag with the current date so you know how much time the bananas have left.
  4. Freeze for up to 6 months.

To Peel Or Not To Peel

You might be wondering – can you freeze bananas with the peel on? Won’t that preserve them better and longer? 

It’s quite the contrary, actually. You can still freeze them with the peel on if you want, and they’d still be safe to eat, but they won’t be as fresh. Also, taking off the frozen peel can be quite a challenge! 

How to Thaw Frozen Bananas

If you’re using frozen bananas to make baked goods, transfer them into the fridge and defrost for 6 hours. You can also leave the bananas to thaw at room temperature. They’ll take about two hours to defrost.

Take note: The bigger the pieces are, the longer it takes to defrost them.

If you’re using frozen bananas to make smoothies, no need to defrost! You can use them as-is.

How to Use Frozen Bananas

As I’ve mentioned, frozen bananas have many uses. In fact, you can use them for any recipe that requires banana puree.

I love using frozen bananas to make smoothies because they get insanely creamy when blended. You don’t even need to add too much milk to make a nice, thick beverage.

Apart from drinks, I also use frozen bananas to make banana bread, pancakes, and even ice cream. Yum!

Tips & Tricks

  • While bananas will survive in the freezer for longer than 6 months, I recommend using them before that. They will start to develop freezer burn the longer they stay in the freezer.
  • Freezing bananas will stop them from ripening any more, so you want to freeze them when they are fully ripe. The riper, the better! Pick bananas that are just starting to develop brown spots – that’s when they’re perfectly sweet. 
  • Once thawed, bananas will look mushy and liquidy. Don’t drain the liquid, though, because you need that moisture when baking. If you get rid of it, your baked goodies will be dry and unappetizing.
  • When using frozen bananas to make smoothies, no need to put in ice anymore. The frozen bananas will take care of that for you! 
  • Did your frozen bananas turn brown? That’s what happens when they are exposed to air. That means you weren’t able to seal the container properly. So, be sure to shut the bag or container tight before you freeze.
  • You can also freeze bananas as fruit popsicles. Just pierce popsicle sticks through the center of a ripe banana, dip it in chocolate, and flash freeze. Yum! You can also sprinkle it with chopped nuts, sprinkles, or any other ice cream topping before freezing them for added flavor.
Can You Freeze Bananas

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