banana split cupcakes

Aren’t these cute!?

At my track meet on Friday, I couldn’t stop showing everyone the grainy pictures of these banana split cupcakes on my iPhone. 

“Hey, look what I made!”
“You can’t see it in the picture, but they’re filled with banana pudding — pretty fancy, huh?”
“Those are real maraschino cherries… in case you were wondering.”

… sorry to my track team for being so annoying.  But hey, they should put up with my baking bragging, because I provided two trays of my butterscotch blondies at the meet.  Sorry, not sorry. 😉

Anyways, since I’ve already told my track team about them, let me tell you why these cupcakes are awesome.

1) Banana splits are arguably more American than apple pie.  They’re also retro, funky, and remind me of fun, colorful diners and jukeboxes.

2) Sometimes, it’s too cold for ice cream (ahem, it was around 20 degrees yesterday).  These cupcakes are a warmer twist on a classic cold favorite.

3) The recipe is multi-step, hands-on, and slightly fussy.

Reason #3 may surprise some of you, but personally, I love fussy recipes.  The ones that have multiple steps and multiple flavors.

While making these cupcakes, I loved getting lost in the process of coring each cupcake, carefully filling each one with banana pudding and decadently frosting each one with layers of rich buttercream.  I relished meticulously coating each one with a seamless layer of nonpareils and carefully placing a glossy maraschino cherry atop yet another swirl of buttercream.  I get such a rush from putting my heart and soul into a recipe.  I even made a midnight run to the grocery store to buy more nonpareils and maraschino cherries. (Shout out to mom for taking me there at 11:30 on a school night! You rock!).

These would be perfect for a summer potluck or for a cloudy Tuesday in January when I’m missing the carefree flavors of summer.

Do you like fussy recipes?
With love,

Banana Cupcakes
Adapted from The Food Network 


1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 large ripe bananas, peeled and mashed

Preheat the oven to 350 F.  Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper cupcake liners.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, beat the butter and granulated sugar.  Add the sour cream and vanilla. Slowly beat in the eggs, one at a time. Incorporate the dry mixture and wet mixture together until thoroughly combined. Add the bananas and mix until just combined.
Using an ice cream scoop, fill each cupcake liner three-quarters of the way full. Bake in the oven until the tops turn golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cupcake comes out clean, 18 to 20 minutes. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.

Chocolate Glaze
Adapted from Bakers Royale

2/3 cups dark chocolate
2 tablespoons heavy cream

4 tablespoons powdered sugar, sifted
5-8 tablespoons water, warm
Place chocolate and heavy cream in a bowl over simmering water. Let chocolate and cream sit for 2-3 minutes to melt without stirring. Then slowly stir mixture to combine. Add powdered sugar and mix to combine. Add water one tablespoon at a time, mixing after each addition until pouring consistency is reached. Set aside and let sauce cool to warm.
Vanilla Buttercream
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons milk
In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, mix together sugar and butter. Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes. Add vanilla and milk and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more milk if needed for spreading consistency.
To Assemble Cupcakes:

Additional Ingredients
One package Instant Banana Pudding
maraschino cherries

Prepare pudding according to the directions on the package.  Core each cupcake with either an apple corer or the large end of a cupcake tip.  Fill each cupcake with banana pudding.
Fill a pastry bag fitted with a large round tip with vanilla buttercream and start piping from the outside working in to the center to create one even layer. Freeze cupcakes for 20 minutes (so the frosting won’t melt when dipped in the warm glaze.  Dip each cupcake in warm chocolate glaze. Rim generously with nonpareils.  Return cupcakes to freezer for five minutes so that the glaze can  set. Remove from freezer and finish piping frosting on top and garnish with a Maraschino cherry.

© Cannella Vita. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission/linking back to Cannella Vita. If you want to republish this recipe, please link back to this post.

28 thoughts on “banana split cupcakes

  1. Izy

    gahhh so adorable!
    hahahahah midnight run to the store :') oh Erica, I know what that's like… #foodbloggerproblems

    1. Cannella Vita

      Thank you! I'm glad you understand! I am in the process of making some CRAZY things with all of the English goodies you sent me! Stay tuned!

  2. The Cooking Actress

    omg the cutest!!! I would totally be super proud of myself and showing them to everyone too 😉

  3. Anonymous

    Just the sight of these darlings made me smile. They are so happy looking! Your mom DOES rock for taking you to get ingredients that late on a school night 🙂 Fussy recipes are fun when you have the time for them….how do you manage!!!!!!

    1. Cannella Vita

      Haha thank you so much! I am glad my baking made you smile! I showed my mom this comment and she thought it was pretty funny :). I somehow find the time to whip up buttercream amidst track meets, high school parties, and piles of math homework… #priorities.

  4. Erika Kwee

    Erica. We are similar baking souls. I adore fussy recipes, especially when they're of the Momofuku variety 🙂 These look like they could totally measure up! And I was JUST thinking how I want to try making a banana split layer cake! After my detox though…

    How did you get those sprinkles so perfectly embedded in the ganache? Did you roll them or sprinkle them on? They look BEAUTIFUL.

    1. Cannella Vita

      No way! I am glad we are kindred spirits in the baking world! Ohhh Momofuku recipes are the best! I have been ogling many Momofuku recipes for the past year, and will hopefully make some soon! I sprinkled them on, and I used a plate to catch the "runaways."

  5. Stacey Evans

    Wow Erica, you absolutely amaze me with your writing, cooking, and photography skills, this is another fabulous looking recipe! If you ever come to Arizona I wish you could give me a lesson! Thanks for sharing, Stacey

  6. Ally

    These look so good and I don't even like banana! Seriously gorgeous pictures! I love the one where you cut the cupcake in half and labeled it! 🙂
    Xx Ally

    1. Cannella Vita

      Thank you so much! I wanted to show you the inside of each cupcake, with the banana filling and all! So scientific!

  7. Yii-Huei Phang

    Oh my, these look like perfection. Sounds delicious too. I love fussy recipes, especially when there are many elements in just a cupcake!

  8. Little B

    I can't wait to see where you are in your life in 15-20 years! Nice job – looks & sounds yummy 🙂

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