How To Use Your Oven To Ripen Bananas

Hey, did you guys know you can ripen bananas in the oven? Call me naive, but I did NOT know this until last weekend. I wanted to make Tropical Mango Banana Bourbon Bread, and I wanted to make it right away. I had already waited for my severely underripe banans to ripen for about a week. And seriously, those things just weren’t budging. They were more green than yellow and hard as rocks, and I wasn’t waiting any longer.

I had heard of the trick of ripening things by putting them in a paper bag with an apple. I’ve had some moderate success with that with underripe avocados, but it still usually takes 2 – 3 days to work it’s magic. And seriously, I really didn’t want to wait any longer.

Enter stage left: a quick Google search. A few different sources told me I could put the bananas in a low oven and ripen those bad boys right up. Here’s what they looked like when I started:

I put them in the oven at the lowest setting my oven would run at (170° F). I baked them for 20 minutes, and the bottoms were starting to darken, so I flipped them over and baked them another 20 minutes. At that point, they looked like this:

Pardon the bad photography – the sun started to set while I was doing this, and I forgot to white-balance the camera between shots. But I can assure you that that’s the same baking pan and the same bananas. Not gonna lie, I may have overdone it a bit. These bananas were so soft on the inside, they were like a creamy paste! This worked out perfectly well for banana bread, although maybe 30 minutes baking time would have been enough. However, I wouldn’t recommend this method for ripening bananas for eating as-is purposes.

There you have it. My little kitchen hacking adventure that got me eating banana bread right away instead of watching bananas never slowly ripen.

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  • https://twitter.com/theautismunited Autism United

    Great tip! We have been having banana shortages here in Ontario, well my little village anyways, and when we can get bananas they are so so green.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13795920193886653278 Lori Yates

    Oh no – sorry to hear about your banana shortages. I actually don’t prefer them on their own (I really only eat them when they’re baked into baked goods…haha). So, if I could ship you my share of bananas from here in Michigan, I would! haha.

  • http://apuginthekitchen.com/ Suzanne

    I never knew this, I have had the same problem with banana’s not ripening, This is a revelation, Thank you for posting this!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13795920193886653278 Lori Yates

    Thanks Suzanne. I debated about whether to even post it or not, but I’m glad I did! I usually try to keep ripened bananas in the freezer, but that doesn’t always happen, so this is another way to work with what you have.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12696451865353565516 Pat Kallio

    This is genius!! Banana bread here I come!!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13795920193886653278 Lori Yates

    Yay Pat! Let me know how long the bananas take to cook in your oven, if you try it.