What do you do when you have a bunch of overripe bananas sitting on your kitchen counter, looking all miserable and dangerously threatening to call in a bunch of fruit flies to come put them out of their misery like, any second now?
You make banana bread, of course!
But what if you’re not in the mood for something so “healthy”? What if you really want to seriously splurge and go for something that’s totally decadent, refined and sophisticated (but that’s hardly even more complicated to make)? Well then you start by first kicking the “good twin” out of the kitchen and then you whip up this mind blowing Banana Peanut Butter Bundt Cake!
Actually, I should’ve called it more like a Banana Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Bundt Cake, but I thought that was too much of a mouthful for a name, so I chose to leave the chocolate part out. Well, out of the name, that is. Definitely not out of the recipe. Because as you will see, chocolate is very present in that cake, and in quite generous amounts, too!
And chocolate isn’t the only thing that comes in generous amount with that cake… Just you look at that frosting coming down the center of the cake as you slice into it, like a giant wave of sweet peanut buttery lava. Oh my! Be still my heart!
Need I tell you that this cake means serious business? It is crazy flavorful, super moist but really dense and firm at the same time, just the way I like my cakes. It’s bold, it’s got character and it’s not afraid to let you know it; it just screams to your face “HEY YOU, LOOK AT ME, I EXIST AND I’M AWESOME”. The combined flavors of the banana and chocolate just totally explode in your mouth, while the peanut butter in the background adds a subtle layer of salty, buttery richness to the whole deal.
I’m telling you, after you’ve made this cake, you will never again wonder what to do with those overripe bananas, and might even be tempted to “forget” the good ones on purpose, so they too, get a little too dark to be eaten as is.
As for poor banana bread, well… you can leave that one to the good twin!
- 3 cups (360g | 12.75oz) unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
- 1 cup (250g | 8.75 oz) all-natural creamy peanut butter, (homemade or store bought)
- 1/2 cup (120g | 4oz) butter, at room temperature
- 1½ cup (300g | 10.5oz) light brown sugar
- 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract (store-bought or homemade)
- 2 large eggs
- 4 over-ripe medium bananas, mashed with a fork
- 1 cup (240ml | 8oz) buttermilk
- 1½ cups (270g | 9.5oz) semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
- 1/2 cup (125g | 4.4oz) all-natural creamy peanut butter, (homemade or store bought)
- 3 cups (360g | 12.75oz) powdered sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract, (store-bought or homemade)
- 1/2 cup (120ml | 4oz) whole milk
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a 12 cup Bundt cake pan and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer equipped with the paddle, beat the peanut butter, butter and brown sugar on high speed until pale and fluffy.
- Add the eggs and resume beating for another 1 minute. Throw in the mashed bananas and vanilla and mix again until well incorporated.
- Add half the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix them in very delicately, until just incorporated, then add the buttermilk, beat until well blended and then finally, add the rest of the flour mixture.
- Fold in chocolate chips delicately with a rubber spatula.
- Pour the batter in the prepared pan, spread evenly and smooth the top.
- Bake the cake for about 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. After 30 minutes, cover the cake loosely with aluminium foil to prevent burning.
- When the cake if ready, remove it from the oven and place it on a cooling rack. Let the cake cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then unmold it onto the rack and let it cool to room temperature. Transfer the cake to the refrigerator and let it cool completely, about 2 hours.
- While the cake is cooling, make the peanut butter icing: in the bowl of your stand mixer, still equipped with the paddle attachment, mix together the peanut butter, powdered sugar and vanilla extract. The mixture will be dry and crumbly at this point, which is perfectly normal.
- Add the milk, about a tablespoon at a time, until the desired consistency is achieved. You're looking for a thick but somewhat pourable icing.
- When the cake is completely chilled, spoon the icing over the top of the cake, garnish with chopped peanuts, slice and serve.
- Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week.
Step-by-step instructions and pictures
First things first, the mise-en-place:
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a 12 cup Bundt cake pan and set it aside.
In the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the peanut butter, butter and brown sugar. In a medium mixing bowl, mash the bananas with a fork (you could even throw the vanilla extract right in there, why not?).
In a larger mixing bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda and salt together. Measure the milk, weigh the chocolate chips and take two eggs out of the fridge.
We’re now ready to make the cake batter
Equip your stand mixer with the paddle attachment and beat the peanut butter, butter and brown sugar on high speed until pale and fluffy. You may want top stop the motor to scrape the sides a few times, just to make sure you get every last bit incorporated.
Oh, and if you didn’t have a stand mixer, you could very well do this with a hand mixer instead.
Add both eggs and resume beating for another 1 minute.
Then, throw in the mashed bananas and vanilla and mix again until well incorporated.
At this point, your batter should be very fluffy, light and airy.
Add half the dry ingredients to the bowl and mix that in very delicately, until just incorporated.
Pour in the buttermilk and beat until well blended
Finally, add the rest of the flour mixture and mix until just incorporated, no more.
As you can see, the batter now got much thicker and has a bit of a lumpy consistency to it. That’s perfectly okay.
Throw in the chocolate chips….
And delicately fold them in with a rubber spatula.
Oof! Don’t you wish you could sit yourself down with that bowl and eat the whole thing? I know I did…
Quick, we must get this tasty-looking batter out of our sight!
Let’s bake that cake!
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, spread it evenly and then smooth the top.
Bake the cake for about 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. After about 30 minutes, you might want to cover the cake loosely with aluminium foil to prevent burning.
When the cake is ready, remove it from the oven and place it on a cooling rack, where you will let it cool in the pan for about 10 minutes.
After that time, unmold the cake onto the rack and let it cool to room temperature.
Now technically, you could stop right here, slice that baby up while it’s still warm and dig right in, without any other form of ceremony: this cake is definitely ready to eat and would probably be absolutely divine as it stands right now.
So if you’re in need of a very urgent banana chocolate chip cake fix, go for it.
BUT, if you are wanting to have your mind and taste buds blown, I urge you to be patient and go on with that next step. Trust me, we’re about to elevate this already beautiful cake straight to the next level.
So be good and send that cake to the refrigerator and let it cool completely for about 2 hours. Yes, that’s 2 hours. I know, I know… but we’ll keep busy in the meantime.
And now, for some Peanut Butter Icing
While the cake is cooling, we’ll make the peanut butter icing.
In the bowl of your stand mixer, still equipped with the paddle attachment, mix together the peanut butter, powdered sugar and vanilla extract.
At first, the “icing” will be dry and look something like this. Nothing really mind-blowing here, right? Right…
Start adding the milk, about a tablespoon at a time, mixing well between each addition, and eventually, you’ll end up with something that looks like THIS!!!
Now we’re getting somewhere! And just you wait until you have your nose just inches from that bowl. Oh my…
Keep adding more milk until your icing has a fairly thick but somewhat pourable consistency. Swirls should hold their shape, but the icing shouldn’t be so firm that it won’t ooze on the sides of the cake as you spoon it on.
How’s about we assemble this beauty?
When the cake is [FINALLY!] completely chilled, spoon generous dollops of the peanut butter icing all over the top of the cake.
Why did we have to wait for that cake to get cold, you ask?
Working with a cold cake will insure that the icing doesn’t melt on contact and completely run off the cake, that’s why!
Now for the finishing touch: garnish with a handful of chopped peanuts.
AND VOILÀ! We’re finally ready to slice and serve!
I think you better sit down for this…
Any *ahem* leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week.
But they’ll never last that long!