Platanos maduros fritos are ripe plantains that have been sliced and fried. In this recipe, I’m air frying mature yellow plantains, smashing them, and air frying them again. Flattening and frying them twice gives you a more of a chip, like tostones, but using ripe plantains makes this a sweet treat. For a snack that satisfies both salty and sweet cravings, my air fryer maduros may be just what you’re looking for!
Throughout the pandemic, our household has been making heavy use of grocery delivery services to stay out of the stores. The one downside of these services is that sometimes I get surprised by my fresh produce purchases.
For example, some heirloom tomatoes are *huge* while others are rather small. If I order three tomatoes, sometimes I’ll get three cups worth of tomatoes and other times half of that.
When I shop for myself, I can adjust my purchase on the spot, getting more or fewer tomatoes. With home deliveries, I often have to make do with what ends up at my door.
And this was the situation when I ordered plantains for my jibarito recipe a few weeks back. Green (unripe) plantains were necessary for this recipe.
Unfortunately, there was no place to specify what I wanted in this store’s order. (Note: some services, like Instacart, do have space for comments. This store’s service did not.)
I ordered a few extra plantains for the purposes of recipe testing and received a mixture of yellow and green fruits. I used the green plantains for the jibaritos, but what was I going to do with the yellow plantains?
Time for Air Fryer Maduros!
The jibarito sandwich recipe used giant tostones instead of bread. As mentioned above, tostones are made with starchy (unripe) green plantains. Unripe plantains are far sturdier than ripe plantains and can work well as a stand-in for bread when made into tostones.
Classic maduros are typically sliced and fried once. Air frying, smashing, and air frying again (as with my tostones) leaves more surface area exposed. This gives you a crisper chip.
I was wondering what would happen if I took ripe plantains and air fried them like I would tostones. I knew I’d have to change the technique to account for the fragility of the yellow plantains. Also, I also knew the results would be softer than traditional tostones.
You don’t want to use a tortilla press to flatten these; they’ll turn to mush! Using the bottom of a cast-iron pan gives you a bit more control, allowing you to flatten them slightly.
You’ll also want to skip the soaking step we did with the plantains in the jibarito recipe. Soaking yellow plantains will make them more likely to crumble apart on you.
It’s also better to use yellow versus black plantains here. Black plantains are the sweetest plantains of all, but they are too delicate to use in this recipe.
The advantage of using yellow plantains is that you are getting a snack that is sweet, but that also has the pleasant saltiness of a chip. These air fryer maduros are great for cravings for both sweet and savory foods.
Meanwhile, we’re cutting back on a lot of added oil (and thus calories) by air frying instead of deep frying. If you are trying to reduce the amount of deep-fried food in your diet, an air fryer may help. I love my 10-Quart Kalorik Digital Air Fryer Oven!
And now for the disclaimer…
All recipes on this website may or may not be appropriate for you, depending on your medical needs and personal preferences. Consult with a registered dietitian or your physician if you need help determining the dietary pattern that may be best for you.
The calorie information is an estimate provided as a courtesy. It will differ depending on the specific brands and ingredients that you use. Calorie information on food labels may be wildly inaccurate, so please don’t sweat the numbers too much.
For more information on how the three recipe levels may help with a weight management goal, refer to this post. Let’s get cooking!
Air Fryer Maduros That Are Cooked Like Tostones
- 1 yellow plantain
- 1 T olive oil
- smoked salt, to taste
- Peel your plantain and cut it into 1" thick coins.
- Put the slices on an air fryer rack in a single layer and brush with 1 teaspoon of olive oil.
- Air fry the plantain slices for 5 minutes at 350°F.
- One at a time, smash each slice by placing it between two plastic baggies and gently smooshing with a cast iron pan. The baggies help to prevent sticking. Do not use a tortilla press for this!
- Lay the smashed slices in a single layer on your air fryer racks. (You may need to cook them in batches if you have a small-capacity air fryer.) Brush the tops with 1 teaspoon of olive oil.
- Air fry the smashed plantain slices for 5 minutes at 400°F.
- Remove the plantain slices from the air fryer and flip them over. Brush the sides of the slices that are now facing the top with 1 teaspoon of olive oil.
- Put the air fryer trays back in the oven, switching their position in the oven. Air fry for 8 minutes at 400°F. (Note: air fryer cooking times may vary; feel free to adjust the cooking times listed here as needed.)
- Remove the maduros from the oven after air frying. Sprinkle them with the smoked salt while they are still hot. Enjoy!
This is a level 2 recipe (transition or weight maintenance). Though it’s quite delicious, this isn’t the lightest snack in the world. I tried cutting back on added oil by misting the plantains with spray oil instead of brushing the oil on. Unfortunately, I was not satisfied with the results because I felt the plantains turned out too dry. This is definitely one instance where I would leave the recipe as-is instead of trying to reduce the oil further. For those following a low-sodium diet, you could try sprinkling these air fryer maduros with some cinnamon instead of salt. I think spices like cinnamon and nutmeg would complement the sweetness in these nicely.
Did you try these air fryer maduros and think they were awesome? It would make my day if you left a comment and recipe rating below! (Five stars means they were snacking perfection!)
You can also tag me on social media with your kitchen creations @SummerYuleRDN. I love to hear from you!