Hummingbird Cake Recipe

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Hummingbird Cake Recipe Intro Image

A delicious spicy and fruity cake that originated in Jamaica and which found a home in the Southern states of America.

I discovered it watching Jamie Oliver’s Comfort food series on TV and immediately thought I want a slice of that!

It is a very versatile cake that you can pretty much customise to your liking. Personally, I swap the vegetable oil for light olive oil and added mango, cardamom, ginger and molasses, to decrease the sugar content, making it less sweet but more fruity and spicy. The result is an amazingly moist sponge full of flavour and a light frosting that is layered between the two sponges and covers the top only. Of course, for a more indulgent treat you can cover the whole cake with frosting! 

The list of ingredients may seem long but the method is pretty simple, so don’t hesitate give it a try.

You will not be disappointed!

Hummingbird Cake Recipe Ingredients Image


For the Sponge:

350g of self raising flour or (325g of plain flour with 25g baking powder)
1 teaspoon of baking soda
A pinch of salt
1 x teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of cardamom pods seeds extracted and crushed
1 teaspoon of ground ginger
150g of dark Muscavado sugar
60g of dark brown soft sugar
1tbs of blackstrap Molasses
3 large nicely ripen bananas
250g can of crushed pineapple juice drained or freshly cut pineapple
½ a ripe juicy mango
250 ml of light olive oil (original recipe uses vegetable oil)
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
2 large eggs
100g of Pecan nuts freshly roasted


For the frosting:

120g of icing sugar
45g of butter at room temperature (55g if frosting the whole cake)
200g of full fat cream cheese (280g if frosting the whole cake)
1/2 a teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of rose water or orange blossom water (optional)
½ teaspoon of following, of ground Cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger


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Start with the frosting.

In a bowl combine the cream cheese and butter till smooth, then add the spices and rose/orange blossom water (if using) and finally the sieved icing sugar and whisk well. Put it in the fridge to cool until needed.

For the sponge, in a large bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt, sugars and spices. If there are any sugar lumps, work the mixture between your fingers until they dissolve.

In a blender or food processor put all the fruits along with the Blackstrap Molasses and vanilla extract. Blend till you reach a smooth consistency. Remove from blender and in a bowl combine the obtained mixture with the oil and the eggs. Now combine the wet and dry ingredients adding half of the roasted pecan nuts finely chopped to the batter.

Divide the cake batter in two and bake at 180c for about 30min or until you can plunge a thin knife and it comes up clean.

Wait till cool and start building the cake. Layer a generous amount of half of the frosting between the cakes and cover the top with the other half. To finish it off sprinkle the top of the cake with the rest of the roasted and roughly chopped pecans.

Hummingbird Cake Recipe Closing Image


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