Banana splits are ice cream sundaes built on a banana boat, made up of a ripe banana that is split straight down the center. Typically, three scoops of ice creams are piled on top, followed by a variety of sauces, whipped cream, nuts, sprinkles and cherries. They’re a bit of a retro dessert these days, since many modern ice cream shops build their sundaes to be a lot more decadent than classic banana splits were, but I love them even if they’re not in vogue.
These Banana Split Brownies are a fun combination of brownies – a popular ice cream sundae element themselves – and the flavors of a classic banana split. They’re fudgy brownies that have diced bananas and chopped, toasted pecans folded into the batter. The chunks of banana are a little bit unusual for a brownie recipe, but they actually serve to keep the brownies moist and fudgy even a few days after baking. Rather than getting banana mixed with chocolate, as you might get in a recipe where the banana is mashed into the batter, with these brownies you get clear flavors of chocolate and banana, along with a few crunchy toasted nuts, in each bite.
The brownies are delicious on their own, especially since I’m a big banana lover when it comes to baked goods. But you can easily turn them into something extra-special by serving them up as a sundae. Simply top them with a scoop of your favorite flavor of ice cream, a big pile of whipped cream and a cherry. You get all the flavors of a banana split in each bite, and a fun new twist on an old favorite.
Banana Split Brownies
1/2 cup butter
2-oz dark chocolate (60-70% cacao)
1 cup sugar
3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
2 large eggs
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1 cup chopped ripe banana (about 2 medium bananas)
1/2 cup finely chopped toasted pecans or walnuts
1 pint vanilla ice cream
Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9×9-inch baking pan with aluminum foil and lightly grease.
In a large, microwave-safe bowl (or a small bowl,if you don’t have a large one), melt together butter and dark chocolate in the microwave. This should be done in 30-second intervals to avoid overcooking the mixture. Allow butter to cool slightly.
Whisk sugar and cocoa power into butter mixture. Whisk in eggs, one at a time, followed by the salt and vanilla extract. Whisk in the all purpose flour and stir until flour is just incorporated and no streaks remain. Fold in chopped bananas and nuts.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs attached.
Allow brownies to cool in the pan, then lift the foil to easily remove them before slicing.
Cut into 9 large squares.
Before serving, top each brownie square off with a scoop of ice cream, a dollop of whipped cream and, if desired, a cherry.