This cool and creamy No Bake Banana Split Cake is everything you could want for a summer picnic! An easy recipe that takes only 30 minutes and needs no baking, makes it the perfect dessert for the season. Start with a graham cracker crust and top it with layers of vanilla custard, sliced bananas, crushed pineapple and Cool Whip. Finish it with everything a banana split needs like hot fudge, nuts and cherries and get ready to indulge!
This recipe has been sponsored by Minerva Dairy and created with their rich and creamy butter. All opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own.
I love cool, refreshing summer desserts that are simple to throw together and don’t heat up the kitchen. Recipes like No-Bake Grasshopper Pie, Coffee Ice Cream Pie, and Mango Pineapple Icebox Cheesecake fit my criteria as well as this easy No Bake Banana Split Cake. It's a family favorite I’ve been making for over 30 years.
Table of contents
This dessert offers up all the yummy flavors of your favorite banana split in an easy no-bake recipe. It’s a sweet, layered dessert that starts with a chilled graham cracker crust, followed by a light and creamy custard filling, a layer of crushed pineapple and all topped with a fluffy layer of Cool Whip. And you know it wouldn’t be a banana split dessert if it didn’t have a drizzle of hot fudge, a sprinkling of nuts and, of course, a cherry on top.
Some people get a little squeamish at the thought of a dessert with raw eggs but, since all the eggs are pasteurized prior to reaching the store, I’ve never had a problem with it. I find this custard layer is lighter than a typical cream cheese filling but I’ve noted a few alternatives below that you can substitute if you must.
- The cream cheese layer is simple to make yet a little heavier. Just beat together 16-oz softened cream cheese, 1-½ cups confectioner’s sugar, and ½ teaspoon vanilla.
- Another option is to use a boxed vanilla or banana pudding, prepared as directed on the package.
- Don’t care for pineapple? You can sub in some ripe sliced strawberries in their place.
- Make your own whipped cream in lieu of the Cool Whip. It will be a little richer but just as delicious.
- Let the kids add a few sprinkles to really up the fun factor!
How to Make A No Bake Banana Split Cake
Gather the simple ingredients to make this easy no bake layered dessert.
Graham Cracker Crust
- It only takes 4 ingredients to this simple crust – crushed graham crackers (these can be gluten-free), sugar, butter and a pinch of salt.
- Mix together well.
- Press gently into a 9x13-inch pan. Note: If you press it down too firmly it will be difficult to cut and lift from the pan when serving.
At this point, the crust can be frozen for about 10-15 minutes or can be baked for a bit crunchier texture for 10 minutes at 350 then allowed to cool.
- Combine the room temperature butter with sugar, eggs and vanilla extract. Make sure the butter has softened sufficiently for a smooth mixture, about an hour on the counter will do the job.
- Whip until light and fluffy about 3-4 minutes at medium speed. The mixture should be pale yellow in color.
Note: When opting for the butter in this recipe, make sure to pick a rich creamy butter like Minerva Dairy Sea Salt Butter. Since butter is what makes this custard layer so unbelievably tasty you want to use the best. Minerva Diary’s butter is a slow-churn, small-batch butter that has 85% butterfat, making it one of the smoothest, richest butters around.
- Remove the crust from the freezer or use the cooled crust from the oven.
- Spread the custard evenly over the graham cracker crust.
- The next layer are the sliced bananas. You want to use ripe but still firm bananas. Make sure to cover the custard completely.
- Cover the bananas with the drained crushed pineapple. Spread evenly. This layer actually helps to prevent the bananas from browning (at least for a while).
- Spread the Cool Whip over the crushed pineapple to create a smooth top.
- Time to decorate! Sprinkle on the chopped nuts. I like to use pecans but walnuts or even peanuts would be great.
- Next comes the fudge sauce drizzle. Make it easy by heating the fudge sauce slightly then pouring it into a small ziploc bag. Clip a small corner off and squeeze the chocolate over the topping.
- Finish it off with cherries placed so that each slice or serving will have its own cherry. You can also wait until just before serving and pipe on some additional whipped cream on each serving then place the cherry on top. It’s your sundae – go for it!
This summery dessert is super popular whenever and wherever it is served. It is great for family gatherings, holiday picnics like the 4th of July as well as summer BBQs. It does take a little planning as it should set in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours but is even better when made the day before. So indulge yourself this summer with this easy No Bake Banana Split Layer Cake. Enjoy!
More delicious summer desserts
Fresh Fruit Tart - brings all the summer flavors to the table. An almond shortbread crust holds a layer of creamy lemon cheesecake filling topped with your favorite fruits of the summer season.
No Bake Mocha Cheesecake Minis - are small but decadent. Oreo crumbs are layered with mocha cheesecake then topped with whipped cream and an espresso bean to give you a gourmet dessert that only takes 20 minutes.
Frozen Raspberry Dessert from Kitchen Gidget is a cool and creamy dessert filled with ice cream, raspberries, fudge, and whipped cream.
Creamy Raspberry Lemonade Popsicles - are an easy-to-make summer treat. Just 3 ingredients, yogurt, lemonade, and raspberries, is all it takes for a refreshing healthy snack on a hot day.
Banana Split Cake
Graham Cracker Crust
- 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
- 4 Tablespoons sugar
- 6 Tablespoons Minerva Dairy unsalted butter melted
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
- 1 cup Minerva Dairy sea salt butter, room temperature
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 4-5 ripe bananas sliced
- 1 can (20-oz) crushed pineapple, drained or up to 3 8-oz cans, drained
- 10 oz Cool Whip
- Chopped nuts
- Maraschino cherries drained
- Chocolate fudge sauce
- Butter the bottom of a 13”x9”x2” pan.
Graham Cracker Crust
- Prepare graham cracker crust by mixing all 4 ingredients together.
- Gently press the crumbs into the bottom of prepared pan.
- Freeze for 10-15 minutes or bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees then let cool completely on wire rack. This baking process will help keep the crust crispy.
- While crust is chilling or baking, prepare the filling.
- Combine all ingredients for filling and beat for 3-4 minutes at medium speed. When the mixture appears light and fluffy and is pale yellow in color it is done.
- Pour into chilled or cooled crust.
- Layer sliced bananas on top of filling.
- Spread drained crushed pineapple on top of bananas.
- Top with Cool Whip, spreading evenly to edges.
- Decorate with a sprinkling of nuts then drizzle with fudge sauce and top with some cherries.
- Refrigerate for at least 4 hours but it is best when made the day before and chilled overnight.