Can Bananas Be Refrigerated? Everything You Need to Know
Bananas aren’t only a delicious snack, they’re also packed with potassium and essential nutrients. Unfortunately, they tend to ripen and go bad quickly before you get to enjoy them.
So, you’re probably wondering, can bananas be refrigerated? And will it slow down the ripening process?
Look no further for the answers! In today’s article, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about refrigerating bananas and making them last longer.
Can Bananas Be Refrigerated?
The answer is yes! You can refrigerate bananas and keep their health benefits.
However, you need to understand that cool temperatures slow down the ripening process. Therefore, if you refrigerate unripe, green bananas, it’ll take a longer time for them to become ripe.
In fact, they might stay unripe. That’s because storing an unripe fruit in the fridge can cause a “chilling injury” to the fruit, which stops the ripening process.
As you probably know, unripe bananas taste bitter. For that reason, you need to carefully pick the bananas you store in the fridge.
In case you bought unripe ones, you can simply leave them on the countertop, where they can ripen naturally. According to the US Department of Agriculture, the best temperature for storing bananas for short periods, like transportation, is 56 to 58 °F.
Things to Consider When Refrigerating Bananas
Before storing your delicious fruit in the fridge, there are a few things you need to consider. Let’s check them out.
Moisture can speed up the rotting process. For this reason, you should store your yellow treats in an airtight food container.
Keep the Bananas Alone
It’s essential to avoid storing bananas next to other fruits or foods. So, keep your bananas in a separate container.
Bananas release extensive amounts of ethylene gas, which speeds up the ripening of other fruits.
Pressure Leaves Bruises
We all hate those brown bruises on bananas. Did you know that any pressure on a part of a banana will likely cause this part to turn brown?
For this reason, many people prefer hanging bananas instead of packing them in containers. However, this won’t be possible to do in a fridge! So, you can simply avoid placing heavy items on the bananas to keep those brown bruises away.
What Happens to Bananas in Refrigerators?
Typically, bananas grow in hot climates. So, they don’t adapt to cold temperatures.
Some enzymes enable bananas to ripen and become sweet. In cold temperatures, these enzymes become inactive, so they might stay green for longer periods.
Can You Refrigerate Sliced Bananas?
As you probably know, sliced bananas discolor in no time. So, don’t slice your banana you’re not ready to eat it right away.
That said, let me tell you about a secret trick that can help you keep your sliced bananas as yellow and perfect as they are.
You’ll need to sprinkle the slices with lemon juice. That’s because the lemon juice is acidic, so it’ll lower the pH levels and stop the browning process. Then, wrap them in plastic wrap or place them in an airtight food container. After that, put them in the fridge.
This way, sliced bananas can look and taste good for around three to four days in the fridge.
Can You Store Bananas in the Freezer?
Yes! You can freeze your bananas whole or as slices. In any case, you should store them in an airtight container or a ziplock bag.
As you might think, freezing the bananas will also stop the ripening process. So, you’ll need to freeze them at your preferred ripeness level.
Additionally, the low temperature changes the texture of the fruits. For that reason, frozen bananas can only be suitable for recipes that call for mashing them, like banana bread.
So, can bananas be refrigerated?
The answer is yes! You can refrigerate bananas to keep them from going bad. However, you need to understand that low temperatures can slow or stop the ripening process.
Therefore, you can leave the fruits on the countertop to reach the ideal level of ripeness before you store them in the fridge. Moreover, you need to avoid stacking other fruits on top of your bananas, as this can cause the brown bruises that we all hate.
When refrigerating sliced bananas, I recommend sprinkling some lemon juice on them to stop the browning process. Other than that, go bananas!