What can I use instead of banana in smoothies? The best substitutes for bananas in smoothies are sweet, hearty fruit and vegetables like avocado, butternut, sweet potato, mango, and cauliflower. Use oatmeal, quinoa, chia seeds, or cashews for thickness and richness.
Banana is a popular smoothie ingredient, with good reason. This healthy fruit blends into a thick, creamy consistency, giving substance and sweetness to your beverage. It is rich in antioxidants and potassium, a mineral essential for blood and muscle health.
Banana packs a fiber punch, keeping you full for longer and aiding in gut health. Here are the nine best substitutes for bananas in smoothies.
The Best Banana In Smoothies Substitutes
The ideal substitute for banana in smoothies is avocado.
Avocado is a sub-tropical fruit with rough green skin and tender, pale green flesh. This potassium-rich fruit is full of healthy fats and vitamins, easy to digest, and has a mild, sweet flavor.
Avocado has a satiating effect, meaning you’re not tempted to snack.
Although avocado doesn’t have as intensely sweet a flavor as banana, its subtle richness goes well with most other smoothie ingredients, especially chocolate, nuts, and berries.
It also tempers robustly flavored veggies, like spinach and kale.
Use avocado instead of banana to create the same delectably creamy texture in your smoothie.
Half an avocado can replace a small banana, while a whole avocado replaces a large banana.
A vegetable that makes an excellent substitute for banana in smoothies is cooked butternut squash – although any sweet pumpkin will suffice.
A member of the gourd family, butternut squash has pale, brownish skin and vivid orange flesh.
Butternut has a naturally sweet, nutty flavor and dense texture, making it more appealing than the stringy, watery pumpkins you sometimes find.
Like bananas, butternuts are high in potassium, with antioxidant carotenoids (hence the orange color) essential for immune strength.
Although squashes are in season in fall, frozen butternut and canned pumpkin are readily available. You can also successfully freeze baked butternut.
Cooked butternut can substitute for banana in smoothies because it adds the same sweetness and smooth thickness.
The color and flavor are ideal if you want to create a fall feel – add apples, cinnamon, and pumpkin spice.
Replace each banana with ½ cup cooked butternut or pumpkin in a smoothie.
Cooked sweet potato vegetable replacement for banana in smoothies.
Sweet potatoes are not true potatoes but large, dense tubers that can be purple, orange, or white.
This delicious vegetable is a nutritional powerhouse, full of potassium, fiber, and antioxidants. It also has anti-inflammatory and anti-aging qualities.
Like butternut, sweet potato has a hearty texture and a rich, almost dessert-like flavor, making it an ideal banana substitute.
Buy canned or frozen sweet potato, or bake, puree, and freeze a couple in readiness for smoothie heaven.
Replace banana with sweet potato in smoothies for a similar sweetness and creamy consistency. Sweet potato pairs very well with apples, blueberries, chocolate, and acai.
Use ⅓ cup cooked sweet potato per banana.
Although fruit is a common smoothie ingredient, mango makes a delicious banana substitute.
Mangoes are a tropical fruit with red, green, or orange skins and exquisitely fragrant, tender, and juicy orange flesh. They have the intense flavor of melon and peaches, with the tanginess of apricots.
Rich in vitamins A and C, copper, folate, and antioxidants, mangoes improve blood sugar levels and heart health. They are low in calories and help to fight certain cancers.
Fresh, peeled mangoes can sweeten and thicken smoothies like bananas. If you have some frozen fruit, it will add extra smoothness and texture.
Replace bananas in smoothies with mangoes, especially in green smoothies with spinach, kale, or parsley. Mango also makes a fantastic tropical-style smoothie with nut butter.
Make up equal measures of mango to replace bananas in smoothies.
Cooked cauliflower is a low-carb, low-calorie substitute for banana in smoothies.
With its snowy florets and subtle, nut-like flavor, cauliflower is a popular cruciferous vegetable. It is enormously high in fiber and vitamin C.
Cauliflower is great for the immune system while also low in sugar.
You may already use cauliflower to replace your rice and mashed potato. If you keep frozen, riced cauliflower on hand or have leftover steamed cauliflower, you have the perfect smoothie ingredient.
Avoid using raw cauliflower, as it can be grainy and cause bloating.
Replace banana with cauliflower in your smoothies. It blends to lush smoothness instantly and keeps you full for hours.
Cauliflower is mild enough to meld with other flavors. It is particularly good with nut butter, chocolate, berries, and warm spices, like cinnamon and ginger.
Use the same weight of cauliflower to replace bananas in your smoothie.
Oatmeal is a wholesome substitute for banana in smoothies.
Oatmeal, ground oats, or rolled oats are typical breakfast food, often made into porridge. This healthy grain contains protein, manganese, vitamins, and antioxidants. It is also sought after for its soluble fiber.
Oats keep you full, improve digestive health, and are excellent for weight loss.
Although oats don’t have the same sweet fruitiness as bananas, they work as a substitute because of the heft they add to smoothies. Add fruit or nut butter for flavor.
You can add rolled oats directly to a smoothie. However, for best results, soak the oats for at least an hour in milk or water to create a smoother texture.
If you don’t have time to steep the oats, grind them in the blender before adding the liquid ingredients.
Replace each banana with ¼ to ½ cup rolled oats.
Another grain-based substitute for bananas in smoothies is the superfood quinoa.
Like other cereals, quinoa contains fiber, but this ancient grain is also unusually rich in protein, manganese, zinc, and iron.
You can use quinoa like oats to replace bananas and create a thick, hearty smoothie – with the added bonus of a protein punch. Because quinoa doesn’t have a pleasantly sweet flavor, add plenty of fruit, veggies, or nuts.
Replace each banana in your smoothie with ½ to 1 cup cooked quinoa, especially if your smoothie serves as a meal.
Use chia seeds to replace bananas in smoothies.
These minute greyish-black oval seeds have become a health-food favorite for their rich protein, heart-healthy fats, fiber, and calcium.
Chia seeds are also popular as they add bulk and texture to dishes because of their glutinous quality when added to liquid.
Chia seeds can replace banana in a smoothie if you need a binder, thickener, and source of fiber.
Because they have a very mild, slightly nutty flavor, chia seeds must be supplemented with other ingredients in a smoothie.
Replace a banana with 1 tablespoon chia seeds. Stir the seeds into your smoothie and set it aside for a couple of minutes while they thicken.
Cashew nuts are a tasty substitute for bananas in smoothies.
If you’re a fan of nuts, you probably enjoy the rich, sweet flavor and tender crunch of cashew nuts, along with the protein boost.
Cashews also contain heart-healthy fats, anti-inflammatory vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, and fiber.
Long used in Indian cuisine to thicken kormas and gravies, cashew nuts blend into a luscious consistency.
The secret is soaking the raw nuts in water before blending. (Overnight is ideal, but 15 minutes will be adequate.)
Cashews add texture and flavor to smoothies and work well with berries, chocolate, dates, and green, leafy veg.
Replace each banana in your smoothie with ½ cup of raw cashews.