Best Recipes for Overripe Fruits & Vegetables

Written by Mayella Vasquez | Edited by: Jessica Tishue

Does this sound familiar? You go to the store and stock up on fruits and vegetables, but if you are like me, you get busy, eat out, and forget you bought them. Three weeks later, you find your fruits and vegetables in the back of your fridge moldy, old, and wrinkly. Definitely throw those out…

BUT if you find your fruits and vegetables overripe and are not sure what to do with them – this blog is for you! 

We’ve compiled 25  recipes you can use to upcycle your overripe fruits and vegetables before they go bad. Why spend more time and money going to the grocery store, when you still have great ingredients at home? 

WHAT TO DO WITH AN OVERRIPE BANANA:

 

Last year, bananas ranked as one of the most purchased foods in the US. This is not surprising considering all of the health benefits bananas provide.  

Bananas are high in potassium, which can help lower blood pressure and protect your heart health. When applied to your skin, banana peels can also help relieve itchiness and inflammation from bug bites or poison ivy.  

 Since bananas also provide magnesium and calcium – they are great pre-workout snacks because they contain the three out of four nutrients (except for sodium) needed to ease muscle cramps.

Next time you find yourself with an overripe banana, use one of our recipes below because it would be a shame to miss out on the benefits of this nutritious fruit. 

Below are 5 easy recipes to turn overripe bananas into delicious dishes:

1: Classic Banana    Bread — Overripe  Banana Recipe

Click here for the full recipe

Ingredients Needed for This Recipe:

    • 2 cups all-purpose flour (*if gluten-free, substitute with equal parts gluten-free flour mix)
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda 
    • ¼ teaspoon salt
    • ½ cup butter (*if vegan, substitute with coconut oil or vegan butter substitute of your choice)
    • ¾ cup brown sugar (*if you want to reduce your sugar intake and make this recipe healthier, substitute with ½ cup apple sauce, 3 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, or ½ cup coconut palm sugar or sugar substitute of your choice)
    • 2 eggs, beaten (*if vegan, substitute with flax egg – 4 tablespoons ground flax mixed with 8 tablespoons water and then added to mixture)
    • 2 ⅓ cups mashed overripe bananas

 

2: Banana Pudding — Overripe Banana Recipe

Click here for the full recipe

Ingredients Needed for This Recipe:

  • 2-3 very ripe bananas
  • 1 cup milk (*if vegan or lactose intolerant – substitute for equal serving of dairy-free milk alternative such as almond, coconut, or oat milk)
  • 1 cup whipping cream (*if vegan, substitute for 1 cup full fat coconut milk)
  • ½ cup sugar (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 3 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, honey, ⅓ cup coconut palm sugar, ro sugar substitute of your choice)
  • 3 tablespoons arrowroot starch
  • dash salt
  • 3 egg yolks (if vegan, substitute for vegan egg yolk substitute)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

3: Easy 5-Minute Banana Smoothie — Overripe Banana Recipe

Click Here for the Full Recipe

Ingredients Needed for This Recipe:

  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 orange, peeled and quartered
  • 1/3 cup Greek yogurt (*if vegan substitute for equal parts vegan yogurt)
  • 1/4 cup water or milk (dairy or non-dairy)
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons honey, optional

4: Banana Cream Pie — Overripe Banana Recipe

Click Here for the Full Recipe

Ingredients Needed for This Recipe:

    • 8 tablespoons arrowroot starch 
    • 1 1⁄4 cups sugar (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 4 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, honey, 3/4 cup coconut palm sugar, ro sugar substitute of your choice)
    • 4  eggs, slightly beaten (*if vegan or have an egg allergy, use one of these 5 egg substitutes)
    • 4 cups cold 1% low-fat milk (*or dairy-free milk alternative such as almond, oat, or coconut)
    • 2  tablespoons butter (*sub for coconut oil if vegan)
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla
    • 1 dash salt
    • 3 -4 ripe bananas
    • 2 graham cracker pie crust of your choice (*sub gluten-free crust for gluten-free)

5: Best Banana Cake — Overripe Banana Recipe

Click Here for the Full Recipe

Ingredients Needed for This Recipe:

  • 3 large ripe bananas (about 1 and 1/2 cups mashed)
  • 3 cups  all-purpose flour (*substitute equal parts gluten-free flour if gluten-free) 
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature (*substitute ½ cup coconut oil if vegan or vegan substitute. To reduce oil, can also use ¾ cup apple sauce as an oil substitute)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar  (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 4 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, honey, 3/4 cup coconut palm sugar, or sugar substitute of your choice)
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature (*if vegan or have an egg allergy, use one of these 5 egg substitutes)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 
  • 1 and 1/2 cups buttermilk, at room temperature (*if vegan, substitute for dairy-free alternative)

HOW TO MAKE HOMEMADE APPLE SAUCE USING OVERRIPE APPLES & OTHER OVERRIPE APPLE RECIPES: 

Did you know that the United States is one of the biggest producers of apples in the world? In fact, apples grow in all 50 states, are the state fruit in 6 of them, and are celebrated throughout National Apple Month in October.  

Apples are something all 50 states have in common, and a staple of the American diet. Apple pie is found on almost every Thanksgiving table, warm apple cider is sipped by many throughout the Fall months, applesauce is packed in kids lunch boxes, and apple juice is a common drink amongst children. 

While there are a wide array of recipes for apples, apples are a great ingredient for desserts – especially if they are bruised and soft. 

Below are some of our favorite overripe apple recipe ideas:

1: Old Fashioned Easy Apple Crisp — Overripe Apple Recipe

Click Here for the Full Recipe

Ingredients Needed for This Recipe:

CINNAMON OAT TOPPING

  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour  (*substitute equal parts gluten-free flour if gluten-free)     
  • 1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar  (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 4 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, honey, 3/4 cup coconut palm sugar, or sugar substitute of your choice)    
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup cold butter, cut into cubes (*substitute ¼ cup coconut oil or vegan butter substitute if vegan or lactose intolerant)

 APPLE FILLING

  • 5 cups thinly sliced granny smith apples (about 4 large apples)
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 1 tablespoon monk fruit sweetener, honey, 1/4 cup coconut palm sugar, ro sugar substitute of your choice)  
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted (*substitute 1 tablespoon coconut oil or vegan butter substitute if vegan or lactose intolerant)
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour (*substitute equal parts gluten-free flour if gluten-free)    
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt

2: 5 Ingredient Apple Pie — Overripe Apple Recipe

Click Here for the Full Recipe 

Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

 

  • 6 Cups of Thinly Sliced Apples
  • ¾ cup sugar  (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 3 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, honey, 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar, or sugar substitute of your choice)
  • 1 tablespoon butter (*substitute 1 tablespoon coconut oil or vegan butter substitute if vegan or lactose intolerant)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 recipe pastry for a 9-inch double-crust pie (*sub gluten-free crust for gluten-free)              

    3: Homemade Apple Sauce — Overripe     Apple Recipe

    Click Here for the Full Recipe 

    Ingredients Needed For This Recipe: 

    • 8 to 10 apples
    • 2 strips of lemon peel
    • 3 tablespoons lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • Up to 1/2 cup of sugar (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 3 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, honey, 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar, ro sugar substitute of your choice) 
    • 1 cup of water     

      4: Cinnamon Apple Muffins — Overripe   Apple Recipe

      Click Here for the Full Recipe

      Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:     

        • 2 cups all-purpose flour + 2 teaspoons for coating apples  (*substitute equal parts gluten-free flour if gluten-free)     
        • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
        • ½ teaspoon salt
        • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon + 1/2 teaspoon for coating apples
        • 2 cups diced apples
        • ½ cup (1 stick ) unsalted butter, room temperature (*substitute ¼ cup coconut oil or vegan butter substitute if vegan or lactose intolerant)
        • 1 cup sugar  (*to make lower in sugar or healthier substitute for 3 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, honey, 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar, ro sugar substitute of your choice)
        • 2 large eggs  (*if vegan or have an egg allergy, use one of these 5 egg substitutes)
        • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
        • ½ cup milk  (*or dairy-free alternative)

        5: Easy Stewed Apples — Overripe Apple Recipe

        Click Here for the Full Recipe

        Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

               

        • 1 to 2 tablespoons rum, apple brandy, or water
        • 3 apples, peeled (cored and diced)
        • 2 tablespoons molasses
        • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter  (*substitute 1 tablespoon coconut oil or vegan butter substitute if vegan or lactose intolerant)
        • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
        • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
        • 6 to 8 grates of fresh nutmeg
        • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
        • Pinch of salt

        OVERRIPE MANGO RECIPES: 

        Mangoes are one of the most popular fruits in the world. This ancient fruit was first grown in India 5,000 years ago. It is said Buddha meditated under a mango tree. It is also believed that for centuries, Mango bark, leaves, skin, flesh, and the pit have been used in folk remedies.  

        Besides having a rich cultural and historical tradition, the mango is also good for you. 

        Mangoes are low in calories and rich in nutrients.  They contain, Copper, Folate, Vitamin C, B6, A, E, B5, and K, Niacin, Potassium, Riboflavin, Manganese, Thiamine, and Magnesium.

        Mangoes are also delicious.

        Below are some ways you can continue to enjoy Mangos, even as they soften:

        1: Mango Icecream — Overripe Mango Recipe

        Click Here for the Full Recipe

        Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:       

        • 2 large mangoes – to make 2 cups puree
        • 1 can of  sweetened condensed milk (* if vegan or lactose intolerant, substitute equal party dairy-free alternative)
        • 2 cups thickened cream / heavy cream / whipping cream / or full fat coconut milk

          2: Mango Muffins — Overripe Mango Recipe

          Click Here for the Full Recipe 

          Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:       

          • 1 mango large
          • 1 1/4 cup self-raising flour (*substitute equal parts gluten-free flour if gluten-free)  
          • 1 tsp baking powder
          • 2 egg (* if vegan, substitute with flax egg – 4 tablespoons ground flax mixed with 8 tablespoons water and then added to mixture)
          • 1/2 cup caster sugar  (*if you want to reduce your sugar intake and make this recipe healthier, substitute with ½ cup apple sauce, 3 tablespoons monk fruit sweetener, or ½ cup coconut palm sugar or sugar substitute of your choice)
          • 100 g butter (*if vegan, substitute with coconut oil or vegan butter substitute of your choice)
          • 1/4 cup milk (*if vegan or lactose intolerant – substitute for equal serving of dairy-free milk alternative such as almond, coconut, or oat milk)
          • 1 tbsp walnut oil

            3: Mango Ceviche — Overripe Mango Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe 

                   Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

                • 1 pound “sashimi-quality” skinless meaty ocean fish fillet (halibut, Mahi Mahi, or Bass all work well), cut into ½ inch cubes
                • 1/2cup fresh lime juice
                • 1/2cup fresh orange juice
                • 1small red onion, sliced very thin
                • 1 fresh habanero, stemmed and seeds removed, finely diced
                • 2 cups (about 12 ounces) cubed mango
                • 1 small avocado, pitted, flesh scooped from the skin, diced
                • About 1/3cup chopped cilantro, plus more whole leaves for garnish

            4: Easy Mango Smoothie — Overripe Mango Recipe

            Click Here for the Full Recipe 

                Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

                • Non-fat yogurt (*if vegan or lactose intolerant substitute for coconut cream)
                • Greek yogurt (*if vegan substitute for equal parts vegan yogurt)
                • Ice cubes
                • Banana
                • Mango
                • Unsweetened coconut
                • Vanilla extract
                • Honey
                • Chia seeds

             

            5: Mango Salsa — Overripe Mango Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe 

                   Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

                • 1 mango – peeled, seeded, and chopped
                • ¼ cup finely chopped red bell pepper
                • 1 green onion, chopped
                • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
                • 1 fresh jalapeno chile pepper, finely chopped
                • 2 tablespoons lime juice
                • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

            THE MANY WAYS TO SAVE A SPROUTED POTATO: 

            Potatoes are good for your bone and heart health, blood pressure, and metabolism.  Potatoes also contain folate.  Folate plays a role in DNA synthesis and repair, which prevents cancer or many mutated DNA cells from forming.

            Additionally, potatoes are environmentally friendly vegetables.  They grow easily, and do not require a lot of fertilizers and chemical additives.  In fact, they were the first food grown in space. 

            Even after they have started sprouting, potatoes are hearty vegetables that can be central to many dishes and meals.  

            Below are some recipes to save your sprouted potatoes:

            1: Baked Potato — Sprouted Potato Recipe

            Click Here for the Full Recipe 

            Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

             

            • 1 large russet potato 
            • Oil to coat
            • Kosher salt
            • Optional toppings, such as butter (can use vegan substitute or coconut oil), sour cream, shredded Cheddar (vegan cheese is great too!) and/or scallions

              2: Classic Hash Browns — Sprouted Potato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe  

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

              3: Mashed Potatoes — Sprouted Potato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe 

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe: 

                      • 2 pounds baking potatoes, peeled and quartered
                      • 2 tablespoons butter (*if vegan, substitute with coconut oil or vegan butter substitute of your choice)
                      • 1 cup milk (*if vegan or lactose intolerant – substitute for equal serving of dairy-free milk alternative such as almond, coconut, or oat milk)
                      • Salt and pepper to taste

               

              4: Potato Soup– Sprouted Potato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe 

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

                      • 6 slices thin bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
                      • 1 whole medium onion, diced
                      • 3 whole carrots, scrubbed clean and diced
                      • 3 stalks celery, diced
                      • 6 whole Small Russet Potatoes, Peeled And Diced
                      • 8 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
                      • 3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour (*if gluten-free, substitute with equal parts gluten-free flour mix)
                      • 1 cup milk (*if vegan or lactose intolerant – substitute for equal serving of dairy-free milk alternative such as almond, coconut, or oat milk)
                      • 1/2 cup heavy cream (*if vegan substitute for coconut cream)
                      • 1/2 teaspoon salt, more to taste
                      • Black pepper to taste
                      • 1/2 teaspoon cajun spice mix
                      • 1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley
                      • 1 cup grated cheese of your choice

               

              5: Plant Your Sprouted Potatoes

              Tools Needed

                      • Sharp knife 
                      • Tray or cookie sheet 
                      • Compost 
                      • Shovel 
                      • Rake 
                      • Mulch 
                      • 5-10-10 slow release or liquid fertilizer 
                      • Measuring spoon (optional) 
                      • Bucket (optional) 
                      • Gopher traps 
                      • Mouse traps 
                      • Peanut butter 
                      • Dog food 

              Warnings

                      • Keep all tools and fertilizer out of reach of children and pets. 
                      • When brewing compost tea, keep the bucket in a safe location, away from children. A child can drown in a bucket of water. 
                      • If using traps, keep children and pets away from the garden. 

              Tips

                      • Potatoes can also grow in stacked tires, potato towers or garbage bags. 
                      • A weekly application of compost tea can be used instead of fertilizer. Soak a shovelful of compost in a 5-gallon bucket of water for 24 to 48 hours, then pour the water around the potato plants. 
                      • A cat or small terrier is often effective in rodent control, although the terrier might dig in the garden and disturb your potatoes.

              EASY RECIPES FOR BRUISED TOMATOES: 

              Tomatoes are low in carbs and high in fiber. They are also rich in vitamin C, K, B9 (folate), and potassium. There have been studies that show that eating tomatoes is good for your skin, heart, and can even help prevent cancer. 

              Tomatoes are also a part of many great foods like salsa, and Italian Dishes. Even if your tomatoes are bruised these recipes below will put them to good use:

              1: Tomato Sauce– Bruised Tomato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe 

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe: 

              • 8 medium overripe and cracked or bruised tomatoes
              • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
              • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
              • 1/4 medium onion, diced (about 3 tablespoons)
              • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
              • 1 small bunch fresh basil, leaves chopped
              • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

              2: Salsa– Bruised Tomato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

               

              • 4 vine-ripened tomatoes, quartered
              • 2 small yellow onions, cut into wedges
              • 6 cloves garlic, peeled
              • 3 Serrano chili peppers, stemmed (use less for a milder salsa)
              • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
              • 2 teaspoons salt
              • 1 teaspoon cumin
              • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
              • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice, from one lime, plus more if needed

              3: Jam–Bruised Tomato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

               

              • 2 pounds plum or Roma tomatoes, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
              • 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
              • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
              • 1 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger (from 1-inch knob)
              • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
              • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
              • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
              • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

              4: Grandma’s Old Fashioned Tomato   Soup  — Bruised   Tomato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

               

              • 4 diced tomatoes
              • 4 cups  tomato juice
              • 1 1⁄2 cups  heavy cream (*if vegan substitute for coconut cream)
              • 1⁄2 cup  butter (*if vegan, substitute with coconut oil or vegan butter substitute of your choice)
              • salt and pepper

              5: Bloody Mary—   Bruised Tomato Recipe

              Click Here for the Full Recipe

              Ingredients Needed For This Recipe:

               

              • 2 1/2 pounds ripe heirloom tomatoes about 5 or 6 large
              • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
              • 2 tablespoonsWorcestershire sauceAnnie’s brand is vegan
              • 1 tablespoon horseradish
              • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
              • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
              • 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
              • 2-4 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
              • Ice
              • Vodka
              • Celery sticks
              • Lime wedges

              There you have it!  Quick, simple, and creative recipes to enjoy your overripe fruits and vegetables – just before they go bad.  If you liked this article, check out….

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              References: Bananas– https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/20144/banana-banana-bread/ http://jensfavoritecookies.com/2014/09/16/banana-pudding-2/ https://www.inspiredtaste.net/19907/simple-banana-smoothie-recipe/ https://www.food.com/recipe/fantastic-banana-cream-pie-or-pudding-using-3-4-ripe-bananas-361454 https://sallysbakingaddiction.com/best-banana-cake/ https://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/g3342/brown-banana-recipes/ https://tasty.co/article/rachelysanders/delicious-ways-to-use-up-old-bananas https://thatsitfruit.com/blog10-interesting-facts-about-bananas/ https://www.pma.com/about-pma https://www.webmd.com/pain-management/ss/slideshow-muscle-cramps-foods Apples– https://www.thekitchn.com/8-smart-uses-for-not-so-great-apples-tips-from-the-kitchn-61086 https://www.thekitchn.com/waste-not-five-ways-to-use-mea-97047

              25 Uses for Apples that are Slightly Overripe, Mealy or Bruised
              https://web.extension.illinois.edu/apples/facts.cfm
              Old Fashioned Easy Apple Crisp Recipe
              https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/12324/apple-pie-i/ https://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/applesauce/ https://addapinch.com/cinnamon-apple-muffins-recipe/ https://www.thespruceeats.com/stewed-apples-darkly-spicy-913456 Mangoes– https://www.seriouseats.com/2015/08/mango-recipes.html https://www.cookingandme.com/2015/03/24/eggless-mango-recipes-ripe-mango-recipes/ https://www.discusscooking.com/forums/f30/what-to-do-with-over-ripe-mangoes-84352.html
              Homemade Mango Ice Cream Recipe (No Ice Cream Maker!)
              https://www.bestrecipes.com.au/recipes/mango-muffins/2s8gpgjf
              Tropical Mango Ceviche
              https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/48032/mango-salsa/
              Mango Facts
              https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/mango#nutrition Potatoes–
              7 Things To Do With Sprouted Potatoes
              https://www.canitgobad.net/can-potatoes-go-bad/ https://www.growveg.com/guides/what-to-do-with-sprouting-potatoes/ https://mobile-cuisine.com/did-you-know/potato-fun-facts/ https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/280579 https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/the-baked-potato-recipe1-1908821 https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/220520/classic-hash-browns/ https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/24771/basic-mashed-potatoes/
              Potato Soup
              https://homeguides.sfgate.com/plant-potatoes-1footlong-sprouts-74282.html https://spoonuniversity.com/lifestyle/is-ghee-vegan
              How to Substitute Cream
              Tomatoes– https://food52.com/blog/10947-10-ways-to-use-up-bruised-tomatoes https://www.eatingonadime.com/5-ways-use-ripe-tomatoes-2/ https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/tomatoes https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchen/ugly-tomato-sauce-3634994 https://food52.com/blog/10255-how-to-make-salsa-without-a-recipe https://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-tomato-jam-247279 https://www.food.com/recipe/grandmas-old-fashioned-creamy-tomato-soup-330111
              Fresh Tomato Bloody Mary