How to Dehydrate Bananas

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Learn how to dehydrate bananas. Dehydrating bananas is a great way to preserve them and another delicious way to enjoy this fruit. They turn into a healthy snack that tastes like candy!


How often do you have a few extra bananas from the week that are just ripe enough and you don’t know what to do with them? Have you ever thought about dehydrating bananas in the dehydrator? Not only is it a great way to preserve the bananas, but dehydrated bananas are another way to enjoy this delicious fruit.

Sadly, I can’t grow Bananas here in North Carolina, so I rely on my local grocery store to pick them up. Most often we eat them before they get too ripe. If they do ripen before we get a chance to eat them, and I don’t put them in the dehydrator, I will whip up a healthy Banana Bread that we all love. Lately, the kids are really loving the dehydrated bananas as well.

Dehydrating Bananas in the Dehydrator…

dehydrated bananas ready for serving

If you can peel and slice a banana, you can successfully dehydrate this fruit. Dehydrating Bananas are just as easy as dehydrating Oranges and Strawberries. The other benefit, besides being so easy to do, is how tasty dehydrated bananas are as a snack. I love the various ways you can combine them with other foods such as oatmeal or a trail mix.

Reasons For Drying Bananas…

  • Dehydrated Bananas are healthy – 1-ounce serving of banana chips contains 147 calories. Bananas are a nutritious food rich in potassium and fiber.
  • Another way to eat them – We love to peel and eat bananas but like changing things up a bit and dehydrating bananas gives us just another fun, yet different way to enjoy them.
  • Easy to travel with – dehydrated bananas are a great hiking/camping/picnicking snack. They are easy to pack in a jar or a zip-lock bag and take with you anywhere you go.
  • Preserving for long-term storage – often we find ourselves with too many bananas at the end of the week. With all due respect for our beloved chickens, they ain’t getting this golden food! So preserving it for later is what we do. Dehydrating is so easy, requires just a few minutes of prep work, and the result is delicious.
fresh and ripe bananas ready for dehydrating

Ingredients…

  • Bananas – make sure to choose firm and ripe but not overripe bananas. I used 4 bananas in this tutorial and ended up with a little bit over half a pint of dried banana chips.
  • Water and lemon juice – in order to prevent the banana slices from browning, we are going to make a simple bath of water and fresh lemon juice to soak the slices in before we dry them. You can also use Fruit Fresh instead of lemon juice.
  • Seasonings – it’s possible to add some cinnamon or maybe sugar on top of your bananas before you dehydrate them. More on this in the FAQ section below. I’ll keep it simple in the tutorial below and will just use bananas.

Kitchen Tools…

  • Knife
  • Cutting board
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Dehydrator – I am using a nice dehydrator that allows me to control the temperature and produces a better end result. If you don’t have one of those, you can still dehydrate bananas in the oven or in a cheap (no temperature control) dehydrator. More on this in the FAQ section below.
  • Air tight storage container (I use jars)

Dehydrating Bananas Step By Step…

Step one – prepare your bananas. Peel the bananas and slice to thin slices (1/4 of an inch), soak the banana slices in a bath made with one cup of water and the juice of half a lemon (to prevent browning) for a few minutes.

setting banana slices in one layer on the tray of the dehydrator

Step two – add to the dehydrator. Place the banana slices in one layer on the trays of the dehydrator. Place them close to each other but make sure that they aren’t touching to allow good airflow and proper drying.

dehydrated banana slices out of the dehydrator

Step three – dehydrate. Place the trays in the dehydrator and dehydrate at 135 degrees F for about 12 hours. At about 8 hours you can start checking your bananas. If they are completely dry and crispy (break easily) you can remove them from the dehydrator. If after 12 hours they aren’t yet completely dry leave them for another hour or so.

storing dehydrated bananas in jars

How to Store Dehydrated Bananas…

Once the bananas are dry, let them cool for a few minutes and then transfer them to an air-tight container. You can vacuum seal them or use zip-lock bags, however, in my opinion, jars with two-piece lids work best for storage and are beautiful on the shelf!

How to Condition Dehydrated Fruit…

If you are going to store your dehydrated bananas for the long term, make sure to condition the fruit. This means that after storage, every day for about a week, check to make sure that there is no moisture on the inside of your air-tight container. If you spot moisture, remove the fruit and dehydrate it again for a few more hours. Then transfer to an air-tight container and condition again. If after a week there is no moisture your fruit is ok to be stored for the long term at room temperature.

How to Use Dehydrated Bananas…

  • As a snack – dehydrated bananas are an easy snack to pack the kids for a school lunch or for any other occasion. They are a great snack for a road trip or a picnic or just to pick up in the middle of the day.
  • Breakfast – they are a great addition to yogurt with homemade granola or to add to any bowl of cereal (alongside dehydrated pineapple).
  • In baked goods – you can substitute dry bananas for fresh ones in homemade banana bread or any other baked goods.
  • Top a salad – they are a great topping! You can crush them into smaller pieces and add them to a fruit salad or any other salad.
  • Add to shakes and smoothies – throw some dry bananas with strawberries or other fruit, milk, ice, and anything else you like into the blender and blend into a healthy drink.

How to Make and Use Banana Powder…

One of the greatest things about dehydrated food is that you can turn it into powder. To make banana powder, place the dry bananas in a coffee grinder and grind them until you get a powder. Store your powder in jars at room temperature. Here are a few ideas for using banana powder…

  • Add to frosting – add the powder to a cream cheese frosting to turn it into a banana frosting to top any cupcake or cake.
  • Add to a protein shake – if you drink protein shakes, add a tablespoon or two of banana powder into your shake to make it even healthier.
  • Add to smoothies or milkshakes – the same way you would use it in protein shakes.
  • Add to cake batter – add a few tablespoons of banana powder into any cupcake or cake batter whenever banana flavors fits well.
  • Add it to homemade ice cream – if you like making ice cream at home you can definitely use your powder for added banana flavor.
  • Add it to whipped cream – making whipped cream to go over a cake or maybe even your morning cupcakes? Add banana powder into the cream before you whip it!

Frequently Asked Questions…

Can I dehydrate bananas in the oven?

Yes. Drying foods in a proper dehydrator where you can control the temperature produces a better result and preserves the nutrition better, however, if you don’t have a dehydrator, you can follow the same prep instructions: line a baking sheet with parchment paper, turn your oven to its lowest temperature (hopefully under 200 degrees F) and dehydrate your bananas this way. Of course, drying time will change so keep checking your bananas. Also, you might need to turn your baking sheet and/or turn the banana slices halfway through.

Can I add seasoning to my bananas?

I usually don’t feel the need to add a thing, however, you can try sprinkling some cinnamon or nutmeg on the bananas or even sugar before you place them in the dehydrator. Also, I am looking forward to adding peanut butter and making these banana chips soon.

Can I dehydrate whole bananas?

It’s not recommended and will take them a very long time to dry. Slicing them is the best way to go.

I can’t control the temperature on my dehydrator, can I still use it?

The cheaper Presto dehydrator is very popular and you can find it at any Walmart or online. It runs at a temperature of 165 degrees F and there is no way to control the temperature. Yes, you can use this kind of dehydrator to dry strawberries. Again, for best results, we want to process fruit at a temperature of 135 degrees F but a higher temperature will work as well. Drying time will probably be shorter, around 6 hours or so and you might need to purchase drying mats for your dehydrator.

Can I rehydrate bananas?

Not really… Bananas don’t rehydrate very well. Once you have dehydrated them they should be used dry. You, can, however, rehydrate dehydrated bananas before you bake with them. To do that, just add as many dry bananas as you want to use into a bowl of boiling water and let them rest in the water for 10 minutes or so. Note that you can use the banana-flavored water in baking or to make a smoothie.

Can I dehydrate frozen bananas?

Probably no. I’ve never tried it so you are welcome to give it a try, I say no because when you thaw bananas they become a watery soft mess and are hard to handle. When it comes to frozen bananas it’s best, in my opinion, to just use them frozen.


It’s very easy to learn how to dehydrate bananas! In fact, if you are new to the world of food dehydration this is a great first project. You simply, slice, soak in a lemon bath, and dehydrate. They have a million uses and this is a really easy way to preserve bananas. I hope that you’ll give it a try!

More Dehydrating Tutorials…

How to Dehydrate Bananas

How to Dehydrate Bananas

Yield: 4 bananas
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 12 hours
Total Time: 12 hours 10 minutes

Learn how to dehydrate bananas at home. Preserve them for long-term storage and turn them into a healthy snack that tastes like candy!

Ingredients

  • 4 Bananas
  • 1 cup of water
  • Juice from 1/2 a lemon

Instructions

  1. Step one – Peel the bananas and slice to thin slices (1/4 of an inch), soak the banana slices in a bath made with one cup of water and the juice of half a lemon (to prevent browning) for a few minutes.
  2. Step two – Place the banana slices in one layer on the trays of the dehydrator. Place them close to each other but make sure that they aren’t touching to allow good airflow and proper drying.
  3. Step three – Place the trays in the dehydrator and dehydrate at 135 degrees F for about 12 hours. At about 8 hours you can start checking your bananas. If they are completely dry and crispy (break easily) you can remove them from the dehydrator. If after 12 hours they aren’t yet completely dry leave them for another hour or so.
  4. Step four - Once the bananas are dry, let them cool for a few minutes and then transfer them to an air-tight container. You can vacuum seal them or use zip-lock bags, however, in my opinion, jars with two-piece lids work best for storage and are beautiful on the shelf!

Notes

Frequently Asked Questions...

  1. Can I dehydrate bananas in the oven?
    Yes. Drying foods in a proper dehydrator where you can control the temperature produces a better result and preserves the nutrition better, however, if you don’t have a dehydrator, you can follow the same prep instructions: line a baking sheet with parchment paper, turn your oven to its lowest temperature (hopefully under 200 degrees F) and dehydrate your bananas this way. Of course, drying time will change so keep checking your bananas. Also, you might need to turn your baking sheet and/or turn the banana slices halfway through.
  2. Can I add seasoning to my bananas?
    I usually don’t feel the need to add a thing, however, you can try sprinkling some cinnamon or nutmeg on the bananas or even sugar before you place them in the dehydrator.
  3. Can I dehydrate whole bananas?
    It’s not recommended and will take them a very long time to dry. Slicing them is the best way to go.
  4. I can’t control the temperature on my dehydrator, can I still use it?
    The cheaper Presto dehydrator is very popular and you can find it at any Walmart or online. It runs at a temperature of 165 degrees F and there is no way to control the temperature. Yes, you can use this kind of dehydrator to dry strawberries. Again, for best results, we want to process fruit at a temperature of 135 degrees F but a higher temperature will work as well. Drying time will probably be shorter, around 6 hours or so and you might need to purchase drying mats for your dehydrator.
  5. Can I rehydrate bananas?
    Not really… Bananas don’t rehydrate very well. Once you have dehydrated them they should be used dry. You, can, however, rehydrate dehydrated bananas before you bake with them. To do that, just add as many dry bananas as you want to use into a bowl of boiling water and let them rest in the water for 10 minutes or so.
  6. Can I dehydrate frozen bananas?
    Probably no. I’ve never tried it so you are welcome to give it a try, I say no because when you thaw bananas they become a watery soft mess and are hard to handle. When it comes to frozen bananas it’s best, in my opinion, to just use them frozen.

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