No-Bake Banana Split Summer Cake

A classic banana split is hard to beat, but it certainly isn’t the easiest dessert to pull together for a crowd at your next summer dinner gathering. You likely don’t have a plethora of banana split boats on hand, and you’d have to spend a great deal of the party dicing bananas and scooping ice cream. A banana split cake could be the perfect compromise, but who wants to have the oven on for hours during the warmest season of the year?

Well, you won’t have to touch the oven to pull off Look’s no-bake banana split cake from recipe developer Jessica Morone. The no-bake cake will give you the nostalgic flare and taste of a banana split from your favorite creamery without ever having to turn on the oven. It’s cool and refreshing to serve on a warm day, with a balance of sweetness and fruitiness from ingredients like fresh bananas and strawberries. And should you need more convincing to try this dessert, it’s ideal to make ahead of time and is easily customizable for celebrations like birthday and holiday cookouts.

Customize your no-bake banana split cake with colorful sprinkles or extra fruit

Close-up of no-bake banana split cake

The base of this cake is a graham cracker crust, but recipe developer Jessica Morone says you can use ice cream cones instead to lean into the inspiration. Either way, press down the crust with a measuring cup or your hand so the other ingredients don’t seep through the bottom. For the filling, there’s actually no ice cream involved. Instead, you’ll combine cream cheese, Cool Whip, and a few other ingredients for light and sweet layers between the fruit. The most important step is to place it in the freezer for at least two hours so it has sufficient time to set before you cut and serve.

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As always, we’ve always got a few ways to customize any recipe. Can’t imagine a banana split cake without ice cream? Add instant banana or chocolate pudding mix or a splash of vanilla extract for similar flavors to the ice cream used in the classic sundae. Or switch up the fruit with a mixture of other berries or use fresh pineapple instead of the canned version on the ingredient list. You can also add some of the best ice cream toppings to finish it off like rainbow sprinkles for a birthday celebration, or red and white sprinkles for the festive summer holidays. And if you want more recipes that don’t require the oven, check out Look’s other no-bake dessert recipes like no-bake berry pudding and dark chocolate raspberry fudge.

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