Learning how to freeze plantains isn't a hard process, and it's one that anyone can do. Learning the best way to freeze sweet plantains is a great way to preserve these versatile fruits for later.
Many people think that plantains are the same as regular bananas, but they are actually two very different types of fruit.
Fresh plantains and bananas are different, so let's dive in and learn more about these tropical fruits.
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What are plantains?
While you can now find plantains in most grocery stores, they were originally discovered in Southeast Asia.
Once the raw plantains are picked, they can be used in a variety of different recipes and cooking methods.
Green plantains are considered unripe plantains but will continue to ripen even as they're picked.
While they are a family member of the bananas, they are not quite as sweet as bananas, and the skin is thicker and harder to peel than the skin on bananas.
If you're looking to find the perfect substitute for bananas, plantains can be a great choice.
Instead of making banana bread, make plantain bread instead and see what you think of the flavor.
It just might be your new favorite way to make a tasty snack.
Speaking of delicious snacks, be sure to check out our Chocolate Banana Overnight Oats as well! You could even substitute the bananas with some plantains.
What can I do with frozen plantains?
You can literally choose almost any cooking method when it comes to freezing plantains and then cooking them.
Once you remove them from the freezer, you can make fried plantains, fried plantain slices, plantain chips, or just about anything else that you want.
The first time that you thaw and start to cook, you might feel a bit limited on dishes and options.
But this is where you do your research to discover different dishes and you'll have so many yummy side dishes and snacks to prepare for the next time.
How to freeze whole plantains
If you're not quite sure how you are going to use the plantain, then you can actually freeze it whole.
Make sure to peel the plantain first, and then wrap it in plastic wrap and store it in an airtight container or freezer-safe bag.
Place it in the freezer in a freezer safe containter for up to 6 months.
How to freeze ripe yellow plantains
Now that you know that you can freeze plantains whole, let's talk about a couple of different ways that you can also freeze this popular side dish. One way to freeze plantains is to slice them in half.
You can also use a sharp knife to cut the plantain in circles and then store the pieces in a freezer bag for later.
Lastly, you can also freeze mashed plantain as well, making it super simple to thaw and add right into the batter for bread and desserts.
If you want to plan ahead a bit, you can actually freeze plantains in smaller portions so that you can use what you need when it comes to baking or cooking.
That way, you don't have to unfreeze a lot of plantains to really only need to use a few.
Make sure that you write the date of freezing on the freezer-safe bags so that you know how long they'll stay fresh. If frozen correctly, they should last 6 months in the freezer without the worry of freezer burn.
How do I store plantains so that they don't turn brown in color?
Even though the plantains will turn brown once they are peeled, the good news is that you can do something to stop that process.
Adding a little bit of lemon juice to your peeled plantains will give you the best results in stopping those black spots that come from the peeling and ripening process.
Simply cut the plantains, and then sprinkle a little bit of lemon juice over them.
Then let them sit for 5 to 10 minutes before freezing them in your freezer safe container.
Once you've frozen them, or stored them in the fridge appropriately, you can them thaw them or let the come to room temperature before using them in your cooking or baking recipes. This will help keep that bright yellow color!
How can I use frozen plantains?
Since they're a member of the banana family, you can really use them in any way that you would like a banana.
You can unthaw them and toss the chips in the deep fryer to make a crunchy treat, or you can blend them into your homemade ice cream recipe to add some natural sweetness.
You can also make a delicious plantain pudding, smoothie bowls or even use them in your favorite banana bread recipe. Enjoy!
If you don't have the ability to freeze the plantains, what are some other ways of storing them?
Plantains will usually last up to one week if stored properly in your refrigerator.
Can I cook frozen plantains?
You can. If you are running low on time, you don't have to wait for a long thawing process.
You can literally use the frozen plantains as they are.
The only thing that you'll want to be aware of is that if they are frozen, they will be harder to make smooth and will require a high-power blender or mixer to do the trick.
Are there any other ways to use plantains?
Absolutely! From fried plantain chips, to sweet and savory recipes like maduros (sweet plantains), plantain fritters and empanadas.
Plantains can also be used as a low calorie substitute in recipes that call for potatoes or rice. They are
Are black plantains okay to eat?
Yes, black plantains are perfectly okay to eat. In fact, they make an excellent ingredient in dishes like mofongo, which is a traditional Puerto Rican dish made with fried and mashed plantains as the base.
Black plantains contain more starch than green or yellow ones, making them very starchy and sweet when cooked.
They also contain more fiber, vitamins and minerals than their yellow or green counterparts.
They are also often used as a side dish with savory sauces.
So black plantains can be just as nutritious as green or yellow ones - they just have a different flavor profile!
Can I use plantains in breads and cakes?
Yes, you can certainly use plantains in breads and cakes. Plantains contain a lot of starch, which makes them ideal for baking.
Plantain breads are particularly delicious when combined with savory or sweet ingredients such as cheese, bacon, onion, garlic or sugar.
Similarly, cakes made with mashed black plantains tend to be dense and quite moist due to the high starch content. They can be flavored with spices and served as a dessert or snack!
What are some health benefits of plantains?
Plantains are a great source of energy due to their high levels of carbohydrates.
Additionally, they’re rich in fiber, vitamins A,C and B6 as well as minerals like potassium, magnesium and iron.
Plantains are also known to have anti-inflammatory properties which can help improve gut health and reduce the risk of certain illnesses.
Finally, plantains are a good source of resistant starch which helps keep your blood sugar levels stable and aid in digestion. Enjoy!