Stop whatever you are doing right now and run into your kitchen!
I’m serious. Make this cake asap, you wont regret it!!
Coming from a girl who hates bananas, I’m telling you that this is one of my favorite cakes that I’ve made and seeing as it’s topped with whole banana slices (well halves, but whatev), that’s saying something.
It’s simple to make, uses ingredients that almost everyone always has on hand, and it’s flavor and texture are unreeeeeeal.
This is called an olive oil cake but the olive oil flavor is very subtle. You could use melted coconut oil or vegetable oil in it’s place. I love using olive oil in cakes. As long as you don’t use extra virgin and the cake doesn’t call for heaps of oil, you won’t even notice it.
One nice thing about this cake? Your bananas don’t need to be super ripe. I find that though super ripe bananas can lend a lot of sweetness to your baked goods, they also add a lot of heavy banana flavor. I used bananas that were nice and yellow, but not brown at all yet and they were perfect. The cake is definitely banana based but not overpowering at all.
NO banana mashing is required for this cake, either. I like to blend up the wet ingredients in a blender, then add the bananas and process them until they are broken down but not completely smooth. Then the mixture can be poured in with the dry ingredients and mixed together. Try something like this if you are looking for a stronger flavored olive oil cake!
A little warning to the waste-wise: When preparing the bananas for the top of the cake you will be left with about 8 banana quarters (to keep the banana slices going in the same direction you need more bananas than can actually be used in the cake). The extra bananas will have a flour coating on the bottom. Just throw them into a container and freeze them. They’ll still work great for a future loaf of banana bread.
I was surprised to find when I first tried this cake that the bananas on top were actually incredibly delicious. Lemon juice is brushed over the top of them before they are baked so that they don’t turn brown and that acid gives the cake a little tart pop that is so nice with the sweet.
I’m not going to lie, the best part of this cake is the toffee sauce. I mean, the cake by itself is delicious, yes, but TOFFEE SAUCE. Sprinkled with a little coarse sea salt. I don’t think I need to say more.
This recipe could also be turned into muffins (just reduce the sugar a little), or go with this recipe if you’re into white chocolate 😉
Out of olive oil but still want banana cake? This one’s for you.
- FOR THE CAKE:
- ½ cup Olive Oil (not extra virgin)
- 3 large Eggs
- 1¼ cups Light Brown Sugar
- 2 teaspoons Vanilla
- 3 medium-sized Bananas, (ripe, but they don't need to be brown)
- 1½ cups All-purpose Flour
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 2 teaspoons Baking Powder
- ½ teaspoon Cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon Ground Cardamom
- extra flour
- 4 large Bananas (these don't need to be super ripe)
- 1 Lemon
- FOR THE TOFFEE SAUCE:
- ½ cup (1 stick) Salted Butter
- ⅔ cup Brown Sugar
- ½ cup Heavy Cream or Full Fat Coconut Milk
- Coarse Sea Salt
- FOR THE CAKE:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a deep-sided 9" round baking pan.
- Place the oil, eggs, brown sugar, and vanilla in a blender and process until smooth. Add three of the bananas and process until there are no large chunks of bananas left, yet the mixture is still slightly lumpy. Pour the banana mixture into a large mixing bowl.
- In a smaller mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, and cardamom.
- Add the dry ingredients to the banana mixture and whisk together until just combined.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
- Add about ½ cup of flour to a shallow bowl. Peel the 4 large bananas. Toss the bananas in the flour gently, so that they are fully coated. Using a sharp knife, slice the bananas in half, then slice each half horizontally. You should have 8 slices of banana that curve one way and 8 that curve the other. Take 8 of the banana slices that all curve in the same direction and place them carefully on top of the batter, cut side up, so that they form a wheel of sorts (see photos of cake). Squeeze a little lemon juice on the cut side of each banana and spread across the surface with your finger - this will stop if from browning unpleasantly.
- Bake the cake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool for 30 minutes in the pan. Invert onto a serving platter. Top with toffee sauce sprinkle with a little chunky sea salt, and serve (spoon a little extra sauce over the slices of cake).
- Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Toffee sauce should be stored in the refrigerator.
- FOR THE TOFFEE SAUCE:
- Place the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan. Heat over low, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved.
- Bring the heat up to medium high. Cook the mixture at a boil for a few minutes, or until it begins to turn a deep amber color. As soon as the mixture darkens, pour in the cream. Mixture will sputter and seize. Continue to cook until the mixture becomes smooth and silky.
- Remove from heat.
- Let cool.
- Pour over slices of banana cake.
- Store in the fridge in an airtight container. Reheat as needed.