Classic Southern cake made with bananas, pineapple, chopped pecans, and topped with a cream cheese frosting. And more pecans.
- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp nutmeg (optional)
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup canola oil
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 8 oz. can crushed pineapple, with juice
- 2 cups mashed bananas (about 3-4 bananas)
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans
Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients*
- 1 lb cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 lbs (32 oz.) confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 Tbsp Cointreau**
- 1 cup roughly chopped pecans, for topping (optional, toasted)
- Edible flowers for garnish (optional)
*The cream cheese frosting recipe can be cut in half if you prefer less frosting. If so, apply sparingly so there is enough to cover the entire cake.
**Feel free to use any favorite liquor, such as Grand Marnier, Triple Sec, Cognac, Armagnac, Brandy or even Bourbon. Or, simply omit the liquor and use 2 tsp vanilla extract.
1 Preheat oven to 350° F. Lightly grease and flour three 9” round cake pans.
2 In a very large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg (optional).
3 In a separate bowl, whisk the canola oil and eggs together until combined. Stir the pineapple, bananas, vanilla and one cup of the chopped pecans into the egg mixture and mix (do not beat).
4 Using a wooden spoon or spatula, fold the moist ingredients into the dry ingredients until just combined (do not over-mix).
5 Pour the batter into the three prepared cake pans, taking care to divide evenly. Bake on center racks of oven for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
6 Allow the cakes to cool in the pan on wire racks for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, run a knife around the edges and remove the cakes from the pans. Cool completely on wire racks before frosting.
Cream Cheese Frosting
1 Cream the softened butter and cream cheese in a large bowl with an electric mixer. With the mixer on a slow speed, add the confectioners’ sugar in small amounts until all is incorporated, then add the Cointreau and vanilla and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy.
Note: Do not add the confectioners’ sugar while the mixer is set on a high speed, or you will create a snowy mess of sugar all over your kitchen. [Please do not ask me how I know this.]
2 Place one layer, top down, on a large plate or cake stand (this creates a smooth surface on the top and results in a more level cake). Spread frosting evenly over the first layer, then repeat with the second and third layers, then frost the sides.
3 Sprinkle the top completely with the remaining cup of chopped pecans (toasted or untoasted). Alternatively, press the chopped pecans onto the sides of the cake and leave the top simply frosted. Store in refrigerator, then remove one hour before serving to allow the cake to come to room temperature.