Smoothies are one of the best ways to pack in a good portion of your daily fruit and veggie intake. And bananas are one fruit that is a staple in smoothies. But if you’re trying to switch up your smoothie and want to replace bananas with other luscious, sweet fruits, then look no further!
We’ve rounded up some delectable and nutritious substitutes for bananas in smoothies to tantalize your taste buds and give your body all the right ingredients.
Avocados are a delicious and nutritious option for smoothie lovers who are looking for a replacement for bananas. Not only are avocados naturally creamy, but they are also packed with nutrients, including essential vitamins and minerals like B6, Vitamin E, potassium, and magnesium. Plus, they have a natural sweetness that is similar to bananas without added sugar.
When using avocado as a banana substitute, keep in mind that it can be quite heavy in texture and flavor. So, it’s best to use a quarter or half of an avocado for every banana called for in the recipe. If your smoothie is too thick, you can add more liquid, like almond milk or coconut water, to thin it out. Avocado also takes on flavors easily, so you can pair it with any number of other fruits like pineapple, mango, or blueberries.
Ripe, juicy mangoes can boost the flavor of your smoothies in a big way. They’re perfectly sweet and can add a smooth texture to your drink. Plus, mangoes offer many nutrient benefits that can give you an added energy boost for the day ahead.
It’s easy to substitute mango into your smoothie recipes. Use a third of a cup of chopped mango (fresh or frozen) for every half a banana that’s used in the original recipe. If you find the mixture too thick, add a splash of water or non-dairy milk to help thin it out. Experiment to find the perfect balance of sweetness and texture!
Pineapple adds sweetness, texture, and flavor to the mix and can help replicate the creaminess of a banana-based smoothie. In addition, pineapple packs some excellent health benefits due to its high concentration of vitamins, minerals, and natural enzymes.
You can replace bananas in smoothies by using an equal amount of pineapple. For example, in place of one banana, add about a cup of diced pineapple. For two bananas, add two cups of diced pineapples. Blending frozen pineapple chunks is also a great option, as it will naturally sweeten the smoothie and give it a deliciously creamy texture.
Peaches share a similar sweetness and texture with bananas, so their presence in a smoothie can be almost indistinguishable. Plus, they are also high in vitamin C, making them a nutritiously delicious replacement.
When substituting peaches for bananas, use one peach per cup of liquid. Because peaches are softer than bananas, you may have to alter the amount of additional ingredients used to thicken the smoothie, such as yogurt or peanut butter. Blend the peaches until smooth before adding the remaining ingredients.
When it comes to making smoothies, apples are often an obvious choice. Not only are they much easier to find, but they also provide multiple health benefits. They have high dietary fiber content and are a great source of vitamin C, both of which help reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, and certain cancers. Additionally, apples lend a crunchy texture to the drink and add a subtle tartness that complements other fruits well.
When it comes to deciding how many apples to use in a smoothie as a banana replacement, the best ratio is usually two parts other fruit to one part apple. Apples can also be blended with nuts, yogurt, or honey for extra flavor and texture.
Pears have juicy and sweet flesh that’s also slightly tangy, so they can offer a delicious alternative to bananas. Moreover, pears help to provide a good texture to the smoothie as they are quite firm and crunchy.
To use pears as a substitute for bananas, try blending one ripe pear with approximately three-fourths or one cup of liquid like almond milk or water. Pears also go very well with other fruits like mangoes, blueberries, strawberries, apples, and peaches, so feel free to experiment by blending different fruit combinations. The sweetness of the pear will balance out the tartness of the other fruits and make for an incredibly satisfying smoothie.
7. Pumpkin Puree
Unlike bananas, which are a common fruit-based sweetener in smoothie recipes, pumpkin puree is an unrefined vegetable that provides a good balance of flavors and textures. Its mild sweetness adds just the right amount of flavor to any smoothie recipe without being overpowering. Additionally, pumpkin puree has a creamy consistency that blends perfectly with other ingredients and will give your smoothie a thick and creamy texture.
Using pumpkin puree in a smoothie as a banana substitute is very easy. Simply add half a cup of pumpkin puree (canned or fresh) to every two cups of your favorite fruits or vegetables. If you’re looking for more sweetness, feel free to add a tablespoon of honey or maple syrup. You can also adjust the ratio depending on the texture and flavor you desire.
8. Coconut Cream
Coconut cream offers a unique texture and sweetness that can instantly transform any smoothie into a tropical paradise. While it cannot replace the consistency of a banana, it will add some creaminess and a distinctive flavor that will give smoothies an exotic twist.
When using coconut cream as a banana substitute in smoothies, be sure to use it in moderation — typically around a quarter cup or less for one serving. If you prefer your smoothie recipes with a more creamy texture, add some yogurt or other nut milk component to create the desired consistency. Additionally, adding frozen chunks of coconut meat or even coconut milk can also achieve the same desired effect!