What is the serving size of a banana?

When it comes to healthy snacking, bananas are one of the most popular and convenient options. But how much of a banana counts as a single serving? Let’s take a look at the serving size for bananas and what that means for your health.

The Standard Serving Size for a Banana

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the standard serving size for a medium banana (about 7″ to 7-7/8″ long) is:

  • 1 medium banana (126g)

This serving contains around:

  • 105 calories
  • 1.3g protein
  • 0.4g fat
  • 27g carbs
  • 3g fiber
  • 14g sugar
  • 10% DV vitamin C
  • 12% DV potassium

As you can see, a single medium banana makes for a nutritious, satisfying snack that provides key nutrients like fiber, vitamin C and potassium in a low-calorie package.

Serving Sizes for Different Banana Sizes

Bananas can vary significantly in size, so the serving for a small or large banana may be different:

  • Small banana (about 6″ long): 1 small banana (101g)
  • Medium banana (about 7-7/8″ long): 1 medium banana (126g)
  • Large banana (about 8-8/7″ long): 1 large banana (152g)

As you go up in banana size, the calories, nutrients, and serving weight increase:

Banana Size Serving Weight Calories Carbs Fiber Sugars
Small 101g 90 24g 3g 12g
Medium 126g 105 27g 3g 14g
Large 152g 121 31g 4g 17g

As you can see, the medium banana falls around the middle with 105 calories and 27g of carbs per serving.

Factors that Affect Banana Size and Servings

Many factors can affect the size and serving amounts of bananas:

  • Banana type – Some banana varieties are naturally smaller or larger.
  • Ripeness – Unripe green bananas are smaller. Riper yellow bananas grow bigger as starch turns to sugar.
  • Grower and growing conditions – Soil quality, climate, and grower practices affect size.
  • Transport and storage – Bananas continue to grow after harvesting. Proper transport and storage slows ripening.

Due to these factors, banana sizes can range from about 5.5-9 inches long. The most common retail size is the 7-7.8 inch medium banana. Jumbo bananas over 8 inches long are also available. Bananas under 6 inches are rare commercially.

How Banana Servings Fit Into a Balanced Diet

One medium banana makes an excellent snack or part of a balanced breakfast or lunch. The fiber, potassium, vitamin C and magnesium content in a serving make bananas a healthier choice than many other processed snacks.

Bananas can be used:

  • On their own as a convenient grab-and-go snack
  • Sliced over yogurt, oatmeal or cereal
  • Blended into smoothies
  • As part of a fruit salad or parfait
  • Spread with nut butter
  • Baked into banana breads or muffins

Pairing a banana with a protein or healthy fat source helps ensure a satisfying, balanced snack. For example:

  • Medium banana + 1-2 tbsp peanut or almond butter
  • Medium banana + 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • Medium banana + 1 oz cheese
  • Medium banana + handful of nuts

As part of a 2000 calorie diet, a medium banana counts for about 5% of your daily calories. Most nutritionists recommend getting 20-35% of calories from fruits and vegetables as part of a healthy diet.

Typical Banana Nutrition Facts Panel

Here is the nutrition facts panel for a typical medium 7-7/8″ banana weighing 126g:

This shows the full nutritional breakdown for the standard USDA medium banana serving size.

Daily Values in One Banana Serving

Here are some of the key daily values (DV) provided in a single medium banana serving:

  • 105 calories – 5% DV
  • 27g carbs – 10% DV
  • 3g fiber – 10% DV
  • 12% DV vitamin C
  • 12% DV potassium
  • 8% DV vitamin B6
  • 7% DV magnesium

As you can see, bananas provide significant amounts of key nutrients, particularly vitamin C, potassium, B6 and magnesium. Bananas are especially high in potassium, providing 12% of the recommended 4700mg per day.

Banana Serving Sizes for Diets and Nutrition Targets

You may need to adjust your banana serving sizes to meet certain diet or nutritional goals:

Low Potassium Diet

If you are on a low potassium diet, limit bananas to a 1/2 medium banana (63g) serving or less per day. Spread out your banana intake over the week rather than having a full serving every day.

Low Sugar or Low Carb Diet

For a low sugar/low carb diet, stick to a 1/2 medium banana (63g) serving and pair with protein or fat. Limit to 3-4 times per week. Favor unripe, greenish bananas which are lower in sugar.

High Fiber Diet

To increase fiber intake, enjoy a full medium or large banana in your daily meal plan along with other high fiber foods like berries, avocado, beans, lentils, and quinoa.

High Potassium Diet

On a high potassium diet, you can enjoy 1-2 medium or large bananas per day as potassium sources. Pair bananas with other potassium-rich foods like sweet potatoes, spinach, tomatoes, oranges, yogurt and salmon.

Weight Loss Diet

For weight loss, stick to a single medium banana as a snack or part of a meal containing protein and/or fat. Limit higher calorie ingredients added to bananas like sugar, honey or chocolate.

Tips for Picking the Perfect Size Banana

Use these tips to pick a banana that matches your serving size needs:

  • Basic rule: 1 banana = 1 serving
  • Look for unblemished, bright yellow peel
  • Avoid bananas with brown/black spots
  • Pick bananas free of bruises or cracks
  • For smaller servings, select a banana around 6 inches long
  • For larger servings, choose a jumbo banana 8 inches or longer
  • Let greenish bananas ripen for 2-5 days until yellow
  • Ripe yellow bananas make great daily snacks
  • Slightly green-tipped bananas work well for cooking

With some intuition, you’ll be able to pick a banana that matches your desired serving size!

Do Banana Servings Change When Raw vs Cooked?

Cooking bananas does not significantly alter the serving size or nutrition profile:

  • A medium raw banana has 105 calories and 27g carbs
  • A medium cooked banana has 103 calories and 27g carbs

Cooking does impact the texture, taste and appearance of bananas. But the overall serving size and nutrition facts stay the same whether a banana is raw or cooked.

Common Ways to Enjoy Bananas

Here are some of the most popular ways to enjoy bananas using standard medium servings:


  • Peel and eat raw
  • Slice and eat raw
  • Spread with nut butter
  • Dip in Greek yogurt


  • Blend with milk, yogurt, juice, peanut butter
  • Freeze slices for thicker texture
  • Sweeten to taste with honey, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, cocoa powder


  • Mash ripe bananas for banana breads and muffins
  • Use firmer bananas for cakes
  • Saute or grill slices as a topping

Other Ideas

  • Add to oatmeal, yogurt, cottage cheese or cereal
  • Make “banana ice cream” in the freezer
  • Use in pancake or waffle batter
  • Blend into shakes or smoothies

Health Benefits of Banana Servings

Enjoying bananas as part of your daily nutrition provides many healthy benefits:

1. Nutrient Dense

Bananas provide a wide range of key vitamins, minerals and plant compounds in one convenient fruit.

2. Good Source of Fiber

A medium banana has 3g of fiber to support digestive and heart health.

3. Antioxidants

Bananas contain antioxidants like catechins, dopamine and gallocatechin which may help reduce oxidative stress.

4. Electrolytes

Bananas are packed with potassium, magnesium and sodium to replenish electrolytes lost during exercise.

5. Vision and Eye Health

Carotenoids like beta carotene in bananas help keep eyes healthy and prevent macular degeneration.

6. May Aid Blood Sugar Control

Despite their sweetness, bananas have a low glycemic index which may help regulate blood sugar.

7. Improve Heart Health

Bananas contain potassium, fiber and other minerals known to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol.

Potential Downsides of Bananas

Bananas make a safe, healthy addition to most diets, but there are some potential downsides:

  • High in natural sugars – those watching carbs/sugar may want to limit portions
  • Can cause bloating or react with latex allergy for some
  • Higher potassium needs monitoring on low potassium diets
  • Unripe bananas may aggravate digestive issues

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are bananas healthy?

Yes, bananas are very healthy. They provide key nutrients and antioxidants and can be part of a balanced diet. Bananas are nutrient dense and low in fat and sodium.

2. How many bananas should you eat a day?

1-2 medium bananas per day is a healthy amount for most people. Athletes or very active people can safely eat 2-3 bananas. Those watching carbs or sugar may want to limit to half a banana.

3. Is banana good for weight loss?

Bananas can aid weight loss due to their fiber content which helps you feel full. But portion control is key as bananas are higher in natural sugars. Enjoy a medium banana as a snack vs overindulging.

4. What is the healthiest way to eat a banana?

The healthiest ways to eat a banana are raw or blended into foods like smoothies or oatmeal. Bananas retain the maximum nutrition benefits when consumed raw. Banana chips or sweets with added sugar are less healthy.

5. What happens if you eat too many bananas?

Eating 4+ large bananas daily could lead to excess calories, weight gain, blood sugar spikes, and high potassium levels. max. Limit bananas to 2 medium or 1-2 large per day.

6. Are bananas good for diabetics?

In moderation, bananas generally do not cause major blood sugar spikes. But diabetics should enjoy bananas in sensible portions as part of a balanced diet and monitor blood sugar response.

The Bottom Line

A medium 7-7.8 inch banana constitutes one single serving and contains around 105 calories and 27g carbs. Bananas come in small, medium and large sizes, with adjusted serving sizes. Enjoy bananas as a nutritious snack or as part of balanced meals and smoothies. Bananas provide many health benefits thanks to their unique mix of key vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

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