Fresh Banana Cake

Use very ripe bananas, the blacker the better. You can bake the layers ahead and freeze them, then frost, and serve. For garnish, sprinkle with cinnamon or finely chopped toasted pecans.

Fresh Banana Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 12 servings
For the Cake:
  • Vegetable oil spray or shortening for greasing the pans
  • Flour for dusting the pans
  • 1 package (21.6 ounces) Cake Mix Doctor’s Old-Fashioned Yellow Mix OR 1 package (18.5 ounces) butter-recipe yellow cake mix plus 5 tablespoons flour
  • 1½ cups mashed bananas (from 3 very ripe large bananas)
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, at room temperature
  • 4 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly mist or grease two 9-inch round cake pans and dust them with flour. Set the pans aside.
  2. Place the cake mix, bananas, water, oil, eggs, vanilla, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed until incorporated, 30 seconds. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat until the mixture lightens and is smooth, 1½ minutes longer, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Pour the batter into the prepared pans, smoothing the top with a rubber spatula, and place the pans in the oven.
  3. Bake the cake until it is golden brown and the top springs back when lightly pressed with a finger, 28 to 32 minutes. Remove the layers from the oven, let them cool in the pan 10 minutes, run a knife around the edges, gently shake the layers to loosen the cake, and invert them once, then again, onto wire racks to cool right-side up. Let the layers cool 30 minutes before frosting.
  4. For the frosting, place the cream cheese and butter in a medium-size bowl and beat with an electric mixer on low until combined, 30 seconds. Add the sugar, a little at a time, beating on low speed, until incorporated. Add the vanilla, then increase the mixer to medium and beat until the frosting is fluffy, 1 minute more.
  5. To assemble the cake, place one layer, right-side up, on a serving plate. Spread the top with about 1 cup frosting. Place the second layer, right-side up, on top of the first and frost the top and side of the cake, working with smooth, clean strokes. To make slicing easier, place the uncovered cake in the refrigerator until the frosting sets, 20 minutes.

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