Move over ice cream! Grilled bananas are taking the dessert table by storm, and once you’ve tasted the custardy goodness of a banana fresh off the grill, there’s no going back. But don’t take my word for it. Try one of these delicious recipe options and watch your family and friends…well, go bananas.
Grilled Bananas with Topping
A simple grilled banana can be dressed up any number of ways by adding your favorite sundae toppings. Start with a medium-hot grill. Place unpeeled bananas directly onto the grill, and cook for 4-5 minutes per side. The banana skin will darken and bananas will feel soft. Remove from grill, peel, and scoop fruit out into a dish. Top with caramel drizzle, chopped nuts, dried fruit, or chocolate bits.
Once you have the basic grilling technique down, you can try lots of different ideas for spicing up the basic grilled banana:
- Banana Boats–Slit banana skin open before grilling. Stuff chocolate pieces and miniature marshmallows inside skin. Grill for 10-12 minutes.
- Cinnamon-Sugar Bananas–Slice bananas into quarters and peel. Sprinkle with lemon juice, then roll in cinnamon and brown sugar mixture. Place in foil packet and grill for 5-6 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream.
- Chilled Chocolate Peanut Butter Bananas–Grill bananas as described above. Prepare chocolate peanut butter ganache: Mix 1/2 cup heavy cream and 1/2 tsp vanilla. Simmer on stovetop for about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Immediately stir in 5 oz. of chopped dark chocolate pieces and 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter. Stir until smooth. Drizzle ganache over grilled bananas and place in refrigerator until ganache firms.
Health Benefits of Grilled Bananas
Bananas have been linked to numerous health benefits, including increased seratonin levels (the brain chemical responsible for positive moods), lower blood pressure, reduced muscle cramping, better digestive health, and even antacid benefits for people with heartburn. But not everyone enjoys the taste of a banana straight out of the skin. Grilling bananas changes their texture and offers a bit of a twist on the natural banana flavor. And while it’s possible to smother your banana in lots of non-healthy toppings (hey, who doesn’t love a great dessert!), you still get all of the great health benefits bananas bring to the table.
Looking for a healthier grilled banana? Serve with an ounce or two of dark chocolate for heart-healthy antioxidants or drizzle with honey and sprinkle with cinnamon for a less sugary dessert option. You can also add bananas to a fruit kebab for a delicious side dish.