Vegan Banana Cake :)


I have a very problematic relationship with vegan baking. My lovely, vegan friend Klaudia is always missing out on dessert whenever we have a dinner party or some such, which made my sweet-toothed heart cry for her. Determined that she should want no more, I got googling and baking. But these adventures in vegan baking have been very tough on my baking self esteem. However, having wasted crazy amounts of perfectly good chocolate, and many, many bananas, I am happy to report that here is a vegan cake that doesn’t taste… well, vegan.

I know a lot of people say  it’s easy to bake tasty vegan cakes, but I think they must have forgotten what butter, milk and eggs taste like. I’m not a fan of margarine or soy milk, and I always try for recipes that don’t need anything ‘out of the ordinary’ to work. But in the end, I always find that, at the most, they taste ok, but lack something. Either in flavour or consistency. Maybe I’m mistaken, and I’ll happily be proven wrong, it’s just that I’ve tried (and failed) at so many vegan cakes now, that I’ve become very apprehensive at the idea of wasting any more chocolate. Some of these cakes have tasted fine enough.. But not in the way that you’d want to make them again.

And don’t even get me started on vegan chocolate cakes… I just cannot express how many times I’ve been disappointed, when the cake that smelled so good coming out of the oven, was just… meh. So much chocolate wasted. So. Much. I’ve also tried making ganache with coconut oil, but I just find the subtle taste of coconut distracting. Anyways, do please send me your (non-fussy) vegan chocolate cake recipes, if you have any, maybe I’ve just been unlucky!

Whilst more or less an omnivore, I tend to gravitate towards vegetarian food, simply because it makes me feel better after I eat it, and I feel as though I digest it better. And the way we produce and farm animal protein really disturbs and upsets me. I try to be conscious of where I buy my eggs and butter from, but even so… long story short, I’m always happy to find recipes that are vegetarian or even vegan!

I already have a favourite (non-vegan) recipe for banana cake, but this one is, dare I say it – just about as good. And vegan to boot. It’s from a Danish blogger, Månebarnet, which means the moon child 🙂 and it’s everything a banana cake should be, in my opinion – it’s really, really, crazily moist, studded with dark chocolate and walnuts, and strikes a perfect balance between salty and sweet. I’m really curious to try out some more of her recipes! This one turned out so yummy, and she has a lot more interesting and yummy-looking recipes.. albeit in Danish 🙂 I’m especially tempted to try out this courgette/zucchini cake. I shall report back!

Moist Vegan Banana Cake 🙂 (makes one round cake, or 20 little muffins*)
From Månebarnet

  • 200 g (1 3/5 cups) flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 100 g (1/2 cup) brown sugar
  • 130 g (1 1/3 cups) sugar (preferably cane sugar)
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla sugar/powder/extract
  • 100 ml (just over 6 1/2 tbsp) vegetable oil (I used olive oil)
  • 3 ripe, mashed bananas (about 250 g)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice or vinegar
  • 50-60 g (1/3 cup or 2.1 ounces) chopped dark chocolate (obviously one containing no dairy!)
  • 100 g (1 cup or 4.3 ounces) chopped walnuts

Whisk together all your dry ingredients in a medium bowl (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and sugar, as well as vanilla if using vanilla sugar/powder). Mush up your bananas, then chop your walnuts and chocolate.


Add the lemon juice or vinegar, the oil and the mushed bananas (and the vanilla, at this stage, if using vanilla extract) into the flour mixture, and whisk until just combined (don’t over-mix, as the cake will become heavy). Add the chocolate chips and chopped nuts, and transfer to a greased springform tin (about 20 cm/9 inches in diameter).

Bake for 45-55 minutes at 160°C/320°F, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Let cool before attempting to cut (although it’ll taste phenomenal, it won’t cut very neatly otherwise!).


Keeps for several days, wrapped in tinfoil or covered with a cake dome. 🙂

P.s.: I may try drizzling a bit of dark chocolate over this next time I make it! Where other vegan banana cakes I’ve tried weren’t quite sweet enough, and were easily tipped over the edge towards too bitter with the addition of dark chocolate, this is quite a sweet cake, so I think it could handle a bit of a decorative dark chocolate drizzle. Not that it needs it, but it wouldn’t hurt at all! I also think this would make for wonderful little banana-nut muffins* – with or without chocolate 🙂

*Update: I’ve now tried making these as muffins, too, and they were wonderful! And somehow even more appealing, because they’re slightly easier to eat/transport etc, in this format 🙂 The recipe makes for about 20 little muffins. I added about 100 g finely chopped walnuts on top of the muffins, to add a nice crunch and make them a bit more appealing, visually. Bake them in muffin liners, at 160°C/320°F for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.



My Favourite Banana Cake

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Adapted from  Byens Bedste Kager

I’ve made many a banana bread/cake/loaf in my day; for years I kept going back to Nigella Lawson’s fantastic recipe from How to be a Domestic Goddess, and every time I tried another I was a little disappointed. Until I tried this one that is, which has it all, in my opinion: it’s not too sweet, but sweet enough, packed with plenty of chocolate and walnuts, and drizzled with melted chocolate. I hope you’ll like it too 🙂

I’ve found that the only thing that makes a banana bread a ‘bread’ is the fact that it’s baked in a loaf pan. This one is baked in a springform pan, and thus qualifies as a ‘cake’. The ingredients listed below are for just one cake, but they can very easily be doubled or tripled depending on how many bananas you have and how many cakes you need (I made two cakes because I had six very ripe bananas, and two birthdays to host/attend this weekend, and even though it looks like a humble cake, it’s very moorish and keeps really well if you need to make it a day or two in advance – just drizzle it with chocolate on the day of 🙂 ).

You will need:

  • 100 g butter, softened
  • 200 g brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 very ripe bananas
  • 150 g flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50 ml buttermilk
  • 100 g dark chocolate, chopped (I used 70%), plus another 100 g for drizzling over the cake
  • 100 g walnuts, chopped (optional, but highly recommended)

Preheat your oven to 180° C / 350° F / gas mark 4. Butter a springform tin.

Mix together the butter and brown sugar, then whisk in the eggs one at a time.

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Mush up the bananas with a fork and add them to the butter, sugar and egg-mixture, followed by the vanilla extract.

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Sift together the flour, salt and baking soda, and mix this into the wet ingredients.

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Add the buttermilk, and then the chopped-up chocolate and walnuts (and if, like me, you have a sister who doesn’t like walnuts, add the chocolate first and pour a little of the batter into one or two mini loaf tins, before adding the walnuts to the rest of the batter, so that your sister can also have some cake!).

Pour into the baking tin and bake for about 45 minutes, until the cake no longer wobbles and a tooth pick comes out clean.

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Let the cake cool on a cooling rack, then place it on a cake dish and drizzle with the melted chocolate (I just break it into chunks and microwave it for 30-40 seconds; you can also go the slightly more time consuming way and melt it over a bain marie/double boiler).

The cake keeps well for at least three days under a cake dome 🙂