This easy banana cake comes out light and moist. It is only four ingredients and doesn’t contain any eggs, butter, oil or milk. The batter can easily be mixed by hand, so you don’t even need a mixer. This cake works great as a snack cake or dessert. It’s paired with a light cream cheese frosting.
I love banana cake but banana cake usually contains a long list of ingredients. This simplified banana cake is just four ingredients and so easy to make. Because it doesn’t contain any butter or oil, it is also low in fat.
- Mashed Bananas
- Self-Rising Flour
Mashed Bananas: I recommend using very ripe or overripe bananas because they are easier to mash by hand. You want to use a fork, whisk or potato masher and mash until only very small lumps remain.
Self-Rising Flour: Self-rising flour already contains baking powder and salt which is why you don’t need to add them to the recipe. If you don’t have self-rising flour on hand, you can make your own by mixing together all purpose flour, salt and baking powder. The exact ratios are discussed in the notes section of the recipe card.
Sugar: This cake is sweetened with granulated white sugar.
This cake is very light, soft and moist. Because it doesn’t contain any fat, it does have a slight chew to it, which is typical for low fat or fat free cakes. I don’t mind the little extra chew to it (I grew up on fat-free muffin mixes and loved them.) However, if that slight chewiness bothers you and you want a more classic cake crumb, you can easily achieve that by substituting some of the water for some oil. Just add 1/3 cup of oil (canola or vegetable) and reduce the water to 2/3 cup.
Cream Cheese Whipped Cream Frosting
You can pair this cake with whatever frosting you’d like. Banana cake is often paired with cream cheese frosting. My family finds traditional cream cheese frosting to be too heavy and sweet so I made a lightened up version. This cream cheese frosting is mixed with whipped cream so it has a lighter texture and a less intense cream cheese flavor. It’s also not as sweet as typical cream cheese frosting.
More Easy Cake Recipes
- 4 Ingredient White Cake
- 3 Ingredient Apple Cake
- 4 Ingredient Chocolate Cake
- 4 Ingredient Peanut Butter Cake
4 Ingredient Banana Cake
- 1 ¾ cups (230 g) self-rising flour
- 2/3 cup (132 g) granulated white sugar
- 1/2 cup (120 g) mashed bananas
- 1 cup (8 oz/227 g) water
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line an 8 x 8 inch square cake pan with parchment paper.
- Add flour and sugar to a large mixing bowl. Whisk together until evenly combined. Then sift the mixture. To do this, run your whisk rapidly back and forth until your flour mixture becomes light and powdery. This step is needed because it is difficult to break up any flour lumps after you add the liquid because of the lack of fat.
- Add in the mashed bananas and water. Whisk until batter is smooth.
- Pour batter into prepared baking pan. Bake for about 30-35 minutes. When cake is done it should be lightly browned on top and a toothpick inserted should come out clean. The cake will be paler than your typical banana cake because of the lack of fat. Let cake cool completely before removing and serving. If frosting your cake, also wait until it is fully cooled before frosting.
- This recipe works best with ripe or overripe bananas as they are easier to mash. Use a fork, whisk or potato masher to mash your bananas until only very small lumps remain. You will need a little under 2 large bananas to yield 1/2 cup of mashed banana.
- To make your own self-rising flour, whisk together 2 cups all purpose flour, 3 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt to a bowl. Measure out 1 3/4 cups for the recipe. (This recipe for self-rising flour makes more than the 1 3/4 cups of self-rising flour needed for the recipe, which is why you can't add the full amount.)
- I discuss more about the texture of this cake in the post. Because the cake has no fat, it is light, soft and moist but has a slightly chewy finish to it. Some people don't like this texture. I don't mind it at all. But if you want a regular cake finish, all you need to do is substitute some of the water for fat. Use only 2/3 cup of water and add 1/3 cup of vegetable or canola oil.
- Cream cheese whipped cream frosting: You can pair this with your favorite cream cheese frosting. I made a lightened-up cream cheese frosting because most of my family does not like regular cream cheese frosting.
- For this cream cheese frosting you will need 3 oz of cream cheese (softened to room temperature), 4-5 oz of heavy cream (chilled/straight from fridge), and 5-7 tbsp of granulated white sugar (or more to taste). I recommend using a hand mixer.
- Beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth and fluffy. Gradually add in cold heavy cream and beat at highest speed until stiff peaks form. Taste and adjust as needed. You can add more sugar if you do not find your frosting sweet enough. You can add more heavy cream if you want a lighter frosting.
- Estimated nutrition is for the cake only and does not include frosting. One cake slice contains less than 1 g of fat but the nutrition calculator is unable to display less than 1.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.
Thank you! I made the cupcakes this past Sunday and they were perfect with 25-27 min baking. I also used the 2/3 cup water and 1/3 cup vegetable oil and they turned out amazing!!! I also would just like to thank you for posting these recipes, my son has food allergies and I have been able to bake many treats for him from your recipes!
We’re so glad you and your son loved them!
Can I make this into cupcakes? Would the baking temp and time change?
It should work as cupcakes – you can keep the oven temperature the same, but cupcakes will take less time to bake. We haven’t tried it, so we can’t say for sure how long, but maybe start with 20 minutes and check on them.
Can’t wait to try all of these for a fundraiser dinner dessert. (Since eggs are soooo expensive)
Let us know what you think!
I tried it and it was amazing
So glad you enjoyed it!
Will frozen bananas work ok? The texture of frozen then thawed bananas is often a bit different than mashed fresh bananas. I use bananas that have been frozen in banana bread and banana muffins with no problems, but the lack of eggs and such in this cake might necessitate the use of bananas that still have a firm texture. Any thoughts on this?
We haven’t tried frozen bananas which can have more moisture than fresh ones. Without trying it we can’t say if it will work.
I added a splash of vanilla, a dash of cinnamon & a large handful of chopped walnuts. I like the texture and taste it added.
We’re so glad you enjoyed it!
This cake is the bomb! I made the version with 2/3 cup water and 1/3 cup melted butter and had to force myself to stop eating it after it came out of the oven. Thank you for supplying a version of the recipe with fat added. I also tossed in 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, and swapped allulose and monkfruit sweetener for the sugar. It still came out well.
I’m so glad it worked out well for you!
I made this over the weekend and it is Incredible! I followed the recipe exactly as written and it’s Delicious! By far one of the best banana cakes I’ve had. I can’t seem to put the fork down! Thank you, Kirbie, for another fabulous recipe!
So glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for your nice review.
Outstanding recipe. I thought it would come out dry- it did not. Super moist, good banana flavor. My husband said it was better than the banana breads I had tried to make that all call for butter or oil. Thank you so much for sharing.
Thanks for letting us know!
I’m super excited to make this! Can it be made as a layer cake? Thoughts on that? Maybe make 2 batches? Thank you for sharing- I love your recipes!
We haven’t tried a layer cake, but it would probably work best to make two separate batches.
Hi there I am Antonette that cake sounds ?very nice so I will give it a go then let you know regards from me
We hope you enjoy it!
Great cake! Instead of Cream cheese whipped cream frosting. I used banana cream pudding and whip cream as frosting.
That’s a great idea – thanks for sharing it!
My new favorite banana cake recipe! I made it as listed, but did add oil as mentioned in the recipe comments. I used a sunflower oil because it had no flavor. I also did not have any cream cheese to make the frosting, so I made a simple powdered sugar icing and drizzled that over the cake. It’s light, flavorful and definitely craveable. Thanks!
I’m so glad you liked it!
Your 4, ingredient Banana Cake recipe left out a step when do you add the 1 cup water the instructions don’t even mention adding the 1 cup of water.
I did not leave it out. It’s step 3 where it says “Add in the mashed bananas and water.”
Seems like it would be delicious thank you for having it accessible to me
We hope you give it a try!
I’m glad you liked it!
I enjoyed the cake thanks Soo much
I’m so glad you enjoyed the cake!
Can you make this with gluten free flour?
I have not tried it with gluten free flour
Can’t wait to try this bananas cake looks awesome
Can you use Walnut flour in this? or any other flour that’s not wheat.
I have not tried with anything other than wheat flour
Could an electric blender be used instead for smashing & whisking the bananas?
When you use a blender, the bananas get more mashed than when you mash by hand. The consistency is more liquidy, more like a puree than a mash. I don’t know if this will affect the texture of the recipe. Sometimes it can make a big difference. Also 1/2 cup of banana puree is going to use more bananas than 1/2 cup of mashed bananas which will make your cake gummy. So if you do want to use a blender, make sure you weigh out the bananas rather than measure by cups
Do you know if this can be made using gf flour?
Sorry, we haven’t tested the recipe with GF flour.
I just made this recipe as written. My bananas were very ripe. It’s delicious. The texture is good, maybe a little chewy but nothing I’d have noticed if I wasn’t looking for it. I spread a little Nutella on top of my piece while it was a tiny bit warm. A delicious treat and easy and quick to make
I’m so glad you liked it!
I like your recipes
Can I substitute the sugar for Splenda?
I haven’t tried using Splenda
Luv all your recipes so easy & so tasty ? I cook them for my daughter hasn’t got much time due to work.
We’re glad you’re enjoying them!
I like this recipe, simple, easy and healthy. Thanks
I was wondering if I can substitute the flour for a gluten free flour?
Sorry, we haven’t tried it with gluten-free flour.