Hummingbird Cupcakes

Hummingbird cake is a wonderful southern dessert secret. So secret in fact, that even I had never heard of this dessert until about a year ago. We were at a neighborhood block party and enjoying the most wonderful food. Did I ever mention that one of the best things about living in an older townhouse community filled with senior citizens is that all my neighbors are incredible cooks? Anyway, I had made my way through the appetizers and sampled all the incredible dishes. My husband and I were a little late getting to the dessert table, and were only able to sample a very small piece of the beautiful homemade banana, pineapple and nut cake. I was so enthralled in conversation, I forgot to ask who had made the wonderful cake, and what it was called. The next day, many of the woman were still talking about the delightful hummingbird cake. That was its name! And what a cute name for such a delicious cake. I found that this cake recipe was published in 1978 in Southern Living, and is apparently is their most requested recipe. You can make this recipe as the traditional cake, but I opted for the ever popular cupcakes. This was another cupcake that I made for our Share our Strength Great American Bake Sale. Be careful not to over beat the batter. The original recipe call for pecans, but I had walnuts on hand, so I used those. Lightly roast your nuts before using for extra flavor. I paired the cake with an easy cream cheese frosting.

recipe photo

Hummingbird Cupcakes

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For the cupcakes:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 large eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 8 oz can crushed pineapple, undrained
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
2 cups chopped and mashed bananas, very ripe

For the frosting:
8 ounces cream cheese
2 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups powdered sugar


For the cupcakes:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together, and set aside.

Chop and mash bananas. Combine sugar and oil in stand mixer. Mix until well combined.

Add eggs one at a time until well-combined. Add flour and mix until just combined. Add vanilla extract, bananas and pineapple. Mix until just combined. Add nuts and mix just enough to incorporate.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the middle of the cupcake.

For the frosting:
Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Make sure cream cheese is at room temperature, or frosting will be lumpy.

Mix with a hand mixer on low until combined, then on high about 2 minutes until smooth and creamy.

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*Nutritional Information is not guaranteed for 100% accuracy.

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  18 Responses to “Hummingbird Cupcakes”

  1. anabela pereira — April 23, 2010 @ 6:08 pm

    Yummmm so good.

  2. Chef Dennis — April 23, 2010 @ 6:20 pm

    looks like a sure winner here…..its strange being a southern boy I have never sampled hummingbird cake….I guess with my grandmother being Mexican that could be…
    Your recipe seems easy enough it will be a nice addition to our cupcake line!! I love your presentation as well!!
    .-= Chef Dennis´s last blog ..Bread Pudding & Pesto Hummus =-.

  3. 5 Star Foodie — April 23, 2010 @ 6:52 pm

    I love the idea of hummingbird cupcakes, they look so good!
    .-= 5 Star Foodie´s last blog ..Vanilla Bean Muffins with Four Sugar Toppings and Morel Giveaway on MarxFoods =-.

  4. Sasha — April 23, 2010 @ 8:38 pm

    These look and sound amazing. Never heard of hummingbird cake but the hummingbird cupcakes sound and look quite lovely. I love making cupcakes so I really enjoyed this post
    .-= Sasha´s last blog ..Eric’s Kitchen in Jersey City: Belgian Style Mussels =-.

  5. Miri — April 24, 2010 @ 7:17 am

    sounds lovely! what size pan (or how many cupcakes) should I use?

    • Angie — April 24, 2010 @ 9:35 am

      I got 30 cupcakes out of this batter. You can also do 3 9 inch cake pans.

  6. Joanne — April 24, 2010 @ 7:28 am

    I saw the Paula Deen hummingbird cake recipe not so long ago and new I HAD to make it. It definitely warrants the right occasion though because it’s not the kind of thing I should really make to just sit around my apartment…my thighs would NOT be happy. In cupcake form though? Perfect. These look just delicious.

  7. Jessy — April 24, 2010 @ 10:43 am

    What a delightful name! The recipe looks so easy and delicious too. I grew up in the south and never heard of such a beautiful creation.

    My daughter would love it if I told her we were going to have hummingbird cakes and tea!

  8. grace — April 24, 2010 @ 4:20 pm

    i love hummingbird cake! it’s such a fun and delightful combo of components, and the rich frosting just makes all the difference. lovely work!

  9. tigerfish — April 25, 2010 @ 9:17 am

    Hummingbird…such a lovely name 🙂

  10. Drick — April 25, 2010 @ 9:49 am

    this has been around for a long time, my grandmother’s friends made it back home, mid-Alabama … always like to see old recipes come to life, they are to me truly so meaningful and seem to taste so much better just knowing such recipes are time tested – your cupcake idea is just great
    .-= Drick´s last blog ..Hot Fudge Pie =-.

  11. Juliana — April 26, 2010 @ 3:46 pm

    Oh ! Angie, what a beautiful cupcake…love the pineapple in it…sounds and look so refreshing…great pictures!

  12. Heavenly Housewife — April 27, 2010 @ 8:09 am

    How wonderful! These beauties look like little gems. I hope you saved one for me.
    *kisses* HH

  13. The Duo Dishes — April 27, 2010 @ 7:42 pm

    We made this cake for a friend’s going away party, and everyone loved it! Perfect as cupcakes too.
    .-= The Duo Dishes´s last blog ..Breakfast is Served =-.

  14. Brie — May 1, 2010 @ 10:36 pm

    so cute! your hummingbird cupcakes look awesome! i usually get my fix at a little deli in town that makes the best sandwiches and hummingbird cake! thanks for sharing the recipe!
    .-= Brie´s last blog ..Flatbread Pizzas =-.

  15. Katie — August 21, 2010 @ 5:49 pm

    I loved stumbling upon your Hummingbird Cupcake recipe! My hubby & I just got married 2 weeks ago & just 2 days after our wedding had this hummingbird cake in the keys – truly decadent! (The one we tried also added a few more ingredients to the original recipe – dates and fresh strawberries …divine) We have been talking of it since but as one commenter said…I couldn’t have this cake around in the house as it is just irresistible. Your cupcake version is one I will try – sounds perfect…hopefully, we will have enough self control to freeze leftovers!

  16. Cynthia — August 23, 2010 @ 10:55 pm

    I just finished putting my batch of this recipe in the oven and the one major (or minor, depends who you’re asking) flaw is that your recipe does not mention when to add the VANILLA EXTRACT. Fortunately, i managed to add a teaspoon to the remaining batter so my 2nd batch will have the vanilla. I have yet to taste the difference and hope it’s not too drastic as I’m competing in a Cupcake Wars for work! Thanx, and I hope others will notice the mistake 🙂

  17. Maria Alberta — April 11, 2013 @ 8:25 pm

    Love is all you need

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