RECIPE: The Moistest Caramelised Banana Upside-Down Cake

November 18, 2020

banana upside down cake recipe

This Caramelised Banana Upside-Down Cake is a twist on the classic treat. It has the nostalgia of an old-school bakery banana cake, but the caramelised topping makes it a hundred times better!

And the best thing is that it’s all baked in one pan. Sliced bananas are placed at the base of your pan before they are topped with cake batter. The bananas caramelise in the oven while the banana cake bakes. Once it’s done, flip the cake out of the pan to reveal a beautiful caramel banana topping which gets infused into the cake base too. [Go straight to recipe]

Banana Upside-Down Cake
Banana cake is probably one of the first things that got us into baking.

With a few simple ingredients and steps, you can get a delicious sweet treat ready. This time round, we've taken a different twist to the old-school banana cakes that we're used to having.

With a layer of caramelised banana sitting at the top of a moist banana cake layer, this Caramelised Banana Upside-Down Cake will surely be your new favourite bake. 

It’s moist, decadent, and flavourful. We bet you won’t be able to stop at one slice!

Banana Cake with Caramel on Top

Incorporating caramel is a foolproof way to elevate baked goods and desserts. Its bittersweet, slightly burnt flavour pairs well with virtually anything.

From vanilla, fruits, to dark chocolate, it’s almost impossible to find something that doesn’t taste great with caramel. Don’t you just love the crackly caramel layer on top of crème brûlées?

Banana Upside-Down Cake
When you bake this banana cake, the topping mixture will caramelise with the sliced bananas, resulting in a layer full of gooey goodness. 

At the same time, the butter browns, giving your cake yet another dimension of flavour.

Just like in our recipes and baking kits, like these Oreo Chunk Cocoa Cookies and Thai Tea Coconut Cookies, brown butter never fails to enhance the overall taste of your food.

Read more: Brown Butter - The Hero You Never Knew Existed

There’s a science behind it—caramelisation often happens simultaneously with the Maillard Reaction, a reaction that makes your food taste so much better.

To balance out the sweetness that comes from the banana and caramel, we’re adding some salt into the caramelised banana layer topping. 

Salt helps to bring out the flavours in food, making this upside-down cake more appealing to your taste buds.

Now you know why salted caramel is such a popular flavour!

No Bananas Go to Waste

This recipe is a great way to use up overripe bananas. Instead of throwing them away, incorporate them into this cake for a banana treat that everyone will love!

Banana Upside-Down Cake
As bananas ripen, the starches they contain are converted into sugar. That’s why overripe bananas are much sweeter than those that aren’t fully ripe.

If you have bananas that haven’t fully ripened yet, you can hasten the ripening process by setting them under certain conditions. There are many ways to do it, so choose one that works best for you!

Fully ripe bananas give this upside-down cake just the right sweetness (and moisture!) without too much sugar. 

Level Up Your Banana Cake

Banana Upside-Down Cake
This cake tastes great by itself, but there are ways to take it up a notch!

Fold in some nuts for added flavour and texture. Walnuts are the most common choice for banana cake—the mild, earthy nuttiness of walnuts pairs nicely with the cake’s sweetness.

Walnuts won’t turn too soft when folded into the batter, which is a good thing if you love some crunchiness in your sweet treats!

Take a slice and plop a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top to turn this cake into a decadent after-dinner dessert.

ramekins and square cake pan
This recipe can be made in two ways. For a smaller, individually-served dessert, halve the recipe and bake the cakes in
oven-proof ramekins.

If you’re sharing with a crowd, follow our recipe and bake it in a square pan with high walls for a cake that can be sliced and served to your guests! It is important to ensure that your square pan is not too shallow, as this recipes gives you a pretty tall cake.

Spicing Up the Cake

It is no surprise that cinnamon and bananas go very well together, and hence cinnamon is used to elevate the taste of this cake.

If you’re not a fan of cinnamon, feel free to skip it, or add in your favourite spices such as Chai and nutmeg!

If you’re a sucker for spiced bakes, our No-Knead Cinnamon Raisin Bread is a quick and easy recipe you should try too! 

Banana Upside-Down Cake
This cake is best served fresh and warm from the oven, and is incredibly soft and moist. Store leftovers wrapped tightly in the fridge, and warm it up gently the next day for a treat you’ll relish.  

The liquid from the caramel layer trickles down with time, moistening and infusing the cake with sweetness.

This Moist Caramelised Upside-Down Banana Cake is the definition of sugar, spice, and everything nice!

Caramelised Banana Upside-Down Cake

Use fully ripe bananas to give this cake the right amount of sweetness and moisture.

INGREDIENTS
yields 1x 8" by 8" cake

Caramelised Banana Layer

83g unsalted butter

113g brown sugar 

38g granulated sugar 

2g salt

Sliced bananas (enough to fit the base of your pan)


Banana Cake

62g butter, softened 

95g granulated sugar 

71g brown sugar

1 tsp vanilla

170g very ripe banana, mashed

2 eggs 

200g cake flour

2 tsp baking powder  

¾  tsp cinnamon powder (or to taste) 

¾ tsp salt 

68g milk

    INSTRUCTIONS

    Caramelised Banana Layer

    1. Melt the butter in a microwave.
    2. Add in both types of sugar and salt. Mix until well combined.
    3. Pour the sugar mixture onto the base of your lined/greased 8” square cake tin. Spread the mixture evenly using an offset spatula or a silicone spatula. Take note to use a cake pan with high walls as this recipe gives you a very tall cake.
    4. Arrange fresh sliced bananas neatly, all over the sugar mixture. This will be the top of your cake later.

    Banana Cake Batter

    1. Cream softened butter with granulated and brown sugar until light and creamy.
    2. Add in vanilla and whisk until combined.
    3. Add in mashed bananas and eggs, whisk till combined.
    4. Sift in cake flour, baking powder, cinnamon powder, and salt. Whisk until well combined.
    5. Add in milk, whisk until just combined. Do not overmix.

    Assembly

    1. Pour the batter over the caramelised banana layer in your square cake pan
    2. Bake at 175°C for about 60–70 mins or until just cooked through. A skewer inserted into the centre of the cake should leave clean, or with moist crumbs attached.
    3. Let the cake cool till at least lukewarm before removing. To remove, invert the cake tin onto a serving plate. Lightly tap the base of the tin and lift it up carefully.

      A Simple Banana Cake Recipe

      Banana Upside-Down Cake Recipe
      We love the good old banana cake, but it’s nice to have something new every once in a while. Show some love to your family and friends through a slice of this cake!

      For those with less of a sweet tooth, you may reduce both the sugars used in the cake batter by 10% to 15%. Try this recipe and let us know how you like it by sharing your creations on Instagram, and tag us @bakestarters and #bakestarters!

      For more quick & simple bakes like that, check these recipes out:

      Love this recipe? Get priority access to more free recipes, baking tips and guides sent straight to your inbox here.




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      The Bakestarters blog features tips and lessons to baking in Singapore, along with useful tips when using our signature baking kits.

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