Frugal TIPbits: Ways to Salvage Bruised Fruit

Sometimes it’s a rogue apple that rolls off the counter onto the tile floor. Sometimes it’s a carefully selected peach that is carelessly bagged by a supermarket cashier. Sometimes it’s a forgotten plum that becomes squashed in the back of the produce drawer. Whatever the cause, bruised pieces of fruit are unsightly and, in many cases, unsavory. Fresh fruits are so pricy that throwing them away is like tossing out fistfuls of coins (not to mention that it’s wasteful). How can they be used in appetizing ways?

Ways to Salvage Bruised Fruit | Bruised pieces of fruit may be unsightly and unsavory, but they’re far from useless. Read on to find out 20 things that can be made with bruised fruit.

Before I go any further, let me clarify what I mean by bruised. I’m talking about fruits that have become soft and discolored because of pressure (from the weight of other fruit in a bin, from being squished by other groceries, from the impact of a fall, etc.). I’m not talking about moldy fruits or fruits that are split open with their innards exposed. For safety reasons, these latter fruits shouldn’t be eaten.

Things to make with bruised fruit

  • Applesauce and other fruit sauces
  • Breads (muffins, coffee cakes, quick breads, pancakes, etc.)
  • Cobblers, crisps, and streusels
  • Curries and stir-fries
  • Fried cinnamon apples
  • Fruit butters
  • Fruit ice cubes
  • Fruit leathers
  • Fruit salsas
  • Fruit vinegars
  • Fruit-containing BBQ sauces and marinades
  • Fruited coleslaws and other salads
  • Gelatin salads
  • Homemade ice creams
  • Mix-ins for oatmeal and other warm breakfast cereals
  • Pies and cakes
  • Popsicles
  • Smoothies
  • Toppings for ice cream, pancakes, or French toast
  • Yogurt parfaits

Now I just have to decide which to make with my bruised apples! What other suggestions do you have for using bruised fruit?


  1. Norma VanMatre says:

    Bananas are notorious for getting dark and nasty in my house. I cannot in good conscience throw them away. I usually make banana nut bread or just banana bread (depending on how many nuts are lying around!) and take them to church and give them to various people I know will appreciate it. Make no mistake…. I eat my share. They, and other fruits, ate also still really good in smoothies! Thanks!

    • I agree. I almost always have a baggie of frozen bananas waiting to be baked into bread.
      Sharing them with others you know will use them is a great idea!

  2. Good tips! My husband makes some great breakfasts and one of my favorites is banana nut pancakes which are also a good way to use old bananas.

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