What is the shelf life of plantains? 

Plantains are starchy fruits native to tropical regions. The banana-like fruit has a thick, green, and yellowish skin with soft white flesh inside. In some countries, plantains are considered a delicacy. They can be eaten raw or cooked in many ways. Plantain chips are popular snack food in the United States.

In this article, we will discuss how long you should keep plantains before eating them. We will also look at how they can be stored for longer periods.

Table of Contents

    How long do plantains last?

    The shelf life of plantains depends on several factors such as:

    • Storage conditions
    • Type of plantain
    • Quality of plantain
    • How fresh it was when purchased
    • Whether it was peeled or not
    • Whether it was cut into pieces or whole

    Plantains spoil because of their high starch content. Starch breaks down into sugars over time, causing them to rot. If stored properly, plantains should remain good for several weeks or months.

    Fresh plantains (whole) 

    Whole plantains

    The shelf life of whole plantains is dependent on the variety and storage conditions. They are best eaten when they have been stored in a cool, dry place for up to 3 weeks. Store them in a dry place. 

    If plantains are stored in the right conditions, they reach full maturity in about 3 to 5 days at room temperature (about 20°C). 

    What is the shelf life of fresh plantains? 

    • Room temperature: 3 weeks or until ripe (3 to 5 days when ripe)
    • Refrigerator: 5 to 7 days once ripe
    • Freezer: 10 to 12 months (best quality) 

    The average shelf life of fresh whole plantains is about 3 weeks when stored at room temperature. Once they ripen, they can be refrigerated for up to a week and frozen for up to 12 months.

    To extend the shelf life of fully ripe plantains, put them in a plastic bag and refrigerate or freeze them. 

    How long can you store fresh, whole plantains in your refrigerator?

    You can store whole, unpeeled, ripe plantains in the fridge for 5 to 7 days, but they may become mushy if kept too long and eventually spoil.

    Do not refrigerate plantains until they are fully ripe. If you let them ripen at room temperature, they will be tastier. 

    How long does fresh plantain keep in the freezer?

    You can freeze cut plantains for up to 1 year. To avoid freezer burn, use only plantains that are firm and without any soft and mushy spots.

    How to prepare plantains for freezing?

    Wash well and pat dry. Cut off both ends. Peel if desired. Slice crosswise into ¼-inch slices. Freeze in an airtight container.

    Read this post for more information on how to store plantains.

    Read also: How to freeze plantain bananas

    How do I peel plantains?

    Peeling plantains helps to preserve their nutrients and prolongs their shelf life. To peel a plantain, cut off the top of each plantain, then slice along its length. Remove the skin with your fingers.

    How to ripen plantains faster

    To speed up ripening, put the plantains in a kraft paper bag, seal it, and leave it on the counter or warm place. The longer you leave them, the more they will ripen.

    If you want to make sure that your plantain is ripe enough to eat, cut off one end of the fruit and try to pull off the skin. If it comes off easily, it’s ready to eat.

    How long do plantains keep in the fridge? 

    Ripe plantains will keep for about 5-7 days in the refrigerator. 

    How long do plantains keep in the freezer? 

    Stored in the right conditions, plantains maintain optimum quality for about 10 to 12 months in the freezer but remain suitable for consumption beyond this period. 

    How do you know if plantains are expired? 

    Plantains that spoil usually become very soft, become covered in dark spots, and begin to ooze. Discard plantains if mold appears or if they smell or look abnormal. 

    Fresh plantains (cut) 

    Cut plantain slices on a cutting board

    When cut, plantains don’t last as long as they do if they’re whole. Therefore, it is important to store them in the fridge or freezer because they may turn brown and spoil as a consequence of oxidation if left at room temperature for too long.

    How long do keep them after they are peeled and cut?

    •  Refrigerator: 3 to 4 days
    • Freezer: 10 to 12 months (best quality) 

    You can store cut plantains in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. Frozen plantains can be kept for up to a year.

    Can I store cut plantain in the fridge?

    Yes. You can store cut plantains for 3 to 4 days in the refrigerator.

    Make sure to wrap the cut plantains tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil before storing them in the refrigerator, or store them in an airtight container. 

    How do you keep plantains fresh after cutting?

    The best way to store plantains cutting by refrigerating, freezing, or drying them. They can be frozen for up to 6 months. However, dried plantains should be stored in an airtight container and used within 4 months.

    Storing them in the refrigerator will keep them from turning brown.

    How long do peeled plantains last?

    Plantains don’t spoil as quickly as other fruits when peeled. Peeled plantains can be stored in the refrigerator for 4 days.

    Plantain chips

    Plantain chips

    If you have a large family and are looking for something that will hold up well, then plantain chips may be your best bet. They can be made by slicing the plantain into thin slices, frying it until golden brown, and then cooling it on paper towels.

    Alternatively, they can also be made using a dehydrator and oven. To make them;

    1. Cut plantains into ½-inch thick pieces.
    2. Place them in a food dehydrator set at 105°F for 8 hours.
    3. Turn over halfway through drying time. When dried, remove from the dehydrator and place in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
    4. Bake at 250°F for 30 minutes. Cool completely.

    Plantain chips are best eaten within 1 month after being made. If you want to keep them longer than that, freeze them in an airtight container. They will last for 4 months or more.

    Can you freeze plantain chips?

    Yes, you can freeze them. They’ll keep fine in the freezer for at least 6 months (if not longer).

    How do I tell when plantain chips are expired?

    The answer is: that they become chewy and stale. The plantain chips will lose their crispness, but still taste good.

    How to make plantains last longer

    The best way is to store them in the fridge. They will stay good as long as you don’t let them get too warm or dry out. If you are going to use them within 24 hours of making them, then just put them in the fridge.

    However, if you are planning to use them later, then you need to either freeze them or cook them right away. Keep in mind that frozen plantains will not taste as good as those cooked immediately.

    They also need to be thawed first before cooking.

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