Baked Banana Spice Wontons - A Pantry Scraper Recipe

Friday, March 6, 2009

This was a recipe of novelty and frugality. Arising from an empty place where, upon gazing at the mismatching staples and supplies and supposedly unrelated items you realize, in a flash of cosmic understanding, a pattern and potential of all things. While most people would argue that the bananas that had been placed in suspended animation in my freezer since time forgot to prevent them from being wasted might not be so good after such a long cryogenic sleep I begged to differ.

"No," I said, "these now black fruit have potential." In fact their flavor had intensified and their sugars had become sweeter. While their skins were pitch, inside they were a creamy, though slightly off-putting off-white color. A black mark or two streaked down their fibrous, but pliable sides, as if to attest that they, indeed, weren't getting any younger.  I opened them up and they lugubriously fell into the bowl with slothful disdain for me for having thawed them from their frozen stasis. 

We then got out some chopped walnuts that were leftover from a pilaf I made a few months back. They were on their last legs, and the smell was questionable, but not enough so to deter us from their use. Walnuts are expensive, after all. 

Lastly we broke out the leftover wonton wrappers that had wantonly held some delicious gingered pork that had been devoured the night before, leaving behind many of their brethren to wonder what their pouchy-fate would be. While those had been steamed these would be baked, something neither of us had tried but were confident enough that between two somewhat competent cooks we would yield an edible result that wouldn't set off the smoke detector. 

My roommate and I decided to mash the bananas up with some freshly grated cinnamon and nutmeg. Adding some flour and the nuts to the mix as well we then began to fill and seal the wonton wrappers. After we gave them a fresh eggy coat and a sprinkling of brown sugar and cinnamon and into the oven they went.

They were delicious. Sweet, spicy, and the texture was intriguing; soft in the middle with enough give to make you wonder if the wrapper wanted to give up its fruity contents at all. The outer rim was crisp with a auditory-pleasing snap. The sugar and spice on top was just enough to counter the banana filling which we agreed was a bit heavy on the fresh nutmeg, but decided it was pleasing all the same. 

Banana Spice Wontons

Take out whatever old bananas you have, one banana will usually fill about 12 wonton wrappers. Mash up the bananas with a fork.

For each banana add:
-1 tablespoon of flour
-pinch of nutmeg
-1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon

Beat an egg and set aside in a small bowl. Lay out the wonton wrapper. Dip your finger into the egg and wipe the rim of the wonton wrapper, this will seal the wrapper when you fold it. Add a teaspoon of the mashed banana mixture to the middle. Fold over into a triangle and press the edges together so the seal. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Give the top of each wonton a light egg-was with your finger or a brush and then sprinkle on some brown sugar and cinnamon. 

Bake for 10 minutes at 350. 

Store in a container without a lid as covering them will make the high amount of moisture from the bananas soften up the crispy wonton edges.
*I call this a pantry scraper because it's just made from whatever bits you can find left over in your kitchen to make something awesome. Furthermore, I just threw this together, which is reflected in the very laid back organization to the recipe. 


  1. oooh thanks for this recipe : )


  2. I have 2 banana's and some leftover chopped pecans, may have to run to the store for the wonton wrappers! The only thing that may make these better might be the coconut ice cream that is served with the fried banana rolls at PF Changs!

  3. Sounds delicious, but where is Bulwer-Lytton when we need him? LOL

  4. Lovely idea...makes me think of fried banana desserts, which I love! Glad for this baked option :) and yes, Irene, coconut ice cream would make this heavenly! Thanks for sharing!

  5. How wonderful and unique. Love the photography on your blog.

  6. I have a version that I grew up with (not sure which grandma though...) -

    Mix together chopped peanuts (salted are okay - I like salty and sweet), shredded coconut, honey (enough to bind) and a dash of cinnamon. (Adjust quantities to your liking. For me it just depends on how much I have of each ingredient.) Fill wonton wrappers. Deep fry. Sprinkle with a light dusting of powdered sugar. I am always surrounded by smiling faces when I make this!

  7. Garrett~ Have you heard about the $80-a-week menu challenges? There are plenty of Eat Cheap idea on the web, but the more I look the more those menus revolve around things like Ramen and mac and cheese. Which is fine, but not necessarily satisfying for someone who loves to cook.

    I know you said you were living on a tight student budget this month and I was wondering if you could do a post on what a weekly menu might look like for you when you're trying to keep your budget from busting.


  8. You've inspired me to try these with Plantains!

  9. that's sort of like the Chunky Monkey I make with egg roll wrappers. Just place a 1/2 a bananna some brown sugar and a sprinkle of cinamon and a few chocolate chips and nuts. Roll up burrio style and fry, but you could probably bake them also like you did with the wonton wrappers.

  10. These look lovely...I just made pantry scraping soup and my daughter's college friend said "this tastes like, I dunna, real food, it's good!" made my day!

  11. Looks lovely, nice photos...just made pantry scraping soup and my daughter's college friend said "this was good, it tastes like, I dunno, real food"...that's why I do it! also,really enjoy your blog.

  12. Can I just say I LOVE the term "pantry scraper"?

  13. I'm going to try these and also try a peanut butter and banana version.

    Thanks! I also like the name.

  14. it was fate - leftover wrappers from making pork wontons, a lone apple in the fruit bowl and some cinnamon sugar hiding in the pantry from snickerdoodles a few weeks ago...and of course catching up on your blog led to mini apple pies! thanks for the inspiration!

  15. WOW, they sound right up my alley and as luck would have it, I also have Nutella in my pantry. Sounds like a delicious lunch to ME!! TY Garrett

  16. Looks like a yummy recipe with a unique combination! I'm gonna try it.

  17. My father is a huge fan of Banana Spice Wontons and I always try to bake one for him whenever we see my parents. He has yet to be fully blown away by any of the recipes i've tried. Simplicity is key, and yours looks perfect! Can't wait to try it. thank you for shearing your post.


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