These Banana Split Cupcakes are made with two different cupcake batters, strawberry and chocolate, then filled with a banana flavor pudding. The whole thing is topped with whipped cream and chopped walnuts.
These Banana Split Cupcakes are the literal translation of banana split ice cream in cupcake language. They have all of the flavors and elements you know and love from this classic ice cream: chocolate, strawberry, banana, whipped cream and walnuts. You could certainly add a cherry on top too, I just didn’t have them handy at the time.
How to Make Banana Split Cupcakes
These two color cupcakes are made by layering a basic chocolate cupcake batter with a real strawberry cupcake batter. Since they are made with two different batches of cupcakes, this recipe will yield 24 cupcakes in all, perfect to bring to parties.
The easy banana filling is made with Jell-O instant banana cream pudding and pie filling. One small package is enough to fill all 24 cupcakes. I attempted to make a fresh banana pastry cream for a more homemade flavor. Unfortunately, cooked banana turns brown very easily and the pastry cream doesn’t even have a super strong banana flavor. So I decided to stick with the original Jell-O banana pudding.
Filling the cupcakes is very easy. I simply use the back of a piping tip to cut into the cupcakes. Push down and twist, when you lift up, a piece of cupcake will come out with the piping tip leaving a nicely formed hole for the filling to be added to. Do this twice for a deeper hole. To get the plug of cupcake out of the piping tip, use a chopstick to push it out from the other end.
Add about two teaspoon of banana pudding to each cupcake. Alternately, you could add the banana pudding to a pastry bag, cut a hole at the end and fill the cupcake quickly by squeezing it out of the pastry bag into the cut out holes. Then replace the pieces of cupcakes you cut out over the filling. Pipe whipped cream on top to cover everything up and sprinkle chopped walnuts generously over the whipped cream.
These banana split cupcakes were one of the original flavors I came up with way back in the day when I was obsessed with cupcakes, and thought about opening a cupcake catering business, well before I started this blog. They are one of my absolute favorite cupcake creations beside these strawberry lemonade cupcakes. I hope you enjoy them just as much as I do.
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!
This recipe was originally published on 8/18/2014. The recipe has been updated to reflect a few improvements. The post has also been updated with extra tips and process photos to help you in the kitchen.
Banana Split Cupcakes
Strawberry Cupcake Batter
- 1/4 cup freeze dried strawberry powder (14 g, 1/2 oz)
- 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (204 g)
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar (127 g)
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (1 g)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder (4 g)
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda (2 g)
- 1/2 cup pureed strawberry (113 g, 4 oz)
- 1/3 cup buttermilk (77 g, room temperature)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil (50 g)
- 1 large egg (room temperature)
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (2 g)
Chocolate Cupcake Batter
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (170 g)
- 1/2 cup cocoa powder (54 g, dutch-processed)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (180 g)
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (1g)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder (2 g)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (4 g)
- 1 cup buttermilk (231 g, room temperature)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil (50 g)
- 1 large egg (room temperature)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (4 g)
Filling and Topping
- 1 package of Jell-O instant Banana Cream Pudding (96 g, 3.4 oz)
- 2 cup whole milk (490 g)
- 2 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream (600 g)
- 5 tablespoon granulated sugar (56 g)
- 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (8 g)
- 1 cup walnut (100 g, roughly chopped)
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line two muffin pans with cupcake liners and set aside.
Make the strawberry cupcake batter
- Add 1/2 oz of freeze dried strawberry to a food processor and process until a powder forms. Keep a kitchen towel draped over the food processor while it’s working to prevent the strawberry powder to escape and fly everywhere.
- Add strawberry powder to a small mixing bowl along with flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Mix with a whisk to distribute evenly. Set aside.
- In the same food processor used previously for the freeze dried strawberry, add the fresh strawberry and puree. Add strawberry puree in a medium mixing bowl along with buttermilk, vegetable oil, egg, and vanilla extract. Beat together with a whisk until smooth.
- Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredient mixture and fold until just combined.
Make the chocolate cupcake batter
- In a small mixing bowl, add flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Mix with a whisk to distribute evenly. Set aside.
- Add buttermilk, vegetable oil, egg, and vanilla extract to a medium bowl. Beat together with a whisk until smooth. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredient mixture and fold until just combined.
Prepare the batter and bake
- Use a small ice cream scoop to divide the strawberry batter into the prepared muffin pans, about 2 tablespoons each. Then use the same ice cream scoop to add the chocolate batter on top of the strawberry batter. This should be enough for 24 cupcakes.
- Bake in the middle oven rack for 17 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the middle of a cupcake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to the touch, remove cupcakes from the pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack.
Prepare the filling and frosting
- Add pudding mix and milk to a medium bowl and whisk for 2 minutes. Refrigerate for at least 5 minutes or until ready to use.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, add heavy whipping cream and sugar, beat with the whisk attachment on medium speed until the mixture thickens slightly. Stream in the vanilla extract and continue to beat until stiff peak forms. Refrigerate until ready to use.
Assemble the cupcakes
- Use the bottom of a frosting tip to cut out holes on top of a cupcake, push down and twist. Use a chopstick to push out the plug inside the frosting tip. Repeat one more time to create a deeper hole for plenty of space for filling.
- Spoon in 2 heaping teaspoons of the prepared banana cream pudding to fill the hole. Alternately, fill a pastry bag with the pudding and quickly fill each hole to the top. Add the plugs of cupcake back on top to cover the filling.
- Add whipped cream to another pastry bag fitted with a star tip. Pipe whipped cream on top of the cupcakes.
- Repeat the process for the rest of the cupcakes. Garnish with chopped walnuts.
- I buy freeze dried strawberry from Target, one package is typically 1 oz.
- Refrigerate left over cupcakes.
Shop The Recipe Tools
- Food Processor
- Stand Mixer
- 1 Tablespoon Cookies Scoop
- Pastry Bags
- Open Star Piping Tip
- Measuring Cups and Spoons
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