Fried Plantain Chips Recipe

How to make Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips

Raw Banana Chips, often made from unripe plantains, are a crunchy and delightful snack popular in various parts of the world, especially in South Indian cuisine where they are known as “Banana Chips” or “Nendran Kai Chips.” They stand out due to their inherent firm texture and subtle sweetness when raw, which transforms into a savory, crispy treat once fried.

The process of making these chips involves thinly slicing the plantains and deep-frying them in oil until they achieve a golden color. Traditionally, coconut oil is used for frying which imparts a distinct flavor synonymous with the banana chips from Kerala, a region famed for this snack. The choice of oil can greatly affect the final taste of the chips.

Seasoning is often simple, with just a sprinkle of salt to enhance the natural flavors of the banana. However, variations exist, and it’s not uncommon to find versions flavored with black pepper, red chili powder, or even jaggery for a sweet coat.

Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips Recipe

Fried Plantain Chips Recipe

Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips

Kerala is known for its sweet and savory plantain chips. The sweet ones are yellow and made from the nendran banana variety; the savory ones are made with raw (unripe) banana or plantains. Both versions are fried in coconut oil and lightly seasoned with salt and pepper. It’s hard to say no to these chips, which are particularly irresistible when served with coffee or tea.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Snack
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6 people
Calories 985 kcal


  • 1 large skillet


  • 1 plantain or unripe raw banana, peeled, ends trimmed, and very thinly sliced into rounds (about 60 rounds if using a mandoline)
  • 11/2 cups coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Line a plate with paper towels and set aside.
  • In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the coconut oil to between 350°F and 375°F. Test to see if the oil is hot enough by dropping a small piece of sliced plantain into the hot oil. If it sizzles and floats, without sinking, the oil is ready for frying.
  • Working in batches, one by one, carefully drop the plantain rounds into the hot oil. Do not fill the entire skillet with the plantain. Fry for 45 seconds. Carefully flip the rounds and fry for 45 seconds more. Continue flipping and frying until the bubbling sound stops. Do not let the plantains brown. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chips to the paper towel–lined plate to drain. Immediately season the chips with salt and pepper and toss to coat.
  • Repeat with the remaining plantain rounds.
  • Store the completely cooled chips in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 to 4 days.
Keyword banana

Cooking Tips about Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips

Homemade Plantain Chips 3-Ways - The Seasoned Skillet

  • Selecting the Right Bananas: Choose firm, unripe plantains or green bananas since they contain less sugar than ripe ones and will crisp up better when fried.
  • Even Slicing: Try to slice your bananas evenly to ensure consistent cooking. A mandoline slicer can help achieve uniform thickness.
  • Soak in Water: To prevent browning and to remove some of the starch, soak the banana slices in water for a few minutes before frying.
  • Drying the Slices: After soaking, thoroughly pat dry the slices with a clean kitchen towel to remove excess moisture. This will also prevent splattering during frying.
  • Optimal Oil Temperature: Heat the oil to around 350°F (175°C). If the oil is not hot enough, the chips will absorb more oil and become soggy; if it’s too hot, they’ll burn easily.
  • Batch Frying: Don’t overcrowd the pan; fry in batches to maintain the temperature of the oil and to ensure that the chips cook evenly.
  • Flavoring: Season them quickly after frying while they’re still hot so the seasoning sticks well. Sea salt is traditional, but you can get creative with spices like paprika, garlic powder, or even powdered jaggery for sweetness.
  • Draining: Use a slotted spoon to remove the chips from the oil and drain them on paper towels to soak up any excess oil.
  • Cooling Before Storage: Let the chips cool completely before storing them in an airtight container to preserve their crispness.
  • Use the Right Oil: Coconut oil is traditional and imparts a distinct flavor, but you can use other oils with a high smoke point, such as canola or vegetable oil.

Serving suggestions about Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips

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  • As a Standalone Snack: Perfect for munching on their own, they make a great accompaniment to tea or coffee during breaks.
  • With Dips and Chutneys: Pair them with various dips like mint chutney, tamarind sauce, or even salsa for an interesting blend of flavors.
  • Part of a Chaat: Crumble them slightly and include them in chaats, adding yogurt, chopped onions, tomatoes, and a sprinkle of chaat masala for a tasty Indian street food experience.
  • Topping for Salads: Use them as a gluten-free crouton alternative in salads to add a satisfying crunch.
  • Accompaniment to Meals: Serve alongside traditional Kerala meals or as part of a ‘sadya’ to provide texture contrast.
  • Decorative Garnish: Crush them lightly and use as a garnish over savory dishes like curries or rice for added texture and visual appeal.
  • In Mixes: Combine with other savory snacks like murukku and roasted nuts to create a festive snack mix.
  • Children’s Lunch Boxes: A healthy alternative to processed snacks, these chips can be a crunchy surprise in kids’ lunch boxes.
  • Picnics and Gatherings: Easy to pack and travel-friendly, they’re ideal for picnics, road trips, or as a sharing snack at gatherings.
  • Gift Packaging: Fill up jars or decorative containers with homemade banana chips for a thoughtful and tasty gift.

Top 5 FAQs about Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips

Plantain Chips - Food with Feeling

  • What type of bananas are used for making banana chips? For making raw banana chips, it is best to use firm, unripe plantains or green bananas. These contain less sugar than ripe ones and crisp up better when fried.
  • How do you cook Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips? The cooking process involves thinly slicing the plantains, soaking them briefly in water to remove some starch, patting them dry, and then deep-frying them in oil at 350°F (175°C) until they are golden and crispy. They are seasoned with salt immediately after frying.
  • Can I make banana chips without deep-frying? Yes, banana chips can be baked or air-fried as healthier alternatives to deep-frying. Adjust cooking times and temperatures accordingly when using these methods.
  • How should I store banana chips, and how long do they last? Store banana chips in an airtight container to keep them fresh. When stored properly, they can last for several days. It’s best to consume them quickly to maintain their crispiness.
  • Are there any variations in flavor for banana chips? Absolutely! While traditionally seasoned with just salt, there are many variations such as adding black pepper, red chili powder, or even jaggery for a sweet coat. Experimenting with different seasonings can lead to delightful new flavors.

Raw Banana (Plantain) Chips are not just a simple snack but a crispy delight enjoyed across various cultures, particularly beloved in Southern India where they are a classic teatime favorite and an integral part of festive culinary traditions. These chips are celebrated for their satisfying crunch and the subtle flavors brought out by the perfect frying of unripe bananas or plantains.


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