Peanut Butter Banana Cream Cake

July 2, 2024

My new Peanut Butter Banana Cream Cake is made with incredibly moist and tender banana cake layers baked on Nilla Wafer cookie crusts, with peanut butter banana cream filling, diced bananas and a silky-smooth peanut butter buttercream.

A tall layered cake on a blue cake stand with cookies and plates next to it.

Peanut Butter Banana Cream Cake

Hope you’re ready for some serious peanut butter and banana decadence! My new Peanut Butter Banana Cream Cake is inspired by the peanut butter banana pudding from Magnolia Bakery – which I happened to just create. You can get that recipe HERE.

What is Magnolia Bakery Banana Pudding?

New York’s Magnolia Bakery is known for many sweet treats, but at the top of the list is their banana pudding. It’s so popular that the bakery now offers different flavors, including a peanut butter banana pudding. I’ve tried as many of the special flavors as available when I travel to the Big Apple and peanut butter is my favorite.

I recreated the pudding flavor and used it to also inspire this cake.

A slice of peanut butter banana cream cake with a bite taken out of it.

What is in the Peanut Butter Banana Cream Cake?

My Peanut Butter Banana Cream Cake has several different components to it. We start with a Nilla Wafer cookie crust, then bake the banana cake batter right on top. This gives us a yummy crunch with every bite. Between the layers, you’ll get the peanut butter banana cream filling with fresh banana slices. To cover this beauty, we’re using my silky-smooth peanut butter buttercream.

It’s so dreamy! In fact, when my 15-year-old son took his first bite of this cake, he said one word: “winner!” He then told me that its the cake he wants for his birthday… in December! (It’s currently July!)

FAQs

Can this cake be made ahead of time? Yes, BUT don’t add the banana slices if you make it ahead of time. If you plan to assemble the cake the same day you’ll be serving it, you can add the banana slices between the layers. If not, I recommend leaving the banana slices out.

How do I store this cake if I make it ahead of time? If you plan to make this cake ahead of time, you’ll want to freeze the decorated cake for about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes wrap the cake in plastic wrap and continue to freeze it. The night before you want to serve the cake, move it to the refrigerator (plastic wrap still on). About 5 to 6 hours before you want to serve the cake, remove the cake from the fridge and place it on the cake stand.

A tall layered cake on a blue cake stand with Nilla Wafer cookies and plates next to it.

Peanut Butter Banana Cream Cake

5 from 2 votes
Moist and tender banana cake layers baked on a Nilla Wafer cookie crust, with peanut butter banana cream filling, and peanut butter buttercream.

Ingredients
  

FOR THE CRUST

  • 70 Nilla wafer cookies, (265 g) pulverized into a fine crumb
  • 1/2 cup (113 g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

FOR THE CAKE

  • 3 cups (360 g) all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon (3 g) baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon (3 g) baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon 4.2 g salt
  • 3/4 cup (169.5 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons (20 g) vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups (300 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup (73.3 g) light brown sugar
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup (360 g) buttermilk, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons (6.3 g) pure vanilla extract
  • 3 medium-sized bananas, mashed (about 340 g)

FOR THE FILLING

  • 2 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup (83.3 g) smooth peanut butter, I use Skippy
  • 4.6 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup (120 g) whole milk
  • 1.67 ounces instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup (120 g) heavy whipping cream

FOR THE BUTTERCREAM

  • 1 1/2 cups (339 g) unsalted butter, slightly cold
  • 1 cup (250 g) smooth peanut butter
  • 5 cups (625 g) powdered sugar, measured and then sifted
  • 1/4 cup 57.75 g heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon (4.2 g) pure vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • *This buttercream recipe makes enough to fill and cover your cake. If you want to add additional piping you’ll want to make an extra ½ batch.

GARNISH

  • Bananas

Instructions
 

FOR THE CRUST

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray three 8-inch cake pans with nonstick spray, line with parchment and spray again. Set aside.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the cookie crumbs, sugar and melted butter. Mix to coat the crumbs so you're left with a "wet sand" consistency.
  • Divide the crumbs between the three pans (about 5 ounces in each). Pat firmly into place.
  • Bake the crusts for 7 minutes.

FOR THE CAKE

  • Turn your oven to 325 degrees F.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, oil, and sugars on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Lower the speed to medium and add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until each is fully incorporated before adding the next (about 30 seconds). Add the vanilla.
  • Continue to mix for an additional 1 to 2 minutes, until the mixture is smooth.
  • With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients alternating with the buttermilk mixture into the creamed mixture, starting and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix until just incorporated and remove bowl from stand mixer.
  • Stir/whisk the mashed banana into the mixture.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the pans, pouring right on top of the Nilla Wafer Crust that has been baked, using a kitchen scale for the best accuracy. (For this recipe, you’ll have about 20 ounces of batter in each of the three 8-inch pans).
  • Carefully smooth the batter with small offset palette knife, and bake until a toothpick or skewer comes out with a few moist crumbs on it, about 35 to 40 minutes.
  • Let pans cool in the pans for 15 minutes, then invert cakes onto racks, gently, peeling away parchment rounds. Let cool completely.
  • When the cakes are completely cooled, you can wrap each layer in plastic wrap and store in the freezer for at least an hour before assembly.
  • The cake layers can be made up to a week or two in advance. If you plan to make it in advance, cover each cake layer with two layers of plastic wrap. When you’re ready to frost your cake, take the cake layers out of the freezer an hour before you decorate.

FOR THE FILLING

  • In a medium size mixing bowl, mix together the cream cheese, peanut butter, and sweetened condensed milk until smooth.
  • Stir in the milk and the pudding mix. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • In a chilled stainless steel bowl, beat the heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks form.
  • Fold the whipped cream into the pudding mixture.
  • Cover and refrigerate until ready to assemble the cake.

FOR THE BUTTERCREAM

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter and peanut butter. Beat on medium-high speed until smooth, about 2 to 3 seconds.
  • Add the powdered sugar to the bowl and mix in, slowly at first until incorporated, then increasing the mixer speed to high. Blend in the vanilla extract, salt, and heavy whipping cream. Continue to beat on medium-high speed until very fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Continue to mix by hand using a wooden spoon to smooth out air bubbles.

ASSEMBLY

  • Place the first cake layer, crust side down, on a cake board or cake stand. I like to spread a little bit of buttercream on the board to “glue” the cake layer in place.
  • Pipe a rim of peanut butter buttercream around the top edge of the cake. The rim of buttercream should be kind of high. Tip: as you’re piping it on, keep your hand lifted so the buttercream falls onto the cake. Don’t push the piping bag against the cake as you pipe. This will smash the wall we’re trying to create.
  • Fill the center with about half of the peanut butter banana filling. Top with sliced bananas (if serving same day, otherwise, leave the bananas out if you’re making it ahead of time and freezing).
  • Place the second cake layer on top of the filling and repeat these steps.
  • The final layer will also go crust side down on the second layer of filling.
  • Apply a thin layer of peanut butter buttercream around the entire cake. This is the crumb coat. Freeze the cake for about 15 minutes to set the crumble coat.
  • After the crumb coat is set, continue to frost the cake with remaining buttercream.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Cake
Keyword: Banana, cake, Peanut Butter

Join the Conversation

  1. Veronica says:

    Hi there! Just confirming that there is no actual banana in the pudding filling, since it is called a “peanut butter banana cream” filling? Is it just the extra banana slices that get added on top? If the cake is made ahead of time and we don’t use the banana slices as you recommend, is there enough banana flavor then from just the cake itself? Thank you!

  2. 5 stars
    So yummy! I made this for the 4th of July and everyone LOVED it! I would definitely make this again.

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