Banana Selection and Variety

Banana Selection and Variety

Bananas are the most popular fresh fruit in the United States. They have a peel that comes off easily, they ripen after they've been picked, there is a generous supply all year, and they are inexpensive. Bananas have both a high amount of carbohydrates as well as potassium, which also makes them the fruit of choice for many athletes. (Wellness Encyclopedia of Food and Nutrition, 1992).

Bananas

Serving size 1 - medium (126g/4.5oz)
Amounts Per Serving % Daily Value
Calories 110
Calories from Fat 0
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 0mg 0%
Potassium 400mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate 29g 10%
Dietary Fiber 4g 6%
Sugars 21g
Protein 1g
Vitamin A 0%
Vitamin C 15%
Calcium 0%
Iron 2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Selection

Avoid bananas with brown spots that seem very soft. Select those bananas with a nice color, specific for the variety. Choose fruit that is firm and free of bruises. Best eating quality has been reached when the solid yellow skin color is speckled with brown. Bananas with green tips or with practically no yellow color have not developed their full flavor. Bananas are overripe when they have a strong odor.

Storage

To further ripen bananas leave at room temperature for a couple of days. Once ripe you can store in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days. The peel may turn brown in the refrigerator, but the fruit will not change.

Varieties

The very popular yellow banana of Cavendish is the banana we see in grocery stores. However, Plantains, Finger Bananas and Red Bananas are also popular varieties. Most all have a soft texture when ripe.

Return to the Orchard of Health Banana Library