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This banana split cake is a no-bake dessert with a delicious graham cracker crust, cream cheese layer, sliced bananas, crushed pineapple, homemade whipped cream, and topped with maraschino cherries, nuts, and chocolate syrup. It’s perfect for parties, celebrations, and family events!
I love banana splits with maraschino cherries, chocolate syrup, whipped cream, banana slices, and delicious ice creams. The lovely combination of ingredients with ice cream is perfect to beat the summer heat. It can be shared. But let’s face it, a whole banana split cake cake you can share with friends is way better!
I knew I was onto something when my husband kept going into the fridge and sneaking bites of this dessert. Before I knew it, he practically ate the whole thing!
I made this banana split cake recipe with all the tasty flavor combinations of the classic banana split. Don’t worry, this banana split cake still has all your favorite banana split flavors! We’re talking fresh bananas, sliced strawberries, crushed pineapple that sits between layers of a cheesecake filling, homemade whipped cream, and a graham cracker crust. Before I serving I topped it with crushed peanuts, hot fudge, and maraschino cherries.
And the best part about this banana split cake is there is no baking required! I love a good no bake dessert in the summertime. And this banana split cake is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
Let’s start making this delicious no-bake banana split cake dessert!
- This pineapple upside down cake is a classic cake with the brown sugar butter pineapple topping and moist yellow cake underneath!
- If you love bananas in your dessert then make this Banana Cake with cream cheese frosting!
- Need ripened bananas fast? Check out this article on How To Ripen Bananas quickly!
What Is Banana Split Cake?
Banana split cake is a layered no-bake dessert with all your favorite banana split flavors. It has a graham cracker crust, cream cheese layer, sliced bananas, crushed pineapple, and whipped cream, and is topped with chocolate syrup, maraschino cherries, and chopped peanuts.
Place in the fridge to chill and serve. This banana split cake is a light, airy, and flavorful no-bake banana split dessert perfect for all occasions and everyone will surely love it.
Why You’ll Love This Banana Split Cake
- No Bake Dessert – There’s no baking involved in this banana split cake recipe. All you need is to prepare all the ingredients and layer them out.
- Perfect For Parties – You can assemble them in a nice-looking baking dish and serve them at parties, potlucks, gatherings, and family events. Everyone will surely love this banana split cake!
- Make Ahead Dessert – Just like your traditional banana splits, this banana split cake needs time to chill in the refrigerator before serving. Prepare it before the party or during your day off and serve after refrigerating for at least 4 hours or overnight.
Here is the list of banana split cake ingredients needed for this recipe.
For The Crust
- Graham Cracker Crumbs – To make graham cracker crumbs, pulse graham crackers in a food processor or blender until you get a fine graham cracker crumbs texture. You can also use a rolling pin to crush graham crackers.
- Granulated Sugar – To sweeten the graham cracker crust.
- Melted Butter – I used unsalted butter melted in this banana split cake recipe but salted butter can also be used.
For The Whipped Cream
- Heavy Cream – Many banana split cake recipes use Cool Whip, but I just love the taste of homemade whipped cream. To make homemade whipped cream, I used heavy cream. Yes, you can also use whipping cream but heavy cream holds its stiff peaks better. Follow this Homemade Whipped Cream Guide.
- Confectioners Or Powdered Sugar – Don’t use granulated sugar because it will not dissolve properly unlike powdered sugar or confectioner’s sugar.
- Vanilla Extract – I use pure vanilla extract for making my homemade whipped cream. It gives a better and stronger vanilla flavor. But you can also use imitation or homemade vanilla extract.
For The Cream Cheese Filling
- Cream Cheese – Should be softened, at room temperature. I always use blocks of full-fat cream cheese. Skip the cream cheese tubs. Follow How To Soften Cream Cheese.
- Bananas – For layering. Use fresh bananas for your sliced bananas.
- Granulated Sugar – To sweeten the cream cheese filling.
- Vanilla Extract – To add slight sweetness, richness, and warmth.
- Crushed Pineapple – I used drained, canned crushed pineapple for this banana split cake recipe.
- Strawberries – Hull and slice fresh strawberries.
For The Toppings
- Maraschino Cherries – I used canned maraschino cherries, drained. I cut them in half but you can leave them whole.
- Hot Fudge Topping – Chocolate syrup or chocolate sauce will also work. I drizzle on right before serving.
- Crushed Peanuts – Add texture to the banana split cake. But can be omitted if there is a nut allergy.
How To Make Banana Split Cake
1. Make Whipped Cream
10 minutes before making your whipped cream, chill your beaters and bowl in the freezer. This will help stabilize your whipped cream. Check out How To Make Stabilized Whipped Cream.
In a bowl, whip together heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract using an electric mixer on low speed then increase to medium-high speed for about 5 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Make sure not to overbeat your whipped cream or it will become lumpy and look curdled.
Place in the fridge and chill until you’re ready to use your whipped cream. One-third of the whipped topping will be used in the cream cheese mixture, and two-thirds will be spread on top of the cake as the final layer.
2. Make The Graham Cracker Crust
Start by making your graham cracker crumbs. I like to pop mine in to the food processor and pulse until they are turned to crumbs. But you can also place them in a plastic bag and smash them with a rolling pin.
In a small mixing bowl, combine your graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Mix well.
Transfer graham cracker crumbs into a 9 x 13-inch baking dish. Press the graham cracker crumbs using your hands, spoon, or the back of a measuring cup. Place in the fridge while you make the cream cheese mixture.
3. Prepare The Cream Cheese Mixture
In a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, vanilla extract, and sugar using your electric mixer until fully combined and you get a smooth consistency. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl to ensure there are no lumps of cream cheese left.
Beat in one-third of your homemade whipped cream into your cream cheese mixture, carefully and slowly. Be careful not to deflate your whipped cream.
4. Assemble Banana Split Cake
Get your baking dish with the chilled graham cracker crust. Scoop cream cheese mixture into the crust and spread using a spatula or spoon.
On top of your cream cheese layer, add sliced bananas on a single layer.
Then, spread the crushed pineapple.
Arrange your sliced strawberries on top of the crushed pineapple layer.
5. Add Toppings
Scoop the remaining homemade whipped cream. Spread it evenly on top of the sliced strawberries.
Loosely cover banana split cake with plastic wrap. Refrigerate banana split cake for at least 4 hours or overnight before serving.
6. Chill And Serve
Sprinkled on the chopped peanuts. Add maraschino cherries and drizzle hot fudge sauce or chocolate syrup. Slice and serve!
- Squeeze lemon juice on your sliced bananas. I didn’t find this necessary since the canned pineapple was placed on top so they kept from browning, but you can always squeeze some lemon juice on top of the bananas. Fresh fruits tend to turn black or darkened when sliced. To prevent this from happening, sprinkle some lemon juice before adding them to your banana split cake.
- Remove as much liquid from canned crushed pineapple to prevent your banana split cake from being too soggy. Use a fine mesh strainer to drain crushed pineapple. With a spatula, press the crushed pineapple into the strainer to remove as much pineapple juice as you can.
- Replace graham cracker crust with other types of cookie crust like Oreo crust. You can also use other types of cookies to make a crust. Don’t be afraid to experiment and try out new things!
- Vary the nuts. I used crushed peanuts because they reminded me of a classic banana split that I grew up eating, but you can always swap the peanuts with walnuts almonds or pecans or omit completely if there is a nut allergy.
Cover the banana split cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate. It can last up to 4 days in your fridge. But I really recommend consuming them as soon as possible. The cream cheese mixture contains liquid and will turn your graham cracker crust soggy if left in the fridge for too long.
Yes, you can also freeze banana split cake. But the same with storing banana split cake in the fridge, the graham cracker crust can turn soggy the longer it freezes. So, be sure to consume them as soon as possible. Also, the sliced bananas will darken the longer its stored. This is not actually a bad thing but it will make your banana split cake less enticing to look at. To freeze banana split cake, wrap it in plastic wrap and place it in the freezer. It can last up to 3 weeks in the freezer.
Yes, you can use fresh pineapples instead of canned crushed pineapple. Cut fresh pineapple into small pieces. Drain them or pat dry to prevent your banana split cake from turning soggy.
Yes, you can use whipped topping or cool whip for both the cream cheese mixture and the whipped cream layer.
More Recipes To Try
Banana Split Cake
For the whipped cream:
- 3 cups (720 ml) heavy cream cold
- 6 tablespoons (42 g) confectioners sugar (powdered)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
For the crust:
- 2 cups (200 g) graham cracker crumbs about 14-15 crackers
- ¼ cup (50 g) granulated white sugar
- ½ cup (1 stick, 113 g) unsalted butter melted
For the filling:
- 12 ounces cream cheese softened to room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
- 4 large bananas sliced
- 15 ounces (1 can) crushed pineapple drained
- 16 ounces strawberries hulled and sliced
- ½ cup maraschino cherries drained
- Hot fudge topping homemade or store-bought
- ½ cup crushed peanuts
Make whipped cream:
- Chill beaters and bowl in freezer for 10 minutes before starting the recipe. This will help whip up the whipped cream to higher peaks.
- With an electric mixer, whip cream, sugar and vanilla on low then increase to medium-high until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes. Make sure not to over-beat, cream will then become lumpy and curdled looking. Keep chilled in the fridge until ready to use. You will use one-third in the cream cheese filling and the other ⅔ to spread on top of the dessert before serving.
Make the crust:
- In a small mixing bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter.
- For easy removal line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper. Press into the bottom of the 9×13 pan. Refrigerate while you prepare the filling.
Make the filling:
- In a large mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, beat together the cream cheese, vanilla, and sugar until smooth and combined.
- Beat in on low speed one third of the whipped cream (about 3 cups) prepared from earlier. Be careful to do this slowly so as not to deflate the whipped cream.
- Spread the cream cheese mixture on top of the graham cracker crust.
- Layer on top of the cream cheese mixture, the sliced bananas, then the pineapple, then the strawberries.
- Spread the rest of the whipped cream on top of the strawberries. Refrigerate for 4 hours, up to overnight.
- Before serving sprinkle on the crushed peanuts, and maraschino cherries. Drizzle on hot fudge sauce and enjoy!