You've heard of one-ingredient banana ice cream, right? Well, consider this a snack-sized, two-bite, chocolate-dipped version that lives in your freezer, just waiting for that craving for "a little something sweet" to hit. These frozen bites require no blending or puréeing (just chop up a banana, dip, and freeze), and yet they're as creamy and sweet on the inside a spoonful of ice cream — only better.
I don't know about you, but dipping anything in chocolate always seems to be an inherently messy affair. But because I also can't seem to resist the temptation of "chocolate-dipped" anything, I've discovered a few secrets.
- Clear some space: Clear your entire counter or kitchen table. Don't try to squeeze this chocolate-dipping operation in the one-square-foot of counter between the stove and the microwave. You need to have room to move.
- Get everything set up: Before doing any other prep work, set up your space. I'm right-handed, so I work most easily from left to right. The to-be-dipped ingredients go on the left, the chocolate goes next to that, then the dishes with the topping ingredients, and finally the parchment-lined baking sheet for holding the dipped snacks on the right. The idea is to keep the work flow consistent, which helps minimize mess. (Reverse this if you're left-handed or feel more comfortable working in the opposite direction.)
- Use two forks for dipping: Use one fork for dunking and lifting the bananas in the chocolate and use another "clean" fork for transferring the topped banana bites from the toppings to the baking sheet. Much less chocolate splatter — on your fingers and the cabinets!
The most fun part of this project, though, is definitely picking the toppings. I'm a big fan of chopped peanuts — roast them in the oven for a few minutes before chopping to really bring out their flavor and crunchiness, if you have the time. I also really like flaked coconut, and sprinkles are a top choice if you happen to be sharing your snack bounty with any children. Use your imagination here — almost any favorite ice cream toppings can be used for this snack.
One last note before we skip the preamble and dive into making these bites. Under no circumstances should you freeze the bites before dipping or leave them at room temperature after being frozen. I tried this thinking that the chocolate might freeze in a thinner coat in the former situation and make a good snack-on-the-go in the latter. But unfortunately, the banana pieces turn to mush as they thaw, making both situations messy and unappetizing.
Have you ever made banana bites like these? I'd love to hear what variations you've tried!
How To Make Chocolate-Dipped Frozen Banana Bites
Makes about 45 banana bites
What You Need
(12 ounces) semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips
coconut oil (or other neutral vegetable oil)
toppings — 1 cup each of sprinkles, chopped nuts, shredded coconut, or any other favorite toppings (See Recipe Notes for ideas)
Bowls for holding toppings
Parchment paper or silicone baking mat
Double-boiler, metal or glass bowl placed over a saucepan, or microwave-safe bowl, for melting the chocolate
Prepare your work space. Place a cutting board for the banana slices to your left. In front of you arrange bowls for the toppings and leave a space for the bowl of melted chocolate. To your right, set a parchment or silicone baking mat-lined baking sheet for placing the dipped banana slices. Have 2 forks handy. Your work will flow from left to right (reverse if you are left-handed).
Melt the chocolate. Fill the bottom of the double-boiler or saucepan with an inch of water and bring to a simmer. Cover with the top of the boiler or place a metal or glass bowl on the saucepan. Place the chocolate in the bowl. Let the chocolate melt, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate is completely melted. Remove the bowl with the chocolate and transfer to your work station. (Alternatively, melt the chocolate in 15-second bursts in the microwave, stirring between bursts. Stop when there are still a few lumps of chocolate and stir until all the chocolate is melted.)
Prepare the bananas and toppings. While the chocolate is melting, peel and cut the bananas into 1/2-inch slices. Pour the toppings into separate bowls.
Add the coconut oil to the chocolate. Add the coconut oil to the chocolate and stir until completely combined. The coconut oil will help loosen the chocolate and make a thinner coat over the bananas.
Dip a banana slice. Drop 1 of the banana slices into the chocolate. Use 1 of the forks to dunk it into the chocolate and coat it completely. Lift the slice out with the fork and scrape it against the side of the bowl to remove excess chocolate.
Coat the banana slice. Drop the chocolate-covered banana slice into one of the toppings. Use your fingers to sprinkle additional coating over the top of the banana slice.
Transfer the banana slice to the baking sheet. Using the clean fork, dig under the banana slice and lift it out of the toppings. Transfer it to the baking sheet, using a finger to gently nudge it off the fork.
Continue dipping banana slices. Repeat with the remaining banana slices. You may need to re-warm the chocolate once or twice while dipping — just set it back over the simmering water or microwave in bursts until it's loose again. Use the chocolate fork just for dipping and the clean fork just for scooping the slices out of the toppings.
Freeze until solid. Freeze the banana bites until the chocolate is completely solidified, at least 6 hours or overnight.
Transfer to a freezer container. Once solid, transfer the banana bites to a freezer container. Bites will keep for up to 3 months. Eat the bites directly from the freezer. Once thawed, the bananas become mushy.
Some gooey chocolate bits will fall out into your toppings. Occasionally lift them out with your clean fork and transfer them to the baking sheet. Once frozen, these also make good treats!
Topping ideas: Sprinkles, chopped nuts, shredded coconut, chopped toffee, granola, crushed malted milk balls, sprinkles or jimmies, other crushed candies.
Inspiration for this snack came from Bon Appétit.