Banana Split Cake

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Banana Split Cake is a graham cracker crust topped with all the familiar flavors of a banana split including the cherry on top! This no-bake dessert will be devoured by everyone. If you want more banana split inspired desserts, I got ya covered! Try my Banana Split Pie or S’more Sundae Banana Split – it has a bit of a twist to it!

slice of banana split cake on a plate

Ok, What is Banana Split Cake?

Banana Split Cake is a no-bake dessert inspired by a love of cake, banana splits and all the ice cream toppings! Basically a match made in dessert heaven, if you ask me. This dessert starts with a graham cracker crust, then layering as we go with a cream cheese mixture, followed by a layer of bananas, crushed pineapple and finally a layer of Cool Whip. Top the cake with maraschino cherries, crushed nuts and hot fudge sauce. Even though this is a no-bake dessert, we do need to let the cake set up in the refrigerator for a couple hours before cutting and serving.

whole banana split cake  decorated in cake pan

How to Make Banana Split Cake

For full recipe details, including ingredients needed and measurements, see the printable recipe card down below. Here is step by step what you can expect when making this recipe:

banana split cake ingredients

Make the Graham Cracker Crust

Add butter and sugar to a small sauce pot and cook on medium heat to melt butter, stirring occasionally to completely dissolve sugar. Remove from heat, then add graham cracker crumbs, stirring to combine.

Press firmly into the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish. Set aside. 

Pro Tip: you can purchase graham cracker crumbs or just pulverize about 14 full size graham crackers in a food processor to make 2 cups of crumbs. Alternatively, place in a zip bag and crush with a mallet or rolling pin. 

Make the Cream Cheese Layer

In a mixing bowl, using a hand mixer or stand mixer beat the cream cheese, butter, sugar and salt until fluffy, about 2 minutes…scraping sides of bowl as needed. 

Spread evenly over top the graham cracker crust. 

Assembling the Rest of the Layers

Open can of pineapple and drain well, reserving liquid in a small bowl. Peel and slice bananas and as you slice place in the bowl of pineapple juice.

Pro Tip: this is an optional step but helps to prevent the bananas from browning.

Add Banana Slices + Pineapple over Cream Cheese Mixture

Remove bananas from pineapple juice and discard the liquid. Place the banana slices in an even layer over the cream cheese mixture. Place the crushed pineapple in an even layer over bananas

Spread Cool Whip

Next, spread the Cool Whip over the pineapple in an even layer. Sprinkle the chopped peanuts over top the Cool Whip.

Pro Tip: fresh homemade whipped cream can be used instead, but Cool Whip is more stable and the better choice for this recipe.

With a Cherry on Top!

Place a single cherry over where each slice will be cut, so everyone gets a cherry on top! 

As your final optional layer, drizzle the top of the whole dessert with hot fudge sauce. I did mine in a diagonal pattern and I think it looks great! 🙂

Cover + Refrigerate

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before slices into 12 even squares and serving cold. Keep refrigerated in between servings. 

Storage and Make Ahead Directions

You can store leftovers in the pan covered with plastic wrap or cut into squares and store in an airtight container with a lid. Be sure to store this cake in the fridge between servings. Banana Split cake will stay fresh in the fridge for 3-4 days. After about 4 days the bananas will start to brown slightly and the cake will start to get watery from the pineapple juices.

To Freeze – To extend storing even longer, this cake can be frozen for up to 2 months. Be sure to wrap it well. Allow to thaw overnight in the fridge before serving.

To Make Ahead – This cake is a great option for a make ahead dessert! Assemble the cake completely and store covered in the fridge 1-2 days before you want to serve it.

banana split cake on a tablescape

More No Bake Dessert Recipes to Try!

I hope you enjoy this dessert as much as we did! I would love it if you would give me a star review and let me know in the comments what you think. The printable recipe card is below. Have a great day, friends! 

whole banana split cake decorated in cake pan
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Banana Split Cake

Banana Split Cake is a graham cracker crust topped with all the familiar flavors of a banana split including the cherry on top! This no-bake dessert will be devoured by everyone.
servings 12
Prep Time 15 minutes

Ingredients

for graham cracker crust

for cream cheese layer

for the rest of the layers

  • 20 oz can crushed pineapple in its own juices, juice drained over. abowl
  • 4 bananas
  • 8 oz Cool Whip thawed in refrigerator
  • 11/2 cup peanuts finely chopped
  • 12 maraschino cherries rinsed and dried (1 for each slice)
  • hot fudge sauce for drizzling, optional

Instructions

for graham cracker crust

  • Add butter and sugar to a small sauce pot and cook on medium heat to melt butter, stirring occasionally to completely dissolve sugar. Remove from heat, then add graham cracker crumbs*, stirring to combine.
    graham cracker crumbs being mixed into melted butter with a rubber spatula
  • Press firmly into the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish. Set aside.
    rubber spatula pressing graham cracker crust into baking dish

for cream cheese layer

  • In a mixing bowl, using a hand mixer or stand mixer beat the cream cheese, sugar and salt until fluffy, about 2 minutes…scraping sides of bowl as needed.
    hand mixer whipping cream cheese
  • Spread evenly over top the graham cracker crust.
    rubber spatula spreading cream cheese layer onto graham cracker crust layer

for the rest of the layers

  • Open can of pineapple and drain well, reserving liquid in a small bowl.
    crushed pineapple in strainer to drain
  • Peel and slice bananas and as you slice place in the bowl of pineapple juice.**
    sliced bananas and pineapple juice in a glass bowl
  • Remove bananas from pineapple juice and discard liquid. Place the banana slices in an even layer over the cream cheese mixture.
    sliced bananas laid out in rows on the cream cheese layer
  • Place the crushed pineapple in an even layer over bananas.
    crushed pineapple spread on top of banana slices all over the cake
  • Next, spread the Cool Whip over the pineapple in an even layer.
    cool whip being spread across the cake
  • Sprinkle the chopped peanuts over top the Cool Whip.
    chopped nuts spread evenly across the cake
  • Place a single cherry over where each slice will be cut, so everyone gets a cherry on top!
    hot fudge drizzled across cake with 12 cherries on top
  • Drizzle with hot fudge sauce in a diagonal pattern as last layer (optional).
  • Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before slicing into 12 even squares and serving cold. Keep refrigerated in between servings.
    slice of banana split cake on a plate

Video

Notes

*you can purchase crumbs or just pulverize about 14 full size graham crackers in a food processor to make 2 cups of crumbs. Alternatively, place in a zip bag and crush with a mallet or rolling pin. 
**this is an optional step but helps to prevent the bananas from browning.

Nutrition

Calories: 828kcal | Carbohydrates: 67g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 58g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 13g | Monounsaturated Fat: 21g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 327mg | Potassium: 773mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 42g | Vitamin A: 811IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 138mg | Iron: 3mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Banana Split Cake

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