Fried plantain is a delicious and versatile snack, appetizer or perfect side dish that is popular in many tropical regions around the world.
Whether you’re looking for a quick snack, a side to accompany your lunch, or a special treat to enjoy with friends and family, fried plantain is sure to satisfy.
With their crunchy exterior and soft interior, cooked plantains are a popular and delicious side dish in many parts of the world. Whether you're in the Caribbean, Latin America, Asia or Africa, fried plantains are a staple on many dinner plates.
How to make Fried Plantain
If you want to learn how to cook plantain from start to finish, check out our easy-to-follow slideshow video.
Continue reading this blog post. We'll take you through the entire process, from choosing and frying the plantains to perfection, including different ways to serve them.
You'll also learn tips and tricks to ensure your cooked plantain turns out crispy and delicious every time.
Plantains have been used in cooking in Asia since around 500 BC. It was discovered that plantain could grow well in many regions, and traders began its spread. Soon plantain was grown across Asia, India, East Africa, West Africa and beyond into the Caribbean, Central America and South America.
It is now available to buy worldwide. Many delicious recipes have been created to cook plantains, from tostones, boil plantains, and deep fryer plantains. However, fried plantains, also called Dodo, is definitely among our favourite way!
If you've never cooked fried plantain, you may wonder what ingredients are needed to make this tasty side dish. In this post, we'll dive into the essential ingredients you need to make the perfect batch of fried plantains.
When looking for plantains to make fried plantains, it's important to check that the skin of the fruit at least has some black spots. This is an indication that the plantain is ripe and sweet.
The darker the skin, the sweeter the results. All black skin with give you delicious slices of fried sweet plantains.
Ripe plantains should be slightly soft when you press them gently with your finger, with some give. For this dish, any size of plantain will work.
Unripe plantains are green or yellow with firm flesh. I don't recommend fried green plantains as they are flavourless and bland.
Any oil with a high smoke point will work to fry plantains. A smoke point is a temperature at which hot oil starts to smoke and break down, affecting the taste and nutrition of the food. Examples of oils with high smoke points include vegetable, canola, grapeseed, or peanut oil.
Vegetable oil is perhaps the most popular choice to cook plantain in because it is readily available, affordable and has a neutral flavour that won't overpower the natural sweetness of the fruit.
Sprinkling a bit of salt over the fried sweet plantains helps bring out the natural sweetness of the plantain while also adding a savoury touch.
It's best to sprinkle salt over the top of the plantains while they are still warm so that the salt can adhere to them better. Be sure to use high-quality salt like sea salt flakes or kosher salt for best results.
That's it! With just these three ingredients, you can make perfectly crispy and sweet fried plantains that will impress your taste buds.
If you're feeling adventurous, add other seasonings or spices like garlic powder, chilli flakes, onion powder, or paprika to add flavour.
Alternatively, you could add a mixture of sugar and spices such as cinnamon or nutmeg as a topping to the fried plantains to serve them as a dessert with cream or ice cream
But stick to the three basic ingredients for a simple and classic version of this dish.
No special equipment is needed for fried plantain, a large non-stick frying pan and a knife to cut the plantain and a fork or other metal tool to turn the plantain is all you need.
If you have a deep-fat fryer you can use that instead of a pan.
A detailed guide on how to slice and fry up your plantains to perfection; follow these simple steps.
Use a sharp knife to chop off both ends of the plantain. Score a line down the skin using the knife.
Peel the skin off carefully.
Cut plantains in half at a sharp angle, then continue cutting both halves at ½-cm slices following that angle.
Heat the oil
Place enough vegetable oil in a frying pan and heat until it reaches 350℉ / 176℃. No thermometer? Make sure it is very hot and bubbles when the plantain is added.
You can choose to either shallow fry over medium heat or use a deep fat fryer as you prefer.
I like to use enough oil in the frying pan to submerge the plantain slices in oil while frying partially.
Carefully add the sliced plantain to the hot oil in the frying pan. It is essential not to crowd so that each slice fries up crispy.
Turn the plantains regularly using a metal utensil or fork, so that they cook and brown evenly.
The middle of the pan is usually hotter so move them around for even cooking.
Cooking Time for Plantain
You will know when plantain is cooked. Once the slices have reached a nice golden-brown colour (time varies depending on the cooking method and oil temperature).
Remove them from the heat using a metal slotted spoon or fork.
Place them onto a paper towel-lined plate to help remove excess oil.
The last step in this recipe calls for a sprinkle of salt (or other seasonings) over the fried plantains while they are still warm.
We love pairing fried plantains with jollof rice and suya beef kebabs for an African dinner. The sweet and crispy plantains balance the bold flavours of the spicy suya seasoning and the savoury hot rice, creating a truly delicious and balanced meal.
Try some of these other recipes which pair well with sweet plantains.
📖 Step by Step Recipe
Fried Plantain Recipe (Dodo)
- 1 large Plantain
- Vegetable oil I recommend using enough oil to partially submerge the plantain slices. You can shallow fry or deep fry instead.
- Salt Flakes
- Use a knife to chop both ends off the 1 large Plantain.
- Score a line down the skin using a knife.
- Unwrap the peel away from the plantain.
- Cut the plantain in half at a sharp angle.
- Continue cutting both halves at ½ cm slices following that angle. Place the vegetable oil in a frying pan and heat until it becomes very hot. If you have a thermometer it should reach 350℉ / 176℃. I like to use enough Vegetable oil to partially submerge the plantain slices. You can shallow fry or deep fry instead.
- Once the oil is hot, gently add the sliced plantain be careful it doesn't splash
- Turn regularly using a metal utensil or fork.
- Cook until browned
- Once cooked remove from pan onto a plate lined with kitchen paper towel.
- The kitchen paper towel helps to remove excess oil. Sprinkle with Salt Flakes.
Since it's so simple to make, we don't recommend making it up in advance, like banana, and plantain doesn't keep well once peeled.
Fried plantain is best eaten right away; however, once cooled, it can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
If you make ahead or have leftovers, microwave them for 1-2 minutes to reheat. They will be a bit soggier than when made fresh.
Unripe plantains are not ideal for making fried plantains as they are too starchy and less sweet. Use ripe plantains for best results.
Use ripe plantains with some black spots or completely black skin for fried plantains. The blacker they are the sweeter and easier to cook they are!
Place the unripe plantains in a brown paper bag. This will help to speed up the ripening process by trapping ethylene gas. Adding a ripe banana to the bag with the unripe plantains can also help to speed up the ripening process.
More Vegetarian Recipes
Here is a selection of vegetarian side dishes you may like.
So, what do you like to serve with fried plantains? Let us know in the comments below! We'd love to hear your favorite recipes and pairings.