The Simple Syrup Trick For Extra Crispy Banana Chips

Rather than indulge in an apple a day, most Americans prefer the creamy texture and honeyed quality of a perfectly ripe banana. In fact, Smithsonian Magazine reports that annually, the average American consumes over 26 pounds of the fruit. With a high concentration of antioxidants and nutrients such as potassium and vitamins B6 and C, Healthline shares that regularly enjoying bananas can lead to improved heart and digestive health. A reliable snack on the go, it's also a great ingredient, baked into a classic banana bread — or better yet — transformed into audibly crunchy banana chips. However, to avoid mushy crisps, there are a few hacks you need to know, especially how to use simple syrup to your advantage.

While the crispest banana chips are made by frying the thinly sliced fruit, there are some variations that involve methods like dehydrating or baking. Likewise, some chips are cooked without any other helping ingredients, whereas other renditions are made with sugary sweeteners, a pinch of salt, or even fiery spices. Regardless of the recipe, choosing the right banana is crucial. Rather than use an overly ripe, brown banana, A Baking Journey emphasizes the importance of selecting bananas that are still firm, but with some freckling as this will help the fruit maintain its shape while highlighting its natural sweetness. Beyond determining the best bananas for the job, the quest for the crunchiest chips also relies heavily on how the chips are cut, baked, and most importantly, seasoned.

A slight saturation makes for the crunchiest chips

Banana chips are a tasty way to enjoy the fruit in a more inventive way. Plus, it helps that preparation is also fairly simple. After slicing bananas into 1/8 inch coins and lining them on a baking sheet, Chiquita Banana recommends brushing the chips with lemon (this helps stop browning) and baking them for 90 minutes to two hours at about 200 degrees Fahrenheit, turning once they're almost cooked. That said, this is just one way to make the chips, as some swap lemon juice for another (crisper) coating of choice.

While it won't stop browning — it might actually heighten caramelization — a surefire way to guarantee the crispest banana chips is by swapping lemon juice for simple syrup. According to Cully's Kitchen, all that's required is to coat slices (either dip, toss, or brush them) with a bit of simple syrup so that as the chips bake the sugar will harden, creating a super crunchy outcome. The only other thing to remember is to let the crisps cool on a wire rack to avoid sticking to the sheet pan.

Although you can enjoy banana chips as is, they also make great vessels for dips like a caramel pecan cheesecake spread. Providing some texture in a morning bowl of oatmeal or a sweet and crunchy addition to trail mix, the crisps also work as a fabulous garnish to top frosted cupcakes or a frozen banana daiquiri. How will you enjoy your banana chips?