Let’s go bananas here for a minute. My husband and I were just in the co-op grabbing a few ingredients for Sunny, who loves to bake, and who today needed extra full fat coconut milk for the amazing grain free donut recipe we found. Not to get too off topic, but oh man, are these donuts awesome. I haven’t had a donut in probably 12 years, and these not only taste amazing but won’t leave us with a gut ache. Bake on, my love, bake on! (Now, to head on over to Amazon to purchase one of these for her.)
Ok, back to bananas.
The carb load of an average sized banana is around 25 grams, which has it come in less than apples at around 35 grams. If you’re watching carbohydrate/sugar intake, then you’ll want to limit your intake, however, if you’re not also consuming grains and processed foods, most tolerate bananas just fine. They can create a great boost of energy, and paired with almond or peanut butter, makes for an almost perfect snack.
When I’m grocery shopping I like to purchase an extra bunch of bananas to keep in the freezer for smoothies and ice cream. Below I will share 4 tasty ways to use bananas.
What to do with your extra bunch of bananas
Peel the whole bunch and cut into coins (this is a great job for an older toddler–even our 7 year old calls this an Annie-sized-job, she still loves doing this for me. You can either place them in a single layer on parchment paper on a cookie sheet until frozen, then place them into a freezer ziplock bag, OR, you can just place them in a freezer ziplock bag in a single layer. Tossing them in results in one big frozen chunk that’s tricky to get small pieces when needed.
What to do with your frozen banana coins
Smoothies–When a smoothie recipe calls for a banana, grab 6-7 frozen coins and toss them in. They not only sweeten the smoothie but also thicken nicely. If you have leftover smoothie, pour them off into popsicle molds, pop in a popsicle stick and freeze for a future healthy and convenient snack.
Ice Cream–When you find yourself with a hankering for ice cream and either can’t tolerate dairy or would rather not eat it, frozen bananas are your stairway to heaven. Toss those coins into a high powered blender with a few tablespoons of full fat coconut milk and blend until soft serve style. We love to grate dark chocolate on top of custard bowls of banana ice cream along with chopped roasted almonds.
Banana Bites–These treats can be made either before or after freezing your banana coins and are also a really fun activity to do with children, even the little ones. Begin by placing your banana coins in a single layer on parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Using a butter knife or child’s size knife, spread nut butter on top of each banana coin. Now, you can either place a chocolate chip (we use Enjoy Life chocolate chips) on the top of each and freeze in a single layer for tasty bite sized treats, OR, you can melt some chocolate chips with coconut oil and drizzle a bit with a small spoon onto the top of each banana coin.
Chocolate Milkshake Smoothie–see below for printable recipe
Chocolate Milkshake Smoothie
- 2 bananas, frozen and chopped if you don't have them in the freezer, then throw in a couple handfuls of ice cubes
- 1 ripe avocado
- 2 Tablespoons nut butter of choice we love peanut butter for this smoothie
- 2 Tablespoons hemp seeds
- 2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp powdered stevia
- 2 scoops Standard Process whey protein powder
- 1 Tablespoon gelatin
- 8 ounces full fat coconut milk
- 2-4 ounces almond milk or to taste/to thin as this smoothie gets thick quick!
- Toss all ingredients into blender and mix to combine.
- For fun, sprinkle top of milkshake smoothies with Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips.
Now that I’ve shared a few of my favorite tips for using bananas, what are some of yours?