The Simple Plastic Wrap Hack To Keep Bananas Fresh For Longer

We've all been there. You pick out the perfect bunch of bananas at the supermarket, whether that be with slight green on the stem, solid yellow, or even a few brown spots, yet they never seem to stay that way quite long enough. By the third or fourth day, they're in another stage that makes them less firm, and on their way to the ideal ripening for banana bread. The reason bananas turn brown and mushy is because of a gas released called ethylene (via Britannica). 

The rate at which ethylene is released increases as time goes on, and the higher the amount of ethylene that's present, the pigments in the banana turn from yellow to brown, known as enzymatic browning. Because of this process, there have been several methods around it to test how to keep bananas fresher. According to Taste of Home, hanging your bananas from a hook has a way of slowing down the release of ethylene, while also preventing any brown spots in places the bananas are coming in contact with. 

Another helpful tip is to buy the greenest bananas of the bunch. That is if you're not needing them for a good day or two. However, The Healthy Journal states that ethylene gas is released from the stems because that's where the bananas were picked from on the trees. If you can trap the gas release, it would prolong the life of this precious fruit. Aluminum foil is an option or better yet, plastic wrap.

Wrap each banana stem in plastic wrap

According to Express, separating the bananas and wrapping each stem individually with plastic wrap will allow them to stay fresh for up to two weeks. This method traps the tops of the fruit, which is where ethylene gas is released. Because the spread of this ripening gas is controlled and not exposed to the other bananas, this slows down the ripening tremendously. Furthermore, you don't need much plastic wrap at all. 

You can use plastic wrap or cling wrap, and just need a small square for each banana to completely cover the tops. Business Insider states that while you definitely can try leaving the bananas in a bunch and wrapping the stems as a whole that way, this risks not working if there's one banana riper than the others. Their higher levels of ethylene gas will emit into the other bananas, plastic wrap or not. The saying "one bad apple spoils the bunch" is correct in this sense.