The Best Gluten Free Banana Cake Recipe with Frosting

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If you love a classic banana bread and cake why not combine your love for both?  That’s exactly what we did here with this gluten free banana cake recipe. This dessert boasts an incredible moistness thanks to the ripe bananas and delivers the ultimate fluffy texture you crave in a cake!

Other gluten free cakes you may enjoy are our upside down persimmon cake recipe or our gluten free bundt cake with rum raisin!

Gluten free banana cake with chocolate peanut butter frosting.

I’ve been wanting to make a delicious banana cake for my family for sometime now and finally gathered up the ingredients (which is minimal since most of these are pantry staples). 

There are some recipes that I like to have more of a dense texture. That’s usually the case when baking with gluten-free flour blends. I set out to not only make a gluten-free banana cake recipe but one with a chocolate and peanut butter frosting that is out of this world delicious! Plus, it’s so simple to make! The frosting tastes exactly like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Trust me when I say you’re going to want to make this frosting!

Why You’ll Love this Recipe

Imagine the perfect blend of sweet, ripe bananas combined with the richness of chocolate and the nutty goodness of peanut butter. This gluten free banana cake recipe has all that, plus it’s the best way to enjoy and use bananas that are nearing the end of their shelf life. 

Ingredients You’ll Need

Here, you will find the list of ingredients that you’ll need for the gluten free banana cake recipe itself. I’ve added the ingredient list for the chocolate peanut butter frosting just below that.

Ingredients for gluten free banana cake.
  • Gluten free flour (1:1 ratio)
  • Baking powder
  • Cinnamon
  • Salt
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla extract
  • Vegetable oil
  • Granulated sugar
  • Brown sugar
  • Milk of choice (I used almond milk)
  • Overripe bananas

Vegetable oil is commonly used in gluten-free baking for its ability to add richness and moisture to the batter, preventing the perfectly moist cake from becoming dry. 

See recipe card for quantities.

Ingredients for Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

Ingredients for chocolate and peanut butter frosting.
  • Butter
  • Peanut Butter
  • Vanilla extract
  • Cocoa powder
  • Confectioners sugar
  • Heavy cream
  • Salt

See recipe card for quantities.

Step By Step Instructions

Here, you will find detailed step-by-step instructions along with step-by-step photos so that crafting your own delicious cake at home will be a breeze!  

Dry ingredients for banana cake in a clear, glass bowl.

1. In a large bowl, whisk together gluten free flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside. 

Bananas being smashed with a pastry blender.

2. In a medium bowl, smash your ripened bananas with a fork or pastry blender.

Wet ingredients for banana cake.

3. In the same bowl as your mashed bananas, whisk in milk, oil, eggs, vanilla extract, and sugars. Pour bowl of wet ingredients into your bowl of dry ingredients. Combine well with a spatula. 

Banana cake batter in square baking dish.

4. Lightly spray your baking dish with non-stick cooking spray and line with parchment paper. Pour cake batter into your prepared baking dish. Bake at 350°F for 60 minutes. After removing from the oven, place the cake on a wire rack. Let cake cool in the baking pan for 20-30 minutes before removing it from the baking dish. Place cake back on the wire rack and let it continue to cool to room temperature before adding frosting to the top of the cake. Make frosting while cake is cooling. 

Instructions for Frosting

  1. If using a stand mixer, add softened butter and peanut butter to the bowl of a stand mixer. Attach the paddle attachment, adjust setting to medium speed and combine well until texture is smooth. 
  2. Add in powdered sugar, cocoa powder, salt, vanilla extract, and heavy cream. Increase the mixer speed to high and mix until the ingredients are well combined, achieving a fluffy consistency.
Chocolate peanut butter frosting.

For any special occasion, this cake with chocolate peanut butter frosting is the perfect way to elevate the celebration. Its moistness, rich banana flavor, and decadent chocolate-peanut butter fusion make it the best banana cake that is sure to leave a lasting impression on your guests and create cherished moments.

Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • For best results, try to use the most ripened bananas as possible. This will really unlock that classic and delicious banana flavor! The ones with brown spots are perfect!
  • Look for a gluten-free flour blend like the one by Bob’s Red Mill that already has xanthan gum in it. This way, you won’t have to worry about adding that ingredient in separately. 
  • When baking with gluten free flour, I recommend sifting it before incorporating with your other dry ingredients. Gluten free flour tends to be on the clumpier side so the sifting will give it a clump-free texture. 
  • Take out butter, eggs and peanut butter (if you refrigerate your pb) and leave them out at room temperature for 1-2 hours before making this recipe. Using room temperature ingredients in baking promotes better texture, flavor development, and overall baking success. It’s a simple yet effective practice that contributes to the quality of your finished baked goods.
  • Make frosting while cake is cooling down. 

Recipe Variations

Below, are few variation ideas to inspire you to get creative and put your own twist on this gluten-free recipe:

  • Gluten-Free Banana Cupcakes – to make cupcakes, simply add the cake batter to muffin or cupcake pan. Keep in mind that you may need to adjust the baking time for this. 
  • Gluten-Free Banana Bread – to make a moist gluten free loaf of banana bread,  pour batter into a 9×5 baking dish. You may have a bit of batter leftover. Adjust baking time as needed. 
  • Cream Cheese Frosting – a thick layer of cream cheese frosting spread on top would be another great way to enjoy this cake!

Substitutions

Below, I’ve included a few different substitutions that you can incorporate throughout this recipe: 

  • Peanut Butter – instead of peanut butter for your frosting, you can use almond butter or other nut butter of your choice. Keep in mind that that texture may not be as smooth. 
  • Heavy Cream – for the frosting, you can use any other milk alternative. I recommend starting with a teaspoon at a time since milk is runnier than heavy cream. Add until you achieve desired texture and smoothness of your frosting.
  • Cocoa Powder – if you’d like to make your frosting even more chocolatey, add in an extra 1/4 cup of cocoa powder to your mixture. 
  • Vegetable Oil – you can use coconut oil instead of vegetable oil. Note that this will alter the overall flavor of this great recipe. 
  • Sugar –  you can use maple syrup or coconut sugar as an alternative to the brown and white sugar that this gluten free cake recipe calls for. You may need to play around with the quantity amount to achieve desired sweetness. 
  • Gluten Free Flour – if you prefer, you can swap out the gluten free flour for regular all purpose flour. 
Gluten free banana cake with a piece on a small, white plate.

Banana Cake Add-Ins

Here are a few, delicious ideas for add-ins! You could also use these as cake toppings:

  • Nuts
  • Coconut flakes
  • Dried fruits
  • Chocolate chips
  • Orange zest
  • Other warm spices

Equipment

Storage Tips

Cake can be stored at room temperature for up to 5 days. Keep cake in an airtight container like a cake carrier or on a dish with a cake cover. 

Common Questions About a Gluten Free Banana Cake Recipe

How do you Keep Gluten-Free Cakes Moist?

Usually by adding in an oil like vegetable oil when baking. You can also add in extra liquids like milk and yogurt or sour cream.

Can I Make this Cake Ahead of Time?

Yes! Bake the cake as directed in the recipe. Allow it to cool room temperature. Once the cake has cooled, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store at room temperature if assembling the next day. 

Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:

Don’t forget to check out our yogurt granola cups recipe that was just added to the blog!

Gluten Free Banana Cake Recipe

Combine your love for banana bread and cake with this delicious gluten free banana cake recipe topped with a decadent chocolate peanut butter frosting!
Print Recipe PIN RECIPE
Prep Time:20 minutes
Cook Time:1 hour
Total Time:1 hour 20 minutes
Servings: 9 generous pieces

Ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten free flour 1:1 ratio or cup for cup
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 ripe bananas
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice I used almond milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar

Chocolate Peanut Butter Frosting

  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tbsp heavy cream

Instructions

  • In a large bowl, whisk together gluten free flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, smash your ripened bananas with a fork or pastry blender. In the same bowl as your mashed bananas, whisk in milk, oil, eggs, vanilla extract, and sugars. Pour bowl of dry ingredients into your bowl of wet ingredients. Combine well with a spatula. 
  • Lightly spray your baking dish with non-stick cooking spray and line with parchment paper. Pour cake batter into your prepared baking dish. Bake at 350°F for 60 minutes. After removing from the oven, place the cake on a wire rack. Let cake cool in the baking pan for 20-30 minutes before removing it from the baking dish. Place cake back on the wire rack and let it continue to cool to room temperature before adding frosting to the top of the cake. Make frosting while cake is cooling. 

Frosting

  • If using a stand mixer, add softened butter and peanut butter to the bowl of a stand mixer. Attach the paddle attachment, adjust setting to medium speed and combine well until texture is smooth. 
  • Add in powdered sugar, cocoa powder, salt, vanilla extract, and heavy cream. Increase the mixer speed to high and mix until the ingredients are well combined, achieving a fluffy consistency.

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