Best Banana Substitutes for 2021
Bananas are one of the best fruits to eat when you are trying to lose weight. They contain low glycemic index, which means they will not cause your blood sugar levels to spike and crash as other fruits can. Bananas also contain plenty of potassium that is good for muscle function and heart health. There are hundreds of health benefits that we can get from this particular fruit, hence it is always served during meals and snacks.
However, what do you do if you do not have this in your kitchen? Many would use different alternatives like sweet potato or plain yogurt, especially in baking. But, to know the best banana substitutes, read more below.
What Are the 10 Best Banana Substitutes
1. Frozen Mango
Mango is a good banana substitute because it does not require any cooking process so you can just add them into recipes without having to worry about anything else. You can even freeze mangoes before adding them to dishes. This way, you can enjoy fresh mango anytime you want. Plus it is the perfect source of potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, and more.
When substituting mango for ripe bananas, make sure to keep their texture similar by cutting off some parts of the skin. Also, be careful with how much water you put on top of the frozen mango since too much moisture may affect its taste. If you need to thaw out the mango first, then place it under running cold tap water until it gets soft enough to cut. You can use 1/2 cup of frozen mango as an alternative for medium bananas.
2. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt has been known to help people who suffer from digestive problems such as constipation. It helps increase fiber intake while reducing cholesterol levels. In addition, it gives a thicker and creamy texture than regular yogurt. But if you want to lessen the sugar content, a regular yogurt would be better.
When using Greek yogurt as a mashed banana substitute, better use other frozen fruit, and sweetener to cover up the sour and tart taste. The same goes if you use sour cream to make a banana muffin.
3. Silken Tofu
A thicker texture than a Greek yogurt is silken tofu. The consistency makes it perfect for smoothies and desserts. However, it tastes neutral flavor and is smooth compared to others. To enhance the flavor, try mixing it with honey or vanilla extract. When used as a banana substitute, one serving should equal 2 tablespoons of silken tofu. This is a great substitute if you are making your smoothie or overnight oats.
4. Coconut Cream
Coconut cream is made from coconut milk but processed differently. Instead of being strained through cheesecloth, coconut cream is whipped to create a thick foam-like substance. Since it is high in fat, it is recommended to consume only small amounts at once. One tablespoon of coconut cream equals 3 tablespoons of coconut oil. Use it instead of heavy whipping cream in baked goods and smoothies. You can use the 1:1 ratio in baking. Just remember not to pour too much because of its high-fat content. Adding chocolate chips will liven up any muffin you make with your baking recipe.
5. Chia Seeds
Chia seeds are tiny black seeds that grow inside cactus plants. They contain omega fatty acids which give chia seeds their ability to absorb liquid quickly. Because they expand when soaked in liquids, they become very useful in creating pudding-type foods. For example, instead of bananas, mix chia seeds with almond milk and maple syrup to form puddings. Or simply soak chia seeds in hot water and let them cool down to get a gel-like mixture. It may not be as sweet as bananas, but it is certainly healthy with a nutty flavor. You just need to add honey, maple syrup, or sugar if you want the food to be sweeter.
6. Sweet Potato
Just like bananas, sweet potato is also versatile. You can bake, fry, roast, or grill it depending on your dish. It also contains a high amount of vitamins and minerals including vitamin A, B complex, C, E, potassium, calcium, and more. So do not worry about replacing bananas with this delicious root vegetable! Simply slice into thin slices and cook over low heat for at least 30 minutes to get a smooth and soft texture. Add cinnamon powder and brown sugar before cooking so that the sweetness will last longer.
7. Oatmeal or Rolled Oats
Oats have long been considered an excellent source of high protein content and nutrients. If you love oatmeal and want to have healthy foods on your menu, then you must know how easy it is to use it as a substitute for bananas in your favorite recipes. It is full of fiber content, hence having it as an alternative will keep your stomach satisfied throughout the day. When substituting, you should consider using half a cup of oatmeal into the mixture. You can opt to blend it first with milk for a smoother outcome.
8. Apple Sauce
Apple sauce has always been known to be good for health since apples are rich in antioxidants. In fact, apple sauce is often served alongside pork dishes. But did you know that it can be a substitute for bananas? Yes, it really works well as a replacement and mixes well with your other simple ingredients, too. Try adding some spices such as cinnamon, ginger, cloves, cardamom, etc. to make it taste better. Also, you can even serve it warm by heating up the pan after blending it with other ingredients. Just remember that every ripe banana is equivalent to 1/2 cup of apple sauce.
Avocados are one of those fruits that people tend to eat without knowing what all benefits they offer. This fruit is packed with essential fats and proteins making it perfect for breakfast items. It provides a creamy texture to the food, especially with baked pastries and smoothies. As a substitute for bananas, get a half cup of ripe avocado and mix it with your healthy foods. The fruit has high sugar content, so it is best to use small portions and just add a natural sweetener like honey.
10. Pumpkin or Canned Pumpkin
Pumpkin or canned pumpkin is another great option for baking because it adds moisture to the dough while keeping its shape intact. However, pumpkin alone does not work well as a substitution for bananas due to its higher fat content. To avoid getting sick from eating unhealthy foods, try mixing canned pumpkin with oats and flaxseed meal. Then, combine these three ingredients together and bake until golden brown. Once cooked, sprinkle some cinnamon powder and vanilla extract onto the top layer for added natural sweetener. This healthy ingredient is better than a banana flavor in baked goods.
What is the best alternative for ripe bananas in banana bread?
Most of the time, applesauce makes the best substitute. Though it cannot be called a banana bread recipe, the flavor, texture, and moisture are still close to having bananas. Because they are a little heavier you might need to consider some baking soda and baking powder.
What is the best substitute for bananas in smoothies?
Frozen bananas or banana puree are used extensively in smoothie recipes because they provide both sweetness and creaminess. They also help thicken the drink when blended with ice cubes. So if you do not feel like drinking banana-flavored drinks, simply replace them with any type of frozen fruit instead. Avocado and frozen mango would be the best fruit for your morning smoothie! These two will give a smoother texture and tasty flavor profile.
What is the best substitute for bananas substitute in muffins?
Bananas have an amazing ability to absorb liquid into their cells, which helps create moistness inside the muffin. If you want to replicate this effect, then go ahead and use mashed sweet potato. You may need to increase the amount of water slightly though.
What fruit is similar to a banana?
A banana is actually very different from most fruits out there. While many fruits contain starch, bananas only contain carbohydrates. Bananas are mostly made up of fructose, glucose, sucrose, and galactose. The closest fruits with banana when it comes to texture, nutrients, and flavor are probably jackfruit, plantain, avocado, mango, and fresh dates. Both fruits share a soft consistency and mild flavor. But unlike bananas, apples don’t have much potassium either.