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Hummingbird Cake

Prep Time:

20 mins.

Cook Time:

30 mins.


1 (3-layer) 8-inch cake

Here’s our version of a delightfully sweet and nutty cake that, as one story goes, began in the 1960s as a “Doctor Bird Cake” after a kind of hummingbird found in Jamaica. The first published recipe appeared in Southern Living Magazine in 1978.



  • 3 1/2 + 2 tablespoons sifted Swans Down® Cake Flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups mashed ripe bananas (3 to 4 bananas)
  • 1 (8-ounce) can crushed pineapple with juice
  • 1 cup toasted pecans, chopped + whole toasted pecans for garnish

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 (16-ounce) box confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350℉ and grease and line 3 (8-inch) cake pans with parchment paper.
  2. Make Cake: Whisk flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon together in a medium bowl; set aside. Mix granulated sugar, light brown sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla together in a large bowl until smooth. Add mashed bananas and crushed pineapple (with the juice) and chopped pecans; mix to combine. Add flour mixture and mix until incorporated.
  3. Divide batter evenly into prepared cake pans. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until tester comes out clean.
  4. Remove from oven and let cool in pans on wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pans and cool completely.
  5. Make Frosting: Cream the cream cheese and butter together until incorporated. Add confectioners’ sugar and continue creaming until smooth and fluffy. Add vanilla extract and salt and mix until incorporated.
  6. Assemble Cake: Place the first cake layer top side down on a cake plate or cake round. Spread a dollop of frosting evenly over top. Repeat with second layer. Add third layer and frost entire cake with remaining frosting. Garnish with pecans.