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Easy Banana Pudding Poke Cake Recipe

This Easy Banana Pudding Poke Cake Recipe is deliciously light and sweet with fresh banana slices, moist cake, and creamy pudding. The perfect make-ahead dessert for weeknights and holidays.

a slice of easy banana pudding poke cake recipe on a plate with a fork, banana, cookies, and a 9x13" pan of cake in the background

Best creamy banana cake

Poke cakes are easy and fun desserts to enjoy. This Banana Pudding Poke Cake is such a simple and delicious treat that tastes just like the classic pudding but with cake. Only a few ingredients are needed like cake mix, bananas, pudding, and Cool Whip. And it’s a make-ahead dessert that is ready to enjoy for the holidays, potlucks, or weeknights.

assembled banana pudding poke cake in a pan with cookies and a banana on the side

Ingredients

  • Yellow cake mix– the sweet vanilla base is so tasty with banana pudding on top. The yellow cake mix has a nice appearance with bananas but the white cake mix would taste the same. Just include the egg yolks for a more yellow appearance.
  • Banana pudding and vanilla pudding– this combination has the perfect flavor combination that compliments each other. It helps keep the banana flavor from being too strong and overpowering. But it can easily be changed up with banana-banana, banana-chocolate, or banana-cheesecake. Be sure it is Instant Pudding and not cook and serve.
  • Vanilla wafers– these cookies add a sweet little crunch to the cake.
  • Bananas
  • Milk
  • Cool Whip– switch it up with homemade whipped cream if you prefer.

Step-by-step instructions

This poke cake is easy to make. All you have to do is:

  1. Make the cake and poke holes- start by making the cake according to the directions on the box. Mine included needing oil, eggs, and water for a 9×13″ pan. Allow the cake to cool completely. Then take the handle of a wooden spoon or a small dowel rod and poke holes all over the cake.
  2. Make the pudding– add milk, banana pudding, and vanilla pudding to a large-sized bowl. Beat with a hand mixer just until the pudding starts to thicken. Don’t let it thicken too much like traditional pudding. It still needs to be a bit runny. Immediately pour the pudding over the top of the cake and gently smooth it with the back of a spoon or spatula to help the pudding drip into the holes.
  3. Let it set– once the pudding is completely over the top of the cake, cover it tightly and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours. This will help the pudding soak into the cake and make it even moister.
  4. Add banana, Cool Whip, and toppings– after it has set, remove from the refrigerator and slice 3 bananas over the cake to evenly cover. Then add a layer of Cool Whip on top. Right before serving, crush vanilla wafers and sprinkle them over the top of the cake. Serve and enjoy!

Storage options

Banana poke cake can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-5 days after it is made. Cover it tightly with plastic wrap or a lid to keep the air out. A little reminder, the bananas will start to brown and the vanilla wafers do become softer but it will still taste just as good!

close up of a slice of banana pudding poke cake on a plate

Frequently asked questions

Why does poke cake need to be refrigerated?

A poke cake is filled with pudding and topped with whipped cream. These dairy products need to be refrigerated to safely eat.

How do I prevent the bananas from becoming brown?

Lightly toss banana slices with lemon juice to help reduce browning.

Can I use cook-and-serve pudding for poke cake?

Instant pudding is necessary so that the pudding will set up properly in the cake.

a slide of cake on the plate, cake in the pan, a fork on the side, and a banana and cookies on the table

More delicious dessert recipes

a slice of easy banana pudding poke cake recipe on a plate with a fork, banana, cookies, and a 9x13" pan of cake in the background

Easy Banana Pudding Poke Cake Recipe

This Easy Banana Pudding Poke Cake Recipe is deliciously light and tasty with fresh banana slices, moist cake, and creamy pudding. The perfect make-ahead dessert for weeknights and holidays.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12
Calories 455 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 15.25 ounce box of yellow cake mix plus ingredients needed for cake including eggs, oil, and water
  • 3.4 ounce instant banana pudding mix
  • 3.4 ounce instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 4 cups cold milk
  • 3 bananas sliced
  • 8 ounces Cool Whip thawed
  • 1 cup crushed vanilla wafers

Instructions
 

  • Make the cake according to the directions on the box for a 9×13" pan. Allow the cake to cool completely. Then take the handle of a wooden spoon or a small dowel rod and poke holes all over the cake. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, add milk, banana pudding, and vanilla pudding. Beat with a hand mixer just until the pudding starts to thicken. Do not let it thicken too much like traditional pudding. It still needs to be a bit runny. Immediately pour the pudding over the top of the cake and gently smooth it with the back of a spoon or spatula to help the pudding drip into the holes. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.
  • Remove and top the cake evenly with sliced bananas then cover with Cool Whip. Right before serving, sprinkle the crushed vanilla wafers over the top. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

Tips:
  • Store leftovers in the refrigerator for 3-5 days after it is made. Cover it tightly with plastic wrap or a lid to keep the air out. Keep in mind, the bananas will start to brown and the vanilla wafers do become softer but it will still taste delicious!
  • This can be made ahead of time up to 24 hours. Just make the cake, add the pudding, cover and store. When ready to serve, add the bananas, Cool Whip, and vanilla wafers.
  • The pudding flavors can be switched with 2 banana, cheesecake, or chocolate for a different variety.
*Nutritional values and cook times vary due to differences in appliance temperatures and product selection.

Nutrition

Serving: 12gCalories: 455kcalCarbohydrates: 63gProtein: 6gFat: 20gSodium: 555mgSugar: 43g
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Nutrition Facts
Easy Banana Pudding Poke Cake Recipe
Serving Size
 
12 g
Amount per Serving
Calories
455
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
20
g
31
%
Sodium
 
555
mg
24
%
Carbohydrates
 
63
g
21
%
Sugar
 
43
g
48
%
Protein
 
6
g
12
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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