This super moist banana cupcakes recipe will make you go, well, bananas! For the best banana flavor, this easy banana cupcakes recipe uses finely mashed, overly ripe bananas. No banana chunks here, just delicious banana flavor in every bite. 

If you love banana bread, you’ll love these cupcakes, which are essentially banana bread cupcakes. You’ll also love my Chocolate Chip Banana Bread and Cinnamon Banana Bread.

Banana Cupcakes topped with cream cheese frosting and a banana slice, on a brown plate.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Simple banana cupcakes recipe. This banana cupcake recipe requires minimal effort for maximum yumminess. Whisk together the dry ingredients, cream together the wet ingredients, and then combine everything. It couldn’t be easier!
  • Great way to use up old bananas. Sometimes I buy bananas thinking my family will eat them throughout the week. Then the end of the week comes, no one has eaten them, and I’m left with several brown bananas…which is perfect for this recipe, which uses over-ripened bananas.
  • Moist banana cupcakes. I’ve made these banana cupcakes with buttermilk, which adds moisture and flavor and helps the cupcakes rise for fluffy banana cupcakes, making this the best banana cupcakes recipe!

Ingredient Notes

  • Warm spices: This recipe for banana cupcakes includes just a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg that add wonderful flavor and spice. 
  • Bananas: As I’ve stated, this recipe uses OVERLY ripe bananas. So feel free to let bananas sit on your counter for a while! Overly ripe bananas are sweeter and easier to mash into a smooth paste – perfect for these cupcakes.
  • Unsalted butter: Butter adds flavor and richness for delicious banana cupcakes. 
  • Buttermilk: Buttermilk helps these cupcakes have a beautiful tender texture by adding moisture and fat. The acid in buttermilk also reacts with baking soda to help these cupcakes rise. 
  • Eggs: Eggs are an important ingredient in baked goods as they help bind things together to create structure. They also add moisture. This recipe uses one whole egg and one egg yolk.
  • Cream cheese: I doubled a batch of my Small Batch Cream Cheese Frosting to make banana cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. If cream cheese isn’t your thing, my Brown Butter Buttercream would be scrumptious on these!
Banana Cupcakes ingredients on a white marble background: ripe bananas, dry ingredients, eggs, sugar, butter, buttermilk, vanilla, and walnuts.

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Prep oven and muffin tin. Preheat your oven to 350℉. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside. 
  2. Combine dry ingredients. In a medium bowl, whisk together 1½ cups all-purpose flour, ¾ teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¾ teaspoon cinnamon, and ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg. Set bowl aside.
  3. Cream butter and sugars. In a large bowl with an electric hand mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together 6 tablespoons softened unsalted butter with ⅔ cup brown sugar and ¼ cup granulated sugar. 
  4. Add mashed bananas, eggs, and vanilla. Mash roughly 2-3 extra ripe bananas in a separate bowl. You need ¾ cup of finely mashed bananas. Add mashed bananas to the butter-sugar mixture and mix until combined before adding one whole egg, one egg yolk, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Mix until combined. 
  5. Alternate adding flour mixture and buttermilk. Add half of the dry ingredients and mix on low. Stream in a ¾ cup of buttermilk. Once the buttermilk has been completely added, add the rest of the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined – don’t overmix!
  6. Fill muffin tins. Distribute batter among muffin tins, filling the cups of your cupcake tin only ¾ full. This batter makes 15 cupcakes. 
  7. Bake. Bake muffins for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean or with a few crumbs clinging to it – no wet batter. Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack to cool. For best results, allow cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.
Four images showing how to make banana cupcake batter in a glass bowl, and then the batter is in cupcake liners, then baked.
  1. Make cream cheese frosting. In a large bowl, beat together ½ cup room temperature butter, 2½ cups powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and ¼ teaspoon salt. Scrape down the sides of your bowl as needed. Once those ingredients are combined, add 10 oz chilled cream cheese in 2 oz blocks, one at a time. After all the cream cheese has been added, continue to mix for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Frost cupcakes and enjoy. Frost the cooled cupcakes. If desired, you can add chopped walnuts or sliced fresh bananas on top of the tangy cream cheese frosting.
A banana cupcake topped with white cream cheese frosting with a fresh banana slice on top, the cupcake is on a brown plate.

Recipe Tips

For banana chocolate chip cupcakes, add ½-¾ cup of chocolate chips to the cupcake batter at the end. Be careful not to overmix the batter. You can also add ½-¾ cup of chopped nuts. 

I mash my bananas with a fork, but you can also make quick work of mashing bananas using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or an electric hand mixer. Just be careful, it could get messy!

Use frosting for banana cupcakes to make some different flavor combinations. Banana cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting would be delicious, or make these into peanut butter banana cupcakes with my Peanut Butter Frosting

If you don’t want to wait for bananas to ripen for this recipe, you can speed up the process by enclosing them in a brown paper bag. This will trap the ethylene gas that causes fruit to ripen. Ripe apples or avocados stored in the same bag can also help bananas ripen more quickly. 

If you don’t have buttermilk, add 1½  teaspoons of white vinegar or lemon juice to a cup measure, then fill with milk to make ¾ of a cup. Let stand for at least five minutes, stir, and use as directed in this recipe.

Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing

Make Ahead: Unfrosted cupcakes can be baked a day in advance and stored in an airtight container at room temperature, then frosted before serving. Otherwise, make and frost cupcakes up to a day in advance and store them in an airtight container in the fridge. Frosting can be made in advance and stored in the fridge for up to a week.

Storing: If you used the cream cheese frosting for these banana cupcakes, you’ll want to store them in an airtight container in the fridge so the frosting doesn’t spoil. In the fridge, frosted cupcakes will stay good for up to a week. If you use a different frosting, you can store these cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days. 

Freezing: You can freeze leftover banana cupcakes with or without frosting. First, lay them flat on a cookie sheet and put them in the freezer for a couple of hours. Once hard, transfer them to a zip-top bag or other airtight container and store them in the freezer for up to two months.

For more information on storing and freezing cakes, including how to freeze cake layers, buttercream, and decorated cakes, check out my How to Store and Freeze Cakes guide!

A Banana Cupcake sliced in half, showing how moist the banana cupcake is, and topped with a cream cheese frosting.

Recipe FAQs

Can I use frozen bananas for this recipe?

Yes, but remember we’re looking for overripe bananas. Frozen bananas from the store are typically frozen before they are overripe. If you do use frozen bananas, let them thaw completely and drain as much excess moisture as possible before adding them to the recipe.

Can you freeze banana cupcakes?

Yes! You can freeze these cupcakes frosted or unfrosted. Lay cupcakes on a cookie sheet and freeze for a couple of hours, or until solid, then transfer to a zip-top bag or other airtight container and freeze for up to two months. Find more tips in my How to Store and Freeze Cakes guide.

What is the best frosting for banana cupcakes?

Banana cupcakes with cream cheese frosting are a classic pairing, and that’s what I used in this recipe. However, my Brown Butter Buttercream, Chocolate Buttercream Frosting, and Peanut Butter Frosting would all be super scrumptious, too!

What if I don’t have buttermilk?

You can make your own buttermilk by adding 1½ teaspoons of white vinegar or lemon juice to your cup measure, then adding enough milk to make ¾ of a cup. Let stand for five minutes, stir, and use. Or, you can thin out sour cream or Greek yogurt and use that instead.

Banana Cupcakes on a brown plate against a dark brown background, with some of the cupcakes topped with chopped walnuts.

More Banana Recipes

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Banana Cupcakes topped with cream cheese frosting and a banana slice, on a brown plate.
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5 from 1 vote

Banana Cupcakes Recipe

Moist banana cupcakes are topped with a delicious cream cheese frosting and chopped walnuts.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 38 minutes
Servings: 15 cupcakes


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter - softened to room temperature
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar - packed
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup mashed bananas - about 2-3 overly ripe bananas
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • chopped walnuts - for topping, if desired

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter - softened to room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar - can add more (up to about 3 1/2 cups depending on how sweet you like it).
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 10 oz block of cream cheese - chilled and cut into approximately 2 oz chunks)


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners and set aside. 
  • Make the cupcakes: In a medium bowl whisk the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. 
  • In a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars on medium speed for 2-3 minutes. The mixture should cream together. 
  • Beat in the bananas until combined. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and mix until combined. 
  • Add half of the dry ingredients and turn the mixer to low. Stream in the buttermilk. Add the remaining dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Do not overmix. 
  • Portion the batter into the muffin tin, filling each cavity ¾ full. Will make 15 cupcakes. 
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs but no wet batter. Remove and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool, frost each cupcake with cream cheese frosting and sprinkle chopped walnuts overtop (optional).
  • Make the Cream cheese frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment mix the butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt on low speed until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. With the mixer on, add the cream cheese, 2 oz at a time. Once all cream cheese has been added continue mixing for 2-3 minutes. Frost the cooled cupcakes.


If you use cream cheese frosting, store leftover cupcakes in the fridge in an airtight container for up to a week. 
Unfrosted cupcakes, or cupcakes frosted with a different frosting, can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for 3-4 days. 
If you don’t have buttermilk, you can thin out sour cream or Greek yogurt with a little water, or make your own by adding 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of white vinegar or lemon juice to a measuring cup and adding milk until it makes a 3/4 cup. Let stand for five minutes, stir, and use. 


Calories: 362kcal (18%)Carbohydrates: 47g (16%)Protein: 4g (8%)Fat: 18g (28%)Saturated Fat: 11g (55%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.4gCholesterol: 73mg (24%)Sodium: 196mg (8%)Potassium: 139mg (4%)Fiber: 1g (4%)Sugar: 35g (39%)Vitamin A: 645IU (13%)Vitamin C: 1mg (1%)Calcium: 59mg (6%)Iron: 1mg (6%)
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
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