This Air Fryer Banana Cake is wonderfully soft and fluffy with the perfect texture and flavor. With just 5 minutes prep time, this is a fool proof recipe.
Baking in an air fryer can result in a very dark cake top, but still under cooked or raw in the middle. Unlike an oven where hot air circulates evenly around the cake, the air fryer blows hot air from the top.
Rather than creaming butter and sugar, which made the cake too light and airy, I used a quick bread of method like my carrot walnut cake, which resulted in a tighter crumb and also made it one of the most easiest cake recipes.
In addition to the chopped walnuts throughout the cake, I wanted more on top, which added a wonderful toasted nutty crunch. My favorite part is that this air fryer banana cake recipe makes a small 6 inch cake, thats perfect for a small family or when you are looking for a small snack cake.
Why this recipe works?
The secret to a perfectly baked cake, using air fryer is two different cooking temperatures! It is left to pre heat at 340° for 5 minutes and then the cake is baked at 330°. The pre heating works similar to oven, by making sure that it is hot enough, to kick start the baking, as soon as the cake is placed in it. And, the lower temperature ensures the cake is cooked all the way through, without the top browning too much.
Scroll down to the recipe card below for full information on ingredients and amounts.
- Banana - Use very ripe, heavily speckled bananas for intense caramelly fruitiness.
- All purpose flour - Gives a stable structure.
- Sugar - It compliments the caramel notes in bananas and is always my go to, like in almond flour cake.
- Leavening - A good dose of baking soda, along with baking powder, was necessary to make the hefty batter rise.
- Egg - Eggs gives crucial structural support, and also makes the cake tender with a light texture.
- Yogurt - It adds moisture, a slight tanginess and the acid needed to work with baking soda.
- Walnuts - For crunch and texture contrast.
How to make?
You can find full printable recipe below, but here is a quick overview of the procedure along with step-by-step photos.
1. Whisk together all purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a bowl.
2 & 3. Whisk together mashed banana, brown sugar, yogurt, oil, egg and vanilla extract, until smooth.
4. Stir dry ingredients into the wet.
5. Mix until just combined (do not over mix).
Tip: Over mixing will create gluten development, and might make the air fryer banana cake dense and tough, instead of the soft and fluffy texture you are aiming for.
6. Transfer batter to a greased 6-inch cake pan, smooth top and sprinkle chopped walnuts on top.
Pro tip: What kind of cake pan can you use in the air fryer? Any glass, metal, aluminium pan or even silicone molds that's oven safe can be used. However, make sure that the pan fits in your air fryer and is not too tall, so when the cake rises it won't touch the heat element.
7 & 8. Pre heat air fryer to 340 degrees for 5 minutes (I use this time to make the batter). When 5 minutes is done, reduce to 330 degrees for 35 minutes. When hot, place the cake pan and cook until done.
How to store?
Cooled air fryer banana cake can be stored in a sealed container at room temperature for about 3 days.
To freeze - Wrap cooled cake in plastic wrap, place in a large zip lock bag and seal well. Freeze for up to 2 months. Let it thaw overnight at room temperature.
- Mash the bananas thoroughly. I like to use a potato masher, but a fork would also do the trick.
- Use greek yogurt - Use ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons plain greek yogurt along with 2 tablespoons water instead of the regular yogurt in the recipe.
- Cake pan - A 6-inch round baking pan.
- Air Fryer used - This recipe was tested in Instant Pot 6qt Vortex Air Fryer, cooking time may vary for other brands.
- Baking time - This air fryer banana cake will have a darker top, when compared to an oven baked cake. So, cake might look done on the top but still be undercooked inside. Insert a tooth pick or a thin knife into the cake after 35 minutes and it should come out clean or with a few crumbs attached to it. Else, bake the cake 5 to 10 minutes longer.
That is mainly because the cake was removed before having a chance to be fully cooked. So, make sure to bake for an approximate of 35 minutes and check for doneness before removing
The best and fastest way to ripen bananas is to enclose them in a paper bag for a few days. Add an apple into the bag to speed up the process. The ethylene gas produced by the fruits will be trapped in the paper bag and will hasten ripenening.
Absolutely! Cut cooled cake into two layers (please refer this informative article on how to cut a cake into even layer), frost with your favorite frosting like chocolate butter cream, vanilla butter cream, whipped cream, chocolate peanut butter, Nutella, cream cheese or chocolate cream cheese.
I'd like to preheat to kick start the baking process, much like an oven and then bake the cake at a lower temperature. This method guarantees that the cake is baked all the through and top stays deep golden brown without getting burnt.
More Air Fryer Desserts
Air Fryer Banana Cake
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup + 2 tablespoons mashed banana about 1 very large
- ½ cup packed golden brown sugar
- ½ cup plain yogurt refer notes to use greek yogurt
- ¼ cup vegetable oil
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Chopped Walnuts as needed
- Pre heat air fryer to 340°F for 6 minutes (the air fryer will run empty during this time, this helps to kick start the baking process). Prepare cake batter in the mean time.
- Grease a 6-inch round cake pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
- Add all dry ingredients into a small bowl and whisk until combined.
- Add all wet ingredients into a larger bowl, whisk until smooth and combined. Stir in the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula, until just combined. Tip: Over mixing will create gluten development, and might make the air fryer banana cake dense and tough, instead of the soft and fluffy texture you are aiming for.
- Transfer batter to the prepared pan, smooth top and sprinkle chopped walnuts on top.(The air fryer would have done pre heating by now). Set air fryer to 330°F for 35 minutes. When ready, place the cake pan into the air fryer basket and bake until done and brown.
- Check by inserting a knife into the middle of the cake and it needs to come out clean.Pro tip: Baking time - This air fryer banana cake will have a darker top, when compared to an oven baked cake. So, cake might look done on the top but still be undercooked inside. Insert a tooth pick or a thin knife into the cake after 35 minutes and it should come out clean or with a few crumbs attached to it. Else, bake the cake 5 to 10 minutes longer.
- Place the cake pan on a wire rack to cool completely.
Nutritional information, based on third-party calculations, should be seen as estimates, not guarantees, as various factors like product types, brands, processing methods, and more can alter the nutritional content in recipes.
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