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Hummingbird Cake

This Hummingbird Cake has to be one of our all-time favourites. With bananas, pecan nuts and cream cheese, the unlikely combination is always a good go-to


Preparation time

30 mins plus 1.5 hours resting time


Cooking time

30 mins 


10 pieces



For the cake:

3 eggs
200ml olive oil
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
380g self-raising flour
300g caster sugar
140g pecans, lightly toasted, roughly chopped
2 tsp ground cinnamon
320g fresh pineapple
3-4 really ripe bananas, mashed

For the frosting:

100g unsalted butter, softened
400g cream cheese
300g icing sugar, sifted

For the filling:

80g reserved fresh pineapple, drained really well
1 ripe banana, mashed



For the cake:

  • Preheat oven to 180C.
  • Grease and line three 20cm round cake tins.
  • In a large bowl, beat the eggs, oil, and vanilla until well combined.
  • In another bowl, combine the flour, sugar, pecans and cinnamon and stir to combine. Incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet mixture and beat well.
  • In a food processor, blitz the pineapple until crushed, but not yet pureed. Reserve 80g for the filling and put the remainder into the cake mixture, juice and all! Add the banana too and mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Divide batter into the three cake tins and bake in the oven until a skewer or tooth pick comes out clean when placed in the centre of the cake.
  • Leave to cool a little in the tin and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely before assembling.


For the filling:

  • Mash the banana and combine in a bowl with the reserved 80g of crushed pineapple.


For the frosting:

  • Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth and there are no lumps. Slowly add the icing sugar until well incorporated.


To assemble:

  • Place one cake on the bottom of a serving plate or board. Spread with a thick layer of cream cheese frosting and distribute half of the filling mixture on top.
  • Repeat with the next cake layer, making sure the cakes are in line with each other. Finish layers with the third cake.
  • Place a big spoonful of the cream cheese frosting on the top of the cake and with a spatula, slowly work your way down and around the cake. This is the first layer of frosting (a.k.a. crumb coat), to smooth it all out and pack down the crumbs, so don’t be too pedantic.
  • Once the whole cake is thinly covered, pop the cake in the fridge for about an hour or until the icing has firmed a little.
  • Finish the cake with the final layer of frosting.
  • Top with lightly toasted pecans.