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Mini Hummingbird Cakes

With roots in Jamaica but popularized by Southern Living Magazine in the USA in the late 1970s, Hummingbird Cake has been a Southern staple for decades. It’s a rich, moist, and fruity cake filled with banana, pineapple, and pecans, but rather than the 2-layer classic, I’ve miniaturized this cake, turning it into individual-sized minis!

3 Mini Hummingbird Cakes on a black platter.

With a buttery cream cheese frosting and oodles of flavor, this is a deceptively easy cake to make. There’s some measuring and mixing involved, but that’s it! 

I’ve been making the mini version for decades and used to offer them in my restaurant along with other individual-sized desserts. 

These minis look great on high tea platters, on dessert buffets, or anytime you want to impress with a personal-sized dessert!

Mini Hummingbird Cakes on a white platter.

What You’ll Love About Individual Hummingbird Cakes


  • The cake is moist, fruity, and filled with flavor from the banana and pineapple.
  • It’s really a simple cake to make, and because they’re minis, they bake up so much faster!
  • There’s no fussing with a 2-layer cake – these minis get a dollop of frosting on top, and you’re good to go!

Ingredients

  • Butter – I cook with salted butter. Make sure your butter is at room temperature.
  • Oil – Use flavor-neutral oil like canola or vegetable oil.
  • Brown sugar – You can use dark brown sugar if you like, but regular brown sugar is fine.
  • White sugar – Plain old white sugar. Save the powdered sugar for the frosting.
  • Egg
  • Banana – Plan this cake in advance and let some bananas get super ripe on the counter. Mash them up with a fork; you’ll need about 2 bananas.
  • Canned crushed pineapple – Drained.
  • Vanilla extract – You can use pure or artificial vanilla extract. I cook with artificial vanilla, and it all tastes great!
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder – Make sure your baking powder hasn’t expired!
  • Baking soda
  • Cinnamon – Ground cinnamon. The older it is, the weaker the flavor. Use fresh spices for the best flavor.
  • Salt – I cook with kosher salt.
  • Chopped pecans – Toasted first, for the nuttiest flavor.

For the Icing:

  • Butter – Salted and softened.
  • Cream cheese – At room temperature.
  • Vanilla – Just like with the cake, artificial vanilla is fine.
  • Salt – Just a tiny pinch!
  • Powdered sugar

How to Make Individual Hummingbird Cakes

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F, spray the mini cake or mini loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray, and set it aside.
  2. Cream the butter, brown and white sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer or in a bowl with electric beaters until creamy.
  3. Add the oil and mix until smooth.
  4. Add the egg and vanilla and mix it in, scraping down the sides as needed.
  5. Finally, add the mashed banana and pineapple.
  6. Combine the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt and mix until combined.
  7. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well. Then stir in the pecans.
  8. Add a scant 1/4 cup of batter to each of the cake wells in the mini cake pan and bake in a 350°F oven for 18-20 minutes or until the cake is set in the middle and an inserted toothpick comes out mostly clean.
  9. Cool completely before frosting.

To make the frosting:

  1. Beat the softened butter and cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer or with a hand mixer until smooth.
  2. Stir in the vanilla and salt, then the powdered sugar. Add up to a tablespoon of milk if needed to reach a spreadable consistency.
  3. Frost the very cool cakes and enjoy!

Step By Step Process

Chef Jenn’s Recipe Notes

  • Got super-ripe bananas? Forget banana bread; make these mini Hummingbird Cakes instead!
  • Drain the pineapple really well to avoid excess moisture in the cakes. You can press the juice out with the lid pressed into the can, or my favorite trick is to use a citrus squeezer to squeeze the juice out of the pineapple.
  • Toast the pecans lightly for an enhanced nutty flavor. I toast them in a dry skillet or on a baking sheet in the oven. Just don’t walk away! The nuts will burn really quickly.
  • If the mini cakes aren’t fully cooled, the icing will melt!

Recommended

Storage

These cakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. For longer storage, refrigerate them for up to a week. If you wish to freeze them, do so without the frosting, and they’ll keep well for up to 3 months. I store the unfrosted cakes in the freezer, and put the icing into a baggie in the freezer, too, then I just thaw, frost, and serve as needed! Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and add frosting before serving.

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3 Mini Hummingbird Cakes on a black platter.

Mini Hummingbird Cake

Chef Jenn
Super moist and packed with flavor from banana and pineapple, Mini Hummingbird Cakes are fabulous, and the frosting really is the icing on the cake! It's buttery and delish and fabulous!
5 from 46 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 8 mini cakes
Calories 685 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup butter divided and softened
  • ½ cup oil neutral flavor oil like vegetable oil
  • ½ cup brown sugar lightly packed
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup banana mashed; about 2 bananas
  • cup crushed pineapple drained
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1.5 cups all purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup chopped pecans toasted

Frosting

  • ¼ cup butter softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 cups powdered sugar also called icing sugar or confectioners sugar

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and spray mini cake or mini loaf pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  • Cream the butter, brown and white sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer or in a bowl with electric beaters until creamy.
  • Add the oil and mix until smooth.
  • Add the egg and vanilla and mix it in, scraping down the sides as needed.
  • Finally, add the mashed banana and pineapple.
  • Combine the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt and mix until combined.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well. Then stir in the pecans.
  • Add a scant 1/4 cup of batter to each of the cake wells in the mini cake pan and bake in a 350°F oven for 18-20 minutes or until the cake is set in the middle and an inserted toothpick comes out mostly clean.
  • Cool completely before frosting.

To make the frosting:

  • Beat the softened butter and cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer or with a hand mixer until smooth.
  • Stir in the vanilla and salt, then the powdered sugar. Add up to a tablespoon of milk if needed to reach a spreadable consistency.
  • Frost the very cool cakes and enjoy!

Notes

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  • Got super-ripe bananas? Forget banana bread, make these mini Hummingbird Cakes instead!
  • Drain the pineapple really well to avoid excess moisture in the cakes. You can press the juice out with the lid pressed into the can, or my favorite trick, use a citrus squeezer to squeeze the juice out of the pineapple.
  • Toast the pecans lightly for an enhanced nutty flavor. I toast them in a dry skillet or on a baking sheet in the oven. Just don’t walk away! The nuts will burn really quickly.
  • If the mini cakes aren’t fully cooled, the icing will melt!

Nutrition

Serving: 1cakeCalories: 685kcalCarbohydrates: 75gProtein: 5gFat: 42gSaturated Fat: 15gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6gMonounsaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 81mgSodium: 440mgPotassium: 185mgFiber: 2gSugar: 54gVitamin A: 773IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 61mgIron: 2mg
Keyword hummingbird cake, mini cakes, mini hummingbird cakes
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