If you have a bunch of bananas that you want to keep fresh, there are a few things that you can do to make sure that they last as long as possible.
This simple foil hack is the most effective. So let’s see how to keep bananas fresh with foil to keep them from ripening and turning brown quickly. I’ll also share some other tips that will help you store bananas properly and keep them fresh for longer.
How To Keep Bananas Fresh Longer – A Simple Foil Hack
Green bananas are best stored at room temperature, taking about one to five days to fully ripen.
On day two, the green color starts to fade, and the skin becomes light yellow; on days three and four, bananas become bright yellow; on day five, they start to develop brown spots, and from there on, they become entirely brown or even black.
However, you can slow down the ripening process using aluminum foil.
- Remove bananas from their plastic packaging right after reaching home. Bananas wrapped in a plastic bag would ripen faster, within a day or two.
- Use a knife or carefully break off and separate bananas from the bunch. Make sure that you leave the stem of each piece intact. You just want to remove the thick part, called the crown, that keeps the banana bunch together.
- Apply some vinegar or lemon juice to the stem parts where you made cuts to remove bananas from the crown.
- Cut about two inches wide aluminum foil pieces and wrap them tightly around the stem of each banana. You want to make sure that the stem becomes as airtight as possible so that no gas can escape from the stems. You can also put a rubber band around the aluminum foil to make sure it stays in place.
- Use the same approach to seal the stems of all bananas. If you don’t have aluminum foil, you can use beeswax wrap or plastic wrap for the same purpose.
- After that, place them on the spot in your kitchen or pantry that doesn’t receive direct sunlight. It should be dark, dry, and cool, away from heat sources such as a window, heater, or stove. You also need to make sure that you don’t store them directly next to other fruits.
Using this approach will prevent the ethylene gas from escaping from bananas to keep them edible for up to 10 days at room temperature.
Why Does Aluminum Foil Keep Bananas Fresh For Longer?
Just like many fruits, bananas release ethylene gas naturally. This gas controls enzymatic browning that leads to the ripening of not just the banana, but it can also accelerate the ripening process of other fruits nearby.
Most of the ethylene gas is released from the stem of bananas. When you wrap aluminum foil around the stem, the gas release is significantly reduced, which is very effective for slowing down enzymatic browning as well as ripening.
It’s one of the most effective and easiest methods to keep bananas fresh for longer.
While you can simply wrap aluminum foil around the crown of the whole bunch, it won’t make it as airtight as wrapping them individually. Therefore, I recommend you break apart the bunch and apply aluminum foil to the stem of each banana separately.
Other Ways To Keep Bananas From Turning Brown
Other than using aluminum foil, you can also use the following storage methods to slow down the banana ripening process.
1. Use a Banana Hanger
Placing bananas on a kitchen countertop or any other hard surface increases the risk of bruising. The banana flesh is exposed to the oxygen in the environment when it gets bruised or damaged. It also allows more ethylene gas to escape, accelerating the ripening process.
Using a banana hanger will help you prevent bruising, and it also ensures even air circulation. It won’t slow the ripening process as significantly as the foil hack, but it will keep it from accelerating.
2. Use a Banana Saver
Another effective method to prevent bruising is to use a banana saver or pod. You can use this purpose-made storage container to store one banana at a time to keep the fruit from getting squashed up.
This solution comes in handy if you need to take the banana for your lunch or a snack later and keep it in your bag.
3. Store Bananas In The Refrigerator
As mentioned earlier, this tropical fruit is best ripened at room temperature. It should only be refrigerated once they have reached the ripeness level, where you will start to see some brown spots appearing.
You shouldn’t refrigerate green bananas as that could cause what is called ‘chilling injury,’ giving bananas a bitter taste and rubbery texture. However, to safely store bananas in the fridge and protect them from chilling injury, use this unique bag that is designed to keep bananas from ripening.
So, if you have green bananas and you don’t have a banana storage bag, use any of the methods discussed above until they’re fully ripened. After that, place your fully ripe bananas in your refrigerator.
Bananas that have reached full ripeness, that are soft to touch, have a bright yellow color with few brown spots, and no green on the stems will last extra 5 to 7 days when stored in the fridge.
It’s important to note that the skin of the fruits will turn brown within two to three days in the refrigerator. However, the flavor and taste will remain the same for up to five to seven days.
These brown bananas are still perfectly edible and have a soft texture and sweet taste. Because of their appearance, they may not look that appealing to eat on their own. Still, they are absolutely perfect for making moist and delicious 3 ingredient banana bread.
4. Store Bananas In The Freezer
If you want to prevent bananas from going brown for more than a month, consider placing them in your freezer. Use aluminum foil or plastic wrap to wrap the entire fruit and place them in your freezer.
Another method is to peel and slice the fruit, put them on the tray and place it in the freezer. Then, wait until they become solid and transfer them to a resealable freezer bag.
Make sure that you squeeze out excess air as much as possible before you seal the bag. These frozen bananas will remain fresh for up to three months and are absolutely great to use in smoothies and protein shakes.
In addition, always label the bags with a date to make sure that you use the fruit before it goes stale.
5. Use Citrus
If you have already peeled bananas, you can use lime or lemon juice to preserve their freshness. The citric acid present in lemon or lime juice slows down oxidation, preventing the fruit from turning brown.
Slice your peeled bananas and put them into a bowl. After that, add one or two teaspoons of lemon or lime juice along with a tablespoon of water to the bowl. Carefully give it a mix to coat the slices, then cover the bowl with plastic wrap and place the bowl in the fridge for up to three to four days.
Does Wrapping Tin Foil Around Bananas Keep Them Fresh?
Yes, wrapping tin foil, aluminum foil, as well as bees wrap or plastic wrap around the banana stem keeps it fresh for an extra 2 to 3 days. It minimizes the rate at which ethylene gas is released from the fruit and slows down the ripening process.
What Is the Best Way To Keep Bananas From Ripening Too Fast?
Wrapping the stem of the banana with aluminum foil is the best way to keep it from ripening too fast. You need to break apart the banana bunch by separating each fruit and then tightly wrap aluminum foil around each stem. Store at room temperature away from other fruits.
How Do Supermarkets Keep Bananas Fresh?
Because bananas are one of the supermarket’s best-selling food items, they are constantly being replaced without requiring long storage time. Also, bananas are picked and shipped very green so that they will arrive at the supermarket still green, giving them enough time to be sold and fully ripened at home.
Should I Store Bananas In Light Or Dark?
Wheater you store your bananas in light or dark does not make a drastic difference in their ripening. However, it is recommended to keep bananas in the dark yet well-ventilated place in a cooler part of your kitchen, ideally around 54°F (12°C).
How To Store Bananas To Prevent Fruit Flies?
Be sure to check your bananas as soon as you return from the store and get rid of any fruit flies or their eggs that may have come with the fruit. Keep your bananas away from empty cans, bottles, trash bags, and other fermenting fruits or vegetables. Fruit flies can’t stand the smell of peppermint, lemongrass, eucalyptus, clove, and lavender. If there are some fruit flies in your kitchen, try placing these herbs around your bananas.
By following these simple steps above, you can keep your bananas fresh and delicious for a more extended period. Unless you are planning to eat them straight away or make banana bread, be sure to pick bananas that are still green, full, and plump, without any bruises.
The peel’s moist, depressed, damaged, and dark areas are usually a sign the banana is bruised inside. Also, if they look gray and dull, don’t buy them as they have probably been overheated or chilled during the transport.