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This banana cake with banana Nutella swirl buttercream also has a surprise layer of chocolate-covered almonds on the inside. #banana #nutella #cake #almonds

Banana Cake with Banana Nutella Swirl Buttercream

This banana cake with banana Nutella swirl buttercream has tender cake, creamy buttercream, and chocolate-covered almonds in the middle (surprise!).
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword almonds, bananas, buttercream, cake, chocolate, hazelnuts, layer cake, nutella, swiss meringue buttercream, vegetarian
Prep Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Servings 9 people
Calories 706 kcal

Ingredients

Banana Cake

  • 3 very ripe medium bananas mashed
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • cup light brown sugar lightly packed
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

Banana Buttercream

  • 2 large egg whites
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ sticks unsalted butter room temperature, cut into tablespoons
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons ground freeze-dried bananas optional

Chocolate-Covered Almonds

  • ½ cup sliced almonds or chopped hazelnuts
  • 1.3 ounces dark chocolate aka 3 squares of TJ’s Pound Plus, chopped

Assembly

  • ¼ cup Nutella

Instructions

Banana Cake

  1. Mix the bananas and sugars until combined. Add the oil, eggs, yogurt and vanilla; mix until smooth.
  2. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. Pour into two greased and parchment-lined 6” round cake pans (or one 9” round cake pan) and bake at 350F until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. This is about 35-40 minutes for 6” pans, and 45-50 minutes for a 9” pan. Cool completely.

Banana Buttercream

  1. In a heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water, combine the egg whites and sugar. Cook, whisking constantly, until sugar has dissolved and mixture is warm to the touch.
  2. Attach the bowl to the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat until it holds stiff (but not dry) peaks, and the bowl is no longer warm to the touch. This will get very loud, so retreat to another room.
  3. Switch to the paddle attachment. Add the butter 1 T at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and banana until smooth.

Chocolate-Covered Almonds

  1. Toast the almonds on a Silpat or parchment lined baking sheet at 350F for 5-10 minutes, or until fragrant and golden brown.
  2. Turn off the oven. Add the chocolate over the almonds, and let melt in the still hot oven. Mix until all of the almonds are coated, then spread them out in a thin layer on the Silpat/parchment. Cool completely, then chop into small bits.

Assembly

  1. Level the tops of the cakes with a long, serrated knife. Place a dab of buttercream in the center of a cake stand/serving plate, then place one cake layer over the buttercream and press it down to help the cake stick to the buttercream and the plate.
  2. Microwave the Nutella for 5-10 seconds, or just until slightly more liquidy and easier to work with. Spread most of the Nutella on top of the cake, then a thin layer of the buttercream (I like to keep this layer thin so that I ensure I have plenty to ice the outside of the cake) on top of that. Sprinkle the chocolate-covered almonds on top, making sure that none jut out over the edge of the cake. Press them into to adhere to the frosting.
  3. Add the other cake, bottom up, so that you have a flat top. Crumb coat the cake with the buttercream, and refrigerate the cake for 10-15 minutes so that the buttercream can set up.
  4. Add the rest of the buttercream and use it to frost the cake more thickly. Use a fork to drizzle/fling the remaining Nutella all over the cake. This can take a while, so you could always pour it over the top and let it drip down the sides instead, or smear dollops of Nutella along the sides of the cake and blend it into the banana buttercream (you will need more Nutella than stated in the quantities).

Recipe Notes

Cake adapted slightly from Ina Garten, buttercream adapted from Martha Stewart.

Shortcut mode: Omit the freeze-dried bananas in the buttercream, use storebought chocolate almonds (chopped up finely), and use a quicker cake decorating method.