Chocolate Chip Banana Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting

It's almost Christmas!!!  The most wonderful time of the year, filled with family, friends, delicious food, and cheery music.  Wasn't that a wonderfully cliché sentence?  Yes, but we hope it's true.  I am fortunate enough to say that it is for me.  I love all my family, I love Christmas music (I can't always vouch for it all being "good" music, but it lifts your spirit and you can mindlessly sing along while wearing a Santa hat and elf socks without anyone thinking twice), and we have an abundance of delicious food.  So much food. 

What is one to do when they have been indundated with rich holiday food?  Take a break?  No fun.  Stand by the vegetable tray all night?  Nah, I hear the conversation can get a little heated with those peppers.  Chew gum?  No, you need a compromise.  Something that will satisfy, but not put you over like your great-aunt's cousin-once-removed on your dad's side triple chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream, ganache, whipped cream, sprinkles, drizzled with caramel and bonbons on top.  Something more like a fruit based cake.  Banana.  With chocolate chips, because it is Christmas, and peanut butter because that makes the whole thing.  The bow on top of the present.  The icing on the cake...so very literally. 

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake with Peanut Butter Frosting

Makes 12-16 servings

Ingredients:

For the Cake

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt or sour cream
  • 4 overripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips

For the Peanut Butter Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks, 8 oz), room temperature
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 - 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar

Directions:

Oven 350 Fahrenheit.  Grease and flour two 8 or 9 inch round cake pans.

Make the Cake

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.  Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together oil and sugars.  Add vanilla and eggs; beat well.

Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the egg mixture.  Mix in yogurt.  Add another third of flour mixture.  Add bananas.  Add final third of flour mixture.  Fold in chocolate chips.

Pour and divide batter evenly between the two prepared pans. 

Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.   Allow to cool for about 10 minutes in the pans before flipping out onto cooling racks to cool completely. 

Make the Frosting

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter and peanut butter together until light and fluffy.  Add vanilla and salt.  Add 2 cups of powdered sugar; add more as needed until frosting is thick enough to spread. 

Assembly

Center one cake layer upside down on a cake stand or plate.  Frost this layer within 1/4 inch of edge of cake. 

Place second layer on top, and frost cake with remaining frosting.  Sprinkle with additional chocolate chips, if desired. 

Jenny's Notes:

I prefer to use organic yogurt instead of sour cream in recipes simply because it's healthier.  I rarely have plain yogurt on hand, so I use vanilla yogurt and reduce the sugar in the recipe by 1/3-1/2 cup, depending on the amount of yogurt called for.  Feel free to use whatever you have on hand!