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Spiced Banana Upside Down Cake

Spiced Banana Upside Down Cake – Bolo de Banana

Bolo de Banana - aka Spiced Banana Upside Down Cake, with a Brazilian twist.

Course Dessert
Cuisine Brazilian, International
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 1 x 23cm – 9 inch round cake pan with 7.5 cm – 3 inch sides


Cake Batter

  • 195 gms – 1 ½ cups flour sifted
  • 2 tsp baking powder sifted
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 113 gms – ½ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 200 gms – 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature separated
  • 120 ml – ½ cup whole milk
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar


  • 55 gms – 4 tbsp unsalted butter cut in small pieces
  • 160 gms – ¾ cup dark brown sugar
  • ½ tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
  • A dash of ground cloves pinch
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large ripe but firm bananas peeled, strings removed, sliced diagonally – 0.6 cm or 1/4 inch thick


Cake Batter

  1. Grease a 23 cm (9 inch) round cake pan with 7.5 cm (3 inch) sides with butter or a non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.
  3. With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl).
  4. Add the vanilla extract and mix well.
  5. Then, beat in the egg yolks, one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl.
  6. Add the flour mixture, alternating with the milk.
  7. In a separate clean and dry bowl, whisk the egg whites at low speed until frothy. Add the cream of tartar. Then, beat at medium speed, increasing the speed gradually to high until the whites form a firm peak.
  8. Gently fold the egg whites with a large rubber spatula into the cake batter.


  1. Slice the bananas and keep them aside.
  2. Put the butter, brown sugar and spices in a small pot and stir over medium heat until the butter melts and the sugar has dissolved.
  3. Without stirring, continue cooking for a few more minutes or until bubbles just start to form around the outside edges of the mixture
  4. Remove from heat, add the vanilla extract and stir.
  5. Pour the caramel into the greased cake pan and evenly arrange the sliced bananas on top of it.
  6. Now pour the cake batter on top of the caramel and bananas. Smooth the top.
  7. Bake the cake in a pre heated oven at 180º C – 350º F for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
  8. Remove the cake from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool for about 10 minutes.
  9. Run a metallic icing spatula or a sharp knife around the edge of the pan. Invert the cake onto a serving plate and serve it warm by itself or with vanilla ice cream or a dollop of cream on the top.