Hummingbird Cupcakes and Christmas Special Issue

Whether you're baking for three or thirty, the Hummingbird cupcakes are sure to please! These cupcakes are filled with tropical fruit, chopped pecans and warm spices, then baked and topped with a delicious cream cheese frosting; will make everyone "hum" with every bite.

While I was food shopping here in South Carolina, a beautiful magazine cover jumped out at me,  I had to have it!  The cake on the cover looked so amazing, and it was of a cake I had only heard about.  The traditional southern cake known as the Hummingbird cake.

Well I found out this cake happens to be the most requested recipe in Southern Living magazine history, and it always receives rave reviews.

I was compelled to try this Southern recipe for Hummingbird cake, but instead decided to use the recipe for cupcakes, simply because I knew it would be much easier to whip up and it makes plenty (about 24 to 26 cupcakes) to share. 

This past week I had the birthdays of three of my children.  Knowing that they love cupcakes, I thought making the hummingbird recipe into cupcakes would be a special treat.  And it was!  They loved them, we all did!

They were truly delicious and sweet tasting, filled with crushed pineapple, mashed bananas, chopped pecans and a hint of our favorite warm spices, cinnamon and nutmeg.  Baked to perfection, then topped with a luscious cream cheese frosting and garnished with crushed pecans.  So yummy, what could be better?

Best of all, by making these into cupcakes instead of a large cake, we are able to enjoy these "portion control" mini cakes anytime.  You can make these cupcakes ahead of time and refrigerate; making them ideal for the holidays.  Enjoy!

                                      Also try our Hummingbird Smoothie!

The Hummingbird Cupcakes
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 1+1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 + 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 (8 ounce) cans crushed pineapple, undrained
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 + 1/2 cups mashed bananas ( I used 2 bananas)

Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, soften
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), soften
  • 1 (16 ounce) package powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup crushed pecans, as garnish

Prepare Batter for Cupcakes:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine first 7 ingredients in a large bowl.  Add eggs and oil, stirring until dry ingredients are moistened.  ( Do not beat.) Stir in vanilla, crushed pineapple, 1 cup of  chopped pecans and mashed bananas. Stir until well combined.

Pour batter into 2 prepared cupcake or muffin pans with paper or grease and flour each one.  Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the wooden toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Remove from oven and allow cupcakes to cool completely before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
Beat cream cheese and butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth.
Gradually add powdered sugar and beat at low speed until light and fluffy. 
Stir in the vanilla extract.  Refrigerate frosting until ready to use.

When ready to frost the cupcakes, place 1/3 of the frosting into a quart size ziplock
bag.  Snip a small opening in one corner of the bottom of the bag.
Twist and squeeze the frosting over each cupcake, in swirling motions.
Top with crushed pecans on each cupcake.  Cover and store in refrigerator.

Here's a quick tip: Place pecans in a ziplock bag. Seal the bag and use a mug to gently crush the pecans.  Open the bag and sprinkle some nuts over each cupcake.  Seal the bag and save any remaining crushed pecans for another dessert.

Yields:  24 cupcakes

 Recipe adapted from Southern Christmas Special Issue 2014
Print Friendly and PDF


  1. These are so fun! I love the flavors in them...totally decadent.

  2. hummingbird cupcakes are my kids favorite! I made them last year and they just feel in love with them. Yours looks delicious

    1. I understand why! We all fell in love with them too.
      Have a great Thanksgiving!

  3. I have always wanted to make the Hummingbird cake - and love the idea of cupcakes instead. Cakes are not my thing but I seem to do ok with cupcakes. These are gorgeous. Three children birthdays in one week? Wow - you must have worked hard to make that happen - haha.
    Your photos are gorgeous and I think I will make these for an office event coming soon. Very nice! Happy Thanksgiving to you both - have a blessed time with family and friends.

    1. Thank you Tricia for such kind words. You always say the nicest things! Have a wondeful Thanksgiving !

  4. Stellar job with these gorgeous humming bird cupcakes. All of us at Platter Talk wish you and yours the best of holidays this year!

    1. Thank you Dan, your good wishes and sweet comments are always appreciated!

  5. Anonymous6:14:00 PM

    Made these cupcakes gluten free. Just used gluten free flour in place of regular flour. SUPERB! Thanks to you ladies for all the wonderful recipes throughout the year. Merry Christmas Ladies keep the meal plans coming.
    Bravo! Denise McDonnell

    1. Thank you Denise! We are so glad you made these gluten-free, it's always good to hear tips on how to turn recipes into gluten-free ones. Everyone will appreciate your comment, thanks again! And Merry Christmas to you and your family! xo


Thank you for taking the time to write a comment!

It makes us smile knowing that you are reading our posts and trying our recipes! Please keep in mind, anything that sounds like a spam will be deleted.

Thanks for sharing on Social Media, and follow us on Instagram! ....Cheers!