Nourishing Literacy | That's Bananas!

By Shayna M. RSS Fri, August 20, 2021

Mashed, chopped, whole, frozen, fresh, or dried—bananas are a whole food that are nutritious to eat and flexible to use in cooking!

This snack is made with just two ingredients, banana, and lemon! With a small amount of preparation and a little bit of patience, you will achieve a chewy snack that is only made from whole foods!

Banana Chews

Oven or Toaster Oven Recipe
No Sharp Tools Needed
3 hours (½ hour prep time)
6 Servings


  • 4 bananas
  • ¼ cup lemon juice or juice of 1 lemon

Kitchen Utensils and Tools

  • Knife (butter knife works great!)
  • Baking tray
  • Mixing bowl
  • Metal spatula
  • Parchment paper (optional for lining baking tray)
  • Potholder


  1. Preheat oven or toaster oven to 200 degrees.
  2. Slice bananas into rounds that aren’t too thin and aren’t too thick, about ⅛-inch.
  3. Toss banana rounds in lemon juice and place in a single layer on a baking tray.
  4. Bake in the oven or toaster oven for 1¾ hours. Flip bananas and put back in the oven or toaster oven for an additional ¾ hour.
  5. Remove from the oven or toaster oven and allow to cool on the tray for about twenty minutes.

Additional Reading
Banana: The Fate of the Fruit That Changed the World by Dan Koeppel is a book that explores the history and cultural meaning of bananas.

It can be fun, special, and self-loving to make hair and body care products from scratch with ingredients that may already be on hand. Everyone’s hair length and texture is different; all or just some of this product will be needed, depending! The entire amount of prepared product can be used immediately, or it can be stored in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for one week for multiple uses. Try sharing this deep conditioning treatment with a loved one if extra is available!

Deep Conditioning Hair Treatment

Stove-Free Recipe
No Sharp Tools Needed


  • 1 banana
  • 3 Tablespoons canned coconut milk
  • 1 egg
  • 3 Tablespoons honey
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil

Kitchen Utensils and Tools

  • Blender or large bowl with a whisk or fork (for mixing)
  • Shower cap or plastic bag with rubber band


  1. Place all ingredients in a blender or bowl.
  2. Blend or whisk until there are no lumps and the mixture is very smooth.
  3. On clean, damp hair, apply the mixture from root (hair closest to scalp) to tip (hair furthest from scalp).
  4. Cover hair with a shower cap or plastic bag tied like a bonnet for 1 hour.
  5. Rinse in warm water.
    Tip: warm water is best because hot water might cook the egg that is in the conditioner making clean-up of hair and space more challenging.

Additional Reading
Wild Beauty: Wisdom & Recipes For Natural Self-Care by Jana Blankenship is a self-care book, featuring thirty recipes for handmade body products for adults and teens. My Hair is Beautiful by Shauntay Grant is a baby board book. The children’s series by Mechal Renee Roe featuring two titles named Happy Hair (one a rhyming book, the other a call and response book), and Cool Cuts, are all a celebration of hair!

Watch and listen to our Nourishing Literacy staff discuss all the delicious and practical uses for bananas on our YouTube channel!

Nourishing Literacy offers food, literacy, wellness, and life skills activities and events to community members, with our core audience being the children, youth, teachers, and caregivers. Nourishing Literacy is made possible in part by a generous grant from the Edna G. Kynett Memorial Foundation.

To learn more about the Culinary Literacy Center, please visit our website or connect with us through Instagram and Facebook.

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