Recently, my sweet friend Ashton moved her little family into their own home! As a non-home owner myself, I can attest that this is VERY mature and responsible of her! ‘Mortgage’, ‘HOA’ and ‘APR’ are words I do not know of yet and want to shut my eyes and cover my ears and revert back to childhood by screaming songs from Barney when I hear them.
However, I DO enjoy shopping for home goods like vases, lampshades, and general cluttery knick-knacks for my non-existent home. So I totally know what Ashton is going through with the whole ‘new-home-wanting-to-decorate-everything-in-Target-and-Z-Gallerie’ kinda thing. I get it.
And despite not owning a home myself, I HAVE moved homes which, I can say, sucks majorly. You don’t realize how much crap you have until you have to somehow Tetris-status it into eleventy-seven thousand boxes. And it isn’t as simple as throwing every book you own in a single box and calling it a day.
But when it’s all said and done, when you’re all unpacked, settled in and ready to make memories, it’s a rewarding feeling and definitely cause for celebration. So when some of my bloggy friends suggested we throw Ashton a virtual housewarming party, I was immediately on board. Moving definitely requires extra calories for endurance and stamina .. it’s a fact.
And while I may be over 3,000 miles away from Ashton’s house, I know she can still appreciate a tasty poke cake when she sees one–after all, she’s basically the queen of poke cakes! From peanut butter cup to red velvet, rainbow to carrot, she’s got them all covered .. and has me brainstorming inventive poke cake ideas constantly.
Aaaaaand since we’re celebrating her new home AND because summer is already approaching (I wore shorts all of last week .. ugh), I thought I’d make a poke cake for Ashton in a fun, summery flavor — Banana Split! You’ll be amazed just how similar this tastes to a frosty banana split sundae. It’s delicious!
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup oil
- 3 eggs
- About 1 cup mashed banana (I used two large jars of banana baby food--works in a pinch!)
- 1 small box sugar free/fat free instant banana cream pudding mix
- ½ of a 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 small jar strawberry sundae sauce (the chunky preserves-kind)
- 1 tub (8oz) Cool Whip Free, thawed
- About ¼ cup chopped sundae peanuts
- About ⅓ cup miniature chocolate chips
- About ⅓ cup rainbow sprinkles
- Maraschino cherries
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Liberally grease a 13x9 inch baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat together the cake mix, water, oil, eggs, and bananas until blended and smooth. Beat in the box of banana pudding to combine. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake until set, or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20-25 minutes. Cool completely.
- Once cooled, poke a bunch of holes (approx. 20 or so) with the wooden handle of a spoon on the cake. Evenly drizzle the half can of scmilk over the holes, trying to fill them as best as possible.
- Spread the strawberry sundae sauce on top of the cake in an even layer; top with the Cool Whip. Sprinkle the Cool Whip with the peanuts, mini chocolate chips and rainbow sprinkles. Allow the cake to set in the fridge for up to 4 hours, but preferably overnight. Before cutting into squares, garnish with drained maraschino cherries and serve! Store leftovers airtight in the fridge.
This banana cake is out. of. this. world! It’s SO moist and dense — definitely not a light and airy cake! — and tastes identical to a creamy, dreamy banana split sundae. If you prefer your sundaes extra chocolate-y, feel free to use hot fudge instead of the sweetened condensed milk, or increase the amount of chocolate chips on top! However, I found the balance of banana, strawberry, whipped cream, peanuts, chocolate and cherries to be perfect… exactly how a banana split should taste!
Wanna know the best part about a party? The other food guests bring!
Julianne at Beyond Frosting – Pound cake with Champagne Glaze
Kate at Food Babbles – Raspberry Lemon Coffee Cake
Anna at Crunchy Creamy Sweet – Glazed Vanilla Donut Muffins
Loretta at A Finn in the Kitchen – Caramelized Almond Nougat Mousse Ice-cream
Joanne at Fifteen Spatulas – Cinnamon Crumb Coffee Cake
Ashley at Kitchen Meets Girl – Blueberry Muffins
Amber at Bluebonnets and Brownies – Lemon Drop Cookies
Dorothy at Crazy for Crust – Reese’s Fudge
Joan at Chocolate Chocolate and more – Broccoli and Cheddar Cheese Quiche
Roxana at Roxana’s Home Baking – Banana Sheet Cake
Julie at White Lights on Wednesday – Mocha Cupcake Milkshake
Tanya at Lemons for Lulu – Lemon Muffins
Natasha at The Cake Merchant – Nutella Layer Cake
Again, welcome home Ashton!