Hummingbird Cake Recipe

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This homemade Hummingbird Cake is wonderfully moist, with amazing flavor from banana, crushed pineapple, pecans, and a hint of cinnamon. It has a moist, tender crumb and is filled and frosted with homemade cream cheese frosting.

The BEST Hummingbird Cake Recipe

We LOVE classic cakes that incorporate fruit for an added boost of flavor, texture, and moistness (like our Carrot Cake Recipe, Italian Cream Cake and German Chocolate Cake just to name a few!)

Whether you are searching for birthday cake ideas, banana cake recipes, holiday cakes, or a delicious recipe "just because", this moist hummingbird cake recipe is the perfect choice.

Today's cake has been our go-to Hummingbird Cake recipe for years, and it is based on a classic Hummingbird Cake recipe that first appeared in the Southern Living Magazine in the 1970s.

How to Make Hummingbird Cake

Unlike most of our cake recipes, there's no need to drag out the stand mixer for this one!  You'll be doing a little stirring for a change with this one-bowl recipe.

*You can find the full, printable recipe card for hummingbird cake further down in this post. Here is a quick look at our steps!

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour three 8-inch round pans. I also like to add a circle of parchment paper to the bottom of each pan.

  • First, in a large mixing bowl, combine the all purpose flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and ground cinnamon and whisk to blend. 
Bowl of dry ingredients for hummingbird cake.
  • Next, add the room temperature eggs and vegetable oil, stirring with a spoon until the dry ingredients are moistened. Add the vanilla extract, crushed pineapple, chopped pecans, and mashed ripened bananas and stir until incorporated. That's all there is to it!
Ingredients for Hummingbird Cake
  • Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and divide batter between the three prepared 8-inch round pans.
Hummingbird Cake Batter in three 8 inch cake pans.
  • Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached.
Hummingbird Cake Layers, cooling in pans on a wire rack.
  • After baking, we like to cool the cake layers on a cooling rack for about 5-10 minutes while still in their pans. You can then flip them out. Allow the layers to cool completely before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

Every good Hummingbird Cake should be dressed in the most delicious cream cheese frosting recipe, and as far as we are concerned, you can never have too much!

For today's recipe, we are using our Pipeable Cream Cheese Frosting recipe which is slightly thicker than our usual  Cream Cheese Buttercream frosting, but both recipes would work well with this Hummingbird Cake!

Bowl of Cream Cheese Frosting

Cream cheese frostings couldn't be easier to make. It is just a matter of combining softened butter and cream cheese, confectioners sugar, and flavorings!

Don't let the simplicity fool you- Cream Cheese Frosting may be easy to make but the flavor is amazing! We love it with so many recipes, from our Spice Cake to Red Velvet Cake, Elvis Presley Cake and more!

Assembling the Hummingbird Cake

  • Place the first layer on your cake stand or cake platter. Spread with cream cheese frosting. Follow with the second layer and repeat.
Spreading frosting on a hummingbird cake layer.
  • Top with the final cake layer and crumb coat (apply thin coat of frosting). I decorated my hummingbird cake with lots of piping around the sides of the cake using a star tip 21 but decorate however you like! If at any time your cream cheese frosting seems too soft, chill it for several minutes to thicken up the consistency.
  • Also, if your cake layers are shifting or sliding as you frost the cake, pop it in the freezer for about 15 minutes or so to firm things up and then continue.

Recipe FAQs

Hummingbird Cake is a beloved classic cake recipe that consists of banana, crushed pineapple, pecans, and a hint of cinnamon. It is most often frosted with cream cheese frosting, and some recipes call for coconut as well (See our Coconut Hummingbird Cake!)

Hummingbird Cake is thought to have first emerged in Jamaica in the '60s, (note the tropical flavor of pineapple & banana in the recipe)!

Although unconfirmed, a popular theory for how this flavorful, moist cake got its unusual name is that its sweetness attracts hummingbirds! This sounds like a good explanation to me. I say that we go with it. ;0)

Yes, just as with most of our cakes (from orange cake to almond cake, strawberry cake and more), these hummingbird layers freeze beautifully!

This not only allows you to work well in advance (as frozen layers stay fresh for up to three months), but we also find that when slightly warm cake layers are wrapped and frozen, they become even more moist!

Wrap and freeze your cooled cake layers individually with plastic wrap, followed by aluminum foil. (If you are only freezing the layers for a few days, it is fine to skip the foil and double wrap with plastic wrap).

To thaw, move the wrapped cakes from the freezer to the kitchen counter. Keep the wrapping on for 30-45 minutes before removing and thawing to desired amount for assembling the cake. The cake layers will taste as fresh as the day they were wrapped!

Yes, hummingbird cake needs to be refrigerated because of the cream cheese filling and frosting. It is best to store in an airtight container or cake dome.

For best flavor and texture, remove the cake from the refrigerator two hours or so before serving. This will allow time for the hummingbird cake to warm and soften.

The most DELICIOUS scratch Hummingbird Cake Recipe!

I think that stirring a hefty bowl of cake batter counts as a mini-workout, don't you? Reward yourself with a big ol' slice of this deliciousness.

We hope that you love this Hummingbird cake recipe as much as we do! It has become a trusted southern classic, right up there with Pineapple Cake, Banana Cream Cake, and Buttermilk Pound Cake!

More Banana Cakes

One of the star flavors of this hummingbird cake recipe is banana! If you are a fan of banana cakes like we are, don't miss these other delicious recipes! Some of our favorites are Banana Pudding Cake, Banana Split Cake, and Banana Pudding Bundt Cake. Here are a few more:

More Hummingbird Cake Options

Make sure to check out our Coconut Hummingbird Cake Recipe (pictured below), as well as our Hummingbird Bundt Cake, and a delicious Hummingbird Doctored Cake Mix Recipe! These recipes are guaranteed to be the hit of any birthday party, potluck, or gathering of friends!

Thanks so much for stopping by! We hope that you enjoy this hummingbird cake!

Don't miss our favorite cake recipes from scratch as well as our cake mix recipes! We have so many cake recipes to share with you in our Cake Recipes section!

Also, if you'd like to learn about cake decorating, we have so many cake decorating tutorials to share with you!

Hummingbird Cake from Scratch

Hummingbird Cake

With flavors of banana, pineapple, pecans, and cinnamon, this amazing Hummingbird Cake recipe is sure to become an instant favorite!
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Course: Cakes and Cupcakes
Servings: 15 servings
Print Recipe Pin Recipe


For the Hummingbird Cake

  • 3 cups (363g) all purpose flour
  • 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon (5g) baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon (3g) salt
  • 1 teaspoon (3g) ground cinnamon
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature lightly beaten
  • 1 cup (215g) vegetable oil
  • 1 ½ teaspoons (6g) vanilla extract
  • 1 8 oz (227g) can crushed pineapple, undrained.
  • 1 cup (100g) chopped pecans
  • 1 ¾ cup (392g) mashed ripe bananas (4 large)

For the PIpeable Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 2 sticks (226g) unsalted butter, softened (do not soften in microwave)
  • 24 oz cream cheese, (total 678g), softened (We used three 8 oz packages- full fat.)
  • 3 cups (343g) confectioners sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (8g) vanilla extract


For the Hummingbird Cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, Grease and flour three 8 inch pans. (We like to line with parchment paper also.)
  • Combine the first 5 ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Whisk to blend. Add eggs and oil, stirring with a spoon until the dry ingredients are moistened. Do not beat the mixture. Add the vanilla, pineapple, pecans, bananas and stir until combined.
  • Spoon batter into three 8 inch greased and floured cake pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached.
  • Cool in pans 10 minutes on cooling rack and remove from pans.
  • Makes 6 cups of batter.

For the Pipeable Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Put the softened butter in the bowl of your mixer and mix until smooth.
  • Add the pieces of softened cream cheese to the mixing bowl. The cream cheese should be soft enough that it combines easily into the butter/powdered sugar mixture. Beat on low/medium speed about 1 minute or until the cream cheese is blended in.
  • Add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat on Medium speed for 2 to 3 minutes (a bit longer if using a hand mixer). Scrape the bowl mid way through. Do not over beat.
  • Makes 6 cups
  • Use immediately or refrigerate. If beaten too long it my become too soft. If this happens, just refrigerate a short time and let it firm up.
4.65 from 39 votes (39 ratings without comment)

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  1. Love your site, I am making the lemon cake, is so good and I can wait to give it a try; also the next one, one of my husband's favorites, hummingbird cake, he is from the south this is the reason, why, again thank you !!!!!

  2. Hello, Melissa, your recipe of Hummingbird cake is so fabulous with the help of this I surely willing to try this at my own. I am so glad that you share so many recipes of your loving cakes with us. Such a good person you are with a kind heart again thanks to you.

  3. Thank you so much for posting this! I am wanting to make cupcakes with this recipe. Would I need to change anything? I see someone else has already done this but I don’t understand what mixing on high to fluff it up means exactly.
    I love your butter pecan cake too by the way!

  4. Hi Candie, Bake the cupcakes at 350 for around 18 minutes, keep an eye on them. They will be done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached. As for your questions on the comment about mixing frosting on high -- be careful mixing cream cheese on high. This will make the cream cheese frosting too soft. If that should happen, just refrigerate for a short while, maybe 15 minutes and it will firm up again. I hope you will enjoy the recipe.

  5. Hi Yvette, Yes, this recipe can be baked in two 9 inch round pans. Bake at 350 degrees. Nine inch pans can hold 5 cups of batter and you will have 3 cups per pan so check at 20 minutes. I am not sure of the bake time. I hope you will enjoy the recipe.

  6. I am confused about the Pineapple Cream Cheese Frosting for the Hummingbird cake. The recipe for the frosting contains NO pineapple. Is something missing?

    1. Hi Dan, Our Hummingbird Cake recipe has pineapple in the cake batter but not in the cream cheese frosting. Possibly you misread the title of the frosting which is Pipeable Cream Cheese Frosting. We wanted bakers to know the consistency of the frosting was suitable for piping. I hope you will enjoy the cake.

  7. I was wondering if you had another type of frosting I could use besides a cream cheese version with your hummingbird cake? Also, not sure if you could give a suggestion…my girlfriend loves pina coladas and carrot cake. Not sure if I could combine them some how

    1. Hi Melissa- you could always try our classic vanilla buttercream recipe which is just a basic American buttercream (butter, powdered sugar, etc.).

      As far as the pina colada and carrot cake combo- this recipe already has pineapple & coconut in it and so I think it's a good fit ;0) The only thing missing is the rum! Here's a link to our popular pina colada cake if you'd like to compare-