Tired of having your bananas go to waste within just a few days after buying them?
With the right practices, you can extend the shelf life of your bananas and store them for a variety of preparations.
How to store bananas? Bananas can be stored in various ways, depending on their current state. Store green bananas in the pantry or at room temperature. After a couple of days or when the bananas ripened, wrap a plastic bag around its stem to slow down its ripening process. When brown spots start to appear on the banana peel, put the bananas in the fridge to extend its freshness for a few more days.
Read ahead for the techniques on how to store bananas and ways to keep them fresh!
How Do You Keep Bananas Fresh for Longer?
Bananas are one of the fastest ripening fruits. And since they provide a lot of nutrients, such as potassium, vitamin B6, and vitamin C, we would definitely want to keep them fresh longer.
With the tips we’ll share here, it is easy to keep bananas fresh for a longer time.
First, wrap the stems tightly with a plastic bag to slow down ripening. Then, put them in a stable position in the fridge away from all other produce.
For even longer storage periods, keep peeled, sliced, or mashed bananas with some citrus juice in sealed containers inside the freezer.
How Long Do Bananas Last?
Like all organic material, bananas continue to ripen even after cutting from a banana tree. This is the reason why bananas are harvested while they are still green.
The harvested bunch of bananas are packed and then stored at an average temperature of 13 degrees Celsius to slow down the ripening process and to enable ripening only when it arrives in the market.
Once purchased from the market, bananas can stay in the pantry for only two to five days, or until it ripens.
The ripe fruit can then be kept fresh in the refrigerator for another five to seven days.
Refrigerating cannot keep the bananas from turning brown, but the pulp can retain its texture and color within this duration.
For uses other than eating raw, store peeled and mashed bananas in a freezer with some lime or lemon juice and keep their quality for about two to three months.
They will indefinitely remain safe for consumption even after this period, as long as you keep them in the freezer in airtight containers.
Ways on How to Store Bananas
Depending on how you would want to consume them, there are a number of ways on how to store bananas.
After buying them from the market, you will learn that the level of ripeness you want is dependent on the type and schedule of consumption.
Check out these tips.
For scheduled use in the near future—say, within a week—purchase bananas that are still green.
You can keep these bananas at room temperature and have them ready exactly when you need them.
To keep bananas unripe for a longer time, store them inside the fridge to slow down all ripening processes.
Ethylene Gas in Bananas
Fruits and other organic material generally produce ethylene gas to regulate ripening.
Putting your bananas close to other fruits and vegetables can cause it to ripen faster than usual.
This is why it is recommended to place your bananas away from other produce to keep them fresh longer.
Wrapping the stems of bananas can slow down the ripening process.
This technique locks in ethylene gas emissions from the fruit and prevents it from spreading to the pulp. In effect, it prolongs its freshness.
Improperly storing bananas sometimes causes bruises, which lead to more ethylene emissions.
Since more ethylene means faster ripening, hang those bananas somewhere secure to prevent bruising and prolong its shelf life.
Once they ripen, you could retain that quality for at least five more days by wrapping the stems and putting them inside the chiller.
Make sure no other fruits and vegetables are placed there with it.
If you want to prepare these ripe bananas for a chilled dessert, store them in the freezer for a short time, just enough that you can still peel the bananas and easily slice through the pulp.
This method will keep the pulp fresh while chilling it for a good banana split dessert.
Peeled some bananas but realized you won’t be needing them all? That’s okay!
Squeeze a lemon to coat some citrus juice over them to keep them from turning brown and unappetizing.
Then, put it in the fridge for same-day consumption, or stick it in an airtight bag or container and put it in the freezer for a much later use.
Sliced or Mashed
Using the same procedure with peeled bananas, prevent sliced or mashed bananas from turning unsightly and spoiled by giving it some citrus bath.
You can use lemon, lime, orange, or pineapple juice for this technique.
If you do not want that sour taste when it comes time to consume them, dilute the lemon or lime juice in water before tossing it together.
For mashed bananas, just add a few teaspoons of the citrus juice to slow down the oxidation process.
Where Is the Best Place to Store Bananas?
As with any other fruit, you would want to store bananas at room temperature and in a clean, dry place in your pantry.
When trying to prolong the shelf life of your bananas, put them in the fridge in a stable position to prevent bruising.
Make sure to put your bananas in sealed bags or airtight containers when putting them in the fridge for use at a later time.
How to Tell When Bananas Have Gone Bad
This is relatively easy, as bananas have been a part of our diet for a very long time.
Turning black is a sign of a banana that has gone bad.
You do not want to consume bananas when the skin has turned dark brown or black, especially when you see liquid oozing from inside the pulp.
Spoiling bananas are very soft, have a dark-colored pulp, may smell very badly, and may sometimes have molds growing around its skin. Discard these bananas immediately.
Can’t wait to use or eat those bananas? There are times when you can’t just wait for bananas to be fully ripe.
Make sure to put them beside apples or any other fruit to regulate more ethylene gas and speed up the ripening.
On the other hand, overripe bananas have this level of sweetness that make them the right choice for making scrumptious banana bread.
If you love baking, you can put your overripe bananas to good use by baking some banana bread.
Overripe bananas, when eaten raw, have that funky smell and unpleasant taste that make you want to throw it out.