No-Bake Banana Split Cake



  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 bananas
  • 1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple, well-drained
  • 1 (8 oz.) container Cool Whip non-dairy whipped topping (or homemade whipped cream)
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 (10 oz.) jar maraschino cherries, drained & patted dry with a paper towel


  1. Prepare the Crust:
    • Melt 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter and blend it with graham cracker crumbs until evenly moistened. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9×13″ pan to form the crust.
  2. Make the Cream Cheese Layer:
    • Using an electric mixer, blend the remaining 1/2 cup (1 stick) of butter with cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, and a pinch of salt. Beat for 3 to 4 minutes until the mixture is fluffy. Spread this cream cheese mixture over the graham cracker crust.
  3. Add the Banana Layer:
    • Slice the bananas and arrange them evenly over the cream cheese layer.
  4. Layer with Crushed Pineapple:
    • Spread the well-drained crushed pineapple over the banana layer.
  5. Top with Whipped Cream:
    • Spread the non-dairy whipped topping (Cool Whip) over the pineapple layer. Alternatively, you can use homemade whipped cream for a personalized touch.
  6. Sprinkle with Pecans:
    • Sprinkle the chopped pecans evenly over the whipped topping layer.
  7. Add Maraschino Cherries:
    • Place the drained and patted-dry maraschino cherries on top, distributing them evenly.
  8. Chill Before Serving:
    • Cover the cake and refrigerate it for at least 2 to 3 hours, or overnight, to allow the flavors to meld and the dessert to set.
  9. Serve and Enjoy:
    • Once chilled, slice and serve this delightful No-Bake Banana Split Cake. The layers of flavors and textures make it a refreshing and indulgent treat.

Note: Feel free to customize the cake by adding chocolate shavings, drizzling chocolate sauce, or incorporating different nuts for added texture and flavor. Enjoy this easy and delicious dessert with family and friends!

Here are some helpful tips to make your No-Bake Banana Split Cake even more delightful:

  1. Quality Ingredients:
    • Use high-quality ingredients, especially when it comes to the cream cheese, butter, and whipped topping. This ensures a rich and delicious flavor.
  2. Enhance the Crust:
    • Add a dash of cinnamon or a splash of vanilla extract to the graham cracker crust for an extra layer of flavor.
  3. Customize the Cream Cheese Layer:
    • Experiment with flavored cream cheese, such as strawberry or chocolate, to add a unique twist to the cream cheese layer.
  4. Fresh Bananas:
    • Use ripe but firm bananas for the best texture and sweetness. Slice them just before assembling the cake to prevent browning.
  5. Pineapple Drizzle:
    • Drizzle a bit of pineapple juice over the banana layer for an additional burst of pineapple flavor.
  6. Homemade Whipped Cream:
    • Consider making homemade whipped cream instead of using non-dairy whipped topping for a fresher taste. Sweeten it to your liking.
  7. Toasted Pecans:
    • Toast the chopped pecans lightly in a dry pan before sprinkling them on top. This enhances their nutty flavor and adds a delightful crunch.
  8. Variety of Nuts:
    • Mix different nuts like walnuts or almonds for a diverse and interesting nutty flavor.
  9. Fresh Fruit Additions:
    • Include fresh strawberries or kiwi slices between the banana and pineapple layers for additional fruitiness and color.
  10. Chocolate Drizzle:
    • Drizzle chocolate sauce or ganache over the top for a chocolatey touch. This complements the fruity flavors in the cake.
  11. Layered Chocolate:
    • Add a layer of chocolate chips or chocolate shavings between the cream cheese and banana layers for a chocolate-infused surprise.
  12. Coconut Flakes:
    • Sprinkle coconut flakes on top for a tropical twist that pairs well with the pineapple.
  13. Use Vanilla Wafers:
    • Substitute part or all of the graham cracker crumbs with crushed vanilla wafers for a different flavor and texture.
  14. Creative Cherry Placement:
    • Arrange the maraschino cherries in a decorative pattern on top for an aesthetically pleasing presentation.
  15. Individual Servings:
    • Instead of a large cake, consider assembling individual servings in glasses or mini trifle bowls for a charming and portion-controlled dessert.
  16. Chill Well:
    • Ensure that the cake chills for the recommended time to allow the layers to set and the flavors to meld properly.
  17. Serve Cold:
    • This dessert is best enjoyed cold, so make sure to keep it refrigerated until serving.
  18. Personalized Decorations:
    • Get creative with additional decorations like edible flowers, mint leaves, or colorful sprinkles to make the cake visually appealing.

By incorporating these tips, you can elevate the flavors and presentation of your No-Bake Banana Split Cake, creating a delightful and memorable dessert experience. Enjoy!

Achieving the perfect No-Bake Banana Split Cake involves attention to detail and a few secrets to enhance flavor and texture. Here are some tips for perfection:

  1. Even Graham Cracker Crust:
    • Ensure the graham cracker crust is pressed evenly across the pan to provide a stable base for the layers.
  2. Proper Cream Cheese Blending:
    • Whip the cream cheese, butter, confectioners’ sugar, and salt for the recommended 3 to 4 minutes. This ensures a fluffy and smooth cream cheese layer.
  3. Chilled Ingredients:
    • Use softened but not melted cream cheese. Cold ingredients help maintain the structure of the layers.
  4. Fresh Bananas:
    • Slice the bananas just before assembling the cake to prevent browning and maintain freshness.
  5. Drain Pineapple Well:
    • Ensure that the crushed pineapple is well-drained to avoid excess moisture that may compromise the cake’s texture.
  6. Sturdy Whipped Topping:
    • If using non-dairy whipped topping, make sure it is well-thawed and sturdy. Overly soft whipped topping may affect the cake’s structure.
  7. Precision with Pecans:
    • Chop the pecans finely and sprinkle them evenly for a consistent nutty crunch in each bite.
  8. Pat Dry Cherries:
    • Pat dry the maraschino cherries with a paper towel to prevent excess moisture on the top layer.
  9. Layering Order:
    • Assemble the layers in the specified order to create a well-balanced dessert with each component shining through.
  10. Chill Thoroughly:
    • Allow the cake to chill for at least 2 to 3 hours, or overnight. This ensures that the layers set and the flavors meld for the perfect consistency.
  11. Balanced Sweetness:
    • Taste as you go and adjust the sweetness according to your preference. The balance between the graham crust, cream cheese layer, and sweet toppings is crucial.
  12. Fresh Whipped Cream Option:
    • Consider making homemade whipped cream using heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract. This adds a fresh and creamy element to the cake.
  13. Creative Garnishes:
    • Add a touch of creativity with garnishes like chocolate shavings, mint leaves, or edible flowers for a visually appealing presentation.
  14. Individual Servings:
    • For a more elegant presentation, consider assembling the cake in individual serving glasses or mini trifle bowls.
  15. Experiment with Flavors:
    • Feel free to experiment with additional flavors such as a hint of almond extract in the cream cheese layer or a dash of cinnamon in the crust.
  16. Room Temperature Serving:
    • Allow the cake to sit at room temperature for a few minutes before serving to enhance the flavors.
  17. Layer Thickness:
    • Maintain a balanced thickness for each layer to ensure that every bite includes a harmonious blend of flavors.
  18. Cover Well in Refrigeration:
    • Cover the cake well with plastic wrap or a lid to prevent it from absorbing any odors in the refrigerator.

By paying attention to these secrets, you’ll be on your way to creating the perfect No-Bake Banana Split Cake, with a harmonious combination of flavors and a delightful texture. Enjoy your delicious creation!

Here are some popular questions and answers related to No-Bake Banana Split Cake:

Q1: Can I use store-bought graham cracker crust for this recipe? A1: Yes, you can use a store-bought graham cracker crust for convenience. However, making the crust from scratch allows for customization and a fresher taste.

Q2: Can I use frozen whipped topping instead of Cool Whip? A2: Yes, you can use frozen whipped topping as a substitute for Cool Whip. Thaw it according to the package instructions before use.

Q3: How long does No-Bake Banana Split Cake last in the refrigerator? A3: No-Bake Banana Split Cake can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. However, for the best texture and flavor, it’s recommended to consume it within the first 2 days.

Q4: Can I freeze No-Bake Banana Split Cake? A4: Freezing is not recommended, as the texture of the cream cheese layer and whipped topping may be affected upon thawing.

Q5: Can I use fresh pineapple instead of canned crushed pineapple? A5: Yes, you can use fresh pineapple, but make sure to finely chop or crush it to achieve a texture similar to canned crushed pineapple.

Q6: How do I prevent the bananas from turning brown? A6: Slice the bananas just before assembling the cake and consider brushing them with lemon juice to prevent browning.

Q7: Can I make individual servings instead of a large cake? A7: Yes, you can assemble individual servings in glasses or mini trifle bowls for a personalized presentation.

Q8: What can I use instead of pecans for a nut-free option? A8: You can use chopped almonds, walnuts, or omit the nuts altogether for a nut-free version.

Q9: Can I use a different type of cookie crust instead of graham crackers? A9: Yes, you can experiment with different cookie crusts, such as vanilla wafers or chocolate cookies, for a unique flavor.

Q10: How can I make the whipped cream from scratch? A10: To make homemade whipped cream, whip heavy cream with sugar and vanilla extract until stiff peaks form. Adjust sugar according to taste.

Q11: Can I make No-Bake Banana Split Cake without cream cheese? A11: Cream cheese adds a rich and creamy texture, but you can try substituting it with mascarpone or Greek yogurt for a different twist.

Q12: Can I use fresh cherries instead of maraschino cherries? A12: Yes, you can use fresh cherries, but pit and chop them before placing them on top.

Q13: Can I make this recipe without butter? A13: The butter in the graham cracker crust contributes to its structure. You can try using a butter substitute or coconut oil, but the texture may vary.

Q14: Can I serve No-Bake Banana Split Cake immediately after assembling? A14: While it’s best to refrigerate for at least 2-3 hours for optimal texture and flavor, you can serve it shortly after assembling. However, it may be slightly softer.

Q15: Can I use low-fat or fat-free cream cheese? A15: You can use low-fat cream cheese, but keep in mind that it may affect the richness and texture of the cream cheese layer.

Q16: Can I add chocolate syrup on top for extra flavor? A16: Absolutely! Drizzling chocolate syrup over the finished cake adds a delicious chocolatey element.

Q17: What’s the best occasion to serve No-Bake Banana Split Cake? A17: This cake is perfect for summer gatherings, potlucks, birthdays, or any occasion where a refreshing and easy-to-make dessert is desired.

Q18: Can I use plant-based alternatives for dairy ingredients? A18: You can experiment with plant-based cream cheese and non-dairy whipped toppings for a vegan version of No-Bake Banana Split Cake.

Enjoy making and savoring this delightful No-Bake Banana Split Cake!