Easy Hummingbird Cake Recipe
Hummingbird Cake is a 2-layer cake traditionally made with bananas, pineapple, and nuts in the batter. This classic homemade Southern dessert is unlike any other cake you've had. This Easy Hummingbird Cake Recipe tastes a bit like carrot cake, but it is made with pineapple and banana instead of carrots.
The history of Hummingbird Cake is long. It started as an old recipe from the South, but it didn't receive the name "Hummingbird Cake" until the 1970s, when it appeared in an issue of Southern Living Magazine. It was made even more popular by Oprah's then-chef Art Smith in the 1990s, through his television appearances and at his restaurant, Table 52.
This is our version of this amazing, fruity cake recipe! The chopped pecans in the batter give the cake a wonderful, crunchy texture. Frost your cake with the homemade cream cheese frosting, and you'll have the perfect dessert to bring to any family gathering or dinner event.
- For the Cake:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups mashed, ripe bananas (about 3)
- 1 cup drained, crushes pineapple
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla or vanilla paste *
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- For the Frosting:
- 16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla or vanilla paste
- 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans, plus whole pecans for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare two 9-inch round cake pans by greasing well and lining with circles of parchment paper, greased on both sides.
Combine flour, sugar, soda, cinnamon, and salt in a large bowl and stir well with a whisk. In another bowl, combine bananas, pineapple, oil, eggs, and vanilla and stir well until well mixed. In two batches, add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, stirring just until dry particles are wet do not over beat.
Divide and spoon batter into the two prepared pans, smoothing the tops. Bake for about 40 minutes, until a cake tester inserted in the center of a layer comes out clean. Place cakes on a cooling rack for 3 minutes, then turn out on cooling racks and very carefully remove the parchment. Allow layers to cool completely before assembling.
While layers are cooling, prepare the frosting by whipping cream cheese, butter and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer until completely smooth. With the mixer on low, slowly add the powdered sugar until smooth. Fold in the remaining pecans, or you may choose to use those for a garnish on top, along with the pecan halves.
To assemble the cake, place one layer on a serving plate, bottom side up. Spread with frosting, just up to the edges. Place the second layer, again bottom side up, on top and press gently to settle it into place. Using an offset spatula, spread top and sides with a small amount of frosting (called a crumb coating) for an even, thin coating. Chill cake for 20 minutes, then continue to frost top and sides with the remaining frosting (keep the frosting on the counter until ready to use; do not refrigerate it).
Garnish the cake with pecan halves as desired. Refrigerate the cake to keep it cool until ready to serve.
* Vanilla paste is a unique ingredient of vanilla seeds in a thick syrup-y form, available at specialty baking stores or websites and is extremely flavorful. It can be substituted one-to-one for regular liquid vanilla. Vanilla bean paste often has a stronger and more natural flavor than vanilla extract, but for the most part, you probably won't notice much of a difference in the finished project.
Southern Vintage Pecan Cake
If you love hummingbird cake, you'll love this Southern Vintage Pecan Cake! It's easy and the perfect thing to bring to your next potluck. It's packed with Southern summer flavor.
What's your favorite Southern dessert recipe?
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