Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Go Bananas!

Originally grown around Malaysia, bananas made their way to India and eventually to the West, but it was not until 1876 that Americans first tasted the banana. They were served in Pennsylvania at a celebration of the hundredth anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. And we’ve been finding innovative ways to eat and serve them ever since!

Luckily, bananas are available year round. Although they may be green or greenish yellow in the store, they are ripe when they are fully yellow.

Never ripen in the refrigerator, only at room temperature. If not using right away once they are ripe, you can store in the refrigerator, but know that even though the skin will turn black, the flesh of the banana is fine underneath.

Another option is to peel and freeze until ready to use. Look for Whole Trade bananas, available only in Whole Foods Market® stores. Our Whole Trade® Guarantee ensures fair prices are paid for products, better wages and working conditions and sound environmental practices. We’ve built relationships with some of the world’s best and most socially and environmentally innovative banana growers.

Considering the social and environmental problems that have resulted from large-scale banana production in many Latin American countries, we are proud to offer this excellent fruit from growers that are truly part of the solution. Bananas are great on their own, but don’t stop there! Y

ou can have a blast cooking with bananas, starting right here with our great ideas.

When I was five years old, I got caught red-handed with a banana in each (red) hand, peeled and ready to eat. It earned me the nickname I carried for years: Alana Banana from Louisiana.

Do you have a banana story? What about a favorite snack or recipe? I’d love to hear.

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Chuck Pheterson says …

Chocolate-dipped bananas are great. I'd like to share a few for making them that I've learned from experience. First, it's really important to let your bananas ripen until they are covered with *small* brown spots. That ensures that their sugar level is optimal. Next do not place them in a freezer bag to freeze them. Moisture evaporates from the bananas as they freeze and this will result in ice crystals on the bananas if it is trapped within a plastic bag. The ice will melt into the chocolate when you dip the bananas and cause the chocolate clump. If you do see ice crystals on the frozen bananas, brush it off prior to dipping them. In addition to being a great tasting treat, frozen bananas are also a good food source. For a good description of nutritional benefits, see: http://www.totally-bananas.net.

Mindy says …

The best product is Totally Bananas' frozen bananas dipped in gourmet dark chocolate with various toppings.

Annemarie says …

Here's our favorite gluten-free banana pancake recipe: http://realfoodrealdeals.com/2012/05/11/gluten-free-banana-pancakes/

Suzanne Torlen says …

Reading very negative news items about Chiquita bananas...do not want to contribute to their bad energy. What company do you use?

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@SUZANNE - Our main banana vendor will be Earth University bananas. You can always check with your local store directly to see what vendors they source from. There should also be a sticker on the bananas with the vendor name.