There will be no more bananas wasted. They're on the counter top and threatening to turn brown before your eyes. But this time, you're going to win the battle and freeze them in their just-ripe glory. Thanks to your mission, you'll have healthy, convenient snacks for your little one all while avoiding yet another wasted bunch of bananas.
1 Freeze whole bananas to save for snacks that even picky eaters will enjoy — smoothies, muffins, banana bread. First, fill a small bowl with lemon juice; it is the magic ingredient that stops bananas from turning brown. Remove the banana peel and dip the banana into the lemon juice. Place the lemon-coated banana in a sealable baggie and place the bag in the freezer. When you're ready to make your child her snack, let the frozen bananas thaw out on the counter top or put them in a bowl and defrost them in the microwave.
2 Make some frozen banana chunks for your youngster to snack on. Peel the banana, cut it into slices or chunks and lay the pieces on a wax paper-covered baking sheet to flash freeze them. Place the baking sheet in the freezer until the banana pieces are frozen and then transfer them into an airtight container or sealable bag. Store the container in the freezer until your child is ready for her treat. If your toddler's molars are coming in, the frozen banana chunks can help soothe her mouth while she's teething.
3 Surprise your youngster with frozen chocolate-covered banana pops on special occasions. Peel a banana, cut it in half and insert a lollipop stick into each piece. Stick the bananas in the freezer until frozen — about two hours. Melt milk chocolate or candy melts in a microwave safe bowl in two-minute increments on a low setting until completely melted. You can stir in some peanut butter half way through if you'd like. Lay your frozen bananas on a wax paper-covered sheet and spoon the chocolate mixture onto the bananas. Now you can coat your banana pops in all kinds of toppings, like crisped rice cereal, coconut, sprinkles or colored sugar. Freeze the treat for 20 to 30 minutes on a baking sheet and that's it — now you have a tasty treat with a healthy center.
Items you will need
- Lemon juice
- Small bowl
- Sealable bag
- Wax paper
- Baking sheet
- Lollipop sticks
- Milk chocolate or candy melts
- Microwave-safe bowl
- Peanut butter (optional)
- Crisped rice cereal (coconut, sprinkles or colored sugar)
- Pops!: Icy Treats for Everyone; Krystina Castella
- Noel Hendrickson/Digital Vision/Getty Images