This article was co-authored by Mathew Rice. Mathew Rice has worked in restaurant pastry kitchens across the country since the late 1990's, and currently owns Pink Door Cookies in Nashville. His creations have been featured in Food & Wine, Bon Appetit, and Martha Stewart Weddings. In 2016, Eater named Mathew one of the top 18 chefs to follow on Instagram. In 2018, he appeared in season 18 of the Food Network's Beat Bobby Flay and won his episode.
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Banana cake is one of those things that brings a smile to your lips and happiness to your heart. It's delicious and relatively easy to make. This cake has many variants and it is a great way to use up those leftover overripe bananas.
Simple banana cake:
- 300g of self-raising (self-rising) flour
- 150ml (2/3 cup) of milk
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 150g of caster (superfine) sugar
- 3 eggs
- 80g (1/3 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 2 overripe bananas (brown are best)
Banana walnut cake:
- 1/2 cup cooking oil
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup mashed bananas (4-5 overripe bananas, brown are best)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/2 cup cooking oil
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 cup of mixed sultanas (optional)
Icing or frosting:
- 1 cup milk
- 2 level tablespoons plain/all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup of sugar
- Another 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Method 1Method 1 of 3:Simple Banana Cake Download Article
- 1Preheat the oven to 180ᴼC/350ºF. This cake takes 20 minutes to prepare, 1 hour and 10 minutes to cook and serves roughly eight people. This recipe resembles a banana bread, but is a little sweeter, with a thinner batter suited for cakes.XResearch source
- 2Grease and line a 2-pound loaf tin. You can use any sort of baking dish that you'd like, of course, but loaf dishes are nice and deep, allowing you to get thick, moist center to your bread. You can just as easily pour the batter into pie tins, a bunt cake, or any other baking dish.Advertisement
- 3Sift the flour into a bowl, then add the milk, vanilla, sugar, and eggs. Beat using an electric mixer until the ingredients are combined in a light, consistent color, about one minute. If you don't sift the flour, whip it up with a fork at least -- this breaks up big clumps of flour to ensure that everything gets melted and mixed together well.
- 4Melt the 1/2 cup of butter and mash the overripe bananas in, mixing well. Melt the butter slowly, in 15-20 second bursts, so that it is liquid but not hot. Then mash up your bananas, blending well. The more ripe the banana is, the better it will be. Dark brown bananas are often your best bet.XResearch source
- You can pre-mash the bananas easily on a plate with the back of a large.XResearch source
- 5Combine butter and flour mixtures, stirring just until they are completely blended. Flour actually toughens up as you mix it, leading to chewier, less tender cakes. Just mix the flour in until their are no more dry bits and everything is taken one consistent batter.
- 6Pour all the batter into your tin and cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes. The cake is done when you can pierce it with a knife or wooden skewer and the blade comes out clean, with only a few crumbs. If the skewer comes out with wet batter on it, let the cake cook for an additional 5 minutes or so and try again.
- 7Let the cake cool for 5-10 minutes in the pan before serving. When ready, tip it out and allow to cool on a wire cooling rack. Allow to cool completely if you are adding icing or frosting, as the heat will make even frosting impossible.XResearch source
Method 2Method 2 of 3:Banana and Walnut Cake Download Article
- 1Preheat the oven to 350ºF/180ºC and grease two cake tins. All you need is a little bit of butter spread across the pans with a paper towel, or a nonstick cooking spray.
- 2In one bowl, mix together 1/2 cup of vegetable oil, sugar, and the beaten eggs. Use a whisk, an electric mixer, or a stand mixer (like a Kitchen-Aid). It usually helps, furthermore, to pre-scramble the eggs with a fork to make sure the yolks and whites mix in evenly.
- 3Mash the bananas into the milk and vanilla and then mix in. Take these three wet ingredients and mix them together in a small bowl off to the side. Remember that, the darker and more ripe the banana, the better it will be for banana cake, as overripe bananas are sweeter and softer. When done mixing the wet ingredients, add to the oil and egg mixture.
- 4In a different bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix together all of these powdered, dry ingredients and then use a fork or a whisk to break up any clumps. For perfect cakes, you should sift the flour in, which perfectly breaks up clumps for a nice smooth batter.
- Add the walnuts, and if using, the sultanas. Chocolate chips are also a wonderful addition that could go in now, if desired.XResearch source
- 5Slowly add the dry ingredients to your wet ones, mixing the entire time. If you have an electric mixer, this is your best choice. Turn it on low and slowly incorporate the flour mixture into your milk/oil/banana mixture, adding the flour, mixing in 80% of it then adding more flour. Mix until all of the dry ingredients are mixed with the wet.XResearch source
- 6Fill both pans equally with batter. Make sure it is level and without air pockets. A good way to do this is to bang fill the tins up and then bang the bottom of the pans on the counter top lightly, which should shake out any air bubbles.
- 7Bake for 35 minutes, or until the cake looks golden brown. If you stab the cake with a skewer, it should come out with no wet batter, only a few crumbs. As soon as you remove the cakes, let them cool for 3-5 minutes and then turn them out onto wire racks to finish cooling completely.
Method 3Method 3 of 3:Making Icing or Frosting Download Article
- 1In a saucepan, whisk together 1 cup of milk, 3 level tablespoons of flour, and 1/4 cup of sugar. Turn the heat on medium-low and whisk everything vigorously, keeping it moving and making sure everything is well dissolved.
- 2Bring to boil over medium heat. Keep an eye on it, and keep whisking. Icing is a quick-moving process that should not take too long to cook.
- 3Add a teaspoon of vanilla extract and cut the heat, letting it cool completely. Stir the icing completely as it cools, then let it sit. Note that you do not have to use vanilla extract here -- as banana, almond, or even cocoa will go exceptionally well here.
- 4Cream together 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup of vegetable oil as the flour mixture cools. Creaming means using an electric mixer or fast-moving whisk to beat the sugar and oil together. For even richer icing, use 1/2 cup room temperature butter, as this leads to a delicious buttercream frosting.
- 5Combine the two mixtures and beat until smooth. When flour/milk mixture is cool, mix together at high speed until creamy. At first, the icing may appear curdled. It will clear up as it is beaten.
- QuestionHow do different oils affect the taste of cakes?Mathew RiceMathew Rice has worked in restaurant pastry kitchens across the country since the late 1990's, and currently owns Pink Door Cookies in Nashville. His creations have been featured in Food & Wine, Bon Appetit, and Martha Stewart Weddings. In 2016, Eater named Mathew one of the top 18 chefs to follow on Instagram. In 2018, he appeared in season 18 of the Food Network's Beat Bobby Flay and won his episode.
Professional Baker & Dessert InfluencerProfessional Baker & Dessert InfluencerExpert AnswerWell, for cakes — unless you're making something like an olive oil cake— you always want to use a really neutral oil. Everybody has vegetable oil on hand, but I always use grapeseed oil. It's a little bit lighter than vegetable oil and just super neutral.
- QuestionMay I use half oil/half butter?Community AnswerYes, typically in recipes that call for melted butter, oil can be used as a partial/full substitute. Do note that replacing butter with oil will result in a less rich/fragrant baked good.
- QuestionCan I add cooking oil instead of vegetable oil?Community AnswerYou could, but depending on the specific type of oil you use, it may alter the taste and consistency slightly.
- QuestionHow can I make an eggless cake without an oven or microwave?Top AnswererThis is impossible. You need heat to make a cake, unless you are making a no-bake refrigerator cake.
- QuestionHow can I determine the exact temperature if my microwave settings only have high, medium, and low modes?Top AnswererYou should not be using a microwave, you'll need to use a conventional oven.
- QuestionWhy is baking powder not used?Community AnswerBecause there is no need to use baking powder to make a banana cake. The bananas give the cake its consistency, so baking powder would be too much.
- QuestionCan I hand whisk the batter for a banana cake?Community AnswerYou can, but it may not be as smooth as you want it to be. It may also take much more time.
- QuestionWould it be a good idea to make a banana cake for someone's birthday?Community AnswerIf you know the person likes bananas and banana-flavored things, sure!
- QuestionCan I use a blender to mix the ingredients?Community AnswerNo, the blender will make the cake the wrong texture.
- QuestionCan I use all purpose flour?Community AnswerYes. Your cake would be fluffier with cake flour, but it will still be fine with all purpose flour.
- Butter at room temperature blends in better with ingredients.
- Four to five mashed bananas will equal the amount necessary for a cup of mashed bananas.
- Use large eggs if possible.
- Stick a toothpick in the cake at 25 minutes; if the toothpick comes out dry, then the cake is done.
- Always use over-ripe bananas, they provide the most flavor. Bananas that are over-ripe has dark almost black-colored peel is the best to use for banana bread recipes.
- Over mixing will result in the cake not rising.
- Icing the cake while the cake is warm will cause the icing to run or cause the cake to fall apart.
- If the flour and milk mixture aren't stirred constantly, it will get lumpy very quickly.
Things You'll Need
- Mixing bowl
- Mixing implement
- Cake pans
- Wire cooling rack
- Oven mitts
About This Article
To make a banana cake, start by beating flour, sugar, milk, vanilla, and eggs in a bowl with an electric mixer. Then, mix in some melted butter and mashed, overripe bananas until everything is completely blended. When you're done with the batter, pour it into a greased loaf tin and bake it for 1 hour and 15 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Finally, let the cake cool for 5-10 minutes before serving, or let it cool completely if you want to frost it. To learn how to make frosting for a banana cake, scroll down!