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Bananas Foster | A simple, classic New Orleans dessert. Perfect for Mardi Gras!

Bananas Foster

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With Mardi Gras just days away, I thought I’d practice my flambe skills and whip up Bananas Foster, a classic New Orleans dessert.

Bananas Foster with a scoop of ice cream on a round white plate

Bananas Foster

Fat Tuesday AKA Mardi Gras is upon us. Going into this Lenten season, I’m toying with giving up my guilty pleasure, cookie dough, or maybe sweets altogether. There is one last day to gorge, so it’s the perfect time to make a traditional New Orlean’s dessert.

This easy, yet decadent bananas Foster was created in 1951 by Paul Blangé at Brennan’sRestaurant. Their recipe uses banana liqueur along with the rum, but I elected to use vanilla extract instead (my palate is forever scarred after taking liquid banana Dramamine before our family vacations. I’m sooooo wary of banana flavored anything).

Bananas Foster

Tips for Making Bananas Foster

This is one simple, delectable dessert, but it takes some patience. Bananas are sliced and sauteed in a mixture of butter, cinnamon and dark brown sugar along with some pecans.

  • My brown sugar didn’t melt into a smooth sauce, but no worries. The taste was uncompromised.  Next time, though, I’ll lower the heat and give the sugar a bit more time to dissolve.
  • For the grand finale, rum and vanilla are added to the pan.  With a flick of my lighter, the dessert is flambéed for a dramatic effect right before serving. 
  • Be very careful, though, as the flames shoot high and nobody needs a kitchen fire! Or singed eye lashes.
  • Spooned over vanilla ice cream, these boozy and caramelized bananas will impress your guests.

I’m rethinking my view on banana desserts as this flambeed Bananas Foster was marvelous. If you’re a fan of banana desserts, try this Banana Pudding Poke Cake, too!

More Easy Mardi Gras Recipes You Might Enjoy:



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Bananas Foster

The classic New Orleans dessert. Adapted from Allrecipes.

  • Author: Liz Berg
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Saute
  • Cuisine: American


  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 bananas, peeled, then cut on the diagonal
  • 1/4 cup pecan halves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons dark rum
  • Vanilla ice cream, to serve


  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add sugar and cinnamon and mix to combine. When mixture starts bubbling, continue cooking till sugar dissolves; add bananas and pecans. Spoon sugar syrup over bananas and cook till bananas are hot, only a couple minutes. Add vanilla and rum, and using a lighter, ignite alcohol if desired (be VERY careful as flames will shoot high!).
  2. Serve over ice cream.
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72 comments on “Bananas Foster”

  1. These bananas look exquisite – definitely my ideal dinner 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  2. P.S – Congrats on the well deserved award 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

  3. I am going to try this one the weekend. It looks super cool and delicious 🙂

  4. These look soo yum!
    I love the flavor of rum with bananas!!

  5. This looks delicious, Liz! Good luck giving up cookie dough….I know that is quite a sacrifice for a baker chick!

  6. Awesome!! That flame adds the perfect touch!

  7. Simple yet with a wonderful outcome. This is for me to try out.

  8. Congrats on your awards and this recipe. I’ve flambeed bananas once and was shaking in my boots. I’d love this over French vanilla ice cream.

  9. I must try this some day, because I have never tasted this. I knew a lady whose family had this tradition of serving Banana Fosters for dessert every Sunday. This sounds so fun and delicious to make.

  10. Looking at the other posts from the blog hop it seems that Bananas Foster is a bit of a craze at the moment. I have to say I have never heard of them before!

  11. Oh this reminds of my favorite French Vietnamese restaurant – they serve fried banana with coconut ice cream… and they cook the banana with rum in front of you showing off this flame! I’m going to make this this week or weekend. It’s not fried banana, so it’s easier to cook, too.I’m so excited but kids will be extra excited for sure! 😉

  12. A delicious combination! Yum yum! 🙂
    Your blog also promoted me to look up lent and the reason why we had pancakes at work today. Now I know:)

  13. Liz, these bananas flambées look very impressive! And rum+banana can only create delightful flavours.

  14. Mmmmmmmm. I have nothing more to add!

  15. Bravo on the flaming! That part always makes me a little nervous. I also always end up with mushy bananas. Yours look perfect!

  16. you know I love me bananas. I was just telling one of our cooking friends, how I put bananas in all cakes, cupcakes, muffins… because back when I was a kid we were poor and I ate bananas maybe tree times a year (bananas were caviare for me back then, and coca cola a champaign) 🙂 so now I try to cure my childhood yearnings 🙂

  17. These look delicious! Maybe one of these days I will get over my fear of the flaming and make some of these for hubs – he loves it! Great pick!

  18. Hi, Before this blog hop I wasn’t sure what Banana Foster was, but heard of it. Totally cool dessert! I need to make it! You make the recipe seem easy. I would love to make it flame to! Plus it would scare my Husband! lol He gets nevous when I use the blow torch for melting marshmallows, imagine a big flame in my skillet. he he

    Love the recipe and the history of Banana Foster!

  19. You are sending me over to the sweet side…

  20. Good for you that you did the flambe of the banana… that part always scares me. 🙂 This is always such a decadent treat over vanilla ice cream. Love all the Mardi Gras recipes. 🙂 Happy Fat Tuesday.. Skinny Chick. Sorry had to throw that one in. 🙂

  21. Who knew bananas could look so pretty?

  22. Cookie dough? That would be tough to give up. Does that mean no cookies until April, or will you actually not eat the dough. I am not sure I could do that!
    I have never had bananas foster before, it looks delicious!

  23. Oh yummm, I love caramelized bananas! These look like a glorious rendition!

  24. This bananas Foster looks so delicious right now, especially since I skipped lunch. Congrats on the Liebster!

  25. This is a delicious combination of rum bananas with vanilla ice cream. I liked that last picture.

  26. Mm, I never heard of bananas foster, but they’re a bit like a flambéed banana dish I make sometimes, though I use brandy instead of rum, and don’t add the nuts. I’ll have to give this a try next time! Looks delish!

  27. I have a soft spot for bananas foster. My mom used to make it whenever we had a birthday in the family and I love it to this day. Your recipe looks great and it was fun to remember an old classic!

  28. ::falls down:: I’m going to need some bananas foster to revive me >) Love the look and simplicity of this dessert – so few ingredients but so much to love. Oh, and thanks for the (unnecessary) shout-out…

  29. Two posts in one day, you go girl!

    I need to make your recipe for my husband’s birthday, he would L O V E it! We enjoyed bananas foster at Commander’s Palace in NOLA a couple of years ago, and we still talk about it!

  30. Oooh Lizzy, you chose to make the real deal Bananas Foster, which BTW I’ve never tasted. Looks so decadent and rich; just what I crave for a dessert! I made Bananas Foster muffins for this theme. So much fun for pre-Lenten sacrifices! Now I truly need to experience New Orleans someday!

  31. I never realized how easy it was to make banana’s foster; I think my Banana’s that are sitting on my Kitchen counter are calling out to me ” make me into Banana’s Foster”; this may just be on the list for tonights dinner!

  32. wow lizy u killing me with super delicious recipe..wll try on some week end

  33. This is a NOLA classic, beautifully presented…and I’m scarred just thinking about the banana dramamine.

  34. Banana foster is so good and it looks amazing. Funny enough my first time eating some was in New Orleans…a banana foster cheese cake.

  35. I feel your pain on the banana flavored medicine. Fake banana is probably one of my least favorite flavors EVER. I usually double up the rum when I make Bananas Foster at home. Happy Mardi Gras!

  36. Wow Lizzy! You’re giving up cookie dough, that’s a good one. I don’t think I could do it! Your bananas foster sounds incredible! On top of all of the other banana recipes floating around I’ve decided to pick up some bananas on the way home & I’ll definitely be whipping up something similar! Congrats on the award, you deserve them all!

  37. I love bananas foster! Best of luck with giving up cookie dough! I know that has to be tough, but you can do it!

  38. Ever since a studenty party on a budget, and discovering banana liqueur on arrival in Paris, I haven’t eaten a banana since. Guide’s honour. But perhaps I may just start bananas for lent, Liz. You have a power of persuasion, my friend.

  39. I will mark this bananas foster recipe for sure,looks delicious,I can’t wait to try :0

  40. You are a busy bee girl-2 posts in one day. You must have a clone or several helpers.
    This dish does remind me of Jamaica and it is one of those tropical indulgences I love. Yours does look like it has all the delicious qualities I look for. Amazing pictures-yum!

  41. I’ve always wanted to try Bananas Foster and the recipe looks fairly simple. I love the photo with the flames – so impressive!

  42. Love-love it! I don’t know about perfection, but it looks yummy! Great post! Congratulations on award!

  43. Cookie dough? Yeah, I gave up Krispy Kreme Donuts! I had no idea they made banana dramamine. Ewwww? Your banana fosters looks great along with the pyrotechnics. I think I would have singed my eyebrows for something. Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe with us.

  44. Now this is a great dessert! Good for you giving something up!

  45. Gorgeous! I love bananas foster, and had the chance to make it for the first time last semester in my food service class. I have a few bananas sitting on the counter that are now tempting me to make this tonight… Great post!

  46. Oh la la for sure!!! This a dessert I love ordering at restaurants, so delicious:-) Hugs, Terra

  47. I could just lick the screen!

  48. Thanks for the awesome pick, babe! xoxo

  49. I have to admit I have never had bananas foster before but just looking at this I see I’m missing something. This looks sooooo good! I can’t wait to try this!

  50. I restaurant I used to frequent was a fusion restaurant. They added citrus and tropical flavors fo a typical Bananas Foster and it was out of this world! Yours looks fabulous.

  51. Such an incredible dessert! Definitely perfect for a dramatic presentation.

  52. The perfect classic ending to a Mardi Gras meal!

  53. I absolutely love bananas foster, but when I made it before I didn’t use pecans. I must try that next time!

  54. These look amazing! I know what I want to make for our Mardi Gras dessert now!

  55. Sorry but LOL…Banana dramamine appears to have dramatic results…But so do your bananas foster…Beautiful dessert and tips =) Great for Mardi Gras and the Oscars!

  56. Not the cookie dough!!! Noooooooo! I don’t blame you on the banana flavor either. I love banana baked goods but not so much on the flavorings. Let the real deal shine through!

  57. I don’t know why, but I just never associated these with NOLA. Beignets and Shrimp Creole and Gumbo and King Cake, yes. Now I will add this to my association.

  58. All I can say is yes to everything about this! YUM!

  59. This looks delicious! I love Bananas Foster!

  60. Your photos are so pretty and I love that you flambeed these. Such a tasty dessert!

  61. This looks good. I’ve never tried it but I’ve always wanted to visit New Orleans at Mardi Gras 🙂

  62. I’ve always wanted to make Bananas Foster Liz! It looks and sounds great. With Fat Tuesday looming, it’s time to indulge one last time! Thanks for sharing!

  63. This sounds like the perfect, delicious dessert to make when you forgot to make dessert! I love how simple yet fancy it is!

  64. First of all, I can’t believe banana flavored dramamine is a thing. Second, this looks delicious!

  65. This is such an elegant classic for Mardi Gras, and if you are truly giving up sweets for Lent, I admire your willpower! 🙂

  66. This is my all time favorite dessert I would get once a year at our getaway weekend place. I never made it a home. Thanks for a great recipe. I’ll skip the banana liquor too!

  67. Man, did your Banana’s Foster bring back a memory. I’ve had Bananas Foster one or two times but only at New Orleans’ restaurants. Loved. When Stephen and Melissa were dating, just two college kids at St. Olaf, they visited us in Aspen. For dessert one night, Michael decided he would do Bananas Foster on the grill. Well, Missy and Stephen were granola kids and a fancy flaming dessert was probably not their style or anything they had seen before. Plus, I don’t know what Michael did, but those bananas were a disaster. Stephen said very little that weekend but he did mention that there were some fruits that probably shouldn’t be “grilled.” I still am carting around 1/2 bottle of dark rum! Yours looks delicious so this summer I might finish off my bottle of dark rum and treat my friends to a flaming dessert.

  68. There is nothing like the Banana’s Foster at Brennan’s! What a spectacle that is. We haven’t been there in ages and really must plan a trip back to see our friend Daniel. In the meantime we will have to try your version at home.

  69. A yummy classic that goes so well with ice cream!

  70. Simple and extravagant all in one. I really got a kick out of the flaming bananas.

  71. Wow. That’s a real decadent dessert we’d both love to try with lots of kaimaki (Chios mastic-scented) ice cream on the side. We buy lots of organic bananas lately (for some strange reason), the are a staple in our home now:) So the timing is perfect, now that the Spring is FINALLY here:) Pinned!
    Sending you lots and lots of hugs,
    Mirella and Panos

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