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Chamorro Banana Donuts
...taking you back home!



This is the same banana doughnut or boñelos aga' recipe from my Remember Guam cookbook except I quadrupled the batch and used bananas that were previously frozen. Be sure to bring the thawed bananas close to room temperature so your flour does not clump up. If you find clumps of flour in your batter, let the batter sit for 15 minutes then mix again.


When using previously frozen bananas, the texture of the doughnut will be moist and look wet. If you use bananas that were ripened on the counter – and not previously frozen – the inside texture will be moist but look like a normal doughnut. When in doubt, use less flour and fry a test doughnut.

Fried doughnuts may be frozen, thawed, and reheated—if you reheat in an air fryer, the outside will be a little crispy. I forgot to count how many this makes -- maybe about 4 dozen??

If you want to see what it looks like to make this recipe with overripe banana that were not frozen, check it out here.


Set 1

6 cups or 1350 grams frozen bananas that were drained somewhat then smashed, room temperature

2 cups or 400 grams granulated sugar

1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon, or 17 grams vanilla extract

Set 2

4 cups +/- or about 500 grams all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon, or 19 grams baking powder

Set 3

Coconut oil for frying, or your favorite oil

Tools: extra-large bowl, large pot, spider spoon, colander, baking trays, napkins


Fill the large pot halfway with oil then heat on medium heat. Check the heat every now and then. When you stick a wooden spoon or dowel in the oil and it sizzles, it’s ready, about 330 to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, or 165 to 177 degrees Celsius.

Line baking trays with napkins and set aside.

Combine the smashed bananas, sugar, and vanilla extract with your hand.

Add half of the flour and half of the baking powder then mix well with your hand.

Test the batter. You may use a small dough scooper or your hand. To use your hand, practice over the bowl of batter, NOT THE OIL. Scoop a small amount of batter into the palm of your dominant hand. Make a circle with your thumb and fingers. Turn your “circled fingers” to drop some batter back into the bowl. When you test drop the batter back into the bowl of batter, the test will flatten a little but you should still see its shape on the surface. If it doesn’t retain its shape at all, add the remaining baking powder then add a little bit of flour. Mix well then test the batter again in the bowl. If you add too much flour, the boñelos will turn out hard when they cool off. When in doubt, don’t add any more flour.

Test the batter in the oil. Cook a couple of donuts. It will take about 10 minutes to cook all the way through. If the batter sticks to bottom of the pan, nudge it off with a butter knife. Move the doughnuts constantly. When they look ready, remove one from the oil, then tear the donut open and see if it’s cooked. If you think it’s still raw, look closely to ensure it’s wet batter not a moist piece of banana. If you like it, repeat with remaining batter. If you feel it could use a bit more flour, add a little and mix thoroughly.

Once you’re happy with the consistency of the batter, drop more batter into the oil to fill the pot. It takes about 12 to 15 minutes for one pot full of boñelos to finish cooking on the inside without getting too dark on the outside. Use a spider/slotted spoon to transfer donuts to a colander.

Continue to cook remaining batter. Once all are done, remove the napkins from the tray so the donuts don’t dry out too much….they need a little bit of oil in them!

Once completely cooled, these donuts freeze, thaw, and reheat very well, in the microwave or in the air fryer.

 You might also like Pumpkin Doughnuts

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Effective March 2021, PaulaQ will begin replacing Canola and vegetable/seed oils in recipes with pure lard from Reverence Farm, and organic coconut oil. In addition, beef, pork, and poultry products will be sourced from Reverence Farm in Graham, NC. 



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© Copyright Paula Quinene. Check out Guam cookbooks and Chamorro cookbooks, A Taste of Guam and Remember Guam, for more Guamanian recipes and Chamorro recipes that are tested, tried and true. Get Macarons Math, Science, and Art, for foolproof macaron recipes and techniques. Enjoy a Guam romance novel in Conquered. Most photos courtesy Paula and Edward Quinene.