Get ready to go bananas for this simple vegan banana bread granola!
But first – it is no question how much I love food. One thing I don’t often talk about is the waste that comes with it. It’s not just about what we are throwing out, but how much energy and resources it also takes to produce food, how we are getting rid of it and what happens to food after we throw it out that we need to be mindful of.
And would you have guessed that bananas are one of the worst foods of the bunch? Bananas are one of the biggest sources when it comes to grocery store waste – with lettuce, grapes, bread, and tomatoes also making the list.
That’s why I have partnered with Chaquita and created a yummy Banana Bread Granola recipe to make sure that no banana gets left behind. It’s easy to spot Chiquita bananas as they are one of the first companies to brand bananas with their blue stickers and I’m happy to share the very different ways to use bananas- even if they have a few bruises.
Compost The Banana Peel
This seems like an easy one, right?
But did you know that it takes bananas longer than a lot of other foods that you would normally put in your compost to decompose? Speed up the composting process by cutting your peels into smaller pieces rather than tossing them in whole. Banana peels are very high in nutrients, but not just for us – they are great for your soil and gardens too. Tomatoes and indoor plants will especially love them!
Who would have guessed that you could put a banana peel to everyday use? Banana peels have strong antioxidant properties that have so many health benefits! Try using the inside of the banana peel for any of these household uses:
Pressing the peel on sunburn skin
Use on a rash or bug bite to provide itch relief
Brighten and moisturize your skin
Dust your indoor plant leaves
Shine your leather shoes
Polish your silverware
Place on a splinter to help raise it
Freezing the bananas you know you won’t be able to eat in time is great for later use, but what people don’t think about before freezing their bananas is chopping them beforehand. I like to slice the bananas and put them on a baking sheet. From there, put them in the fridge for 30 minutes before putting them in the freezer so they don’t freeze together.
What should you do with your frozen bananas? There are so many ways to use bananas, but I cooked up a deliciously healthy and simple recipe that will be your go-to for that perfect banana flavour.
Banana Bread Granola
It’s so easy! Made in one bowl and it is fragrant! Whip it up and enjoy as a snack, have it for breakfast or add it on top of your favourite smoothie bowl! Using some of my favourite ingredients like walnuts and coconut oil, mixed with the deliciousness of Chiquita bananas, you don’t need much besides a non-stick sheet to make this quick and tasty recipe.
Other delicious recipes to try with your bananas
So when you are looking to whip something up to make sure your bananas don’t go to waste, look for Chiquita’s blue sticker for recipes like my Easy Vegan Banoffee Pie.
This simple baked Banana Bread Granola recipe is a healthy and delicious way to enjoy that banana flavour while helping do your part in reducing food waste.
3cupsrolled oats, can also use GF oats
1 cup nuts of choice (I used walnuts but you can use walnuts, pecan, almonds, cashews or macadamias)
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp. flax seeds
2 tbsp. pumpkin seeds
1/3 cup honey, maple syrup or agave
2 ripe bananas, mashed (should yield around 3/4 cup of banana)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (176 C) and line a baking sheet with parchment or a non-stick baking sheet.
Into a medium-sized bowl, mix the oats, nuts, sugar, cinnamon, flax and pumpkin seeds.
In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, cook the coconut oil, maple syrup (or other alternatives), and vanilla extract. Once your mixture has become more liquid-like (around 1-2 minutes) remove from heat and add your banana mixture. Pour the maple syrup mixture over dry mixture and stir well.
Now, spread the mixture onto a baking sheet and bake for 23-28 minutes or until golden brown.
Make sure the baking sheet doesn’t get too crowded. You may use additional baking sheets, as needed, if increasing batch size or if you prefer a less chunky granola.
The coconut oil is great for adding golden colour but can cause to burn due to the high smoking point. Be sure to check on the granola every so often to ensure even baking and no burning.
For clumpy granola, do not toss while baking.For loose, less clumpy granola, toss twice while baking.Granola will last up to 10 days in a tightly sealed container at room temperature.