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How to Celebrate Banana Split Day, the Tasty Way

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How to Celebrate Banana Split Day, the Tasty Way
Photo by Eiliv Aceron from Pexels

Packed with nostalgia and a lot of ice cream, the now-classic banana split is synonymous with summer. And yes, there's plenty to love about this dessert in its classic form (whipped cream is just the beginning). But, there are also dozens of ways to enjoy the treat outside the longboat bowl. So, in honor of National Banana Split Day(1) (August 25th), we rounded up our five favorite banana split recipes that cover every taste and occasion, from the traditional to the unique. So, how about we push some banana split boundaries this year?

The Classic Banana Split Sundae

Before we experiment with new takes on the classic treat, let's talk about its OG ingredients. In its classic form, the dessert consists of a banana cut in half lengthwise, three scoops of ice cream (which are sandwiched between the banana halves), and is usually topped with whipped cream, sauces, maraschino cherries, and crushed nuts. The following recipe is a great starting point.

Ingredients:

  • 1 banana, halved lengthwise
  • 3 scoops of ice cream (vanilla, chocolate, strawberry)
  • 3 tbsp whipped cream
  • 3 maraschino cherries
  • 2 tbsp syrup (chocolate or strawberry)
  • 1/4 cup crushed nuts (peanuts or walnuts)
  • 3 tbsp freeze dried strawberries (sliced)

Directions:

  1. Add the strawberries and 1/4 cup warm water to a small bowl. Soak for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, squeeze away excess liquid and set aside.
  2. Place the ice cream scoops in a row in an oblong dish. Sprinkle with the nuts and place the banana halves on each side of the plate. Top each scoop with one tablespoon of whipped cream and one maraschino cherry. Sprinkle with the strawberries and drizzle with the syrup.

1. Banana Split Ice Cream Cake

We'll be honest: This banana split recipe requires a little bit of legwork. But the result is well worth it! Just a slice of this no-bake cake, and you'll regret not making it sooner.

Ingredients:

  • 20 chocolate cookies
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup freeze dried bananas
  • 1 pint of chocolate ice cream
  • 1 pint of strawberry ice cream
  • 1 pint of vanilla ice cream
  • 2 cups fudge sauce
  • 1 cup whipped cream
  • 1/4 cup maraschino cherries
  • 1/4 cup chopped nuts

Directions:

  1. Add the banana slices and 2 cups warm water to a bowl. Soak for 15 minutes. Squeeze away excess liquid and set aside.
  2. Grease an 8x3-inch springform pan and line with parchment paper. Set aside.
  3. Add the cookies and butter to a food processor and pulse until you form a dough. Transfer to the pan and press into an even layer at the bottom of the pan. Top with the banana slices and freeze for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove the pan from the freezer. Using a spatula, spread the strawberry ice cream into an even layer on top of the crust. Top with one cup of fudge sauce, spreading it as evenly as possible. Freeze for 1 hour.
  5. Remove the pan from the freeze and, using a spatula, spread the chocolate ice cream over the strawberry layer. Top with one cup of fudge sauce and freeze for another hour.
  6. Remove the pan from the freezer and spread the vanilla ice cream on top of the chocolate layer. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze overnight.
  7. Before serving, release the cake from the pan, pipe the whipped cream into mounds on the outer edge of the cake, and top each with a maraschino cherry. Sprinkle with the chopped nuts.

2. Banana Split Parfait

A dessert in disguise, this parfait is the closest thing to eating a banana split for breakfast. It calls for yogurt instead of whipped cream and trail mix instead of nuts - so it'll fill you with energy first thing in the morning.

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Add 2 cups of warm water to a bowl and soak the bananas and strawberries for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, squeeze away excess liquid and set aside.
  2. Then, add 3 tablespoons of yogurt at the bottom of 3 parfait glasses. Top with the strawberries and pineapple, diving them equally between the glasses. Drizzle with the chocolate sauce and, again, divide the banana slices equally between the 3 glasses.
  3. Top with the remaining yogurt and sprinkle with the walnuts/trail mix. Refrigerate for 15 minutes and serve cold.

3. Banana Split S'mores

S'mores are perfect just the way they are. But in honor of National Banana Split Day, we decided to give the treat an upgrade by adding freeze dried bananas and strawberries to the mix. Now, if this recipe doesn't make you want to light up your backyard fire pit, we don't know what will.

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Preheat your grill on high-medium heat and break the crackers in half and lay them on a plate. Cut the chocolate into pieces and set aside.
  2. Divide the banana slices and strawberries between half of the crackers. Then, top with 2 ounces of chocolate.
  3. Skewer 2 marshmallows in each skewer and toast for about 20 seconds over the grill. Put them directly onto the chocolate, cover with the remaining crackers, and press down. Serve immediately.

4. Banana Split Kebabs

A kid-friendly spin on the classic banana split, this recipe is the perfect way to get your little one to eat some fruit. Plus, they're so easy to make that you can encourage them to help you during prep and get them excited about healthy cooking.

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Add 3 cups of warm water to a bowl and soak the strawberries, pineapple, and banana slices for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, squeeze away excess liquid and set aside.
  2. Thread two banana slices, two strawberries, and two pineapple bites onto a skewer and repeat the process until you're out of fruit.
  3. Drizzle the chocolate sauce over the "kebabs" and top with the chopped walnuts/granola. Serve immediately.

5. Banana Split Cupcakes

This baked version of a banana split will allow you to enjoy the classic dessert during wintertime when cakey and cozy is the name of the game. The frosting will make the dessert even more irresistible.

Ingredients:

  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup freeze dried bananas
  • 1 tbsp buttermilk or kefir
  • 1/2 cup chocolate sauce
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 cup whipped cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
  • 10 maraschino cherries

Directions:

  1. Add the banana slices and one cup of warm water to a bowl, and soak for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, squeeze away excess liquid and transfer them to a small bowl. Using a form, mash the bananas and set the mush aside.
  2. Add the flour, powdered sugar, baking powder, and salt to a bowl and combine. Add the butter and mix until the dough has a sand-like texture.
  3. Add the milk, buttermilk, and egg, and mix until you have a dough. Stir in the mashed banana and mix well until everything is combined.
  4. Preheat your oven to 350oF and line a muffin tin with liners. Fill each liner about 3/4 of the way with the batter and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the cupcake comes out clean.
  5. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool completely. Top with whipped cream, drizzle with the chocolate sauce, sprinkle with the walnuts, and decorate with a maraschino cherry on top.

How will you celebrate National Banana Split Day? Let us know in the comment section down below!

References:

  1. https://nationaltoday.com/national-banana-split-day/
  2. https://www.browneyedbaker.com/banana-split-ice-cream-cake/
  3. https://mindovermunch.com/recipes/banana-split-breakfast-parfait/
  4. https://dinnerthendessert.com/banana-split-smores/
  5. https://noblepig.com/2021/06/banana-split-kabobs/
  6. https://thescranline.com/banana-split-cupcakes/

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