Banana Cake with Honeyed Brown Butter Frosting


    I hate January. Next to September, January is by far one of the worst months of the whole year. Yes, I love the cold weather (hello polar vortex), but going back to college and starting a new semester is the worst — especially right when I finally got used to laying around the house and doing absolutely nothing.

    I am a mere four days into my second semester of my sophomore year and I am already looking at my calendar for convenient times to schedule my impending mental and emotional breakdown. I know what you're thinking, it's only the first week. The work load for this semester is sickening, to say the least. Between taking 18 hours, mandatory service learning programs, constant meetings, way too many emails, and the rapidly approaching National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) — I am exhausted just thinking about it. But hey, I need to be optimistic... right? This semester will be great! 


Whenever I'm stressed, I find my body acting rather erratically. This time around, any desire for regular food has been replaced by a near-constant craving for sugar. I told myself no sugar this week, but by Tuesday, I had already caved. Oh well. Considering that I'm in control of whatever ingredients go in the mixer, I guess that I'm not too bad off. The one plus of my lack of self-restraint is that y'all get more recipes! So here goes nothing...

    Today, I wanted to share this amazing cake with y'all. Guys, this one is really good. Not just really good, it's damn near perfect. The cake layer is super moist and full of flavor, a glorified banana bread of sorts. From there, I whipped up a honeyed brown butter icing and topped off the cake with toasted pecans brûléed bananas. 

    My recipe made two 8" rounds, but instead of making a layer cake, I decided to ice one cake and simply cover the other one in powdered sugar. Best. decision. ever. Seriously, both ways so good. Each cake was special, but equally as delicious. I am urging you to try this out immediately. 


Banana Cake 

adapted from

  • 1 1/2 cups bananas, mashed, ripe
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • a pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 2 1/8 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 275°. Grease and flour two 8" round cake pans. 

In a bowl, mix together the mashed bananas and lemon juice. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside. 

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time. Stir in vanilla.

Beat in the flour mixture alternately with the buttermilk, starting and ending with the flour mixture. Mix in the banana mixture.

Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake for about 1 hour, or until a cake tester or toothpick placed into the cake comes out clean. (Note: the cake may take a little more or less time to bake depending on your oven. The best bet is to check it 5-10 minutes before just to make sure it's all good!) Cool and ice with frosting. 

Honeyed Brown Butter Frosting

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 4 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup whole milk

Heat butter in a saucepan over medium heat until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Strain the butter into a small bowl to ensure that all sediment is left behind. Set aside. 

Combine the butter with the sugar, honey, vanilla, and 2 tablespoons milk until smooth. If your mixture is too thick, add more milk. Give it a taste and add more honey if necessary.