How to Select Bananas
- Firm & free of bruises
- Stems and tips should be intact
- The fruit will typically move from 1 stage of ripeness to the next in 1 day—keep this in mind as you select your bananas at the grocery store.
- Bananas, like all things that are grown, will vary in size. Select the bananas that are sized best for your appetite & lifestyle.
When are Bananas in Season?
If you love bananas, we have good news — they’re in season year-round! They grow in tropical regions with lots of moisture and rich soil.
Because growing conditions allow growers to plant bananas every month, you’ll always be able to find your favorite fruit at the grocery store, even though they take up to a year after planting to be ready for harvest.
Varieties of Bananas
Like most fruits, bananas come in many varieties.
Cavendish bananas are the most common and have a creamy texture while being slightly sweet. These bananas grow across Central America and are the ones you’re most likely to find at your local grocery store.
Plantain bananas are popular for baking and cooking. They have a high starch content that complements savory dishes — you don’t usually eat these bananas raw like with the Cavendish variety.
Red bananas have reddish-purple skin and light pink flesh. These bananas are much sweeter than Cavendishes. And with their slight raspberry flavor, red bananas make for the perfect sweet treat!
Lady Finger bananas are another sweeter variety, and they are much smaller than Cavendishes — around three inches long. They have a sweet, creamy flavor with a hint of honey.
Blue Java bananas are one of the sweetest varieties — they’re often called ice cream bananas because of their extra creaminess and strong vanilla flavor. These bananas are extremely hardy, being able to grow in colder regions.
Burro bananas are a unique variety that has a tangy, lemony taste. They are more square than round and are much flatter and smaller than typical Cavendish bananas. Burro bananas have creamy white or yellow flesh that is firm in the center and soft on the outside.
Banana Nutrition Facts & Benefits
One serving of a typical medium-ripe banana contains:
- Approximately 110 calories
- 0 grams of fat
- 1 gram of protein
- 28 grams of carbohydrates
- 15 grams of naturally-occurring sugar
- 3 grams of fiber
- 450 milligrams of potassium
In addition to being quite nutritious, bananas come with various health benefits, including:
- Bananas are an excellent way to get more potassium, which is vital for heart health and blood pressure management.
- They also contain various antioxidants that are linked to benefits, like reducing the risk of degenerative illnesses and heart disease.
Because bananas are high in soluble fiber, they are great to add to your diet to slow digestion and help you feel fuller.
How to Store Bananas
- Store bananas at room temperature
- To speed up the ripening process, place the bananas in a brown bag with an apple, tomato or avocado.
- To slow down the ripening process, place the bananas in a brown bag & store at a cool temperature (50-65F). Bananas can be placed in the refrigerator, but the peel will discolor due to the cold temp. The fruit will not be affected.
- To freeze bananas, simply peel & seal in a plastic bag. For best results, use your frozen bananas within 2 months.
How to Prepare Bananas
With so many varieties of bananas, there are endless ways to prepare and eat them.
Other than snacking on your favorite variety of bananas, you can roast them in the oven and use the roasted bananas to add to pancakes, toast, or other meals!
You can also bake banana chips by thinly slicing your bananas and baking them in the oven slowly at a low temperature. These banana chips make for the perfect snack to take with you anywhere, and they are also great when added to a homemade trail mix.
Sautéed bananas are great if you want to make a quick, sweet snack or dessert. All you have to do is sauté some slices of bananas with butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar.
Another way we love to eat bananas is grilling them — leave the peel on, cut them in half, brush them with lemon juice, brown sugar, and cinnamon, and cook on a hot grill for a few minutes. Then serve it warm with ice cream and enjoy!
How to Serve Bananas
2 hrs 10 mins