How to Make Chewy Dehydrated Bananas 6


Years ago, our landlady used to bring us dehydrated bananas when she had an abundance. Personally, I am a “fresh banana or no banana at all, thanks” girl, but my guys loved them. They were not the crunchy banana chips that are commonly sold in stores. These were chewy and it took them no time to snarf down those healthy snacks.

These days, we harvest 40-50 pounds of bananas at a time. There’s no way we can eat that many fresh before they go bad, so drying them makes sense. If you don’t have a banana crop like we do, keep your eyes open for overripe bananas on sale and use those.

Dehydrated bananas are a great healthy snack and they're easy to make. Salvage brown bananas to add to your pantry or emergency supplies.

My landlady cut her dehydrated bananas lengthwise. I did it like that for awhile, but I found it tedious to cut them this way. It’s a lot easier to just slice the bananas across their length. As you can see in the photo, some end up round, others are cut a bit more on a diagonal. Truly, any of these ways work. Play around with it a bit to see what’s fastest for you.

Making Dehydrated Bananas

Ingredients

  • Ripe bananas
  • about 1/2 cup lemon juice for every 5 pounds of bananas

Directions

Before you start, make sure you have a container in which to put the peels. I use a 5-gallon bucket to tote the peels out to the compost when I’m done.

Peel the bananas, collecting the peeled fruit into a large bowl. It will be fastest if you can peel them all at once.

Slice the bananas 1/4″ thick. Place sliced bananas into a bowl or tray with lemon juice. Toss the sliced bananas in the juice.

When you have about four cups of sliced bananas, spread them out on a dehydrator tray, then repeat. I like to fit as many as I can on each tray without letting them overlap. (Touching slightly is not a problem.)

Once your dehydrator is full, or you’ve sliced all the bananas you’ll be drying, turn it on to 135 degrees Fahrenheit for 8-10 hours. This of course depends on your climate and humidity and dehydrator. Plan to be around to check them during those last couple of hours.

Tips from experience

It helps to have a lovely assistant. If you can wrangle someone into peeling the bananas while you slice, it will go much more quickly.

Timing is important. Plan to turn the dehydrator on in the morning so the bananas can be put away that evening, or start them in the evening so they can dry overnight. You can let them go longer, absolutely, but they might be a bit more on the dry side.

I have a 9-tray Excalibur dehydrator. It takes about 35-40 pounds of bananas to fill it. Dehydrated, those bananas will fill a gallon jar or thereabouts.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

6 thoughts on “How to Make Chewy Dehydrated Bananas

  • John Martins

    I’ve always wanted to make dehydrated bananas, and it seems easier to dehydrate them than other forms of fruit. Is there a way to do this without a dehydrator? Could I use my oven instead? I’ve tried making beef jerky in the oven and it came out okay. But, I disliked the amount of time I had to leave the oven running.

    • Kris Bordessa Post author

      It can be done in a low oven, yes. But there’s the expense of running an oven for hours at a time, then. Another alternative when the weather is good? You can do it in your CAR. (Really.) I would experiment with fruit before doing meat that way, though.

  • Wanda

    How do you do this with not having or affording a dehydrator?
    Can it be done in an oven?

    • Kris Bordessa Post author

      It can be done in a low oven, yes. But there’s the expense of running an oven for hours at a time, then. Another alternative when the weather is good? You can do it in your CAR. (Really.)

  • Jennifer L.

    Okay, we live on the big island and we get tons of bananas from our “banana forest.” I tried drying them once and felt pretty happy with the results when they were done; however, they went bad pretty fast and our jars of dried fruit went moldy. I expect it has to do with the ambient moisture here. How do you store them? I am about to start another batch today since we have about a million bananas on my counter looking at me longingly. Maybe keep them in the fridge? Any other ways you use up all the bananas? I am, very unfortunately, allergic to the lovely bananas! How can that be? I don’t understand it at all. I have two big kids that currently eat bananas and it’s a lot of work for them to keep up. We had an easier time with an abundance of raspberries in our garden in Santa Cruz! Those never went bad! I am going to try the lemon juice too this time–I didn’t do that last time and it was fine, but maybe it might help on the preservation side of things.

    • Kris Bordessa Post author

      Aloha Jennifer! Is it possible that your bananas weren’t dry enough? If too much moisture remains, they will mold. We rarely keep our bananas for more than a couple of weeks, as my kids and husband go through them very quickly! I’ve had other fruit mold, though, and I feel like it’s because I didn’t let them dry enough. One last idea is to store them with a desiccant pack. (This is the ticket to storing grains, too!) I make my own: http://www.attainable-sustainable.net/desiccant/