Renee's Kitchen Adventures

Monday, June 1, 2015

Hummingbird Cupcakes

Have you ever had Hummingbird Cupcakes?  This twist on a classic southern treat is full of sweet bananas, pineapple, spices and pecans for a surprisingly easy to make, delicious-to-eat treat everyone will love. Traditionally, this recipe is served as a 2, 3 or 4 layer cake, but I thought it would make great  easy to transport, perfectly portioned cupcakes! 

Hummingbird Cupcakes | by Renee's Kitchen Adventures - Easy dessert recipe for delicious, fruity cupcakes!

When I was in New Orleans earlier this spring, I picked up a few cookbooks for myself.  I absolutely love bringing back recipes that represent the food culture of the area I visit when I travel.  (Can I get a high five from my other foodie fanatics out there?  haha ) One of the cookbooks I brought back from my latest trip to the Big Easy was Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott and the first cake recipe that caught my eye was the one for Hummingbird Cake.  

I have to admit, I have never had the pleasure of enjoying Hummingbird Cake before I made this recipe.  But really....what a shame, because Hummingbird Cake is so deliciously different from your ordinary cake!  Rich, moist and so easy to make.   It is sort of carrot cake like, minus the carrots, of course.  Since this time of year is full of "bring a dish sort of occasions" I thought it would be fun to make this cake into individual servings via the cupcake! 

Hummingbird Cupcakes | by Renee's Kitchen Adventures - Easy dessert recipe for delicious, fruity cupcakes!

The cupcakes above are frosted the traditional way, with cream cheese frosting, but they could be topped with something like Cool Whip® for a lighter option and still taste amazing! You can also leave the pecans out of the recipe, if you like, for a nut free treat. 

Cupcakes are a great way to make cake that travels well and is easy to eat.  I have a large plastic container made specifically for cupcakes, that I purchased many years ago to make transporting easy, but prior to owning that, I used clothing shirt boxes that worked out just fine! 

If you've never had the pleasure of enjoying Hummingbird Cupcakes,  I hope you will give this recipe a try!  Even if you aren't an experienced baker, this is a good recipe to try because they are so easy to make.  They are something just a little different that will have people saying....Mmmmmm! 

Hummingbird Cupcakes | by Renee's Kitchen Adventures - Easy dessert recipe for delicious, fruity cupcakes!

Hummingbird Cupcakes

Renee P.
Published 06/01/2015
Hummingbird Cupcakes
Cupcakes full of sweet fruit and nuts, for an easy to transport, easy to eat, classic southern treat.


  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3 large eggs, slightly beaten
  • 3/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 - 8 oz. can of crushed pineapple, in juice, NOT drained
  • 2 cups mashed, ripe bananas
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • recipe for cream cheese frosting, if using


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line muffin tins with paper liners.
  2. In large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt and mix well with a fork to combine ingredients.
  3. Mix in the beaten eggs, oil, vanilla, pineapple and bananas. Hand mix with a wooden spoon until combined. Batter will be thick.
  4. Portion batter into prepared muffin tins, filling each cup about 2/3 to 3/4 the way full.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack and once cooled, frost as desired. I used a cream cheese frosting like this one HERE.
Yield: 30 cupcakes
Prep Time: 00 hrs. 10 mins.
Cook time: 00 hrs. 20 mins.
Total time: 30 mins.
Tags: cupcakes, cake, dessert, pineapple, banana, pecans, cream cheese

Adapted from Southern Cakes by Nancie McDermott

*This is an indulgent recipe and I will not be supplying nutrition information for it.

Renee's Notes:  I really loved the ease of preparation with this recipe.  I loved that I could do all the mixing by hand and not have to drag out or dirty my stand mixer or my electric mixer.  The cupcakes do have a bit of a muffin texture, rather than a cake-y texture and I think that's because they are so full of fruit.  But they are very delicious and really, for me, something totally different to serve.

On a side note, I cannot believe that is it June already.  Like most summers with teenage kids, this is shaping up to be another busy one.  I'm not complaining though.  I realize that this time is short and I need to try to enjoy every moment, before it becomes a memory!  :)

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  1. I have never tried humming bird cake or cupcakes.. I think I really missed a lot :D these cupcakes look so good!

    1. Oh I do hope you give them a try! They are very good! :)

  2. I love making a hummingbird cake but never made it into cupcakes. The pineapple and banana keep it so moist. Your cupcakes are so pretty.

    1. The fruit really does help keep them moist and I actually think they are better then next day vs the day you make them, which is great when you need to make something ahead of time.

  3. I've never tried Hummingbird Cake before, but I know I'd love it! Great idea to make cupcakes, Renee!

    1. I hope you give them a try sometime Sheena! :)

  4. Hi Renee, I'll give you a "high five!" I too love to find regional cookbooks when I travel. I've heard of this Southern Cake before but I've never made it. I may just have to try your recipe. Nice photos too. Btw, I love the shirt box idea for cupcake transport.

    1. Oh it's so nice that someone else does this with regional cookbooks!! I hope that you get a chance to make this cake. It's something a little different from the ordinary! Thanks for stopping by Candice!

  5. I've never tried Hummingbird Cake but I've always wanted to- I'll have to give these a try!


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