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Fried ripe plantains – Platanos maduros fritos

This is my easy recipe for fried ripe plantains or platanos maduros fritos, a must-have side dish for so many Latin dishes. I experienced overexposure to plantains when I was growing up (and it was great!).

How to make fried ripe plantains

En español

We grew plantains on the farm, my mom used to make us fried ripe plantains for breakfast – or on request. Now my kids rave about my mom making them a whole pan of platanos maduros when they visit her. Fried plantains are also one of the first things I learned to cook on my own as a kid.

Fried sweet plantains or maduros fritos

In Ecuador, the street food stalls in the city and at the beach sell the best whole ripe plantains fried and stuffed with cheese. I could fill a cookbook with all the plantain recipes I’ve tried. There are so many different ways to prepare them and the taste of each dish is completely different even though the same main ingredient is used.

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Maduros or fried ripe plantains recipe

I love dishes made with green or unripe plantains as much as I do those that are made with ripe ones. Fried ripe plantains are probably the most well known way to cook plantains and also the easiest way to cook them. Even then there are so many options for frying ripe plantains, from how you slice them, to how ripe they are and if you shallow fry vs deep frying.

Fried ripe plantains or platanos maduros fritos

Fried ripe plantains go well as a side dish for almost any meal, especially if the meal involves rice. One of the most simple and delicious meals you can have is rice with a fried egg and fried plantains.

Ripe plantains for frying

They are perfect simply right out of the frying pan, but also delicious with cheese on top. I like to use either queso fresco or feta cheese, the saltiness reminds me of an Ecuadorian cheese call queso de sopa (a soft crumbly salty cheese used in soups). A grated cheese that melts easily (like Ecuadorian quesillo, mozzarella, monterey jack or fontina) is also good. These fried ripe plantains can be served as an appetizer, as a side dish, as a snack, or as breakfast dish.

Fried plantains

Fried ripe plantains – Platanos maduros fritos

Easy recipe for fried ripe plantains or platanos maduros fritos, a must-have side dish for so many Latin dishes.
4.80 from 308 votes
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Course: Appetizer, Breakfast, Brunch, Side Dish
Cuisine: Caribbean, Colombian, Ecuadorian, Latin American, Mexican, South American
Keyword: Comfort food, Fried ripe plantains, Maduros fritos, Platanos maduros fritos, Ripe plantains
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 12 fried ripe plantains slices (6 per plantain)


  • 2 ripe plantains
  • Oil for frying can use avocado, sunflower, peanut oil


  • Cheese for sprinkling or melting on top: You can use quesillo queso freso or feta if you want to experience the saltiness contrast with the sweetness of the plantain. Other options include grated mozzarella, monterey jack, or fontina if you prefer the yummy gooiness of melted cheese


  • Wash and peel the plantains
  • Slice the plantains, the best way to slice them is either diagonally or cut the plantain in half and slice lengthwise. The plantain can also be sliced lengthwise full size, but the smaller diagonal or half slices are easier to manage.
  • Heat the oil over medium heat in a large frying pan and add the plantains
  • The plantains will cook very quickly, make sure to turn them before they burn and cook until golden on each side. You can use a spatula or a fork to turn them. If the plantain flesh is still pink or white inside it means that it is not yet fully cooked.
  • Thicker slices and less ripe plantains will need longer to cook, and maybe more oil.
  • Place the cooked plantains on a paper towel to drain any excess oil.
  • Serve warm


If adding cheese, sprinkle the cheese over the plantains and serve. If you using a grated cheese then it is best to skip step #5, once the plantains are done leave them in the frying pan and add the grated cheese on top, remove from the heat to avoid burning them and let the cheese melt.

If you love plantains or want to try different recipes, you can check out my collection of plantain recipes.

Fried ripe plantains

Step by step preparation photos for preparing fried ripe plantains or platano maduros fritos

Place the plantain slices in a hot frying pan
Cook on each side until golden
Platano frito or fried ripe plantains
Platanos fritos
platanos fritos con queso
Platanos fritos or fried ripe plantains
Platanos fritos con queso

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  1. Recipe looks great! How/can I freeze? Any special prep if i go this route? Have been waiting almost 4 weeks for green ones to ripen and don’t want to mess it up. Thanks in advance.

    1. You can freeze them after you cook them. Place them on a tray (line it with wax paper) then freeze for ~4 hours, once frozen put them in a sealable freezer ziplock bag. To re-heat you can microwave them or in the oven/toaster oven.

  2. Hola, Layla! Mi nombre es David, y yo es de Canada. Recently home from Guatemala, where I met a boy my wife and I supported for 8 years through a Mission group. My wife passed away a year ago, but I have told several friends that I have fallen in love again! “You have?” is the usual response. “Yes, with the slow cooker. and now Plantain!” (One of these has nothing to do with the other!) Thank you for these recipes! I have to go out to obtain Peanut oil or some oil which I have never used! David Tournay Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

    Dios te bendiga

  3. Great site. Easy to understand instructions. Pictures help to see how long to cook. I have burned many very soft and sweet plantains. A woman from Jamaica said that in her countries the smooth skin of the women was attributed to rubbing the inner skin of plantains on their faces. Plantains are full of vitamins and nutrition. The green plantains are lower in carbs because the sugar has not developed. Here is a question: I used to make a soup with chicken and tomatoes, spices and palm oil. At that time, I would add green plantains and the cooked like potatoes. Many years later, when I added the green plantain, the plantain became very hard and could not be eaten. Do you have suggestions as to what caused the hard plantain in the soup? Kind regards Jackie

    1. Hi Jackie – Thank you! Sometimes the green plantains are not good quality and are bruised or already dried up so they don’t cook well, try to get green plantains that are firm and don’t have any brown spots on the skin. In my hometown we also make a soup with green plantains (or even green bananas – but they must be very green) and I was always told to not salt before and during the cooking process (only after), but that was more so that they wouldn’t turn brown. Also, depending on the plantains and the size they are cut, they could need more time. One option would be to boil the plantains separately, peeled and cut in half, then dice them and add them to the soup.

  4. Nunca he hecho platanos fritos, pero estan delicioso! Los hice para una asignación de mi clase española. Muchas gracias!

  5. Beautiful pics and directions! Tonight was my first time cooking plantains after years of just eating them. I love the cheese topping; it was a huge hit. Thanks and i’ll be coming back for more recipes!

  6. I have always loved fried plantain since my mother used to make it for us when I was young. She made it pretty much the same way as you said except she would sprinkle sugar on top of them after they’ve come out of the pan then we’d eat them with a bit of sour cream on top. It was so delicious! I’d love some more recipes too if you’ve got more!


  7. Laylita,

    Thank you sooo much for your wonderful recipes! I teach cooking classes (and in a week ro so, one on Latin American foods!). The only way I knew to cook plantains was to fry them – either ripe or green – so thank you so much for all of your amazing recipes!!
    (I have also made fufu with plantains – though it is usually made with yucca, it was incredibel when I used the plantains!).

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