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Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake – everyone’s nostalgic and loved banana pudding, recreated in the form of yummy vanilla ice cream cake. The crust is made up of salty pretzels mixed with sweet Nilla wafer cookies, then baked, chilled, and layered with creamy vanilla ice cream plus additional honey-toasted crumbs. A topping of fresh bananas, vanilla cream, and more of those addicting salty cookie crumbs finish the cake off.

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

It’s slowly becoming ice cream season with lots of spring weather in New York this week. Plus sunshine and warmth in Miami today, I am so excited!

For the longest time I’ve wanted to share a banana pudding recipe, but two reasons have always steered me off the banana pudding path. The first is that I don’t love the idea of using a boxed pudding mix. Most traditional, more retro recipes, use box pudding. If I do ever end up creating banana pudding, it needs to be SIMPLE. A boxed pudding mix would take care of that, but I just don’t love their ingredient list. So I’ll keep working on a solution.

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

The second reason I have yet to share banana pudding is simple, I don’t want to simply recreate a recipe that’s already on the internet.

But Easter is this Sunday! And I wanted to share a banana pudding type of dessert. And that’s when I thought, “Well, a banana ice cream cake could be really fun!”.

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

I made this cake before heading out of town and I’ve been looking forward to sharing it ever since. I love this simple cake, and I love that it reminds me of my Nonnie and her 6 ingredient Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream Cake.

She’d make that ice cream cake all the time, especially for warm weather holidays or whenever we’d spend time with my grandparents in Florida. It’s still one of my family’s favorite cakes. I make it often too!

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

Here are some details

Start with the crust. A mix of salty crushed-up pretzels and Nilla wafer cookies, which are a staple in every banana pudding recipe.

The crust is baked in a springform pan. At the same time, I bake a separate pan of crumbs up along with some honey. We’ll use these crumbs for sprinkling over the cake.

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake | halfbakedharvest.comBake the crust and then let it cool so the cream doesn’t melt into the crust.

Take a container of vanilla ice cream, I like the Tillamook old-fashioned vanilla. Then layer it onto the bottom of the crust.

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

Add half of the toasted loose crumbs from earlier, and freeze. You only need to freeze this layer for 20 or so minutes.

While that first layer freezes, mash a few ripe bananas and swirl them with vanilla, plus some honey. Mix in more vanilla ice and then take that banana-swirled ice cream and spread it out over the cake. Freeze again, but this time freeze until totally frozen!!

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

To finish the cake, layer with sliced bananas, cream, and then, the salty-sweet cookie crumbs!

Slice and enjoy every last creamy, banana-filled bite. It’s sweet, heavy on the ice cream, swirled with banana, honey, and vanilla, and has just the right amount of salty cookie and pretzel crunch on the bottom. The perfect balance of sweet and salty that leaves you longing for another bite.

It’s a real show-stopper!

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

Looking for more ice cream cake recipes? Here are a few to try:

Strawberry Pretzel Ice Cream Cake

Coffee and Fudge Ice Cream Cake

Swirled Berry Ice Cream Butter Cake

Triple Layer Chocolate Fudge Ice cream Cake

Nonnie’s 6 Ingredient Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream Cake

Lastly, if you make this Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake

Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 6 hours 20 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories Per Serving: 469 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.



  • 1. Line a 9 inch springform pan with parchment paper. Line a small baking sheet with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 350°.
    2. In a food processor, pulse the pretzels and Nilla wafer cookies into fine crumbs. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture holds together when pinched. Press half of the crumbs into the bottom of the springform pan, spread the remaining crumbs out on the baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tablespoon honey. Bake 5-8 minutes, until toasted.
    3. Scoop 3-4 cups of vanilla ice cream out onto the cooled crust. Flatten/spread into a mostly even layer. Sprinkle with half of the loose pretzel/cookie crumbs. Freeze for 30 minutes.
    4. Mash 2-3 bananas in a bowl with 2 tablespoons honey, 2 teaspoons vanilla, and a pinch of salt. Add 2 cups vanilla ice cream and gently swirl together. Spread onto the vanilla layer. Freeze for 30 minutes more.
    5. Before serving, use an electric mixer to whip the cream with 1-2 tablespoons honey, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and a pinch of salt until soft peaks form.
    6. Remove the cake from the freezer. Use the parchment paper to lift the cake out of the pan. Top with sliced bananas, whipped cream, and the remaining crumbs. Slice and enjoy immediately.
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Salty Pretzel Banana Pudding Ice Cream Cake Cake |

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    1. Hey Ree,
      Fantastic!! I appreciate you making this recipe and your comment, love to hear that it turned out well for you!🍒🥭

  1. Quick question! Where does the heavy cream go in?! I didn’t see it on the instructions just the ingredients, thanks!

    1. Hi Savannah,
      The cream is whipped in step 5:) Please let me know if you have any other questions, I hope you love this recipe! xT

  2. 5 stars
    Wow, this is so delicious! First off, the vanilla wafer-pretzel combo is nothing short of incredible. As the crust and crumbs were baking, my house smelled like an ice cream parlor with fresh waffle cones baking! And I could have snacked on those crumbs on their own. It is reminiscent of old-school banana pudding but in a different form. I made it for my husband’s birthday and he was so happy.

    1. Hey Amanda,
      Happy Friday!! I’m thrilled to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks a lot for making it and your comment!😎🍑 xx

  3. 5 stars
    I made this for Mother’s Day. Everyone loved it and it was so easy. I didn’t change a thing. I will make it again, but first I have to try the Cookie Dough Ice Cream Cake!!!

    1. Hi Ree,
      Happy Sunday!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit, thanks a lot for making it and your review!! 🍓🫐🍉

  4. 5 stars
    Used this recipe for the crust alone for a different cream pie. It yielded 2 8″ pies and while I didn’t have nilla wafers, shortbread girl scout cookies worked just fine. I added salt to the crust for that salty pretzel flavor, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, and pecans instead of peanuts (improvise am I right?!) I think without salt, the pretzels alone wouldn’t have brought that salty pretzel balance. Also, I added about 2T more butter to get “it to stay together when you pinch it” texture. Perfection! Super crumbly when baked and easy to cut into. My favorite part is that drizzle of honey on the crumbs for crumble… omg! Thanks!

    1. Hey Pearl,
      Awesome!! So glad to hear you were able to use the recipe for the crust to make with another cream pie! Thanks for sharing your feedback! xT

  5. 5 stars
    I don’t have a picture because we ate it so quickly! What a great dessert – everyone loved it!

    1. Hey Diane,
      Fantastic!! 🍇🍌 I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks for making it and your comment! xx

  6. 5 stars
    I made this for Mother ´ s day and it was amazing! I was able to make it early in the morning and it was pretty easy to do. I also used extra nilla wafers and pretzels to decorate the top!

    1. Hi Sarah,
      Awesome!! I love to hear that this recipe was a hit and appreciate you making it! Thanks for your comment! xT

    1. Hi Lynn,
      Happy Monday!! I am so glad to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks so much for making it! xT

    2. Can you please update the instructions for the recipe? It reads as if you put the crust in the pan and then solely bake the remaining crumbs. Even the tiktok video is misleading. I still hope this will turn out good!!

  7. There are no instructions for baking the crust. Do you bake it with the crumbs? For the same amount of time? It just says to put the ice cream on the cooled crust. Thanks for the clarification!

    1. Hi Liz,
      The instructions for baking the crust are in step 2:) Please let me know if you have any other questions! xx

      1. I have the same question. Are we baking the crust in the springform pan AND the other half of the mixture on the baking sheet at the same time?

  8. This looks amazing! I’m going to try this with graham cracker crumbs instead of vanilla cookies and use vanilla coconut milk ice cream. 😍

  9. Hi Tieghan. I am going to start making this luscious dessert in a few minutes. I want to keep it till Sunday. Is it okay to put the whipped cream on today already, or do I need to do that before serving on Sunday? Thanks.

    1. Hi Lynn,
      If you can wait till Sunday to add the whipped cream I would suggest that:) Let me know how this recipe turns out for you, I hope you love it! xT

  10. 5 stars
    Made this morning to freeze for Mother’s Day…. Had a taste of each layer 😋😋😋. Can’t wait to try it all together!!
    Another winner miss Teghan!

    1. Hi Tracy,
      Amazing!! I hope everyone loves this cake on Mother’s Day! Thanks so much for choosing it to share:) xT

      1. Such a winner! Loved loved the honey whipped cream too! Wow…. So so – in Oslo words, “Yummy”!

        1. Lol love to hear this Tracy!! Thanks so much for trying this cake and sharing your feedback! xT

    1. Hi there,
      Yes, that will be just fine for you to do! Let me know if you give this recipe a try, I hope you love it! xT

  11. I’m hoping to make this this weeekend but want to make ahead of time – can we freeze it completed and still get the same result or what would you recommend?

    1. Hi Gretchen,
      Yes, go ahead and just keep this in the freezer:) Please let me know if you have any other questions, I hope you love this recipe! xT

  12. 5 stars
    Long time follower . . . first time commenter. Made this for family dinner last night and it was a HUGE hit. Love the salty – sweet, creamy- crunchy contrast in this one. Hits it out of the park!

    1. Hey Emily,
      Love it!!🍪🍦 I am thrilled to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks for making it and sharing your review!! xx