This warm, comforting cake is a twist on the classic English dessert, sticky toffee pudding — which is not really pudding at all, but rather a warm, moist cake made with finely chopped dates covered in a sticky toffee sauce. Though it looks impressive, it’s easy to make: the cake is nothing more than a delicate banana bread baked in a cake pan, and the toffee sauce is simply a combination of butter, cream, brown sugar and corn syrup.
It’s important to use overripe bananas — the browner and spottier, the better. Begin by mashing them in a bowl, then set aside.
Next, whisk together the dry flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
In a separate bowl, combine the melted butter and sugar.
Beat until combined.
Then add the mashed bananas, eggs, lemon juice and vanilla.
Beat until combined.
Then mix in the dry ingredients.
Transfer the batter to a greased and floured 8-inch square baking dish.
And bake for 35 minutes, until golden.
Meanwhile, make the toffee sauce by combining the butter, heavy cream, corn syrup and brown sugar in a medium sauce pan.
Whisk until the sugar dissolves.
Gently boil the sauce, whisking occasionally, until thickened to a syrup consistency, about 15 minutes. If it seems too thin, don’t worry, it will thicken more as it cools.
Spoon about 1/3 cup of the toffee sauce over the baked banana cake.
And return to the oven to bake until bubbling, about 6 minutes.
Let the cake cool on a rack, then slice into squares when ready to serve.
Warm the toffee sauce and spoon generously over top. Top with fresh banana slices and chopped pecans, if desired. Enjoy!
Note: The idea for this recipe came from a sticky toffee banana pudding featured in Bon Appetit years ago. I tried the recipe as written but found the cake much too heavy and dense. The banana cake that I’ve used here is actually a light and cake-like banana bread from this site (baked in a cake pan instead of a loaf pan) — it’s much better! The toffee sauce has been modified as well.
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Sticky Toffee Banana Cake
For the Cake
- 1-3/4 cups cups all purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off with a knife
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup very ripe mashed bananas, from 2-3 spotty bananas
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the Toffee Sauce
- 1-1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Pinch salt
- Sliced perfectly ripe bananas
- Chopped pecans
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour an 8x8-inch baking dish.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix the melted butter and sugar until blended. Add the eggs, mashed bananas, lemon juice and vanilla extract and mix well.
- On low speed, stir in the flour mixture until just incorporated. Do not over mix. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make the sauce. Bring the heavy cream, brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, and salt to a boil in a heavy small saucepan over high heat, whisking until the sugar dissolves. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook at a gentle boil, whisking occasionally, until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. It should be the consistency of maple syrup -- it will continue to thicken as it cools. Remove the sauce from the heat and cool.
- Spoon 1/3 cup of the toffee sauce over top of the baked banana cake. Return the cake to the oven and bake until the sauce is bubbling vigorously, about 6 minutes. Cool the cake in the pan on a rack for at least 30 minutes. Cut the cake into 9 squares or 12 rectangles. Serve the cake slightly warm or at room temperature with warm toffee sauce and top with sliced bananas and pecans, if desired.
- Note: Sauce can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill; then rewarm slightly before using. If it seems too thick, add more heavy cream to thin it to desired consistency.
- Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The cake can be frozen (without the toffee sauce) for up to 3 months. Bake the cake for 35 minutes, let it cool completely, double-wrap it securely with aluminum foil or plastic freezer wrap. Thaw on the countertop the night before you plan to eat it. Before serving, place the cake back in the oven with the toffee sauce and proceed with the recipe from there.
- Per serving (12 servings)
- Serving size: 1 slice (nutritional data includes sauce but not optional toppings)
- Calories: 402
- Fat: 22g
- Saturated fat: 13g
- Carbohydrates: 50g
- Sugar: 27g
- Fiber: 1g
- Protein: 4g
- Sodium: 231mg
- Cholesterol: 95mg
This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.