This easy Banana Cake recipe with Cream Cheese Frosting is moist, fruity, and easy to make. This banana sheet cake is perfect for serving a crowd on any holiday or occasion, and it’s great for snacking too. Every bite is full of the best texture and flavor, with just a hint of cinnamon!
What’s in Banana Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting?
Tired of plain old banana bread? This light and fluffy banana cake with tangy cream cheese frosting will have you reaching for seconds!
- Bananas: Mashed bananas add flavor and a beautifully moist texture. Look for over-ripe bananas with black or dark brown peels.
- Sugar: Granulated sugar sweetens the cake, while powdered sugar sweetens the frosting without making it gritty.
- Oil: Moistens the cake. I like vegetable oil for its neutral taste, but avocado, canola, or melted coconut oil will also work.
- Eggs: Gives the cake structure.
- Buttermilk: Adds moisture and tanginess to the cake.
- Vanilla Extract: Plays perfectly with the sweet bananas and the tangy cream cheese.
- Flour: All-purpose flour works perfectly in this recipe, but for an even lighter cake, try using cake flour.
- Leavening: Baking soda and baking powder combine forces to make this cake ultra-light and airy.
- Cinnamon: The perfect compliment to bananas.
- Salt: Enhances the flavor of the cake and frosting.
- Cream Cheese: This is the base of the frosting.
- Butter: Combines with the cream cheese to form a rich, buttery cake frosting.
Pro Tip: If your bananas aren’t quite ripe enough, poke them all over with a fork, place them on a plate, and microwave on high for 30 seconds at a time until soft.
Vegan Banana Cake
To make this recipe vegan, swap the eggs for an egg replacement (like Just Egg or flax eggs), swap the buttermilk for vegan yogurt, and swap the cream cheese and butter for vegan versions.
Absolutely! Be sure to thaw the bananas fully on the counter for a few hours or in the refrigerator overnight before using them. Otherwise, they will be too hard to mash. Drain off any excess liquid before mashing them.
If you notice black specks in your banana cake, there’s no need to be alarmed! They are banana seeds and are perfectly safe to eat!
Your banana cake may turn out dry if there is too much flour. The best way to ensure you don’t have too much flour in your cake is to measure using the spoon-and-level method. This will ensure the flour is not packed into the measuring cup.
Banana cake may turn out gummy if it is underbaked or if the batter is too wet. You want the batter to be thick but pourable, just like any normal cake batter. If your batter is too runny, you may need to add extra flour to thicken it up. Be sure to bake the cake until it passes the toothpick test to avoid an underbaked cake, which could collapse and turn gummy in the middle.
You sure can! Simply divide the batter evenly between two 9-inch cake pans (about 717 grams per pan) and bake for 25-30 minutes.
How to Make Ahead and Store
The easy banana cake can be made up to 2 days in advance and stored tightly wrapped in the refrigerator until ready to frost.
The cream cheese frosting can be made up to 3 days in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use. Bring the cake and frosting to room temperature before frosting.
Store leftover cake in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Enjoy cold or at room temperature.
How to Freeze
Freeze banana cake whole, or cut into individual slices, tightly wrapped in 2 layers of plastic wrap and 1 layer of aluminum foil for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before enjoying.
This moist banana cake is the perfect snack, morning, noon, or night! I love it with a glass of milk or a refreshing green smoothie. It’s also delicious with a drizzle of caramel or dulce de leche and a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Banana Cake Recipe
For the Cake
- 1½ cups granulated sugar 300 grams
- ¾ cup vegetable oil 150 grams
- 3 large eggs 150 grams, room temperature
- 1½ cups mashed bananas 340 grams, from about 4-5 whole bananas
- ½ cup buttermilk 114 grams, room temperature (see note)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 8 grams
- 3 cups all-purpose flour 360 grams
- 1 teaspoon baking soda 6 grams
- 1 teaspoon baking powder 4 grams
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
For the Frosting
- 8 ounces cream cheese 227 grams, room temperature (1 brick)
- ¼ cup unsalted butter 57 grams, melted (½ stick)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 4 grams
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2½ cups powdered sugar 283 grams
- Chopped walnuts
- Banana slices
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan and set aside.
- Add the sugar and oil to a large bowl, and mix well until combined.1½ cups granulated sugar, ¾ cup vegetable oil
- Add in the eggs, mashed bananas, buttermilk, and vanilla. Whisk until combined.3 large eggs, 1½ cups mashed bananas, ½ cup buttermilk, 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- In a separate bowl, combine the the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.3 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, gently folding it in until just combined.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool completely before frosting.
- To make the frosting, using a hand mixer, beat the cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and salt together.8 ounces cream cheese, ¼ cup unsalted butter, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- Beat in the powdered sugar, little by little, until incorporated.2½ cups powdered sugar
- Spread the frosting over the cake.
- Top with chopped walnuts and banana slices if desired.Chopped walnuts, Banana slices
- DIY Buttermilk: To make your own buttermilk, measure ½ cup of milk, remove ½ tablespoon of it, and mix in ½ tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar. Let this mixture sit for 5 minutes before using in the recipe.
- Feel free to swap the vegetable oil for canola oil, melted coconut oil, or melted butter.
- For a gluten-free cake, swap the all-purpose flour for gluten-free 1:1 baking flour.
- If using salted butter, omit the kosher salt from the frosting.
- If your cream cheese frosting is too thin, add cornstarch, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the frosting reaches your desired consistency.
- If your cream cheese frosting is too thick, add milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the frosting reaches your desired consistency.
- This cake can also be baked in two 9-inch round cake pans for 25-30 minutes, or as cupcakes for about 15 minutes.
- Nutritional information does not include optional toppings.