10 Best Banana Substitutes

World’s most traded fruit. Fruit that is both a fruit and a berry. Soft, sweet, mushy, used raw or cooked. That is banana. The banana tree is a herb distantly related to ginger, turmeric, and cardamom.

The bananas come from a flower, so they are also considered a berry. There are more than 1000 types of bananas divided into 50 groups. The most known, traded type is Cavendish.

Bananas come in many sizes and colors. There is a variety of bananas for cooking. Their name is plantains. They are less sweeter than regular bananas and contain more starch.

The leaves and flowers of the banana tree are also a staple in Asian, Latin, and Caribbean cuisines. Leaves are used for wrapping food before steaming, and the flowers can be used in curries, salads, and soups.

Bananas can be used in shakes, desserts,  fruit salads,  bread, muffins, or smoothies. You can also steam, roast them or make tasty banana chips. Bananas contain many minerals, vitamins, and fiber therefore you can eat them daily.

If you don’t like bananas or you want to make a smoothie or delicious banana bread but don’t have bananas there are some ingredients you can use as substitutes. For example applesauce or avocado for baking, and oatmeal, mango, or Greek yogurt for smoothies.

Let’s learn more about the best banana substitutes you can use.

Best Banana Substitutes

Bananas can be substitutes for eggs or oil in baking recipes, but what can be a good substitute for bananas in baked goods? Well, it depends on that what is your favorite flavor.

You can use avocado, applesauce, or mashed cooked potato. If you are making smoothies or shakes there is a variety of fruits you can use. Pineapple, mango, avocado, or strawberry you can even use chia seeds and Greek yogurt.

1. Plantains

Plantains

As we mentioned before plantain is one kind of banana that is less sweet than other types of bananas. They are also bigger than bananas and contain more starch.

You can substitute plantains for bananas in baked goods and smoothies. You will not get the banana flavor but you will enjoy the beautiful creamy texture.

Unripe plantains have a hard texture and starchy flavor so it’s best to boil them or fry, but they can be also used when they are fully ripped.

2. Avocado

Avocado

Avocado has a creamy, soft texture and mild flavor. It is used in sweet and savory dishes. Because of its high-fat content avocado is also used as a substitute for meat. Avocado is used in dips, spreads, milkshakes, desserts, salads, soups, and many other dishes.

As a substitute for bananas avocado can be used in smoothies, muffins, or other baked goods. Maybe you will have to add some sweetener since avocado is not sweet but you will get a similar soft texture.

3. Apple sauce

Applesauce

Apple sauce is made from apples, sugar, and some spices like cinnamon, and allspice. It has a sweet and slightly tart flavor and thick texture. Apple sauce is used in cakes, bread, sauces, dressings, and muffins.

As a substitute for bananas use 1/2 cup of apple sauce for one banana. It will give moisture and freshness to your dish. But don’t add more than 1 cup because it will make the mixture wet.

4. Sweet potatoes

Sweet Potato

There are many ways you can prepare sweet potatoes. You can bake, fry, boil them or use them as a base for pasta, soup, or roast.

Sweet potatoes are healthy food just like bananas. They don’t have the same flavor, however, they have similar content of vitamins, minerals, and calories.

Therefore, you can use them as a substitute for bananas. The first thing you have to do is to cook the potatoes, and then mash them. You can add them in smoothies, or any baked food you prepare instead of bananas.

They will give a smooth texture and mildly sweet flavor to dishes. If you are making a smoothie or milkshake use purple sweet potato you will get the wonderful purple color.

5. Oatmeal

Oatmeal

Oatmeal is made from processed oats. You can use them for making cookies, cakes, bread, or you can simply add them to your muesli and porridge.

Oatmeal contains vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants, so it is good for your health. You can use it as a substitute for bananas to thicken up the mixture, but you will have to grind them for a smoother texture.

6. Mango

Mango

Mango is a tropical fruit with a sweet, mixed peach and pineapple flavor. It can be found in different colors like red, yellow, orange, green, or as a combination of these colors.

Mango is used in different sweet and savory dishes like sauces, curries, stir-fries, chutneys, salads, and smoothies, or to top cakes and tarts. You can use it as a substitute for bananas in smoothies, it will make creamy and thick texture and add a sweet flavor.

7. Chia seeds

Chia seeds

Chia seeds are small oval seeds containing high amounts of omega 3 fatty acids, fiber, minerals, and vitamins. They have a crunchy texture and mild nutty flavor.

If you add chia seeds to the liquid they will consume it and swell. Chia seeds can consume liquid 12 times of their weight. You can ground them or use them whole in smoothies, puddings, protein bars, drinks, salads, and baked goods.

If you are using chia seeds have in mind that they are not sweet like bananas, so you will have to add some sweetener. Don’t use too much because you will get a very thick texture.

8. Greek yogurt

yogurt

Greek yogurt is thicker and creamier than regular yogurt. It contains more proteins but less sugar. It is perfect for dressings, sauces, dips, marinades, and smoothies. You can also use it as a substitute for buttermilk and sour cream in desserts.

Greek yogurt has a tart and sour flavor. So, if you don’t like it you can add some dried fruit as a sweetener. If you are using Greek yogurt, you will get a smooth thick texture but a whole different flavor.

Some yogurts have thickening agents like gelatin (made from animal bones) and sugar. Thus, be careful what you are buying. Always buy a yogurt without added thickeners and sugar.

9. Pumpkin

Pureed Pumpkin

There are many types of pumpkins in many sizes, colors, and shapes. The bese ones used for cooking are sugar pumpkins also known as pie or sweet pumpkins.

They are smaller and sweeter than other pumpkins with a sweet flavor that gets sweeter when roasted. You can also boil or steam them.

They are perfect for sweet and savory dishes like muffins, cakes, bread, or soup. If you can’t find a fresh pumpkin you can use canned or frozen. When you are using pumpkin, adjust the amount of sugar because bananas are sweeter than pumpkins.

10. Coconut cream

Coconut cream is thicker and contains more fat than coconut milk. It is used for thickening in desserts, soups,  smoothies, and curries.

You use coconut cream in smoothies and you will get a creamy texture and coconut flavor. Just don’t use too much coconut cream because of its high-fat content.

Related Questions

What fruit is similar to a banana?

Plantain is similar fruit to a banana. Therefore, they’re excellent substitutes for one another.

What is a substitute for bananas in smoothies?

You can use avocado, chia seeds, mango, Greek yogurt, oatmeal, and coconut cream as a substitute for bananas in smoothies.

Can you substitute eggs for bananas?

You can substitute eggs for bananas. Instead of ½ cup of mashed ripe banana use one egg.

Can you substitute bananas for oil?

You can substitute bananas for oil. Use one cup of mashed banana for one cup of oil.

Final Thoughts

Bananas are one of the most popular fruits in the world. You can use them in different dishes or as a substitute for other ingredients like eggs, butter, and oil. If you want to try other ingredients instead of bananas in your recipe you can use some of these substitutes mentioned above.

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