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Plátanos Machos

How to Prepare Plátanos Machos

Plátanos Machos, also known as plantains or cooking bananas, are a staple in Latin American cuisine, including Mexican gastronomy.

Texture-wise, Plátanos Machos differ from regular bananas as they are starchier and less sweet, making them ideal for cooking. When ripe, they have a soft and sweet taste similar to a ripe banana, but as they transition from green to yellow to black, their texture changes significantly. When green, they are firm and starchy, suitable for frying or cooking. As they ripen and turn yellow or black, they become sweeter and softer.

In Mexican cuisine, Plátanos Machos are commonly used in savory dishes despite their sweetness when ripe. When green, they are sliced and fried to make tostones or patacones, a popular dish where the slices are flattened and fried twice to achieve a crispy exterior and soft interior. Ripe plantains are often used in dishes like maduros, where they’re fried or caramelized to bring out their natural sweetness and served as a side dish or dessert.

The versatility of Plátanos Machos allows them to be used in various recipes, including appetizers, main courses, and desserts. Their ability to adapt to different cooking methods and their distinct sweet yet starchy flavor profile make them a favorite ingredient in Mexican cuisine, adding both texture and flavor diversity to a wide array of dishes.

Key Takeaways

  • Who this dish appeals to: Plantain enthusiasts, those craving a sweet and savory treat, anyone looking for a quick and delightful snack.
  • Estimated duration: A swift cooking adventure that takes approximately 15-20 minutes.
  • Nutrition facts: A satisfying dish featuring the natural sweetness of plantains.

About this Recipe

Plátanos Machos are a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in various ways. This recipe guides you through the simple process of transforming plantains into a delectable treat that will please your palate.


  • 2 ripe plantains, peeled and sliced into diagonal pieces
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • Salt to taste
  • Optional: Cinnamon and sugar for dusting


  1. Prepare Plantains:
  • Peel the ripe plantains and slice them into diagonal pieces, about 1/2 inch thick.
  1. Heat Vegetable Oil:
  • In a deep skillet or frying pan, heat enough vegetable oil for frying over medium-high heat.
  1. Fry Plantains:
  • Carefully place the plantain slices into the hot oil, ensuring not to overcrowd the pan.
  • Fry for 2-3 minutes on each side or until they turn golden brown and caramelized.
  1. Remove and Drain:
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fried plantains to a plate lined with paper towels to drain excess oil.
  1. Season and Optional Dusting:
  • While the plantains are still warm, sprinkle them with salt to enhance the flavors.
  • For an extra touch of sweetness, dust the plantains with a mixture of cinnamon and sugar.
  1. Serve Warm:
  • Plátanos Machos are best enjoyed warm. Serve them immediately as a snack, side dish, or dessert.

Serving Suggestions

  • Pair with a drizzle of condensed milk or honey for added sweetness.
  • Serve alongside a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a delightful dessert.
  • Enjoy with a sprinkle of chili powder for a sweet and spicy kick.

Storage Options

Plátanos Machos are best enjoyed fresh, but if you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container at room temperature. Reheat briefly in the oven or a toaster oven to regain some crispiness.

Ingredient Substitutes

  • Vegetable Oil: Substitute with canola oil or another oil suitable for frying.
  • Cinnamon and Sugar Dusting: Customize the flavor by using powdered sugar, cocoa powder, or a pinch of chili powder.

Alternatives to this Dish

Experiment with different plantain preparations, such as Tostones (twice-fried green plantains) or Maduro (sweet ripe plantains) for a variety of delicious options.


Plátanos Machos offer a delightful combination of sweet and savory, making them a beloved treat across Latin America. Whether enjoyed on their own or paired with complementary flavors, these fried plantains are a celebration of simplicity and taste. ¡Buen provecho!