When buying a bunch of bananas, I always start out with the best intentions. I’m going to eat them as a healthy on-the-go snack, or slice them over my morning cereal or yogurt. I’m going to tuck them into the side pocket of my backpack to save me from hanger. But inevitably, I don’t eat all of the bananas, and after a few days I’m left with some very brown, mushy specimens.
At this point, I rejoice! Because now I get to do what I wanted to do all along: make them into desserts. Sure, that typically means banana bread—be it a deep, dark chocolatey version or one spiked with brown butter and bourbon—but the world of banana-based sweets does not stop there. Turn your mature bananas into a whipped-cream-layered Bavarian cake, whirl them into a nutty shake (or a boozy, tropical daiquiri), or use them to make fluffy, powdered-sugar-dusted fritters. So next time you “accidentally” over-purchase bananas and suddenly find that they've all gone spotty, put them to good use with these 19 desserts.
Pro tip: If your bananas are starting to turn but you’re not quite ready to use them, stick them into a Ziploc bag and freeze them, peels and all. Then once you’re ready, let them thaw in a bowl on the counter or microwave for 20 seconds, until they’re at room temperature. Voilà! You’re one step closer to chocolate banana streusel muffins.
How do you salvage older, brown-speckled bananas? Or are you one of those people who prefers your bananas extra-ripe? Tell us below!