There are so many unexpected uses and benefits of banana peels. You can use them to make your plants look as pretty as the day you brought them home, transform them into plant-based meat good enough to fool your meat-loving friends, and even use them to help you sleep better at night.
They’re definitely not destined for the rubbish bin by any means. Before you throw them away, try one of these creative banana peel uses and benefits:
Banana peel uses
1. Make a plant-based pulled pork sandwich
Making pulled pork the plant-based way simply means collecting your banana scraps. All you need to do is clean the peels, shred them with a fork, season them, then cook them.
After they’re done, you’ll have tender zero-waste “meat” for your sandwiches that tastes nothing like bananas.
2. Shine your plant’s leaves
When dust piles up on your plant’s leaves, it can clog their pores, making it hard for the plant to breathe. To keep the leaves shiny and dust-free, gently rub them with the inside of the banana peel. Your plant will look much shinier and be healthier in the process.
3. Moisturise dry skin
Dry skin is incredibly common, especially when accompanied by acne or another skin condition, like eczema. Skin can also become dry as a result of exposure to cold, dry air, or certain pollutants.
In addition to drinking plenty of water, you can gently massage your dry skin with a banana peel, which offers a safe yet effective option for people who have dry skin conditions. Plus, you don’t expose your body to parabens, preservatives, or other hard chemicals that store-bought skin care products might contain.
4. Blend it into a smoothie
It might sound weird, odd instead of just tossing your banana into the blender, add the peel, too. It’s loaded with fibre, making your morning beverage that much more filling and satisfying. Plus, you’ll never even know it’s there.
5. Brew some sleepy tea
Who knew banana peel was the secret ingredient you needed for better sleep? Bananas are full of various sleep-promoting nutrients, specifically the natural muscle relaxants magnesium and potassium.
They also contain an amino acid called tryptophan, which is a precursor for the sleep hormone, melatonin. To reap the benefits, clean the peel and put it in a small saucepan.
Once the water comes to a boil, reduce the heat and let it sit for 10 minutes. Then pour it into a mug—without the peel—and it’s ready to sip.
6. Use it to give your plants a boost
Instead of tossing banana peel in the garbage, use them to give your plants a boost. Peel provides plants with potassium and phosphorous, which is very important, not only for root development and plant strength, to help plants fight off pests and diseases.
Simply drop a couple of banana peels in a pitcher of water and let it sit for a couple of days. Then, use the solution to water your plants.
7. Make vegan bacon
Banana peel pulled pork is one thing… but bacon? Yes, you can actually make perfectly crispy bacon by marinating your banana peels then pan-frying them over medium heat.
It only takes a few minutes for them to become crispy and golden brown.
8. Grill a juicier piece of chicken
You might consider yourself a grill master... except when it comes to skinless chicken breasts. They're so lean that they dry out faster than you can flip them.
Next time, place a banana peel on top of each breast while cooking. The peel will create a barrier that acts like skin, helping the meat retain its natural juices.
9. Make a natural fruit-fly trap
Even though the oranges and apples in your fruit bowl are nowhere near expiration, you often find little flies buzzing around your kitchen. Catch the pests once and for all by crafting a trap.
First gather a large yogurt container, a banana peel, a hammer, and a small nail. Using the nail and hammer, poke holes in the lid of the yogurt container.
Place the banana peel inside, snap on the lid, and leave it where the flies tend to gather. The sweet smell of bananas will attract the fruit flies, leading them inside—but they won't be able to fly back out through the tiny holes.
Dispose of the trap after a day or when most of the flies have been caught.
10. Stop a scratched CD or DVD from skipping
If your favourite disc just won't play smoothly, fix it with a banana peel. Just rub the back of the disc in a gentle circular motion with the inside of the peel.
Wipe off any residue with a soft cloth, then lightly spray the disc with glass cleaner and buff it until it looks clean. The wax in the peel will fill in scratches without harming the plastic finish, so the disc can play without skips.
11. Rid your garden of aphids for good
If you’ve noticed any insect damage in your garden, you need a way to nip the problem in the bud. Just cut up two or three banana peels, then dig a 1-inch-deep hole in the ground at the base of your plants and place the peels inside.
Aphids and ants find the high potassium concentration in banana peels unappealing, so this little trick will make the pesky bugs retreat.
12. Swiftly lift ink stains from skin
We’ve all been there: an exploded pen has left ink stains all over your hands—and soap and water aren't doing the trick. Banana peels are a simple solution to the problem.
Rub the white side onto the discoloured areas and watch the stains disappear. The natural oils in the peel will attract the oils in the ink, weakening the pigment's bond with the skin for easy removal.
13. Whiten teeth
There’s no need to spend a fortune on professional whitening strips—let banana peels do the job instead. Simply rub the inner white side of a peel against your freshly brushed teeth for about 2 minutes every day.
The combination of plaque-busting, astringent salicylic acid and gently bleaching citric acid in banana peels will effectively lighten surface stains on teeth without wearing down the enamel.
14. Buff away scuffs on leather shoes
If your shoes are still in great condition, except for a few scuffs on the toes, try treating them with banana peel as a natural fix. Lightly rub the scuff marks with the white side of a banana peel, then wipe with a clean cloth.
The peel's potassium, which is a key ingredient in leather polish, will be absorbed into the leather and diminish the marks, leaving your shoes looking brand-new.
15. Remove a splinter easily
You can remove a tiny wood sliver easily with a banana peel. Just tape a piece of banana peel, white side down, over the wound and leave it on for 30 minutes.
The enzymes in the peel will seep into the skin and encourage the splinter to move toward the surface for easy plucking. The result: a tear-free extraction.
16. Reduce acne
Banana peels contain vitamin C and vitamin E, and they also contain potassium, zinc, iron, and manganese. These nutrients can calm inflamed skin and reduce acne outbreaks.
Not only that but banana peels contain lutein and carotenoids, which are fat-soluble compounds that help fight inflammation and acne breakouts. Just rub the banana peel over your skin and leave for 5 to 10 minutes, then rinse your skin and repeat twice daily.
17. Treat dry feet
The moisturizing benefits of banana peel are also great for treating dry, cracked heels. They contain a high amount of potassium, which is a super-hydrator for dry, cracked skin.
Rub your banana peel all over the soles of your feet or anywhere that’s dry. The nourishing peel will give you soft, hydrated feet in no time.
18. Polish your fine silver
Banana peels contain oils that can help make your dull silver shiny again without the use of harsh or toxic chemicals. Simply throw a few banana peels and some water in a blender to make a paste.
Then, buff your silver items, such as jewellery or cutlery, with the banana paste and a soft cloth. Finally, simply rinse off the silver with warm water, and dry it off with a clean rag.
19. Soothe a bug bite
When a mosquito bites you, your body’s immune system reacts to it, causing it to itch. At the time of the bite, the mosquito injects you with an anticoagulant to prevent the blood from clotting while it sucks it out of you.
If you rub a fresh bug bite with the inside of a banana peel, which contains an anti-inflammatory called polysaccharides, it will quickly soothe the itching and reduce potential swelling.
20. Make a camping-friendly handheld dessert
Both kids and adults will love this simple yet decadent campfire treat. Partially cut an unpeeled banana lengthwise so that it looks like a taco shell or hotdog bun, and fill it with chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, and nuts.
Wrap the banana in aluminium foil, and place it over an open flame for five to eight minutes. Then, open up the dessert packet, and using a fork, enjoy the chocolatey banana deliciousness.
21. Get rid of warts
Warts are caused by a virus and commonly appear on the hands, feet, face, and neck in the form of small raised skin growths. Although they are virtually harmless and treatable, they can be irritating and embarrassing.
The high levels of potassium in banana peels can combat even the most stubborn warts, including plantar warts. All you need to do is gently rub the wart with the inside of a banana peel for one to two minutes per day. Within two weeks, the wart should shrink or disappear.
22. Smooth out wrinkles
You’re less likely to have wrinkles and fine lines if your skin is healthy and moisturized. While loving yourself the way you are is important, there’s nothing wrong with trying to look and feel your best.
To reduce wrinkles from home, lightly rub your face with the inside of a banana peel. Let the oil and banana residue dry on your face; then wash it off with warm water.
You can even leave it on overnight. If you perform this beauty ritual regularly, your skin will begin to look tighter, smoother, and healthier.
Like tea bags and cucumber slices, you can even put banana peels over your eyes to reduce puffiness!
23. Improve your mood and eyesight
According to recent research, drinking a beverage made with boiled banana peels might be the mood booster you need. Dopamine and serotonin, which are chemicals that boost your mood, are a natural ingredient in banana peels.
In addition, drinking the extract of a banana peel might protect your eyesight because it contains lutein, which is an antioxidant that promotes retinal health.
If you thought banana peels belonged in the trash, hopefully, this video has given you plenty of ideas for how to make use of your old skins before throwing them away. Just because you can’t eat them, it would be a shame to waste them!