We turned the ultimate ice cream dessert into an icebox cake that's just as sweet.

Anna Theoktisto

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Credit: Photographer Victor Protasio, Food Stylist Ali Ramee, Prop Stylist Heather Chadduck

Recipe Summary

active:
20 mins
chill:
2 hrs
total:
2 hrs 20 mins
Servings:
16
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Make a banana split-loving gal or guy's day with this no-bake icebox cake. Our fun and festive Banana Split Cake has an easy press-in graham cracker crust, layers of tangy cream cheese frosting, and all the classic sundae toppings: crushed pineapple, chopped toasted pecans, maraschino cherries, fudge sauce, sprinkles, and sliced bananas, of course. Be sure to freeze the graham cracker crust before you add the cream cheese layer—a solid base will help the other layers to stay put. The cake takes just 20 minutes to assemble, but it needs at least two hours in the refrigerator to chill. While it might be hard to wait, it's worth being patient. This chill time gives the layers time to set, which makes the cake much easier to slice, and gives makes the cream cheese frosting a little firmer, for an ice cream-like texture. You can decorate this Banana Split Cake however you like, but we like a generous drizzle of hot fudge topping, either homemade or jarred. You may need to microwave the sauce so that the consistency is thin enough to drizzle. (Hershey's Chocolate Syrup is a good stand-in if you don't have fudge sauce.) Place the sauce in a ziplock plastic bag and snip off one corner to make a "piping" bag. Add the candy sprinkles and maraschino cherries to the top just before serving so that the colors won't "bleed" into the topping.

Ingredients

Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Coat a 13- x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Stir together graham cracker crumbs and melted butter in a medium bowl until combined. Firmly press graham cracker mixture onto bottom of prepared baking dish. Freeze, uncovered, while you prepare filling.

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  • Beat cream cheese and room temperature butter in a medium bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add vanilla and 2 cups of the powdered sugar, and beat on medium speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Remove baking dish from freezer, and spoon cream cheese mixture over graham cracker mixture, smoothing with a spatula.

  • Spoon drained crushed pineapple over cream cheese mixture, and top with sliced bananas. Beat heavy cream and remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Spoon 3 1/2 cups of the whipped cream over bananas, spreading into even layer. Sprinkle with pecans, and drizzle with hot fudge topping.

  • Spoon remaining 1/2 cup whipped cream into a piping bag fitted with a star tip, and pipe small rosettes over top of cake. Top each rosette with a maraschino cherry. Refrigerate, uncovered, until layers are set, about 2 hours. Garnish with sprinkles just before serving.

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