How to keep bananas from turning brown: Store it properly to maintain freshness

Did you know that according to the USDA, a banana is the most popular fresh fruit in the United States? The average American consumes 13.2 pounds of bananas per year! Their affordability, versatility, and all-around deliciousness have made them a household staple for years. However, managing their ripeness can be a frustrating endeavor.

Luckily, we’ve got a bunch of tricks to help you make the most of your banana stash. From genius hacks to keep your bananas ripe and fresh for longer to innovative uses in the kitchen, let these be your guide to banana mastery. Whether you're a long-time banana enthusiast or just dipping your toe into the world of this fruit’s culinary possibilities, there’s a hack in here for everyone!

Watch the video above to learn how to keep bananas fresh so they last longer and ways to use them.

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How to keep bananas fresh so they last longer and ways to use them

  • Wrap the stems with plastic wrap to keep the bananas ripe for longer or to stop them from becoming overripe too quickly. This method slows down the release of ethylene gas, which is responsible for ripening fruits.

  • Prevent sliced bananas from browning by dipping them in lemon juice or orange juice. The citric acid in the juice helps to slow down the oxidation process, keeping the bananas looking fresh for longer.

  • Bananas can be a useful and tasty substitute for eggs in some recipes like brownies, cookies, muffins, and cupcakes. Substitute one banana for one egg to add moisture and binding properties to your baked goods.

  • There’s no wrong way to peel a banana. You can peel it from the top and bottom or even give the banana a light tug in the center to break it into two clean, even halves. This flexibility in peeling makes bananas convenient and easy to enjoy.

  • Need to quickly ripen a banana? Preheat your oven to 300°F. With the peel still on, place the banana directly onto the oven’s baking rack. Check on the banana after 5 minutes. If it hasn't ripened enough, wait 5 more minutes or until the peel is dark brown. Let the banana cool for a few minutes before using it. The oven will help caramelize the sugars in the banana, making it sweeter and more flavorful.

  • If your bananas are getting too ripe, don't throw them away! Peel them, cut them into chunks, and store them in a freezer bag or container. Frozen bananas are great for making creamy and delicious banana ice cream or adding to smoothies. Defrosted, overripe bananas are also perfect for making delicious banana bread.

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: How to keep bananas fresh: Hacks to make the fruit last longer