This easy, fluffy banana pudding cake is the perfect mix of creamy flavors!
Prep Time10 minutesmins
Cook Time30 minutesmins
Chill Time12 hourshrs
Total Time12 hourshrs40 minutesmins
Keyword: Banana Pudding Cake Recipe
1boxyellow cake mix(made according to package directions with 1 cup water, ½ cup vegetable oil & 3 eggs)
5.1ouncesinstant banana-flavored pudding
2 to 3bananas,peeled and sliced very thin - no more than ¼-inch thick slices
8ouncesCool Whip whipped topping,thawed
12vanilla wafers,for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 9x13-inch baking pan with baker’s spray. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, add the water, vegetable oil, eggs, and contents of the yellow cake mix.
Whisk by hand for 1 minute or until completely combined and no lumps remain.
Pour the yellow cake batter into the prepared baking dish and bake for 30 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean when done.
Once the cake is removed from the oven, using the handle of a wooden spoon, poke holes all over the cake. Allow the cake to cool slightly on the counter while you make the instant banana pudding.
In a large mixing bowl, add the packet of instant banana-flavored pudding and milk. Whisk for 2 minutes by hand until combined. You want this to still be pourable, so DO NOT let it stand for the entire 5 minutes that is stated on the box directions for the pudding before pouring it into the holes poked into the warm cake.
Pour half the banana pudding mixture over the top of the warm cake, being sure to get it into all the holes. You can use the back of a large spoon to gently push the pudding into all the holes.
Add the remaining half of the banana pudding and smooth the pudding into an even layer over the cake.
Place the thinly sliced banana pieces into an even layer over the entire surface of the cake.
Spread the thawed whipped topping evenly over the banana slices and garnish with the vanilla wafers. I like to place 1 vanilla wafer into the center of each serving of cake. This way each person gets a cookie on the top of their piece.
Refrigerate this banana pudding cake for 12 hours, or overnight, before slicing and serving.
Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to keep a close eye on your cake as the suggested baking time approaches.
It’s best to make the holes in the baked cake while it is still slightly warm because as it cools, the crust on top of the cake will crumble more easily.
When you’re pouring the pudding mixture into the holes, tap the pan on the counter a few times to get rid of any air bubbles, and make sure the pudding fills the holes completely.
If you plan on making this dish more than a day in advance, wait to place the vanilla wafer cookies onto the top of the cake. The cookies will get soft the longer they sit on the cake and in the refrigerator.Alternatively, you can crush your vanilla wafer cookies and sprinkle them onto the top and place some additional fresh banana slices onto the top of the cake for a slightly different garnish. I would also wait to do this until just before you plan to slice and serve this cake.
The cake really needs to sit overnight in the refrigerator to absorb all of the liquid. If you rush this process, your cake will not absorb the liquid and could come out very wet at the bottom.