Bananas are healthy and packed with potassium which is good for you. But how do you store it the right way so it keeps its flavor?
Bananas can both be stored in the fridge and on the counter. In the fridge, they have to be ripe before storing them, otherwise their texture, flavor, and color could change. On the counter, you have to store them away from direct sunlight or a heat source, among other things.
What other precautions and storage procedures should you observe, and how do you store a banana product like banana bread? Scroll down to find out!
Pros and Cons of Keeping Bananas in the Fridge
It is important to know that if you store bananas in the fridge, they should be ripe. If they’re not, they will get damaged from the cold temperature as they are tropical fruit (source: Oklahoma State University).
The age-old question of whether bananas last longer or stop ripening in the fridge has sparked confusion among banana enthusiasts. In our enlightening article, we uncover the truth behind refrigerating bananas and its impact on their shelf life and ripening process.
According to the USDA, bananas are one of the many fruits most sensitive to refrigeration and freezing. They are susceptible to what is called “chilling injury” and this happens only after a few hours of putting them in the fridge (source: USDA).
Bananas are tropical fruit. They grow and thrive in the hot and humid tropics. Subjecting them to cold temperatures will result in them changing their texture and overall quality.
With that said, if they are ripe and you store them in the fridge, the cold temperature will help slow the ripening process. This means that nothing much will change in the texture of the banana.
Moreover, storing ripe bananas in the fridge will extend their shelf life from a few days (source: University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension) to even up to a week as some people have observed. These bananas should still be good to eat, as long as the refrigerator’s temperature is ideal.
This is a great way to store your ripe bananas, especially if you have plenty of them. We can’t always finish bananas all at once. And for this reason, storing them in the fridge will keep them until you use them such as baking them into a banana cake, bread, muffins, and other desserts!
This may or may not put you off, but storing bananas in the fridge will make them change color and texture. Read our article that uncovers the reasons why you shouldn’t put bananas in the fridge.
Storing them in the fridge when ripe will turn the skin brownish, and the meat still light in color (source: University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension). However, storing them while they are still green will turn the skin of the bananas black and the meat of the banana won’t be fully ripe (source: Foods Guy).
Storing bananas in the fridge will also keep them secured, with no sunlight or insects that could reach them.
Pros and Cons of Keeping Bananas on the Counter
Storing your bananas on the counter is ideal because they will ripen naturally. You may store bananas on the counter up until they are ripe. This will encourage good ripening, where the bananas will achieve their natural qualities in color, texture, smell, etc.
However, in the same way that storing bananas in cold temperatures can cause chilling injury, storing them in hot temperatures can lead to improper and faster ripening (source: USDA).
This is the reason why you shouldn’t place bananas where sunlight can directly reach them. If your kitchen counter has windows where sunlight can penetrate, it would be best to put the bananas somewhere else where sunlight won’t make contact with them.
The same is true for kitchen appliances that emit heat. Don’t place your bananas near the stove, refrigerator, coffee maker, toaster, and others. The heat they produce can affect the proper ripening of bananas.
Another con when storing bananas on the counter is if insects or bugs can reach them. These bugs might have walked or landed on other foods or surfaces and could bring bacteria to the bananas.
We recommend using two baskets, one to place them in, and the other to cover them with. You can also use other things to cover the bananas according to your preference.
Leaving bananas on the counter uncovered could also make them prone to bruising in physical ways. When you accidentally hit the bananas or an object hits them, they can get bruised pretty easily, especially when they’re ripe.
Banana Products and Fridge vs Counter
Banana bread left on the counter will stay moist and close to when it came out of the oven for up to 4 days (source: Baking Kneads). In the fridge, it will keep for approximately a week.
You have to wrap it with cling wrap or put them inside a container. It doesn’t have to be in an airtight container if you’re going to eat it the next day.
This will help keep the moisture and prevent the banana bread from drying.
Another way to store banana bread is to freeze it. The banana bread has to be cool first before wrapping it using a cling wrap or foil and storing it in the freezer. You can also place the banana bread inside an airtight container.
Banana is a healthy and nutritious fruit and makes for a delicious bread or dessert. Knowing the proper way of storing it can make a huge difference for the better.
We hope you found this guide helpful!