It’s something that many of us want to know, can you freeze bananas with the peel on?
You’ll typically hear that it’s best to peel bananas and even slice them first before freezing.
However, I’m sure you’ll agree that this can be a bit of a hassle.
Surely, the peel acts as a protective barrier, and therefore it should be fine to freeze bananas whole and unpeeled, right?
Allow me to explain the ins and outs of freezing bananas with the peel intact.
You can freeze bananas with the peel on, although this isn’t usually recommended. The production of ethylene will turn the banana peel brown very quickly. With that being said, this will give your bananas a delightful taste, but they will be quite difficult to peel once defrosted. The peel tends to stick to the fruit, and this will naturally mash the banana as you try to peel it. This is generally why it’s better to peel bananas prior to freezing.
1. Will Frozen Bananas Be a Nightmare to Peel?
The main reason you’ll hear that it’s better to peel bananas before freezing them is because of the difficulty of peeling them afterward.
Firstly, due to the natural production of ethylene, which is part of the ripening process, you’ll notice that the peel goes brown almost immediately upon freezing.
However, there’s not actually anything wrong with this.
In fact, it will make your bananas deliciously sweet.
With that being said, you’ll generally find that the peel sticks to the banana far more than the non-frozen variety.
You’ll need to allow your whole bananas to thaw prior to even attempting to peel them.
But, as I say, you’ll notice that the peel clings to the fruit, and so the process can be fairly time-consuming.
Furthermore, be prepared to create a bit of a mess.
You’ll find that as you peel your defrosted bananas that this will naturally mash them.
With that being said, there is one great advantage to this.
2. Are Frozen Bananas With the Peel On Great For Recipes?
If you’re specifically looking to use your bananas in a recipe, especially for baking, then mashing them as you unpeel them could be ideal.
Some of the more common banana recipes include banana bread, muffins, cakes, or pancakes.
And all of these call for mashed banana as an ingredient.
Additionally, you may even be better off freezing bananas whole and with the peel on if you’re looking to bake with them afterward.
As I’ve mentioned, due to the peel sticking to the flesh and turning brown very quickly, you’ll find that your bananas become very, very sweet.
This is, of course, just what you’re looking for when baking with bananas.
In fact, it’s not unheard of to look for ways to ripen bananas quickly in order to use them in a recipe.
So, in effect, you could freeze whole bananas with the peel on for a few hours.
Then defrost them for another few hours, although I wouldn’t recommend using the microwave.
Once it comes time to peel them, not only will they be extremely sweet, but part-mashed as well.
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3. How Are You Going to Use Your Frozen Bananas?
As I’ve alluded to above, it all comes down to what you intend to do with your bananas prior to freezing them.
As you can see, if you’re looking to use them in a recipe, then freezing them whole and unpeeled is fine.
However, if you’re simply looking to eat your bananas or perhaps use them as a topping, then there are better ways to freeze them.
In fact, you should actually unpeel your bananas, slice them, and then squeeze some lemon juice over them.
The lemon won’t affect the taste, but it will ensure that your bananas don’t turn brown.
Then you should place them in a Ziploc bag, and you can freeze them for up to 3 months.
Once removed and defrosted, they can be eaten as a snack and are perfect for adding to your oats, as a topping for pancakes, or on other desserts.
So, I hope you understand that you can freeze bananas with the peel on, although this does depend on how you intend to use them afterward.
The peel will stick to the flesh once thawed, thus making it quite difficult to peel.
However, this will impart a really sweet taste, as well as naturally mashing the bananas while you peel them.
This is ideal if you intend to use bananas for baking or as part of a recipe.
However, if you simply wish to eat the bananas or use them as a topping, then a better option would be to unpeel and slice your bananas prior to freezing.
On a similar subject, have you noticed that banana peels get thinner as they ripen?