- Bananas are the 4th most important staple food in the world after rice, wheat, and maize.
- In the United States, bananas represent a full 50% of all US fresh fruit imports, a large portion of which are produced in Latin America.
- Contrary to popular belief, bananas do not grow on trees, but, in fact, are the largest herb plant on Earth.
Due to growing conditions in the US, you won't find bananas at your local farmer's market since the local farmer can't grow them, unless you live in Hawaii. You will find fair trade bananas being primarily imported from Ecuador, Costa Rica, and Peru. There can be a lot of chemicals sprayed in and around bananas and their workers, so look for organic, free trade bananas like the one's you might find at Whole Foods. Earth University in Costa Rica is also an operation that is properly growing bananas and treating their employees well, according to organic food guru, Max Goldberg. So now you know where to get your bananas, here's what else we can do with them.
Like the two ingredient banana pancake, you can make an easy 2-3 ingredient "cookie" that's much healthier than your average cookie, but equally tasty.
This cookie is chewier than the flour based one, which is another selling point for me. The peanut butter gave a rounder flavor and I estimated about 1 tablespoon per 3 cookies. The figs introduced a whole different cookie. There was a lot going on - yes, with just 3 ingredients - but again, I preferred the banana having the limelight.
It's a versatile, gluten free and vegan treat that you can eat at breakfast, before a workout, or even as a dessert. Its natural sugars will give you a boost, in addition to some good vitamins from A to B to C and a nice dose of fiber and potassium. Enjoy!
Healthy Banana Cookies
- 2 ripe bananas
- 1 Cup gluten free quick or rolled oats
- Optional: 1/4 cup walnuts, few tablespoons of peanut butter, dried figs, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice
You definitely want and need the first two ingredients, but go crazy with the third (or fourth or fifth) depending on your taste. Just adding walnuts allows the banana taste to take center stage, so that version really worked for me. You can also add a little cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice if you're looking for something a bit sweeter.
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- Mash the bananas in a bowl.
- Fold in the oats.
- Decide what other ingredients you want to add, or mix and match.
- Bake for approximately 15 minutes.
- Cookies will turn dark brown, and have some give to them. Allow to cool on a wire rack before eating. Makes approximately 12. Eat immediately or refrigerate.