There is something so approachable about the humble banana. It is truly the every-man of fruit. I don’t think I have ever met a person in my entire life who did not like bananas. With the exception of allergies or other health-related aversions, banana haters are likely true weirdos who cling to the underbelly of society. Anyways…Here is a recipe for Vegan Banana Upside-Down Cake. Perfectly-spiced banana cake with sweet, caramelized banana topping. What more could a person ask for?
An Escalated Snack Cake
I very much believe that this Vegan Banana Upside-Down Cake can fit into the “snack cake” category. It bakes in a 9×13 inch sheet pan and the product is a thin, moist cake with ooey gooey banana topping. A good traveler, this cake can be taken anywhere including school, work or on a salacious errand with your mistress. Truly iconic.
Unlike its Little Debbie-esque counterparts, this cake is a bit more elevated. Fresh ingredients, while not shelf-stable, produce a truly mouthwatering result that you won’t find in a plastic wrapper. Not that anyone here is above plastic wrappers – this is just a different experience.
Vegan Banana Upside-Down Cake Ingredients
- All Purpose Flour: All purpose flour is considered to have a moderate/average amount of protein when compared to other flours. It will give your cake sturdiness without compromising the lightness you desire in a slice of cake.
- Sugar: Granulated sugar is great for baking because the bond that it forms with water/liquid has a moisture-locking effect. This gives us incredible texture and moistness in our baked goods. Where we rely on sugar to give delicious sweetness to our desserts, it also brings out the more delicate flavors in our bakes giving them the level of prominence we desire.
- Baking Powder: Baking powder provides the leavening power when baking cake. Without baking powder our cake wouldn’t rise. Baking powder begins releasing carbon dioxide in the batter and then expands more evenly while baking.
- Baking Soda: Baking soda needs an acidic and liquid ingredient to activate. If a sour flavor is desired in a recipe, baking soda is omitted in favor of a different leavener. Here, we are using baking powder and soda together as we need more leavening than we have acid available in the recipe.
- Sea Salt: Salt is a known flavor enhancer and baked goods are no exception. This is especially true where flour and butter are concerned. In addition to amplifying flavor, salt works to strengthen doughs/batters and provide texture.
- Spices: Cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves make up the perfect spice quartet. Omit any of these and you run the risk of disturbing the delicate fall flavor balance.
- Mashed Banana: For the cake you will be using 1 cup of mashed banana. How many bananas you use will be dependent on their size but count on using 2.
- Unsweetened, Non-Dairy Yogurt: Non-dairy yogurts resemble typical dairy yogurts in every way. The major exception is that they are made from dairy-free sources. These can include nuts, coconuts, rice and oats. These yogurts contain live-active cultures, also known as probiotics. In vegan baking, non-dairy yogurt can also act as an egg replacement as it aids in binding and leavening. Be sure to purchase unsweetened non-dairy yogurts for baking so that you are able to control the sugar levels in your desserts.
- Non-Dairy Milk: Non-dairy milks resemble traditional dairy milks except they are derived from alternative sources such as nuts, coconuts, rice, oats, etc. Any will do in baking. Unflavored and unsweetened are ideal but use what you have available.
- Canola Oil: Canola oil is a neutral or “flavorless” vegetable oil that doesn’t conflict with the flavor of your baked goods. It delivers a nice moistness to any dessert recipe.
- Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract is the most common extract in baked goods. It adds a beautiful dimension and flavor profile to our bakes. Vanilla chemically adds more flavor to desserts without covering up the other flavors you would still like to shine through.
For the Upside-Down
- Bananas: You will be peeling 2 bananas and slicing them length-wise. Large bananas work best here. Each banana should provide you with 3 slices.
- Vegan Butter: Vegan butter is a simple alternative to dairy butter. Non-dairy butter is made up of different vegetable oils and is solid at room temperature. The flavors are nearly identical to normal butter.
- Light Brown Sugar: Light brown sugar has less molasses per total volume of sugar than dark brown sugar. This comes out to about 3.5%. Light brown sugar provides a subtle sweetness to your baked goods. It has a light color and a flavor that is less sweet than white sugar. This makes it an ideal topping when paired with the bananas.
Please remember if you make this recipe to snap a pic and share with @censoredbaker on instagram!Print
Vegan Banana Upside-Down Cake
Perfectly-spiced banana bake with sweet, caramelized banana topping. Pineapple isn’t the only fruit that can be appreciated upside-down.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 1 9×13 inch Cake 1x
- Category: Cakes and Cupcakes
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: American
- Diet: Vegan
For the Cake
2 c all purpose flour
1 c sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp cloves
1 c mashed banana (about 2 bananas)
1/2 c nondairy yogurt
1/2 c nondairy milk
1/2 c canola oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
For the Upside-Down Part
2 Bananas (sliced length-wise into 6 sections)
1/2 c vegan butter
1 c light brown sugar
1. Preheat oven for 350 degrees F (175 C) and lightly spray a 9×13 inch baking pan with cooking oil. Set aside. In a large bowl whisk together all purpose flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, sea salt and spices. In a separate bowl whisk together mashed banana, nondairy yogurt, nondairy milk, canola oil and vanilla extract until smooth. A few lumps of banana are okay. Poor wet ingredients into dry ingredients and whisk until just combined. Do not over-mix.
2. In a small saucepan, combine vegan butter and light brown sugar and begin to melt over medium heat whisking continuously. Continue heating until a caramel-like, sugary sauce comes together. This should only take about 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
3. Place sliced bananas into prepared 9×13 pan cut side down with equal space in between. Pour melted sugar mixture over top of bananas as evenly as possible. Pour prepared cake batter on top of everything and smooth out with a rubber spatula taking care not to disturb the layers. Place pan in preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes.
4. Remove from oven and allow cake to cool for 15 minutes. To remove cake from pan, quickly and carefully flip over onto a serving platter. Cake should release from pan easily. Allow cake to cool for an additional 30 minutes prior to slicing.
*Cake will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days. Does not freeze well.
Keywords: vegan banana cake, banana cake, upside down cake, banana dessert, vegan dessert