Easy Banana Cake Recipe

This recipe for banana cake with cream cheese frosting was passed along to me from my friend Peggy; she got it from this site. It’s so light and refreshing and tastes so good that it’s hard to believe that you start with a box cake mix! The site calls it a cheater cake.

  • 1 box yellow cake mix (Betty Crocker)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp cinnamon (or more, even 2 tsp if you love cinnamon)
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • Pinch of cloves
  • Water, oil and eggs (that are listed on the box cake mix)
  • 3 large over-ripe bananas, mashed (about 1½ cups)


  • 1 box (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 6 T softened unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • cups powdered sugar
  • [optional] cup chopped pecans
  • icing can be prepared ahead of time and stored in the fridge

note: PB said that she makes extra frosting. I made this cake a few days ago and I wish I had. IMO there wasn’t enough frosting to sufficiently cover the cake (or I used cake pans that were too big, which is likely). Next time I will either double it, or boost it by 50%. It was delicious though. Last night we came back after having a big delicious meal in Boston at Fogo de Chão, dessert too….and when we got home a few of us said “is there any more of that banana cake?

5/16/21 – I made cupcakes from this recipe. A single box made 26 cupcakes. I did make a double batch of the icing, but I think a single batch would have been plenty; I had a lot left over. Baking time was about 20-22 minutes. The organic raspberry on top added a touch of color and flavor.

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • Bake in greased & floured round layer cake pan(s) – best to use two 8″ round cake pans.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together dry box mix, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
  • Add water, oil and eggs as directed on the box
  • With mixed on medium speed or beat vigorously by hand for 2 minutes
  • Stir in mashed bananas
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Cool completely.
  • In a medium bowl using mixer, cream butter and cream cheese.
  • Beat in vanilla extract
  • Beat in powdered sugar about ½ cup at a time
  • Spread over cooled cake
  • If using, top with chopped pecans
  • Store cake in refrigerator
Recommended products
I am really liking the quality of these cake pans that I found on Amazon. I just ordered cupcake/muffin pans from the same manufacturer.
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