ngọt: Vietnamese banana cake recipe / banh chuối nướng

This recipe is all about the banana and is more ‘bread pudding’ than cake. Ideally eat this treat while still warm with maybe some whipped cream or vanilla ice-cream but it is still good once cooled. No matter what though: cut yourself some crusty edge pieces right out of the oven, tell everyone you are trimming off the ‘burnt bits for them because that is how much you care’ and then eat them all up!

banh chuối nướng / banana cake recipe

Vietnamese Banana Cake recipe / banh chuoi nuong

I have used frozen bananas (such an easy way to store them when overspending on counter), fresh and even dried (but not the chips).  For frozen slice them while still mostly frozen to avoid mush. For the bread, I have used bagels that were going stale mixed with regular white bread. The amount of bread does not have to be exact but close with an err towards a little more.


  • 6 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (unless your butter was salted and then omit)
  • 1 cup coconut milk ( you can freeze the remaining for the next time you make)
  • 2 cups milk, skim to whole is fine
  • 8 bananas, sliced lengthwise into strips 1/8 – 1/4 inch thick
  • 10 slices of white bread, about 12 ounces total after removing crusts
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup flour


  • Heat the oven to 375 F. Prep your loaf pans by greasing and lining with parchment paper. Recipe makes two large loafs but you can also bake in smaller loaf pans just shorten the baking time to 30-40 minutes. I prefer the smaller loafs for easier sharing and freezing.
  • Prepare the bread by removing the crusts if they are more touch or darker in color. chop into cubes about an inch around.
  • In a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the eggs and sugar well. I found the 1 1/2 cups of sugar to be almost too sweet. I think it depends on your taste and your bananas.
  • Melt the butter and stir it into the milk before pouring into the egg-sugar mixture.
  • Add the coconut milk and salt. Mix well. Add the flour. Mix
  • Add the bread and mix but no too much, you still want some chunks. If you have time and especially if some of the bread was more stale. Let the bread sit and soak up the batter.
  • Start layering in the banana slices and batter. Put a single layer of bananas the bottom of loaf pan. They do not have to cover every open bit of space.
  • Using a ladle or spoon, pour some batter over the banana slices. You don’t need to add a lot because there will be several layers of bananas. Keep repeating this until bananas and batter are gone. If you find that the last loaf was a little short on banana. No worries, just top off with batter. Each of the loaf pans should be filled up to within about 1 inch of the top. This does puff up when baking but sinks when cooling.  Also the edges will get pretty dark brown and are really tasty.
  • Bake in the oven for about an hour for full size loafs, less time for smaller loafs.
  • When done, run a knife around the edges, let it cool for a minute or so and then remove it from loaf pan to a cooling rack.
  • Enjoy! Ideally eat this treat while still warm with maybe some whipped cream or vanilla ice-cream but it is good at room temp or can be reheated.
  • Optional add-ins to batter: brandy or rum, nuts, cinnamon, raisins.
  • Recipe is adapted from Diana  My Tran’s book The Vietnamese Cookbook.

Some of my other banana recipes: Does too many bananas spoil the bunch?

Other Vietnamese Dessert Recipes:

Trio of bite sized vietnamese desserts: coffee jello, ginger beans and banana cake.

4 thoughts on “ngọt: Vietnamese banana cake recipe / banh chuối nướng

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