Tara Riddle: Decadent, sweet banana cake (recipe)

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Winter weekends are for baking and cooking in my book. This past weekend I got the craving for something a little bananas! I usually make banana bread, but this time I wanted a treat with a little bit more bang for its buck. I was craving a decadent sweet treat that would go great with my Game of Thrones binge watch later that night.

I decided to make a banana cake with cream cheese frosting and toasted candied pecans on top. It was perfectly sweet and went great with my hot cup of tea as I laid in bed entirely too early to indulge myself. There is nothing wrong with a little self-care.

This cake was tested and approved by some of my co-workers at Coldwell Banker, my parents, and kids. Part of the fun of making a cake like this is being able to share it with those you care about. While I could probably eat this cake by myself with my family... That’s a lot of working out that I would have to do to burn it all off. Sharing is caring!

I hope you guys enjoy this cake as much as I did. If you have any questions or would like to send me a picture of your banana cake, I’d love to see it!! Tag me on Facebook or email me at Tara@The-Mindful-Realtor.com

Ingredients for the cake

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1 1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

1 cup sour cream (full fat)

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cream of tartar (optional)

1 cup mashed bananas (about 3-5 bananas)

Ingredients for the frosting

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1 bar of 8-ounce cream cheese (full fat)

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream (that’s the good stuff)


To make the cake we want to start by creaming together the sugar and the butter until the mixture is light and fluffy. This will take a couple of minutes. Next add the eggs, sour cream, and the vanilla and blend together until creamy. Finally, you can add your dry ingredients of flour, baking soda, salt, and cream of tartar. The cream of tartar is optional. I am a huge fan of cream of tartar. It makes the best biscuits and just gives that extra fluff to your cake.

Lastly, add the mashed bananas and gently stir it all together. Dump your batter into your baking dish and make sure you spread it out evenly. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-35 minutes.

While your banana cake is baking, we can make the frosting. For the frosting we want to beat the butter and cream cheese together until it’s smooth and combined. Add in the vanilla extract, powdered sugar, and heavy cream. Beat together until a nice, whipped frosting forms that is thick enough to make cutting into your cake easy. Set aside.

Pecans are optional, but I found it gave a nice crunch to the cake. I roughly chopped 2 cups of pecans before I even made the cake. Melt a couple tablespoons of butter in the microwave and stir into your pecans with a little sugar. Pour this mixture onto some parchment paper on top of a cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for about 20-30 minutes.

Test the crunch level on your pecans to know if they are done. You can add as much or as little sugar as you want. Toasted pecans are good all on their own, so it is up to you. Let the pecans cool completely before sprinkling on top of the frosted cake. We do not want our amazing frosting to get all melty.


• Let the cake cool completely before frosting. This will help you avoid a crumbly mess and destroying the top of your cake.

• Cream of Tartar makes things fluffy, while optional, it makes your cake light and airy.

• Use parchment paper when baking things like candied pecans…. AVOID washing your cookie sheet this way. This trick also works for cookies, bacon, chicken, and so on.

• Mash the bananas first, so that you will have them ready when you need them.

• Don’t add banana slices to the top of your cake. The bananas will turn brown and yucky. If you want banana slices on top of your cake, do it only when you cut and serve the cake, or to order.

Tara Riddle is a real estate agent at Coldwell Banker Select. She also works at the Farmer’s Market in Carson City or Black Rock Bison.


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