Banana Split Cake is the perfect no-bake dessert! It has all of the flavors of a classic banana split, made into a 13×9 inch cake.
Be prepared for lots of compliments when you make this Banana Split Cake! It has all of the delicious flavors of a banana split, made into a cake that’s meant for sharing.
The cake starts with a graham cracker crumb base (no baking required!). The crust is topped sliced bananas, followed by a sweetened cream cheese filling—which sports the addition of crushed pineapple.
Then, the cake is spread with whipped topping and garnished with chopped maraschino cherries, toasted pecans, and chocolate sauce.
It’s out-of-this-world delicious, and it’s a great addition to an outdoor gathering, cookout, potluck, or party.
And, it’s no-bake, making it ideal for a warm summer day. I hope you love it as much as we did!
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- Graham cracker crumbs and butter make up the base of the dessert. You can purchase graham cracker crumbs or make your own using graham crackers and a food processor.
- You’ll want to use ripe but not overly ripe bananas. Yellow without too many brown spots is perfect!
- The crushed pineapple gets folded into the middle layer—a mixture of cream cheese and powdered sugar. Make sure to drain the pineapple well so it doesn’t make it runny.
- Maraschino cherries and pecans get sprinkled on top. I like them finely chopped so you get a little in each bite.
How to make Banana Split Cake
Start by combining the graham cracker crumbs and the melted butter in a medium bowl. Then, press them into a 13×9 inch pan. No need to grease the pan first!
You also will NOT be baking the crust. It doesn’t need it—this is a true no-bake dessert!
Next, drain the crushed pineapple very well. Mix the softened cream cheese, softened butter, and powdered sugar on high with a hand mixer until light and fluffy. Stir or beat in the crushed pineapple.
Spread the cream cheese mixture over the graham cracker crust. I like using an offset spatula so that it spreads easily.
Top the cream cheese layer with a layer of thinly sliced bananas. I used three medium-sized bananas to cover the whole pan.
Spread the whipped topping over the bananas. Again, I love an offset spatula for this.
Refrigerate the dessert for at least 2 hours, or until you’re ready to serve it. Right before serving, sprinkle the top with chopped pecans and chopped maraschino cherries.
I also like to garnish it with a few banana slices to give a hint of what’s in the dessert!
Yes! You’ll need 1 cup of heavy cream, 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Whip them all together with a hand mixer or stand mixer until soft peaks form, then spread it on top of the cake. Serve the cake within 4 hours of making the whipped cream (after that, the whipped cream starts to deflate and can get runny).
There are 14–15 full sheets of graham crackers in 2 cups of graham cracker crumbs. Use a food processor to crush the graham crackers into crumbs.
The only ingredient that contains gluten in this recipe is the graham crackers. To make the cake gluten free, use gluten-free graham crackers (Pamela’s is one brand that is widely available). As always, check the labels of any other store-bought ingredients for gluten as well.
To make this dessert dairy-free, substitute a dairy-free butter for the regular butter, a dairy-free cream cheese block for the cream cheese, and a dairy-free whipped topping (such as Truwip Vegan) for the whipped topping.
Serving and storing the cake
If you’d like to see the layers in this dessert when you slice it, place the pan in the freezer for 30–45 minutes before serving. That’ll firm up each layer to make it easier to stay together when it’s sliced. (I would do this if I’m serving this as a plated dessert for a lunch or dinner party, for example.)
If you don’t mind seeing the layers, just serve it straight from the refrigerator. I would do this for a potluck, and place a big serving spoon in the dessert for people to help themselves.
Just before serving the dessert in slices, drizzle it with chocolate sauce. I used Hershey’s syrup here, since it’s easy to drizzle without heating it up.
The cake will last in the refrigerator for several days after serving. Just cover the pan with a lid, aluminum foil, or plastic wrap before storing it.
More no-bake desserts
When it’s warm and you don’t want to turn on the oven, check out these other no-bake recipes for more inspiration!
Special K Bars (also known as scotcheroos)
Have you tried this recipe? Please leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating and/or comment below!
Banana Split Cake
For the first layer:
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
For the second layer:
- 1 (8 oz) block cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1½ cups powdered sugar
- 1 (8 oz) can crushed pineapple, drained well
For the third layer:
- 3 bananas, sliced
- 1 (8 oz) container whipped topping
- Finely chopped pecans
- Maraschino cherries, chopped
- Chocolate sauce
- In a medium bowl, combine the graham crackers crumbs and one stick of melted butter. Press the mixture firmly into a 13×9 inch pan.
- In a large bowl, beat the softened cream cheese and one stick of softened butter with a hand mixer until combined. Beat in the powdered sugar, then beat in the crushed pineapple.
- Spread the cream cheese mixture onto the graham cracker crust.
- Place the sliced bananas in an even layer on top of the cream cheese layer. Top with whipped topping, and spread it evenly over the cake. Refrigerate the cake for at least 2 hours, or until you're ready to serve it.
- When you're ready to serve it, sprinkle the chopped pecans and chopped maraschino cherries over the cake. Cut the cake into slices, place the slices on plates, and drizzle the slices with chocolate sauce. Serve immediately.