For the Birds: Hummingbird Cake with Cinnamon Frosting

hummingbird-cakeWhen it comes to cake, I consider myself somewhat of a connoisseur. I’m not lauding my cake making ability, necessarily…just my cake-eating ability. Chocolate, spice, vanilla, carrot…buttercream, meringue, cream cheese frosting. I’m not picky, I’ll taste any of it. But there are a few favourites that I come back to again and again, that get hauled out for every birthday, anniversary or potluck dinner.

And I’m proud to add one more to the line up.

Have you ever heard of Hummingbird cake? If you’re from the southern US, you’re probably staring at your screen incredulously. I’m aware that, for some, a Hummingbird cake is as much a part of a celebration as candles and balloons. But in the Great White North, the idea of combining spices, pineapple, banana and pecans into ONE dessert? Unheard of outside of a banana split. But man alive, did I find a new chocolate-free favourite. I whipped this baby up for one of my husband J’s birthday celebrations. Give it a try. You might just find a new favourite in the Hummingbird cake.

Hummingbird Cake

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

2 cups white sugar

1 tbsp cinnamon

3 eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

2 tsp vanilla

1 cup crushed pineapple (with juice)

1 1/2 cups chopped pecans

2 cups chopped bananas (about 3 bananas)

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add eggs and oil, and stir until combined (don’t whip or beat). Stir in vanilla, pineapple, 1/2 cup pecans and bananas. Pour batter into three greased 9-inch cake tins (or two cake tins and 6 muffin cups). Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

When cake is fully cooled, assemble and frost with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe below). Use the remaining 1/2 cup of chopped pecans to decorate the outside of the cake.  Store in the fridge if you aren’t serving right away.

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

1 cup cream cheese

1/2 cup butter

1 tsp vanilla

2 tsp cinnamon

5 cups icing sugar

In the bowl of a mixer, beat together cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add vanilla and cinnamon and then slowly incorporate icing sugar until icing is thick. If you’d like a thinner consistency, add milk or cream one teaspoon at a time until desired thickness is reached.

Alicia Mason is a wife to a wonderful husband, mother to a beautiful daughter. She bakes up a storm to celebrate and cope with new motherhood after infertility. Visit her blog at Baking and Babies.———————————————————————————————————————————————————————
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  1. This sounds so good!!

  2. penny g says:

    what a perfect cake for easter! i think i will try my hand at this

  3. Cherri R says:

    Ooooh, tasty

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