Yield: 9″ mocha banana snack cake // Total Time: 1 hr. 15 min. // Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links.
Moist espresso banana cake filled with chocolate chips and topped with an espresso cream cheese frosting.
Mocha Banana Snack Cake
I absolutely LOVE all things espresso and mocha, especially when combining those things with baking. When you are looking for something to do with those sad bananas resting on your counter and are tired of making banana bread, try this instead! This mocha banana cake features an espresso chocolate chip banana cake, that gets topped with an espresso cream cheese frosting and even more chocolate chips. It’s seriously so delicious and ridiculously easy to make! The only “fancy” ingredient you may need for this is espresso powder!
Mocha banana snack cake recipe tips
Weigh your ingredients
Weighing your ingredients is important for getting the recipe perfect and getting consistent results. Not weighing your ingredients can lead to adding too much or too little of an ingredient which can lead to the recipe not turning out properly. If you haven’t already, I highly recommend purchasing a kitchen scale. This one is super cheap and worked well for me when I was starting out!
Mix the batter carefully
It is super important to not overmix the cake batter or you end up with a tough and chewy cake rather than a light and moist cake. When alternating between adding the wet and dry ingredients, be sure to only mix just until the ingredient is fully combined and no more.
Room temperature ingredients
It is important for the ingredients to be at room temperature so that they properly incorporate with each other. If you have ever had your batter look curdled, it is most likely due to the ingredients separating from being at different temperatures. Take out the eggs, sour cream, cream cheese, and butter least 30 minutes and up to 1 hr 30 min. before starting the recipe OR follow these methods for room temperature ingredients FAST:
- Fast room temperature eggs. Place the eggs in a bowl in the sink and continuously run hot water over it for one minute. And there you go – room temperature eggs! Alternatively (and less waste-fully) fill a bowl with warm water and let the eggs sit in it for 5 minutes.
- Fast room temperature sour cream. Microwave the sour cream in 5 second intervals until it is no longer cold (but not hot!). And there you go – fast and easy room temperature sour cream!
- Fast room temperature butter and cream cheese. Slice the butter into 1 tbsp. slices and place them flat on a plate. Microwave in 5 second intervals, until you can easily push into the butter. Repeat with the cream cheese.
Keep an eye on the cake!
Baked goods love to go from underbaked to overbaked in what seems like a split second. Start checking at the cake with a toothpick around 30 minutes. The cake is done when only a few moist crumbs stick to the toothpick.
Ingredients and substitutions
For the mocha banana cake:
Banana: you will need ~3 medium sized very ripe bananas for this recipe. Only ripe bananas will work here. Bananas that are still very yellow/green will be less sweet and add way less moisture to the cake.
Unsalted butter: for tenderizing the cake and giving it that classic buttery taste. You can substitute in salted butter, just omit the extra salt from the recipe.
Light brown sugar: for sweetening, flavor, and for moisture.
Granulated sugar: for sweetening the cake and keeping it moist.
Eggs: for moisture, structure, and binding the batter together.
Vanilla: I use and love this vanilla extract. We will use some vanilla in the bundt, and some in the glaze.
Sour cream: for moisture and for keeping the cake tender. You can substitute in buttermilk or greek yogurt if needed.
All purpose flour: the structure of the cake. I would not recommend using cake flour as the cake is already super fluffy and tender using the all purpose.
Baking powder: for helping the cake rise.
Salt: for balancing and bringing out the sweetness of the cake.
Espresso powder: I highly recommend getting some espresso powder for this recipe. Espresso powder is essentially instant espresso, much more concentrated and more finely ground, making it better for baking applications. However, if you are unable to get your hands on espresso powder, instant espresso or instant coffee will work great here as well!
Semi-sweet chocolate chips: for texture and for having delicious chocolate throughout the cake of course! Use your favorite chocolate chips, chocolate chunks, or chopped baking chocolate here.
For the espresso cream cheese frosting:
Cream cheese: the base of the cream cheese frosting, gives some tanginess to counter all of the sweetness!
Unsalted butter: for thickening up the frosting. Salted will also work here, just be sure to omit the extra salt from the frosting.
Salt: for balancing and bringing out the flavor and sweetness of the frosting.
Espresso powder: for flavor!
Powdered sugar: for sweetening and thickening up the frosting.
How to make mocha banana snack cake
1. Mash the banana. In a small mixing bowl, mash the banana to your desired consistency. Then, in a separate medium sized mixing bowl, whisk together the melted butter and both sugars.
2. Add in wet ingredients. Add in the eggs and whisk until well combined. Then, add in the mashed banana, sour cream, and vanilla, and whisk until combined.
3. Add in dry ingredients. Add in the flour, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder. Lightly mix the ingredients together until only a few flour streaks remain. Add in the chocolate chips, then lightly mix just until no flour streaks remain.
4. Bake. Bake the cake in a 9″ round pan for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out with only a few moist crumbs on it.
5. Make the espresso cream cheese frosting. In a small mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, butter, espresso powder, and salt until smooth. Slowly beat in the powdered sugar until all of it has been used.
5. Frost, serve, and enjoy! Once the cake has cooled to room temperature, frost it with the espresso cream cheese frosting. Top with additional chocolate chips as desired, slice, serve, and enjoy!
Mocha Banana Snack Cake Q & A
Can I double this mocha banana snack cake?
Definitely! Simply double all of the ingredients in this banana cake then split evenly between two 9″ cake pans.
How to store mocha banana snack cake
Because this cake is frosted with a cream cheese frosting, it will need to be stored in the fridge after frosting. I recommend waiting to frost the cake until right before you plan on serving it. Once frosted, it will keep well in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Why do you measure in grams?
My recipes are all written in grams because it is the most accurate way to bake. When you use a kitchen scale, you ensure that your baked goods turn out as close to the written recipe as possible. Plus, the cleanup is way easier when using a scale! I will provide standard cup measurements but please note that I have not tested the recipe using cup measurements and therefore can not guarantee your recipe will come out how mine did. Here is my favorite kitchen scale, and here’s an article about why I use a kitchen scale, and why you should too!
A note on oven temperature
Ovens vary and fluctuate in temperature. For example, I always have to set my oven to 330°F if I want it to bake at 350°F. If you love to bake like I do, I highly recommend getting an oven thermometer. They are super helpful for letting you know when your oven might be lying to you! I use this one.
Tools and Ingredients
9″ cake pan: I have never had a cake not come out perfectly from this pan, I love it!
Vanilla: I love using Rodelle vanilla extract. Not only is it a great quality product, but it’s on the lower end of the price that vanilla can be! This is the one I use.
Kitchen scale: This is the kitchen scale I use every time I bake, I love it!
For a full list of tools, equipment and ingredients that I use and love, you can check out this page here.
Did you make this mocha banana snack cake?
If you made this mocha banana snack cake I would love to see it and know your thoughts! Please leave a comment and review down below, and tag me on Instagram @freshbeanbakery. If you have any questions about the recipe I will gladly do my best to answer them in the comments below!
Mocha Banana Snack Cake
Mocha Banana Cake
- 250 g banana mashed (~3 medium bananas)
- 113 g unsalted butter (½ c.)
- 105 g light brown sugar (½ c.)
- 50 g granulated sugar (¼ c.)
- 2 eggs room temperature
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 45 g sour cream (3 tbsp.) room temperature
- 170 g chocolate chips (1 c.)
- 190 g all purpose flour (1 ½ c. + 1 tbsp.)
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. espresso powder
Espresso Cream Cheese Frosting
- 110 g cream cheese (½ c.) room temperature
- 56 g unsalted butter (¼ c.) room temperature
- 120 g powdered sugar (1 c.)
- ⅛ tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. espresso powder
Mocha Banana Cake
- Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C. Crumple up some parchment paper, then un-crumple it and place it into the buttered cake pan, making sure it sticks to the bottom and sides. Set aside.
- In a small microwave safe bowl, melt the butter in 20 second intervals, stirring after each interval. Microwave just until all of the butter has melted.
- In a small mixing bowl, mash the banana then set aside. In a medium sized mixing bowl, whisk together the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar.
- Add in both eggs, and whisk until well combined. Then, whisk in the mashed banana, sour cream, and vanilla.
- Add in the flour, baking powder, salt, and espresso powder. Use a rubber spatula to mix the ingredients together until only a few flour streaks remain. Add in the chocolate chips, then mix just until no flour streaks remain.
- Pour the mocha banana cake into the prepared pan, then smooth out the top of the cake. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center of the banana cake comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Set aside to cool before frosting.
Espresso Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a small mixing bowl with a hand mixer (or by hand), beat together the butter, cream cheese, salt, and espresso powder until no clumps remain (~2 min.)
- With the mixer running, slowly add in the powdered sugar and beat until all of the sugar has been used. Once all of the sugar has been added, beat for an additional minute.
- Once the cake has cooled down to room temperature, spread the cream cheese frosting over the cake. Top with extra chocolate chips, slice, serve, and enjoy!