The Yonanas machine has become a popular kitchen appliance for making healthy, dairy-free “ice cream” out of frozen bananas and other fruits. But can you also use fresh fruit in a Yonanas? Let’s take a look at what the Yonanas machine is, the types of fruits you can use, and some tips for getting the best results.
What is a Yonanas Machine?
A Yonanas machine is a compact appliance that uses a special blade to turn frozen fruits and vegetables into a soft-serve consistency. It works by shaving fine layers off frozen produce as it passes through the chute. This aerates the fruit to give it a light, creamy texture similar to soft-serve ice cream.
The Yonanas was invented by entrepreneur Mark Crane who was seeking a healthy dessert alternative for his kids. It launched in 2011 and quickly became popular for providing a guilt-free frozen treat made simply from fruit, with no added sugars, preservatives or artificial ingredients.
While bananas are the most commonly used fruit, you can also use mangoes, pineapples, berries, kiwi, cherries, peaches and other frozen fruits. Some people also use frozen zucchini or sweet potatoes. The machine works best with ripe, soft fruits.
Can You Use Fresh Fruit in a Yonanas?
The Yonanas machine is designed to work with frozen fruits and vegetables. Using fresh produce is not recommended for a few reasons:
- Fresh fruits are too hard. The Yonanas blade is not able to properly shave fresh, firm fruits into a creamy texture.
- It can damage the machine. Fresh produce does not grind up well and can jam the machine.
- You won’t get the right consistency. Fresh fruits simply turn into juice or get mashed up rather than forming the signature soft-serve texture.
So for best results, it’s recommended to stick to frozen produce in your Yonanas machine.
Tips for Using Frozen Fruit
Here are some tips to get great results when using frozen fruits in your Yonanas:
- Fully frozen – Be sure fruits are solidly frozen. Partially thawed fruits won’t grind up properly.
- Cut in pieces – Cut large fruits like bananas into coin-sized pieces before freezing. This helps them feed into the chute more smoothly.
- Ripe fruit – Use ripe, sweet fruit for maximum flavor. Underripe fruits can taste sour.
- Keep pushing – Gently push fruits through using the included plunger. Don’t force too hard though.
- Add liquids – For more creamy soft-serve, add small amounts of milk, juice or coconut water.
- Sweeteners – You can add vanilla, cinnamon or a bit of honey if desired.
- Mix it up – Combining 2-3 fruits can create fun new flavors.
Recommended Frozen Fruits for Yonanas
While you have lots of options, here are some of the best frozen fruits to use in a Yonanas machine:
|The #1 fruit for creamy, ice cream-like texture
|Sweet, tropical flavor
|Pretty pink color
|Nice paired with bananas
|Great mixed berry options
|Pretty green color
Be sure to experiment with different fruit combinations and additions like cocoa powder, peanut butter or maple syrup to customize your own creations.
Fruits to Avoid
While most fruits can be used, here are a few types that don’t work as well:
- Coconut – Too hard and fibrous.
- Avocado – Can get stuck in machine.
- Apples – Too dense, doesn’t get creamy.
- Watermelon – Very watery, becomes liquidy.
- Grapes – Can jam machine.
For best results, steer clear of these options. But feel free to experiment – you may find a creative way to incorporate them by mixing small amounts with banana or other fruits.
Can You Make Sorbet in a Yonanas?
While you can’t make true sorbet without added sugar, you can create sorbet-like treats in your Yonanas a few different ways:
- Use 100% fruit juice and freeze it into cubes or a block before processing.
- Mix fruit juice with a bit of honey or maple syrup before freezing.
- Blend fruit with a liquid like coconut water or almond milk before freezing.
- Puree strawberries or other soft fruits and freeze into cubes.
Process the frozen fruit cubes through the Yonanas and you’ll get a sorbet-like consistency. Adding just a touch of sweetener helps balance the flavor. Let your imagination run wild coming up with fruity sorbet options!
Can You Make Yogurt in a Yonanas?
Unfortunately yogurt does not work in the Yonanas machine. Yogurt has a soft, creamy texture already, so running it through the Yonanas blade doesn’t change or improve it. And yogurt does not freeze hard enough for the machine to properly grind it up.
The Yonanas is meant for solidly frozen fruits and vegetables. Anything soft or liquid-like jam the blades. So it’s best to stick to frozen produce rather than trying yogurt or other soft foods.
Cleaning Your Yonanas
To keep your Yonanas running smoothly, be sure to clean it properly after each use:
- Disassemble all parts.
- Wash in hot, soapy water.
- Use included brush to scrub off residues.
- Rinse and air dry all parts well.
- Occasionally sanitize by running lemon juice through it.
Avoid immersing the base motor in water. Wipe it clean with a damp cloth. Regular cleaning keeps the blades sharp and prevent buildup of old fruit residues inside the machine.
Storing Your Yonanas Treats
The soft-serve consistency of Yonanas creations are best enjoyed freshly made. But you can store leftovers in the freezer for later.
- Use airtight container.
- Smooth down top to remove air pockets.
- Cover surface with plastic wrap before sealing container.
- Store up to 2 months.
- Let sit 5-10 minutes at room temp before serving again.
The texture may become a bit more icy after refreezing, but it still tastes great! You can also try incorporating chilled leftovers into smoothies for a nutrition and flavor boost.
Troubleshooting Common Problems
Here are some tips if you run into issues using your Yonanas:
|Fruit getting jammed
|Be sure fruit is fully frozen. Cut larger pieces. Don’t force.
|Cut fruit evenly. Don’t overload machine.
|Use riper bananas. Reduce liquid additions.
|Not creamy enough
|Add a frozen banana or more liquid.
|Motor seems strained
|Don’t force fruits through. Let motor rest between batches.
|Leaking from base
|Ensure parts are assembled correctly.
If problems persist, contact Yonanas customer support for troubleshooting help.
While fresh fruits won’t work properly in the Yonanas, you have tons of delicious options with frozen produce. Bananas, mangoes, pineapple, berries and stone fruits are all great choices. Be sure to fully freeze fruits first and clean the machine properly after each use. Follow the tips provided and you’ll be whipping up healthy soft-serve creations in no time. So go forth and get creative with your own custom frozen fruit combinations!