This Healthy Hummingbird Cake is perfect to make for spring and summer parties! This delicate almond flour cake is made with bananas, pineapple, and chopped pecans, and topped with a cream cheese frosting.
- 1 What is Hummingbird Cake?
- 2 What is in Hummingbird Cake?
- 3 What You’ll Need for a Healthy Cream Cheese Frosting
- 4 How to Make an Almond Flour Hummingbird Cake
- 5 How to Make a Healthy Cream Cheese Frosting
- 6 How to Frost a Layer Cake
- 7 Variations – A Hummingbird Cake without Pineapple
- 8 Storing and Serving
- 9 Other Gluten Free Cake Recipes
- 10 Healthy Hummingbird Cake
What is Hummingbird Cake?
Carrot cake fans will love this Healthy Hummingbird Cake. It’s a spiced cake batter, made with bananas, crushed pineapple, and chopped and toasted pecans.
Similarly to a carrot cake, it’s also topped with a cream cheese frosting.
Hummingbird cakes started out as unfrosted cakes made with bananas and crushed pineapple, and were popular because they stayed moist and fresh for a long time due to the fruit. It was referred to as “Doctor Bird Cake,” which is a Jamaican species of hummingbird.
In the 1960s, Hummingbird cake evolved to be made with nuts, in layers, with a cream cheese frosting. The recipe has been popular ever since.
I love baking in my Sharp European Convection Oven. Its roomy interior makes it possible to evenly bake layer cakes.
Plus, it has a sleek modern look that gives my kitchen a beautiful look.
The oven has a built-in timer, and lots of settings, to ensure all our recipes come out baked to perfection.
Hop on over to the Sharp Home USA website to see if this state-of-the-art oven is the perfect fit for your family!
What is in Hummingbird Cake?
- Almond Flour
- Baking Soda
- Sea Salt
- Raw Honey
- Pastured (grass-fed) Eggs
- Coconut Oil
- Ripe Bananas
- Crushed Pineapple in Juice
What You’ll Need for a Healthy Cream Cheese Frosting
- Organic Cream Cheese
- Pastured (grass-fed) Butter
- Powdered Monk Fruit Sweetener (or organic powdered sugar)
How to Make an Almond Flour Hummingbird Cake
Step 1: In a medium sized mixing bowl, add in the almond flour, baking soda, sea salt, cinnamon and ginger. Whisk to combine dry ingredients.
Step 2: Line a bowl with a linen towel or napkin, and add crushed pineapple into the linen. Squeeze out excess moisture. Almond flour will no absorb liquid like wheat flour, so skipping this step will lead to a mushy cake.
Step 3: Add eggs to a stand mixer bowl. Whisk the eggs for 2-3 minutes on high, until foamy.
Step 4: Add the coconut oil, raw honey, pineapple, and bananas into the eggs. Whisk to combine and break up the bananas into the wet mixture.
Step 5: Add the dry ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients, and use a spatula to stir them in until combined.
Step 6: Add chopped pecans into the batter and fold in.
Step 7: Divide the cake batter evenly into 2 prepared 8-inch cake pans.
Step 8: Bake cakes for 35 minutes, until browned and cooked through in the center. Cool completely before removing the cakes from the tins.
How to Make a Healthy Cream Cheese Frosting
Step 1: Add softened cream cheese and butter into a stand mixer bowl, and beat using the paddle attachment until light and fluffy.
Step 2: Add the powdered monk fruit sweetener (or powdered sugar) and vanilla, and beat until fully mixed.
How to Frost a Layer Cake
Step 1: Add 1 layer of the cake to a serving platter or cake stand. I like to hold it in place with a couple tablespoons of frosting.
Step 2: Top the cake with a thick layer of frosting. This is the filling between the layers.
Step 3: Top the layer of frosting with the second layer of the cake, and press around the edges to ensure its centered.
Step 4: Apply a thin layer, or crumb coat, of the frosting on the cake. You should be able to see the cake through it. This is a first layer that will catch the crumbs so you can apply another coat that stays perfectly white without showing crumbs. After applying the crumb coat, allow the cake chill in the refrigerator for about an hour to let it set.
Step 5: Use the remaining frosting to coat the cake in a thicker layer of frosting.
Step 6: Decorate your Healthy Hummingbird Cake with pecans or toasted coconut.
Variations – A Hummingbird Cake without Pineapple
Swaps: The pineapple adds a lot of moisture to this cake, so don’t omit with pineapple without making a substitution. Swap pineapple for 1 cup of shredded carrot or zucchini (no need to squeeze out moisture). Either option will keep the moisture in the cake!
Leave out the Pecans: It’s okay to omit the pecans, or to swap them with chopped walnuts.
Hummingbird Cake with Coconut: Add 1/2 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut to the batter along with the pecans. You can also toast coconut and use it to decorate the cake along with the pecans.
Storing and Serving
This cake stores well and can be made up to a week ahead of time.
After the cream cheese frosting has set and is dry to touch, wrap the cake tightly in plastic wrap, and store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
To Freeze: Wrap tightly in plastic wrap, then cover in several layers of foil, and freeze the cake (frosted) for up to 3 months. Allow the cake to thaw for 1 day in the refrigerator to serve.
Other Gluten Free Cake Recipes
Healthy Hummingbird Cake
- 3 cups almond flour
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 4 eggs (pastured, grass-fed)
- 1/2 cup raw honey
- 1/4 cup coconut oil melted (or avocado oil)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 bananas ripe
- 16 ounce crushed pineapple in juice drained, *see notes for draining juice
- 1/2 cup pecans toasted and chopped (plus more to decorate, optional)
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 packages cream cheese
- 1/2 cup butter (pastured, grass-fed)
- 1 cup powdered monk fruit sweetener or organic powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- Preheat oven to 325º F.
- Grease 2 8-inch cake pans with avocado or coconut oil, and cut out a parchment circle to place in the bottom of the pan. Set pans aside.
- Into a large bowl, add almond flour, sea salt, baking soda, cinnamon and ginger. Stir to combine.
- Into a stand mixer bowl, add eggs. Whisk eggs for 2-3 minutes until foamy.
- Into the eggs, add the oil, honey, vanilla, bananas, and drained pineapple. Stir the wet ingredients together.
- Add the dry ingredients into the bowl with the wet ingredients, and use a wooden spoon to stir the mixture together.
- Add the chopped pecans, and fold into the batter.
- Divide the cake batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans.
- Bake the cakes for 35 minutes, or until lightly browned on the top and set in the center.
- Allow the cakes to cool at least 2 hours prior to removing from the cake pans to frost.
- Frost cakes with cream cheese frosting and decorate with pecans. See tutorial in blog post for frosting a layer cake.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- Add the softened cream cheese and butter into a stand mixer, and beat for about 2 minutes until the mixture is light and fluffy.
- Add in the powdered monk fruit sweetener and vanilla, and continue to beat until mixed well.