Simple Banana Cake

  • Author: Dana Gerard
  • Prep Time: 25 mins
  • Cook Time: 45 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 mins
  • Yield: 24 1x
  • Category: Dessert/Breakfast/Snack
  • Cuisine: American
Simple Banana Cake

This is the only banana bread recipe you’ll ever need and my most famous recipe! Requested by my closest friends and chefs from my cooking school days!


  • 2 large or 3 small very ripe bananas, about 1 cup mashed
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ½ cup canola or vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs, room temp
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • t white vinegar
  • grated zest of 1 orange or 4 small clementines
  • 2 cups (260 g.) AP flour + 1 t baking soda, sifted
  • ¾ t kosher salt
  • 1 cup toasted pecan halves, chopped*
  • Reserve 16 extra halves for decoration


  1. Preheat oven to 425 F or 400 F convection.
  2. Spray bottom and sides of 2 9” loaf pans with cooking spray.
  3. Line pans with parchment paper (7” x 9”), so that the paper lines just the bottom of the pan and comes up both sides. (This will make a sling to lift out the cake.)
  4. On a foil-lined baking sheet, toast pecans at 325 F or 300 F convection for 15 -20 minutes.
  5. Let cool, and reserve 16 halves for decoration. Chop the rest and set aside.
  6. Using an electric or handheld mixer on low speed, thoroughly combine banana puree with both white and brown sugars.
  7. Keep mixer on low and add oil, then eggs and vanilla, then sour cream, vinegar and orange zest.
  8. Mix well after each addition.
  9. Add sifted flour, soda and salt mixture, 1/3 at a time, until flour mixture just disappears.
  10. Gently stir in chopped pecans.
  11. Divide mixture into 2 loaf pans. Gently place 8 nuts randomly on top of each loaf.
  12. Bake in the middle rack at 425 F or 400 F convection for 5 minutes, then lower the oven to 350F (325 F convection) and bake for another 40 -45 minutes.
  13. Check with a toothpick for doneness after 35 minutes or so.
  14. Place pans on a wire rack until completely cool.
  15. Take a butter knife and gently run it along both ends of the cake to loosen, then carefully lift out cake by holding the paper sides.


Adapted from Ina Garten’s Old-Fashioned Banana Cake