There are so many things that you can make with bananas. There’s banana bread, muffins, banana chips, chocolate-covered bananas, and the list goes on. It is understandable that someone’s house can have a full bunch of bananas with a brain full of ideas.
The sad thing about bananas is how quickly they get too ripe. One moment they will be lightly spotted and the next they are completely dark. The solution? Freeze them. Freezing bananas with any method are easy, including the best way. The best way to freeze bananas is by cutting them and putting them in an air-tight bag.
An Air Tight Seal
Sure, you can toss the bananas into a sandwich bag and freeze them as is, but that isn’t the best way to freeze them. It’s a little more effort, but with the proper method, your bananas will be staying at their best quality for longer.
- Step 1: Remove the peels of the banana. Trying to unpeel a frozen banana is simply annoying so it’s better to remove it, to begin with.
- Step 2: Slice the banana into half-inch slices. The only reason not to do this is if your future recipe calls for a whole banana. Even then, slicing the banana usually adds to future convenience.
- Step 3: Place the slices into a sandwich bag. Make sure the pieces are flat (slide them in instead of piling them at the bottom.) Not only will this save space in your freezer, but it will make it easier to grab a few slices when you need them.
- Step 4: Squeeze all the air out of the bag while closing. The less air in the bag, the better the bananas will keep.
- Step 5: Label the bag with the date. This way you will know how long the bananas have been in the freezer.
- Step 6: Place in the freezer and you’re done.
A note to remember: you don’t have to use a sandwich bag. Some stores sell bags that are meant for the freezer that is usually a lot bigger. Use the bag that works best for how many bananas you are freezing at a time.
For a better air-tight bag, leave a space for a straw while sealing the sandwich bag. Poke the straw inside (metal or plastic doesn’t matter) and suck out any extra air. Then remove the straw and finish sealing. Much less air with a stay in the bag with this trick.
While the above method is the best, there are other methods that you can use to freeze your bananas.
A Tupperware Container
If you want to reduce your plastic waste, you may want to put your bananas into a Tupperware container.
Chop your bananas to your desired size (slices or chopping in half works here) and set them into a container. Label the container and set it in the freezer. Check the bananas weekly or biweekly and make sure ice doesn’t grow on them. It’s not bad if it happens but will make it a lot more difficult to break them apart when you want to use them.
While not as common, you can smash up the banana before freezing. This works great if the banana is going to be used in baking or a smoothie. Simply mash the banana and place it in a container that best fits (plastic bags and Tupperware containers both work fine here.)
Flash freezing is an extra step in the freezing process that helps if you’re freezing a lot of bananas at once.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place sliced bananas on it. Stick them in the freezer for half an hour. Then, move them to your desired container and keep them in the freezer. This method helps to keep the banana slices from sticking to each other.
How Long Do Frozen Bananas Last
When frozen, bananas can last anywhere from 6 months to a year. Bananas are more susceptible to freezer burn so it is important to keep an eye out for that.
When to Freeze
The best time to freeze bananas is when they are fully ripe. If they are starting to get brown, that’s when to freeze them. Of course, you can freeze them at almost any stage. Just don’t freeze bad bananas.
How to Thaw the Bananas
Unless you are making a smoothie or a frozen dessert, you should thaw your bananas before using them. There are two really easy ways to thaw them.
Let Them Thaw in the Fridge
Thawing in the fridge is a very low effort even though it takes a lot of time. It is most convenient to thaw them overnight.
Take your bananas out of the freezer. If you want to thaw the whole bag, just toss the whole thing in the fridge. Otherwise, remove the number of slices you want and place them in a new container before putting them in the fridge. Then wait overnight or around 10 hours. That’s all there is to it!
If you are planning on using the bananas in baking, you can simply microwave the frozen bananas till thawed.
Microwave for 10-second increments and check after each increment until thawed. The bananas will get pretty soft and liquidy but will be fine if baking.
This method works best if you froze mashed bananas as you don’t have to worry about the consistency.
Freezing bananas are a great way to keep your bananas good for longer. With the method listed above, you will both have an easy time freezing them but also an easy time using them when you pull them from the freezer.
Enjoy all the nutrients that bananas have with all the recipes you can make from them. They will taste just as great with frozen bananas as they would with fresh bananas. No one will know they were in the freezer for a few weeks or a few months!