Healthy Banana Recipes
- Banana Corn Fritters
- Banana Cream Layer Cake
- Banana-Kiwi Salad
- Banana-Nut-Chocolate Chip Quick Bread
- Caramelized Bananas
- Chocolate-Hazelnut Banana Splits
- Frozen Chocolate-Covered Bananas
- Gingersnap-Banana Frozen Yogurt
- Roasted Halibut with Banana-Orange Relish
- Spicy Banana Ketchup
- Healthy Banana Recipes
What you get
At 105 calories, a medium (7 1/2-inch) banana is a nutrient powerhouse, providing vitamin B6 (22% Daily Value), vitamin C (15% DV), potassium (12% DV), magnesium (8% DV), folate (6% DV) and 3 grams fiber. It also has virtually no fat, sodium or cholesterol.
- Shopping Tips
- Unlike most other fruits, bananas are able to be picked while still very green. They are best for eating when their skin ripens to yellow and starches convert rapidly to sugars.
- Banana Varieties
- 1. Baby Banana—Now appearing in many supermarkets, this variety is also known as the ladyfinger banana, bananito or murapo. The sweetest of the commercial bananas, it tastes of cinnamon, guava and pineapple. When to eat: Its thick skin turns yellow with black spots when ripe.
- 2. Red Banana—This smallish mahogany-colored fruit, also called Indio, Cuban Red, Jamaican Red, Macaboo and Morado, hails from Ecuador and Central America. Its creamy white to pink flesh has a slight raspberry flavor and floral aroma. Higher in vitamin C than yellow varieties, it is also rich in carotene: the redder the color, the more carotene it contains. When to eat: The skin should be bronze-black and yield to gentle pressure.
- 3. Manzano Banana—Also known as the “apple banana,” the stubby Manzano has a sweet taste reminiscent of apples and strawberries. When to eat: Its thick skin will be heavily mottled with black, but color isn’t always the best indicator: it should yield to gentle pressure before eating (when unripe, Manzanos can be very tannic).
- 4. Cavendish Banana—The most common variety in North American supermarkets is cultivated by the majority of large-scale banana growers for worldwide distribution. When to eat: Allow to ripen at room temperature and consume after its skin fully changes from green to yellow.
- Storage Tip
- Ripe bananas can be refrigerated, although this blackens the skins. A yellowing banana emits generous amounts of ethylene gas, which can help hasten the ripening of tomatoes, avocados, green bananas and other fruits when enclosed together in a paper or plastic bag.
When given a choice of conventional or organic bananas, animals at the Copenhagen Zoo opt for organic. According to their keepers, chimpanzees and tapirs devour organic bananas, skin and all, while the dexterous primates peel conventionally grown bananas before consumption.