Instead of making banana bread – try this banana coffee cake. It’s a deliciously moist banana cake filled with cinnamon, brown sugar and vanilla. Then it’s topped with crunchy cinnamon streusel and a drizzle of vanilla glaze. Perfect for breakfast, brunch, afternoon tea or whenever you want a delicious banana dessert that’s not too sweet.
**This banana coffee cake post was updated February 26, 2023 with new photos and an updated recipe so that it’s baked in a round cake pan**
This banana coffee cake has all the flavor of your favorite banana bread – but taken up a notch. The banana cake is extremely moist and tender with hints of cinnamon, brown sugar and vanilla. Since we’re making cake, as opposed to bread, it’s not as dense as banana bread. Instead, it has a soft and almost springy cake crumb. Then it’s topped with crunchy cinnamon streusel. I like to add a drizzle of glaze for extra sweetness – but that’s totally optional. It tastes warm, comforting and cozy thanks to the delicious banana flavor.
Making Banana Coffee Cake
This recipe is designed for a 9-inch springform pan, or any 9-inch round pan with high sides. I like to use the springform pan because I can easily unclamp the outer ring before serving. With a coffee cake, you don’t want to invert the pan because you’ll lose some of the cinnamon streusel. So if making in a 9-inch round pan, you’ll need to slice and serve it form the pan.
- As always, you’ll start by preheating the oven to 350F (180C) and preparing the pan. For this recipe, lightly grease the bottom and sides of the pan and dust with flour. Note – if using a springform pan, I recommend wrapping the outside in foil just in case the seal isn’t quite tight enough.
- You’ll first start by making the streusel. Whisk together the flour, brown sugar, granulated sugar and cinnamon. Then stir in the melted butter. It should feel like damp sand and form crumbles when you squeeze it in your palm. Set aside for later.
- Then in a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients for the banana cake: flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. This ensures that the baking soda is evenly distributed for the best rise.
- Then in a separate large bowl, you’ll whisk together the melted butter, eggs, brown sugar, granulated sugar and vanilla. When finished, there should be no lumps of sugar or pieces of egg.
- Whisk the sour cream into the wet ingredients. It’s important that the sour cream is at room temperature so that it mixes evenly. If it’s too cold, you can actually end up curdling the mixture.
- Then whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. I typically do this about ½ at a time.
- Stir the mashed banana into the batter. There will be some lumps due to pieces of banana, but you shouldn’t see streaks of flour when you’re done.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
- Then sprinkle the streusel over top.
- The cake will bake for about 40 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean and if you gently touch the top of the cake you shouldn’t really be able to press down.
Once the cake is completely cooled, you can drizzle with the optional glaze for a little sweetness. Optional – but I do find it adds to the flavor.
Baking Tips & Tricks
- Whenever baking with bananas, they should be brown and spotty. I typically ensure that at least 50% of each banana is covered in brown spots.
- For this recipe, you’ll need about 3 large bananas. After mashing the bananas, measure out 1 cup. I always like to say the measurement as opposed to just the number of bananas, because the amount will vary so much depending on how big your bananas are.
- It’s important that the eggs and sour cream are at room temperature before getting started so that everything mixes together properly. I recommend taking them out of the fridge about 15-20 minutes prior to getting started.
- The bake time for this coffee cake is quite long and, because of the streusel topping, it can be a bit hard to know exactly when it’s done baking. If you’re unsure, I’d leave it in for a few extra minutes to make sure that it isn’t still gummy in the middle. The banana cake is very moist, it’s unlikely to dry out.
If you love this banana coffee cake, try these other favorite banana recipes:
- Banana Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
- Double Chocolate Banana Bread
- Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
Banana Coffee Cake
- 9-inch springform pan
- 1 cup all-purpose flour (125 grams)
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar (67 grams)
- ⅓ cup brown sugar (67 grams) light or dark
- 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ⅓ cup unsalted butter (75 grams) melted
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (250 grams)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter (112 grams) melted and cooled slightly
- ¾ cup granulated sugar (150 grams)
- ¼ cup brown sugar (50 grams) packed
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ cup sour cream (120 ml) room temperature
- 1 cup mashed bananas (240 ml) you'll need 2-3 large bananas
- 3-4 tablespoons whipping cream (45-60 ml) or milk
- 1 - 1 ½ cups powdered sugar (110 - 165 grams)
- Preheat the oven to 350F (180C) degrees. Lightly grease a 9-inch (23 cm) round springform pan and dust with flour. I recommend wrapping the outside in tin foil just in case the seal isn't perfect.
- For the streusel - whisk together the 1 cup flour, ⅓ cup granulated sugar, ⅓ cup brown sugar and cinnamon. Then whisk in the ⅓ cup melted butter. It should form crumbles and feel slightly damp. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl stir together the dry ingredients for the banana cake: flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl whisk together the ½ cup melted butter, ¾ cup granulated sugar, ¼ cup brown sugar, 2 eggs and vanilla extract. When done, there should be no lumps of sugar or pieces of egg.
- Whisk the sour cream into the wet ingredients.
- Carefully whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
- Stir in the mashed banana. There may be some lumps of banana in the batter -which is expected.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
- Sprinkle the streusel over the cake. You may have some extra, which is ok.
- Bake for about 40-45 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean and if you give the pan a nudge the cake doesn't wobble in the middle. If you're unsure, continue baking for about 5 minutes.
- Cool the cake in the pan.
- In a medium bowl whisk together 3 tablespoons of cream and 1 cup powdered sugar. Whisk in a little more cream or powdered sugar until the desired consistency is reached. It should be thin enough to drizzle but white/cream in color.
- Unclamp the outer ring of the springform pan.
- Drizzle the glaze over the cake.
- Pan Sizes: This recipe has too much batter for an 8-inch (20 cm) springform pan. A 10-inch (25 cm) springform will work, but the cake will be thinner. I think the bake time will be closer to 30 minutes.
- Room Temperature Ingredients: Be sure that the eggs and sour cream are at room temperature before getting started.
- Bananas: Be sure to use brown bananas and measure after mashing.
- Storage: Cake is always best fresh. Store leftovers covered at room temperature/in an airtight container for up to 2 days or in the fridge for up to 4 days. Remove from the fridge about 30 minutes before enjoying.
- Nutrition: Details provided are an estimate only and based on 1 slice, assuming that all the streusel is used, all the glaze is used and the cake is sliced into 12 equal pieces.