The Best Banana Cake I’ve Ever Had

This is absolutely the best banana cake I've ever had! It's supremely moist with cream cheese frosting, tons of banana, brown sugar, and cinnamon flavor. Recipe on

Remember that time I told you about the best banana cake I’ve ever had? It was over on Instagram.

I enjoyed obsessed over it at a family reunion the other weekend. Kevin’s cousin made it and I stalked her down like a dessert creep and proceeded to talk her ear off about cream cheese frosting and spotty bananas for 35 minutes straight.

What? You don’t do that at parties?


This is absolutely the best banana cake I've ever had! It's supremely moist with cream cheese frosting, tons of banana, brown sugar, and cinnamon flavor. Recipe on

Ok but this banana cake.

It was the moistest cake I’ve ever eaten. Stick-to-the-back of your fork moist. The perfect cream cheese frosting, both sweet and tangy, sinking into the top of the cake made it even more moist. Sweet, but not overpowering. Mega banana flavor, certainly more banana flavor than any banana bread I’ve ever eaten. Very buttery and cakey from creaming the butter and sugars. Ridiculously rich, decadent.

The banana cake was dense, but not heavy. If that makes any sense? (Coming from the lady who talks about rotting bananas at social gatherings, but stick with me here.) The crumb was very soft, but they were tight crumbs. The cake didn’t fall apart when you took a forkful.

Lori told me this cake comes out perfect every time she makes it. And such perfection is reinforced, she told me, when absolutely everyone who has a slice begs her for the recipe. It is, hands down, the best banana cake I’ve ever had.

And I haven’t stopped thinking about it since.

How to make the best banana cake on

Mashed bananas for the best banana cake on

How to Make Banana Cake

The recipe starts with 3 mashed bananas (above). Now, make sure those bananas are nice and spotty. As you know, I’m very passionate about spotty bananas. The bananas you see above are just right. More brown spots = sweeter, more banana flavor. Your cake will thank you. I simply mash the bananas in my mixer– the same mixer I use for creaming the butter and sugars. Beat the bananas on high speed for a minute, then transfer to another bowl. I don’t even wash the mixing bowl– just throw the butter right in and start creaming!

I really love the mix of brown and white sugars in this banana cake. Brown sugar and banana pair wonderfully together and the brown sugar leaves the cake even more moist. Plus, a little brown sugar flavor is never a bad thing!

Let’s see, what else. Oh! The cinnamon. Just a little bit, nothing overpowering. 1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon pairs with the brown sugar and banana flavors.

Here’s the batter. There will be some pretty lumps.

Ok, let’s face it– are lumps ever attractive? Ever?

How to make the best banana cake on

One more thing to note: buttermilk. Hey, how often do I express my love for buttermilk in desserts? You’re lucky I don’t hunt you down at parties and talk your ear off about… dairy.

But anyway, as you guessed, buttermilk is the moist-maker. The cake wouldn’t be what it is without it! I rarely have buttermilk in my refrigerator, unless I have a ton of baking to do that day, so I always sour whole milk instead. For this recipe, you’ll need 1 and 1/2 cups of buttermilk. So here’s what I do instead: measure 1 Tablespoon of fresh lemon juice or white vinegar, then add enough whole milk until I reach 1 and 1/2 cups. Stir it around, let it sit for a minute, then pour into the batter. To keep the cake extra rich, I do recommend whole milk when you are souring milk– not any other milks.

So, soured whole milk OR buttermilk. Your two best bets in this banana cake.

The silkiest, best cream cheese frosting! Recipe on

Is this not the silkiest and smoothest cream cheese frosting you’ve ever seen? Well, it’s the silkiest and smoothest cream cheese frosting I’ve ever tasted! It’s pretty similar to my favorite cream cheese frosting, but there’s a little less cream cheese for the amount of butter. So, this makes the frosting a little more silky. And definitely more buttery!

There’s also a lot of cream cheese frosting. You will think I’m crazy (-er than you already think I am). When you begin slathering it onto the cake, you’ll probably go “Sally, this is way too much frosting!” But it’s not. You want a nice thick layer. It’s essential to the cake’s overall awesomeness.

This is absolutely the best banana cake I've ever had! It's supremely moist with cream cheese frosting, tons of banana, brown sugar, and cinnamon flavor. Recipe on

 YUP. The best banana cake I’ve ever had. Let me know if you try it!

Banana cake recipe

The Best Banana Cake I’ve Ever Had

This is absolutely the best banana cake I’ve ever had! It’s supremely moist with cream cheese frosting, tons of banana, brown sugar, and cinnamon flavor.


Banana Cake

  • 3 large ripe bananas (about 1 and 1/2 cups mashed)
  • 3 cups (375g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (360ml) buttermilk, at room temperature1

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 ounces (224g) full-fat block cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3 cups (360g) confectioners’ sugar, plus an extra 1/4 cup if needed
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C) and grease a 9×13 inch pan.
  2. Make the cake: Mash the bananas. I usually just use my mixer for this! Set mashed bananas aside.
  3. Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together. Set aside.
  4. Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high speed until smooth and creamy – about 1 minute. Add both sugars and beat on high speed for 2 minutes until creamed together. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the eggs and the vanilla. Beat on medium-high speed until combined, then beat in the mashed bananas. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl as needed. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients in three additions alternating with the buttermilk and mixing each addition just until incorporated. Do not overmix. The batter will be slightly thick and a few lumps is OK.
  5. Spread batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes. Baking times vary, so keep an eye on yours. The cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If you find the top of the cake is browning too quickly in the oven, loosely cover it with aluminum foil.
  6. Remove the cake from the oven and set on a wire rack. Allow to cool completely. After about 45 minutes, I usually place it in the refrigerator to speed things up.
  7. Make the frosting: In a large bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese and butter together on high speed until smooth and creamy. Add 3 cups confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and salt. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then switch to high speed and beat for 2 minutes. If you want the frosting a little thicker, add the extra 1/4 cup of confectioners sugar (I add it). Spread the frosting on the cooled cake. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving. This helps sets the frosting and makes cutting easier.
  8. Cover leftover cake tightly and store in the refrigerator for 5 days.

Recipe Notes:

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: Prepare cake through step 5. Cover the cake tightly and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze up to 3 months. Bring to room temperature, make the frosting, frost, and serve. Frosted cake freezes well, up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, bring to room temperature or serve cold.
  2. Buttermilk: If you don’t have buttermilk, you can add 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice or white vinegar to a large liquid measuring cup. Then add enough regular room temperature milk (whole milk is recommended) to make 1 and 1/2 cups total. Stir and let sit for 5 minutes. This soured milk can be used in the recipe instead of buttermilk.
  3. Cupcakes: I’ve gotten a few questions about turning this cake into cupcakes. For about 2 dozen cupcakes, fill the cupcake liners halfway and bake for about 20-22 minutes. Same oven temperature.

Did you make a recipe?

Tag @sallysbakeblog on Instagram and hashtag it #sallysbakingaddiction.

PS: Happy National S’mores Day. Here’s a new video for you. Try these. Try these!

Also, there may have been too much puppy partying on Kevin’s birthday yesterday…

pups 8-9-16

Creamy, silky, smooth, and simple cream cheese frosting! Recipe on
This is absolutely the best banana cake I've ever had! It's supremely moist with cream cheese frosting, tons of banana, brown sugar, and cinnamon flavor. Recipe on


  1. Thanks Sally for this yummy recipe, I’ve done it many times and it always comes out amazing. This is my son’s favorite and today is his 7th birthday, he asked for banana cake. So just put it in the oven. Thought I would finally leave a review! Thank you again for this gteat recipe!

  2. Love your recipes! Can’t wait to try this banana cake. Need to ask you if I am going to cover it with fondant after making two layers of it ,Will this cream cheese icing be ok under the fondant and not lose its shape? If not, what do you think will work with this Cake white chocolate ganache icing or buttercream icing ? Thank you!

  3. Good morning, I just want to say I have tried a few of your recipes and love them I discover that u had one for banana cake I made the German chocolate & it was amazing . The books you have do they have the same recipe you have on line . It will be easier for me so I won’t have to keep writing them down to refer to them. Thanks Happy Holiday’s

    1. Hi Mattie! You can print my recipes using the print button (in the recipe card) if you have a printer. 🙂 My cookbook recipes are exclusive to the cookbooks; my online recipes are free. Thank you so much for reading my blog!

  4. I needed to use some very ripe bananas tonight, so made this cake. Yum! It is very moist and of course, the cream cheese frosting is fantastic! My coworkers will be thrilled when I take it to work tomorrow!

  5. Hi Sally,

    I’m a huge fan of your work & recipes and this one never fails to impress.

    Question though, I would like to try and bake it in 2 9-inch pans. How long do you reckon I should have it in the oven for if I do so?

    Thank you!

  6. Hi Sally! I want to thank you for this great recipe! My boyfriend and I have never baked once in our loves, but just one day we decides to bake banana cake. I stumbled upon your recipe and we found it so easy that for our first ever try, the cake turned out great! We brought it to work and it was a hit. Thank you so much, this gave us more confidence to yry more beginner recipes.
    I also have a question. Can I make 2 pans of this recipe and be able to bake them at the same time, 45-50min at 350F, in the oven? I was planning to bake them on different racks in the oven, and not beside each other. What can you advise me on this?

    1. Hi Clare! I’m so glad you enjoy this banana cake so much! You can bake two cakes at the same time. I recommend next to each other on the same oven rack. The bake time will be slightly longer than instructed.

      1. Thank you, and Yes! I love your recipe. The cake is so moist. Now I can bring something for parues that isn’t store bought hehe.
        One more question, I have done 2 tries already and I always had soggy bottoms. It’s more moist than the top and middle part of the cake. What could cause this? Should I adjust temp to 375 for 45min, instead? Or maybe because I’ve been using 4 bananas instead of 3, like what it says in the recipe?

  7. Hi Sally, I have made this in a cake & large cupcakes. Similar suze to muffins.I love it!! I do a large cake & lrg cupcakes as is a big recipe. And give to extended family members & friends. Espicially when you add crushed walnuts or pecan nuts to the recipe. It really tops it off!!

  8. Hey there, Sally! I baked this cake a second time today and it is just amazing. The best banana cake recipe indeed. My husband, who is not really fond of cakes, loves it that he is bringing some to share at work. I am a neophyte in baking and he thinks, with the banana cake, I did a superb job. Thanks to you and your recipe!

  9. Thank you Sally for a delicious and fluffy banana cake. We’ve made your cake three times so far . It has been requested every time someone notices that we have those lovely, brown speckled bananas ripening.
    The second time, we baked it in 8″ round pans for about 30 minutes. My 8 year old daughter loves decorating cakes, I knew this would be a good one to practice on. After we made your cream cheese frosting, we reserved half in a medium bowl. In the mixing bowl, we added 1/2 cup of Nutella, then whipped it on high for another minute. We scooped the plain on one side of a large piping bag, fitted with a #12 round tip, and the Nutella frosting on the other side of the piping bag. Closed, squeezed and swirled the two together (so pretty).
    Thank you again for sharing this delicious recipe!

  10. Hello Friends, I just baked this for the first time today. In the spirit of cold weather I decided to use a bundt pan, but I accidentally baked it a little too long.

    If anyone else wants to try a bundt cake (this recipe filled up a 10 cup pan) then I’d recommend about 55 mins. Delicious anyway, just not as moist as it should have been. Next time!

  11. I made this cake today and it was very good however, I set my timer for 40 minutes (recipe states 45-50 min cooking time), and it was fully cooked when tested with a toothpick at that time and turned a dark brown already. Next time, I’ll check cake between 30-35 minutes. I also will tent with foil prior. Thank you.

  12. What a phenomenal cake! I was browsing your site reading up on tips for making biscuits when I stumbled upon your Best Banana Cake recipe. As luck would have it, I had all the ingredients and 3 ugly bananas begging to be transformed into something beautiful. Boy did this recipe deliver! Light, moist, and flavorful cake with a silky smooth icing that compliments it perfectly. Thanks for sharing!

    Still looking forward to trying your biscuits.

    1. You can use either measuring method – both are included in the recipe! You can skip the cinnamon but it does add a wonderful flavor!

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