Can you eat banana peels and are they good for you? Instead of tossing the banana skin in the trash, read on to find out why they may be good for you and how you can eat them.
Bananas are America’s favorite fruit; even the beloved apple comes in second place on the list of the most sold fruits in America. Bananas are a great source of vitamin B-6, vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, and manganese.
The banana peel was once thought to be a cause of indigestion. Some nutritionists today, however, believe you should eat banana peels for their high fiber content to actually aid the digestion process.
Because it’s custom in America to throw away the banana peel, little is known about the benefits of eating banana peels. However, a 2018 study suggests that eating banana peels may be a good source of phytosterols, a plant compound that might help you lower your cholesterol.
Another Reason to Eat Banana Peels: Avoid Food Waste
The USDA says Americans waste 30 to 40 percent of the food they buy, so maybe it’s time we save the banana peel from landfills — like so many other savvy countries with sweet and savory cuisines. Find out how else to cut down on food waste in our picture gallery.
Did you know that even the leaves, which are another part of the banana plant that usually goes to waste, can be processed into something useful? Check out our guide on it: Banana Fiber — The Material for Sustainable Fashion From Tree Waste?
How You Can Eat Banana Peels: 3 Recipe Ideas
Wondering how you can eat banana peels? It’s easy, you can eat them cooked, frozen, or even just raw! Here are three recipe ideas that make great use of banana peels.
1. Simple Smoothie Recipe
Bananas taste a lot sweeter when they’re frozen. Check out our guide on how to freeze bananas correctly, including some additional recipe ideas. You can toss a whole banana and its peel into the blender, add a cup of water, orange juice, or plant milk, and whip up a refreshing smoothie in no time.
Also interesting: What Is the Best Plant-Based Milk, and Should You Make the Swap?
2. Vegan Carne Mechada
Boil, shred and then sauté your banana peels to cook up a delicious vegan pulled pork alternative often eaten in Venezuela.
3. Indian Chutney
Chutney is a delectable accompaniment (not to call it a sauce) found next to many South Indian dishes. Impress your friends with your culinary and sustainability skills by soaking six or so banana peels in cold water before simmering them in a mix of spices.
You can find seven other (non-food) ways to put banana peels to use in our guide on the topic:
The Danger of Eating Banana Peels
Banana peels are not harmful in themselves. However, if you don’t make sure to buy organic bananas and wash the banana peels thoroughly before you cook them, you can risk ingesting some of the chemicals used in pesticides stuck on the peel.
Tip: wash all your produce before you store it away. Those fruits and veggies made a long journey from the farm to your fridge, and you never know what might be stuck to their skin.
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