One of my all-time favorite cakes is a recipe I found in Cooking Light Magazine all the way back in 2003 called Raspberry Banana Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting. Although I tend not to return to most recipes after I give them a try, this one I couldn’t resist making again and again even with that voice in the back of my head saying “Make something new!”
It has a irresistibly moist, but light texture and delicious fresh banana flavor. The raspberries inserted in between the two cake layers go perfectly with the banana cake and the lemon cream cheese frosting compliments both of these flavors even further to create this sensational cake!
It’s perfect for birthdays, holiday celebrations, or really just a cake to have in the fridge to nibble on throughout the day. It can be made in any season, but personally, I think summer is the ideal time to make this cake, particularly in July when you can find local raspberries that are fresh and sweet!
When I realized we had some deeply ripe bananas lurking on the counter, I thought this cake would make the perfect July 4th dessert! It did indeed, and garnished with some fresh blueberries and additional raspberries on top of the cream cheese icing speckled with lemon zest, this cake definitely depicted Independence Day!
[The pictures on this blog post depict two different times that I made this cake (one of which was this past Wednesday, July 4th!)]
Raspberry Banana Cake with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
Yield: two 8-inch round cakes
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
scant 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup salted butter, softened
3 large eggs
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup low-fat buttermilk *see note
1 cup mashed ripe banana (about 2 large bananas)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Frosting: *see note
3/4 cup (6 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, chilled
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Dash of salt
1 cup powdered sugar
1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries, washed and halved (two 6 oz containers or one 12 oz container)
*Note: You can make your own buttermilk by placing 1 TBP white vinegar or lemon juice in a measuring cup and then pouring 1% milk up to the 1 cup line.
*Note: After always ending up with way too much icing, I began halving this recipe. However, it depends on how thick you like your layers of icing; I personally just like a very thin layer of icing so halving this recipe yields the perfect amount of icing to cover both layers of cake.
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- To prepare the cake, line 2 (8-inch) round cake pans with wax paper, then coat lightly with cooking spray; dust each pan with 1 1/2 teaspoons flour.
- Place granulated sugar and 1/4 cup butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Add eggs, beating well.
- Lightly spoon 1 3/4 cups flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine flour and baking powder, stirring well with a whisk.
- Combine buttermilk, banana, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add the flour mixture and buttermilk mixture alternately to the sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture (mix after each addition just until blended). Evenly divide batter between the two prepared pans.
- Bake cake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out with moist crumbs. Cool in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. Peel off wax paper. Cool layers completely on wire rack.
- To prepare frosting, combine cream cheese, 2 tablespoons butter, rind, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and dash of salt in a large bowl. Beat with a mixer at high speed until fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar; beat at low speed just until blended (do not overbeat).
- Place 1 cake layer on a plate, and spread with 1/3 cup frosting. Arrange halved raspberries in a single layer over frosting, and top with remaining cake layer. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides of cake. Garnish with fresh raspberries (and blueberries). Store cake loosely covered in refrigerator.
Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine