Known as a staple food in the Caribbean islands, Central America, northern South America, and West and Central Africa, plantains are often called the starchy and less sweet cousins of the bananas. But don’t let that fool you because when cooked, they are downright delicious. Hearty and nutritional, plantains, commonly prepared as chips, are a great food to incorporate into your diet.
And when you’re chomping away on those tasty chips, we’re going to guess that you won’t be alone and that your little furball will be with you. Probably begging at your feet for those savory-sweet treats. So that begs the question — see what we did there — can dogs eat plantains and are they safe for them?
Let’s find out the answer to that question and so much more. We are going bananas with this article!
Can Dogs Eat Plantains?
First, let’s get the big question out of the way. Can dogs eat plantains?
The answer is plantains are perfectly fine to give to your dog, and they can even benefit their health. Just make sure you only serve them small amounts as large qualities can make their stomach upset. As well, plantains are best cooked before eating, and this should be the same for your dog as raw plantains can be tough on the digestive system.
Can dogs eat plantains cooked in coconut oil?
It is completely OK for your dog to have plantains that were cooked in coconut oil. Like always, just make sure to keep it to a small amount.
Coconut oil is great for dogs and can help improve the health of their skin and coat. As well, it can benefit their immune and heart health.
Can dogs eat plantains chips?
Giving your dog a plantain chip as a treat every once in a while should be perfectly fine in most chances. Plantain chips often contain high amounts of sodium that isn’t great for your dog’s diet. If your chips have a lot of sodium, treat the chips as just that . . . a treat for your dog, and not something that’s healthy for them like unsalted plantains are.
Are plantains healthy?
Us dog owners often worry about our dogs’ health, so are plantains a healthy food to give to our puppers? They are!
Plantains make an exceptional high-fiber treat for your dog. They contain lots of vitamins and minerals like potassium, magnesium, fiber, and vitamins A & C for even more health-boosting benefits.
Just remember to cook them first, because unlike bananas, plantains are best eaten cooked, both for taste and for digestive purposes as they are incredibly starchy. When left uncooked, the digestive system has to do all the work breaking those starches down, and that takes a lot of effort.
Plantains: 32% carbohydrates with 2% dietary fiber and 15% sugars, 1% protein, 0.4% fat, and 65% water, approximately 122 calories in a 100-gram serving. Plantain are an excellent source (20% or higher of the Daily Value, DV) of vitamin B6 (23% DV) and vitamin C (22% DV), and a good source (10–19% DV) of magnesium and potassium.
Are plantains anti-inflammatory?
Plantains are not only antibacterial; they are also anti-inflammatory. Giving your dog foods that have anti-inflammatory properties can help them with several common issues. It can help improve the health of their cardiovascular system, immune system, digestive system, and their skin & coat.
Excessive inflammation is one of the biggest factors in an array of illnesses that can affect a dog’s health. Keeping your dog away from pro-inflammatory foods like sugar or french fries and replacing them with ones like plantains is a splendid way to extend your dog’s health and lifespan.
Are plantains dangerous?
Plantains are only dangerous if your dog were to eat an absurd amount as they contain no inherently toxic chemicals. However, plantains are high in starch and can be hard on your dog’s digestive system if they eat more than a little — even when cooked.
Can dogs eat plantains lily?
Despite sharing a name, cooking bananas or plantains are not the same plants as plantain lilies, which are highly toxic to dogs, cats, and horses due to a chemical called saponins they contain. Fortunately, they look nothing alike, and plantain lilies produce no edible fruit.
Plantains vs Bananas: What’s The Difference?
Plantains are larger, tougher, and higher in starch, carbohydrates, and calories compared to bananas who feature a bit more fiber and sugar. Both fruits come from the same family of plants and feature a delightfully rich national profile, featuring high levels of potassium along with vitamins A and C.
Plantains are commonly used to create chips or fries that are incredibly delicious while bananas get eaten raw or baked in treats like muffles and breads.
Which is healthier: bananas or plantains?
You can’t go wrong eating either fruit thanks to both having a fantastic nutritional profile. And when determining which is healthier, it will depend on what you’re looking for — whether for your diet or your dog’s.
If extra fiber and less calories is your goal, then reach for the bananas over the plantains. But if neither is a concern, then choose whichever is more delicious for you and your dog.
Both are pretty similar in nutritional content, so don’t feel like you have to carefully choose one over the other. They are both excellent options!
Can you eat plantains if you are allergic to bananas?
If you or your dog are allergic to bananas, you’ll want to stay away from plantains as they are from the same botanical family, and an allergic reaction is more likely.
As well, you want to be careful with avocados, kiwis, and chestnuts, and to a lesser degree peaches, olives, tomatoes, bell peppers, and carrots. Just because you or your dog is allergic to bananas, doesn’t mean you or they will be to any of the other aforementioned fruits and veggies.
Common Plantain Dishes
Plantains are featured in an incredible array of dishes all across the world. We’ve talked about plantain chips so far, but those barely cover the surface.
In Africa, you’ll find plantains commonly served in the Ivory Coast dish called aolco, which features fried plantains covered in a tomato-onion sauce that’s served with a meat, most commonly, fish.
In the Caribbean, you’ll find plantains in a dish called fufu de platano, which is boiled and mashed plantains mixed with chicken stock and a herby sauce. In India, plantains are often fried with sweetened rice flour and fried in coconut oil.
The list of dishes goes on, and plantains can even be mashed down into a flour, boiled with water, spices, and sugar for a tasty drink, and may even be a decent ketchup replacement.
How To Make Plantain Chips For Your Dog
We’ve covered the plethora of reasons plantains are a great addition to your diet, and as a occasional healthy snack for your dogs. As well, we’ve seen how you can throw them into an incredible range of dishes.
So let’s show you how you can get started cooking with plantains, and one of the best ways to start isby making plantain chips. They are incredibly simple to make and wonderfully scrumptious.
Making your own plantain chips at home is a great way to cut down on salt and calories from fat that plague many commercial brands.
All you need is three simple ingredients: olive oil, salt, and, don’t forget, ripe plantains. When are plantains ripe, you ask? Easy, just wait until they’ve turned from green to bright yellow to dark yellow with black spots, indicating the starches have undergone a chemical reaction that turns them into sugars.
To prep, carefully peel off the skin of the plantains as plantains turn mushier faster than bananas. Slice them in quarter inch chucks or however big you like them, sprinkle them with salt and olive oil. Bake at 425 degrees F until oil is absorbed and sides are crispy. Let cool, then enjoy. Feel free to reheat at 350 degrees F and store for up to a week.
• 3 ripe plantains (dark yellow with black spots)
• 3 tablespoons olive oil or melted coconut oil
• 1 teaspoon salt
• Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
• Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
• Peel plantains
• Slice plantains between 1/4- to 1/3-inch thick — slicing at an angle will increase length of chips
• Carefully toss plantains chips in salt and olive oil or simply lay them out first on the baking sheet first if too mushy to toss without breaking.
• Bake the plantains for 10 minutes, flip, then bake another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven, let cool, but serve warm.
Woah, who knew there was so much to learn about plantains. So let’s summarize what we’ve learned.
First, the big question, can we give plantains to our dogs? We are happy to say that it’s a perfectly healthy treat, just keep it to one or two chips depending on their size. Plantains are incredibly starchy and that can be hard on a dog’s digestive system. So start small in the beginning.
Second, we learned that we always want to cook our plantains because when raw, all the starches can be incredibly taxing on the digestive system, both for your dog and you.
Third, there isn’t much nutritional difference between bananas and plantains, with bananas tending to be sweeter and less hearty, so pick whichever one tastes best to you and your pupper.
Last, one of the best ways to start cooking with plantains is making plantains chips, and by making them at home, you can control the salt and fat content, helping you make a healthy treat for your dog even healthier!
For more information on improving your dog’s diet and what food they can have, make sure to stay up-to-date with Tindog’s Nutrition Blog.