Top 10 ways to use up ripe bananas

Have some over-ripe bananas languishing in the fruit bowl? Put them to good use with our leftover recipes.


A limp banana turning the wrong shade of brown is a common sight – the slim turnover period between the perfect banana and over-ripeness means we’re sometimes caught short.  When a banana loses its firmness it becomes hard to eat as a snack, but it can be mashed and used up in a number of thrifty ways.

Buying and storing bananas

Consider the shelf life when buying bananas. If you want to eat them over the course of the week, choose ones that have green tinges on the ends as they can be ripened at home. To eat straight away, choose bananas with small patches of black on the skin, which is a sign of ripeness. Store in a fruit bowl rather than the fridge, as the cold temperature will make the skins go black. They’ll also make everything else in the fridge smell like bananas.

Our favourite ways with over-ripe bananas...

Brazil and banana breadBanana bread

A popular way of using up bananas is in a loaf or bread, and we have no shortage of recipes to keep you busy. Try a traditional loaf with icing, team it with Brazil nuts, or go healthy and eat a trimmer version with low-fat spread for breakfast.

Brilliant banana loaf

Watch this video on how to make our brilliant banana loaf:


Chocolate baked bananasBaked bananas

Let your soft and squidgy bananas meld in heavenly fashion with chocolate buttons in these whole baked bananas. If it’s not barbecue season, they’ll cook perfectly well in the oven. Contrast all the steaming gooey sweetness with a dollop of ice cream.

Chocolate baked bananas


Microwave banana puddingMicrowave banana pudding

The mashable nature of over-ripe bananas means they can easily be worked into a cake batter. This cheat’s pud takes merely 20 minutes in the microwave, making it an ideal low-maintenance midweek pud.

Microwave banana pudding


banana ice creamQuick banana ice cream

You don't need a fancy churner to enjoy homemade ice cream. For this version, chop your ripe bananas then freeze on a tray. Once frozen, whizz in a food processor with milk. It even counts towards your five-a-day - what more could you ask for?

Quick banana ice cream


Hazelnut and banana smoothieBanana smoothie

Another way of getting benefits from nutritious, potassium-rich bananas is to blitz them into a smoothie. Hazelnuts, mango, citrus fruits and berries all complement bananas in rather fine fashion.

Banana, clementine & mango smoothie
Banana, honey & hazelnut smoothie
Forest fruit & banana smoothie

Banana pancakesBanana pancakes

Go stateside at brunch time and flip up some fluffy pancakes with banana two-ways - sliced into thin rounds and mashed into the batter. Team with crispy bacon and syrup. Elvis would approve...

Banana pancakes with crispy bacon & syrup


Dotty banana fairy cakesBanana fairy cakes

Use up your mushy bananas in a traditional sponge. These cake sale-friendly cupcakes with retro icing will go down a storm with kids.

Dotty banana fairy cakes


Chocolate and banana French toastFrench toast

This decadent fried sandwich will work as a brunch dish or pudding, but it’s not for the faint-hearted -  double cream, maple syrup, chocolate and mashed banana combined will knock your socks off.

Chocolate & banana French toast


Feelgood flapjacksFeelgood flapjacks

Be a little more virtuous with a nutritious flapjack, packed with hidden apple and banana, healthy seeds, chewy apricots and peanut butter.

Feelgood flapjacks


Blueberry and banana muffinsBanana & blueberry muffins

Earn brownie points by tucking one of these fruity muffins into a lunchbox. If you prefer, you can swap the buttermilk for yogurt.

Banana & blueberry muffins


Are you a serial banana offender regularly faced with a browning bunch? We’d love to hear your serving suggestions…



Comments, questions and tips

Sign in or create your My Good Food account to join the discussion.
29th Nov, 2017
When I make banana bread or a banana cake I hardly add sugar. Over-ripe bananas are very sweet. I also mash them, add some chocolate chips or nuts or whatever you have in the larder; then I add rolled oats and mix them till I have a sticky dough. Then I form the dough into small balls, put them on a lined baking sheet and put them in the oven till they are firm. The children love them and at least they are eating oats!
23rd Feb, 2016
banana jam :) a quick google will give lots of recipes!
6th Dec, 2014
The bananas in the picture above don't look over-ripe to me!
Be the first to ask a question about this recipe...Unsure about the cooking time or want to swap an ingredient? Ask us your questions and we’ll try and help you as soon as possible. Or if you want to offer a solution to another user’s question, feel free to get involved...
16th Apr, 2016
Banana pancakes, I have a friend who is coeliac, I do banana omelettes that are just as good, two eggs whisked with one mashed banana (the older the better for flavour) and fryou a tablespoon full off a time. Really tasty
8th Mar, 2016
Make "dirty bananas": simply place the whole, unpeeled bananas in a medium hot oven until the skin has gone totally black - about 10 to 15 minutes. Carefully remove them from the oven (they will be very soft) and transfer onto plates. Cut the skin lengthways and open up, without removing the skin which will make a sort of a bowl around the fruit. From this point, there are various options for toppings: Dollop salted caramel and chocolate sauce over the banana; serve with or without cream. Pour coconut cream and chocolate sauce over the banana. Add chopped stem ginger and pour chocolate sauce over the banana. Add chopped stem ginger and pour coconut cream over the banana. For adults: Pour rum and double cream on top. Serve immediately while still hot. The "bowl" of banana skin will retain the sauces close to the fruit, so you don't need masses of topping.
27th Feb, 2014
A favorite way of using over-ripe bananas in Spain is, leave until the skin is black, this insures that most is converted to sugar, Peel 2 bananas and mash with a fork until smooth, sprinkle with Demarera sugar and then pour brandy on top until covered.Pop in fridge over night next day spoon some on top of custard, heaven!