20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (2023)


    20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (1)Reader's Digest EditorsUpdated: May 25, 2022

      Bananas aren't just the world's most portable snack. You can also use bananas in your beauty routine, to grow houseplants, polish silver, and more.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (2)Gayvoronskaya_Yana/Shutterstock

      Make a Face Mask

      Who needs Botox when you have bananas? That’s right: You can use a banana as an all-natural face mask that moisturizes your skin and leaves it looking and feeling softer. Mash up a medium-sized ripe banana into a smooth paste, then gently apply it to your face and neck. Let it sit for 10-20 minutes, then rinse it off with cold water. Another popular mask recipe calls for ¼ cup plain yogurt, 2 tablespoons honey, and 1 medium banana. Check out more ways to use bananas to improve your hair and skin.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (3)Brent Hofacker/Shutterstock

      Freeze a “Banana-sicle”

      As a summer treat for friends and family, peel and cut four ripe bananas in half (across the middle). Stick a wooden ice-cream stick into the flat end of each piece. Place them all on a piece of wax paper, and then put it in the freezer. A few hours later, serve them up as simply yummy frozen banana-sicles. If you want to go all-out, quickly dip your frozen bananas in 6 ounces melted butterscotch or chocolate morsels (chopped nuts or shredded coconut are optional), then refreeze.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (4)Alliance/Shutterstock

      (Video) Clever uses for bananas (besides eating them)

      Polish Silverware and Leather Shoes

      It may sound a bit like a lark, but using a banana peel is actually a great way to put the shine back into your silverware and leather shoes. First, remove any of the leftover stringy material from the inside of the peel, then just start rubbing the inside of the peel on your shoes or silver. When you’re done, buff up the object with a soft cloth. You might even want to use this technique to restore your leather furniture. Test it on a small section first before you take on the whole chair. Here are more surprising ways to polish silver.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (5)svf74/Shutterstock

      Tenderize a Roast

      Banana leaves are commonly used in many Asian countries to wrap meat as it’s cooking to make it more tender. Some say the banana itself also has this ability. So the next time you fear the roast you’re cooking will turn tough on you, try softening it up by adding a ripe, peeled banana to the pan.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (6)Bozhena Melnyk/Shutterstock

      Brighten Up Houseplants

      Are the leaves on your houseplants looking dingy or dusty? Don’t bother misting them with water; that just spreads the dirt around. Rather, wipe down each leaf with the inside of a banana peel. It’ll remove all the gunk on the surface and replace it with a lustrous shine. Check out more kitchen ingredients that can help your garden grow.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (7)C Levers/Shutterstock

      Deter Aphids

      Are aphids attacking your roses or other plants? Bury dried or cut-up banana peels an inch or two deep around the base of the aphid-prone plants, and soon the little suckers will pack up and leave. Don’t use whole peels or the bananas themselves, though; raccoons, squirrels, gophers, rabbits and other animals will just dig them up. Here are some tips to keep your kitchen bug-free.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (8)Dmitry Bodyaev/Shutterstock

      Use as Fertilizer or Mulch

      Banana peels, like the fruit itself, are rich in potassium, an important nutrient for both you and your garden. Dry out banana peels on screens during the winter months. In early spring, grind them up in a food processor or blender and use them as a mulch to give new plants and seedlings a healthy start. Many cultivars of roses and other plants, like staghorn ferns, also benefit from the nutrients found in banana peels; simply cut up some peels and use them as fertilizer around your established plants. Here are more inedible food scraps that are surprisingly useful.


      (Video) 20 Surprising Uses for Bananas Besides Eating Them #Shorts

      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (9)Enki Photo/Shutterstock

      Remove Warts

      Warts are stubborn and gross, so needless to say nobody wants one. A natural way to remove one is by using a banana peel. Cut a piece of ripe banana peel to cover the affected area, using the inside, and keep it there overnight by using some medical tape. In the morning you should notice some improvement. You can repeat the process nightly until the wart is gone!


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (10)Just dance/Shutterstock

      Attract Butterflies and Birds

      Bring more butterflies and birds to your backyard by putting out overripe bananas (as well as other fruits such as mangos, oranges, and papayas) on a raised platform. Punch a few holes in the bananas to make the fruit more accessible to the butterflies. The fruit is also likely to attract more bees and wasps as well, so make sure that the platform is well above head level and not centrally located on your patio. Moreover, you’ll probably want to clear it off before sunset, to discourage visits from raccoons and other nocturnal creatures. These are the best foods in your kitchen to attract backyard birds.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (11)Jingjits Photography/Shutterstock

      Assist with First Aid

      Banana peels have anti-inflammatory properties, which means they are great when it comes to bug bites, minor scrapes, poison ivy, and sunburn. All you have to do is put the banana peel on the affected area and press it like you would a cool compress. You can repeat this process until you feel some relief.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (12)ELENA PAVLOVICH/SHUTTERSTOCK

      Ripen an Avocado

      Are you an avocado enthusiast? Though you could eat all the avocado toast and guacamole in the world, sometimes avocados just don’t ripen fast enough. In order to satisfy your avocado craving, use a banana to help speed up the ripening process. Bananas release ethylene, which triggers ripening in avocados. Simply place a banana in a brown paper bag and roll it up with an avocado. Check daily until it is ripe enough. Don’t have a banana peel around? Try these tricks to ripen bananas fast.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (13)PTstock/Shutterstock

      Slough Off Dry Skin

      In order to keep your skin feeling smooth and radiant, create a body scrub with a banana. There are many different variations depending on the kind of scrub you need. For a gentle scrub, you can mix a mashed banana with brown sugar. For a medium scrub try mixing in oatmeal or sea salt. If you really need a heavy-duty scrub, grind apricot pits at home and add them to your banana to dig deep into your pores.

      (Video) If YOU see This on Your BANANA, DO NOT EAT IT! 🚨


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (14)donikz/Shutterstock

      Add to the Compost Pile

      With their high content of potassium and phosphorus, whole bananas and peels are welcome additions to any compost pile, particularly in so-called compost tea recipes. The fruit breaks down especially fast in hot temperatures. But don’t forget to remove any glued-on tags from the peels, and be sure to bury bananas deep within your pile (otherwise they may simply turn out to be a meal for a four-legged visitor). Try these simple steps to get started with composting.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (15)Roman Samborskyi/Shutterstock

      Whiten Teeth on the Cheap

      Everyone wants pearly whites, but do you really want to spend all that money on whitening treatments? Banana peels contain citric acid, which will help lighten surface stains on your teeth. For natural teeth whitening at home, after giving your teeth a good brush, simply rub the banana peel on the surface for about two minutes every day. Your smile will not only be whiter, but brighter!


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (16)ISSAH_RUS/Shutterstock

      Get Rid of Splinters

      Splinters can be a real pain, literally and figuratively. The natural enzymes in banana peels can help loosen splinters that just don’t want to seem to get out of your skin. Press the inside of the peel on your skin for up to 30 minutes and it will help move the splinter to the surface for an easy plucking.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (17)Oksana Mizina/Shutterstock

      Make Banana “Ice Cream”

      If you don’t have the time or calories to spare, try making “ice cream” out of bananas. All you have to do is freeze your peeled bananas and blend it in a food processor or blender. The result is an ice cream-like consistency and a satisfied craving. Try adding some peanut butter or shredded coconut as toppings. Here are more deliciousdairy-free frozen desserts.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (18)DMYTRO ZINKEVYCH/SHUTTERSTOCK

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      Create a Dog Treat

      Dogs love human food, but most of the time our cherished pooches cannot digest what we eat. Bananas, however, are foods that our pets can enjoy. They are high in fiber, magnesium, and potassium. Mash up a banana and add it to your dog’s favorite food so they can chow down. Always avoid these toxic foods for dogs.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (19)progressman/Shutterstock

      Restore Dry Hair

      Bananas are great ways to combat that stringy and brittle hair texture. To make a banana hair mask, puree one to three really ripe bananas (depending on your hair length) and then massage it throughout your scalp to your ends. Let it sit for 15 minutes and then rinse it off in the shower and shampoo as usual. Try these other homemade beauty recipes.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (20)5 second Studio/Shutterstock

      Ease Heartburn

      Bananas are an alkaline fruit, which means they may help neutralize acid in the stomach. You can eat bananas regularly as a home remedy for heartburn and GERD. Add a banana to your breakfast to help coat the stomach for the rest of the day.


      20 Clever Uses for Bananas (Besides Eating Them) (21)Aigars Reinholds/Shutterstock

      Fix a Scratched CD

      Is your favorite DVD or CD playlist for the car scratched? Gently rub the scratched part of the disc with the inside of the peel in a circular motion. Wipe off any residue with a soft cloth and then shine it with some glass cleaner. The wax in the banana peel may help fill in the scratches so you can enjoy your treasured disc once more. Be sure you eat at leastsome of the bananas you’re buying. If you don’t eat a banana every day, this will convince you to start.

      Originally Published: November 26, 2019

      Originally Published in Reader's Digest

      (Video) Banana Peel Fertilizer - 3 Ways To Use Banana Skins In Your Garden!


      What are bananas used for other than eating? ›

      Use as fertilizer or mulch

      Many cultivars of roses and other plants, like staghorn ferns, also benefit from the nutrients found in banana peels; simply cut up some peels and use them as plant food around your established plants.

      What else can banana be used for? ›

      Bananas have been grown as crops for thousands of years. Parts of the banana are used for low levels of potassium in the blood (hypokalemia), constipation, and diarrhea. They are also used for diabetes, high cholesterol, and many other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support most of these uses.

      What can I do with lots of bananas? ›

      What to Do with Overripe Bananas
      1. Mash Into Oatmeal. Breakfast is a great time to take advantage of the energy boost that comes from eating the natural sugars in bananas. ...
      2. Blend Into Waffle or Pancake Batter. ...
      3. Make Banana Muffins. ...
      4. Bake Banana Cookies. ...
      5. Add to a Smoothie. ...
      6. Turn Into Ice Cream. ...
      7. Whip Up Beignets.
      Jun 2, 2022

      What happens if you put bananas in your garden? ›

      Banana peels contain: calcium, which promotes root growth helps add oxygen to your soil. magnesium, which assists with photosynthesis. sulphur, which helps plants develop strong roots and repel pests.

      What are things that can be made from banana? ›

      Banana recipes
      • Vegan chocolate banana ice cream. ...
      • Crispy banana fritters (pisang goreng wijen) ...
      • Upside-down banana cake with maple-caramel sauce. ...
      • Fragrant spiced chicken with banana sambal. ...
      • Frozen banana lollies. ...
      • Banana bread. ...
      • Banana bread & butter pudding. ...
      • American-style pineapple & banana pancakes.

      Is it good to rub banana peel on your face? ›

      According to Healthline, banana peel, rich in antioxidants, fibre and essential nutrients, helps brighten the skin and reduce wrinkles. It even acts as a moisturiser and helps in hydrating the skin. Several studies have found banana peel to have anti-inflammatory properties, too just like the fruit.

      What does boiling bananas help with? ›

      They can help keep your cholesterol levels healthy.

      One major benefit of eating boiled bananas is that it may encourage you to choose underripe, green bananas, which have many health benefits. These include reducing the levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in your blood.

      Do banana peels reduce wrinkles? ›

      Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence to support the claim that banana peels can reduce wrinkles or dark spots on the skin.

      Can I freeze whole bananas? ›

      How to Freeze Whole Bananas. Technically, you can freeze unpeeled bananas, but we don't recommend it; they'll stick together more than their peeled counterparts. To freeze whole bananas, peel them completely, line them on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, and put them in the freezer for at least 1-2 hours.

      What happens if you freeze fresh bananas? ›

      If you freeze whole bananas, the peels will turn brown with time in the freezer. This is fine and doesn't affect the flavor of the fruit. However, if your frozen banana slices, chunks, or mash turns brown, the container or bag is not airtight.

      What are the benefits of putting bananas in the fridge? ›

      Stashing your bananas in the refrigerator can slightly prolong the fruit's life—but there's a caveat. When it comes to refrigerating bananas, timing is everything. Refrigerating bananas will slow or stop the ripening process, preserving the fruit at its current state.

      What do bananas do at night? ›

      It turns out; this beloved fruit is the perfect sleep aid. It provides several vitamins and minerals that can improve the quality of your sleep. Bananas reduce stress and anxiety, alleviate muscle cramps, and regulate your sleep-wake cycle with serotonin and melatonin.

      What fruit should you not put near bananas? ›

      Avoid mixing acidic fruits with sweet fruits

      Acidic and sub-acidic fruits such as grapefruits, strawberries, apples, pomegranates, and peaches, should never be combined with sweet fruits such as bananas and raisins. This is because it often leads to digestive problems, nausea, acidosis, and headaches.

      What plants like bananas? ›

      This means potassium-rich banana peels are excellent for plants like tomatoes, peppers or flowers. Banana peels also contain calcium, which prevents blossom end rot in tomatoes.

      What doesn't go with bananas? ›

      • Bananas. Don't eat them if you take ACE inhibitors such as captopril, enalapril and fosinopril among others. ...
      • Grapefruit. ...
      • Milk. ...
      • Black liquorice. ...
      • Kale and other leafy greens. ...
      • Air-dried sausages or aged cheese. ...
      • Coffee. ...
      • Alcohol.
      Jul 16, 2014

      What drink is made from bananas? ›

      In Tanzania, banana wine is made commercially by fermenting peeled, mashed, ripe bananas. Water (to dilute the rather thick banana mash), wine yeast and sugar is added to the "banana mash".

      What is in bananas that make you happy? ›

      “Bananas are a happy fruit as they have tryptophan, which gets converted into serotonin in the body, known to make you relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier," adds Pratima Mishra, clinical nutritionist, Columbia Asia Hospital, Ahmedabad.

      Why should we eat 2 bananas and not 1? ›

      For most healthy people, bananas are a tasty, nutritious fruit. But it's best to just eat one or two a day, as too many could lead to weight gain and nutrient deficiency. Eating a balanced diet is key for optimal health. Bananas are an incredibly popular fruit — and it's no wonder why.

      Why should we eat 2 bananas at a time? ›

      Bananas are a great way to help you get enough potassium each day. Getting enough potassium in your diet may also help lower blood pressure. High blood pressure is one of the leading causes of cardiovascular disease, so eating foods containing potassium daily is an important part of a healthy lifestyle.

      When should you no longer eat bananas? ›

      However, if a banana has begun to grow mold, is releasing liquid, or has an unpleasant smell, it has likely begun to rot and is no longer safe to eat. Because the nutrition composition of the fruit changes as it ripens, you may notice that you digest one level of banana ripeness better than the other.

      Does banana peel whiten teeth? ›

      Banana peels don't do anything to whiten your teeth. Many articles recommend rubbing the peel against your teeth for a few minutes. While this could scrub off some surface stains, it's no more effective than brushing your teeth. Banana peels have no special whitening properties.

      What is banana Botox? ›

      Among the latest crop of TikTok beauty trends is “natural Botox," a hack that entails rubbing the inside of a ripe banana peel on your face to minimize wrinkles. Many women are praising this hack as a cheaper, quicker, and less invasive alternative to Botox injections.

      How to use banana for face wrinkles? ›

      6) Banana face pack for Wrinkles and Fine Lines

      Whip up a banana and add 1 teaspoon of orange juice and plain yogurt. Apply and leave on for 15–20 minutes for younger-looking skin. To further tighten the pores, wash the mask off with cold water.

      Can you freeze bananas in a Ziploc bag? ›

      How long can you freeze bananas? Sliced banana can be stored in the freezer in a ziplock bag or airtight container for up to 3 months.

      Why bananas Cannot be refrigerated? ›

      Bananas grow in hot climates, so they are unused to the cold. If they're kept at a cold temperature, the enzymes that enable them to ripen are inhibited. And as those enzymes become inactive, other enzymes operate more efficiently. Some cause cell damage, while others (browning enzymes) cause the skin to blacken.

      Should eggs be kept in the fridge? ›

      Best practice is to store eggs in the fridge; that way the temperature is always at a constant and your eggs will be fresher!

      Can I drink water after eating banana? ›

      It is recommended to wait for at least 15-20 minutes to drink water after eating a banana.

      What is the best fruit to eat before bed? ›

      Cherries are known for being one of the best foods for sleep as they naturally contain melatonin. Snacking on cherries or drinking cherry juice can help promote longer, deeper sleep.

      Which two fruits Cannot be eaten together? ›

      Avoid mixing your watermelons, muskmelons, cantaloupe and honeydews with other fruits. Try not to mix acidic fruits, such as grapefruits and strawberries, or sub-acidic foods such as apples, pomegranates and peaches, with sweet fruits, such as bananas and raisins for a better digestion.

      What 2 foods should not be eaten together? ›

      Common rules of food combining

      Avoid combining starches and proteins. Avoid combining starches with acidic foods. Avoid combining different types of protein.

      What is the healthiest fruit? ›

      Lemons came out top of the list, followed by strawberry, orange, lime, and pink and red grapefruit. In this article, we look at the nutrition and the many and varied health benefits of these and other fruits you can find in the supermarket.

      What is the banana trick for plants? ›

      How Banana Water is Made
      1. Cut up banana peels into 1 or 2-inch pieces.
      2. Immerse the peels in water.
      3. Steep the peels for two to three days.
      4. After soaking, strain the liquid into a large container or jar.
      5. Add the strained liquid to your plants, pouring it around the outer base of the plant to reach the roots.
      Mar 21, 2023

      What are edible and non edible bananas? ›

      The roots of the banana plants are the only parts that are not consumed as food by humans. The parts of the plant that we can eat are the inner stem, flower, raw banana and ripe banana. They are eaten commonly in South Asia and South-East Asia. The parts we do not eat are its root, leaf and outer peel of stem.

      What is the part of banana that is not used as food called? ›

      All parts of the banana plant - fruits, flowers and stems are used as food. Roots are the only inedible part of a banana plant.

      What do doctors say about bananas? ›

      Bananas contain essential nutrients that may enhance heart health, help manage blood pressure, and boost a person's mood, among other benefits. Eating bananas can help lower blood pressure and may reduce the risk of cancer.

      Are banana peels actually edible if cooked? ›

      If you've been wondering if you can eat raw, cooked or even frozen banana peels, the answer is yes! If you are going to eat your banana peel, know that—just like the fruit itself—the riper the peel, the sweeter it will taste.

      Are the strings on bananas edible? ›

      They have an important purpose: they distribute nutrients throughout the fruit. They are completely edible even though they seem a bit gross.

      Are banana skins edible for humans? ›

      But contrary to what many people believe, banana peels are not only safe to eat, they also offer a number of health benefits. In addition to the nutritional benefits of eating banana peels, there are environmental benefits as well.

      What parts of the banana are edible by humans? ›

      The inner stem, flower, and fruit (raw banana and ripe banana) are all edible portions of the plant. They're widely consumed in South and Southeast Asia. The root, leaf, and outer peel of the stem are the only components that are not consumed.

      Can you eat the inside of a banana tree? ›

      The tender inner stem of the tree is very nutritious too. Thanks to the stem being able to prevent many ailments, it clearly qualifies as a superfood. In many southern Indian states, homes with a garden would often have a banana tree and could provide the house with the fruit and stem.

      What is the flower of banana? ›

      The banana flower, often called banana blossom, is a pendulum that forms below the last bunch of unripe bananas. It has a cone shape and its leaves (bracts) have a purple colour which resembles a heart.

      Are bananas good for arthritis? ›

      Bananas and Plantains are high in magnesium and potassium that can increase bone density. Magnesium may also alleviate arthritis symptoms.

      Do bananas lower your blood pressure? ›

      Bananas. These are rich in potassium, a nutrient shown to help lower blood pressure, says Laffin. One medium banana provides about 375 milligrams of potassium, about 11 percent of the recommended daily intake for a man, and 16 percent for a woman.

      Do bananas help you sleep? ›

      Do bananas help you sleep? Bananas are an excellent source of magnesium and potassium which help relax overstressed muscles and make them an ideal go-to snack before bed. They also contain all-important tryptophan to stimulate production of those key brain calming hormones.

      Why we should not eat banana at night? ›

      But as per Ayurveda, banana can lead to mucus production and eating this fruit at night can choke your throat. Apart from this, banana is a heavy fruit and our stomach takes a lot of time to digest it. This is because our metabolism is the lowest at night. Eating bananas at night might lead to stomach issues.

      What is the best time to eat banana? ›

      Our stomach takes a long time to digest a banana. On top of that, our body's metabolism is at its lowest in the night. Therefore, one should ideally consume bananas in the morning or the evening and must avoid eating them at night.


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