Banana Caramel Poke Cake

This Banana Caramel Poke Cake has a VERY moist cake layer topped with Banana JELL-O Pudding flavored Cool Whip. Caramel in the cake AND drizzled on top with some Nilla Wafers completes this luscious dessert.

Banana Caramel Poke cake: deliciously, moist banana cake topped with caramel, Cool Whip and JELL-O pudding.

I’ve never made a poke cake before. Wait, I’ve made JELL-O gelatin poke cakes. But never the kind that uses sweetened condensed milk.

After making this banana version, I AM SUCH A FAN. I can’t wait to make my next version.

I combined sweetened condensed milk with a jar of caramel ice cream topping sauce. It was a lot of moisture on top of this cake, BUT please, don’t let that deter you. Once you refrigerate the cake over night, it all gets soaked up and creates a super delicious bite of caramel banana cake.

Banana Caramel Poke cake: deliciously, moist banana cake topped with caramel, Cool Whip and JELL-O pudding.

I also mixed in some banana pudding mix to the cake mix. I knew it wouldn’t be enough banana flavor, so I added a second box of pudding mix to the topping. By mixing the pudding with only one cup of milk it remained nice and thick. Perfect when folding in the Cool Whip. I could eat the topping all by itself. Adding the crushed Nilla Wafers is also very essential. They provide that little bit of crunch with the cake. Totally necessary.

I guarantee if you bring this to a potluck people will want the recipe.

Banana Caramel Poke cake: deliciously, moist banana cake topped with caramel, Cool Whip and JELL-O pudding.

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Banana Caramel Poke Cake

Yield: 16 servings

Prep Time: 6 hours

Cook Time: 28 minutes

This Banana Caramel Poke Cake has a VERY moist cake layer topped with Banana JELL-O Pudding flavored Cool Whip. Caramel in the cake AND drizzled on top with some Nilla Wafers completes this luscious dessert.


For the Cake:

  • 1 box (16.5oz) yellow cake mix (with ingredients to prepare, according to box)
  • 1 box (3.4oz) banana cream JELL-O pudding mix
  • I can (14oz) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 jar (12oz) caramel ice cream topping sauce

For the Toping:

  • 1 box (3.4oz) Banana cream JELL-O pudding mix
  • 1 cup milk
  • 16oz Cool Whip, thawed
  • 1 cup Nilla Wafer cookies, crushed
  • 1/4 cup caramel ice cream topping sauce


  1. In a large mixing bowl add cake mix and ingredients to make a 13x9 cake (according to package). Mix in box of pudding mix. Pour batter into a greased and floured 13x9 baking dish. Bake according to package directions.
  2. Remove from oven and poke holes all over the top of the cake. I used a meat thermometer to make all my holes. In a small bowl, mix sweetened condensed milk with caramel sauce. Pour over warm cake, being sure to pour over the holes. Some sauce will remain on top of the cake. That's okay!! Cover cake with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  3. To make the topping, beat pudding mix with milk until no lumps. Fold in Cool Whip. Spread over cake. Top with crushed cookies and drizzled caramel sauce. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Use within 3-4 days. ENJOY!

MAKING THIS RECIPE? Share it with me on Instagram using the hashtag #ShugarySweets so I can see what you're cooking up in the kitchen!

I love making pudding cakes. They are a bit different from poke cakes, but still very delicious and very easy! I have Chocolate, Lemon and Butterscotch versions on the blog!

pudding cake

I also love making NO BAKE Eclair Cakes. Layers of graham crackers with a pudding and Cool Whip filling. The original version is a family favorite, but the strawberry eclair cake has now become a requested recipe!


Summer is not complete until we have enjoyed at least ONE JELL-O gelatin poke cake! They are so fun and easy (change the flavor and colors too). We love layering our cake in a trifle bowl with a cheesecake filling!


This Banana Caramel Poke Cake has a VERY moist cake layer topped with Banana JELL-O Pudding flavored Cool Whip. Caramel in the cake AND drizzled on top with some Nilla Wafers completes this luscious dessert.

**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

71 comments on “Banana Caramel Poke Cake”

  1. Oh my goodness, does this look good! I have really been wanting to try a poke cake.

  2. This looks really good. I can’t wait to try this. I love making poke cakes and did one red, white and blue for memorial day.

  3. ahhhhhh yuM!

    My mom would especially LOOOOVE this-she loves bananas and caramel!

  4. Can we say YUM! I too have never tried a “poke” cake…probably will turn me into a believer!

  5. This is like the new and improved version of Banana Pudding taken to a whole new level! Awesome!

  6. I have seen so many posts for poke cake but havent tried any of them yet, this is the first to totally stand out as a must-make!!! I will definitely be trying this out over the summer!

  7. Banana and caramel make a great flavor combination! I think I will give it a try with a gluten free cake mix. Gluten free goodies tend to get kinda dry, so I think the extra moistness would be a good thing.

  8. That cake is just dripping with goodness! I would love a big slice right about now!

  9. I haven’t made a poke cake yet. When I do, I hope it turns out as gorgeous as yours!

  10. What a delicious recipe Aimee! I love poke cake, and especially with bananas and caramel!

  11. Forget the potluck! I am not sharing that cake with ANYONE but yours truly. Dude that is a cake you hide in the fridge in a brown bag so no one knows what it is and you can keep all the goodness to yourself.

    I am a terrible person. I know. But it’s this cake’s fault. 😉

  12. Marcie

    This looks SO good. I’m a banana fiend, and I bake with them all the time. It’s new for me to see it in poke cake, which sounds devine! Looks so moist and delicious.

  13. I’ve never tried a poke cake before, but you regularly make me question that decision. I need an excuse to make this, for sure. It sounds amazing.

  14. This is SO dangerous! There’s no way I could just have one slice!

  15. This looks so moist and AWESOME!! I love the banana and caramel combo 🙂

  16. This looks incredibly! I made one but topped it with Golden Oreo. The addition of caramel would take it up a notch!!! Love me some poke cake 🙂

  17. Banana caramel? Pllleeease smuggle this through TSA and bring me a fat slice to BHF! I need it.

  18. I have yet to try and make a poke cake. I think I will start with this show-stopper!

  19. Lisa


    Real quick question on this recipe… is it instant or cook and serve Jell-O pudding you are using? Thanks!

  20. Pudding poke cakes are my favorite, for sure. Growing up my mom used to make them a lot. This one sounds amazing, and I can’t wait to try it! At Disneyland, I tried banana caramel french toast and I can’t get the flavors out of my head!

  21. nessa

    You had me at banana-caramel 🙂

  22. I’ve never heard of a poke cake, but the texture looks amazing! Banana and caramel is such a winning combination!

  23. This is awesome! I love that you folded the pudding right into the whipped cream, what a great idea!

  24. I think I’ve been missing out, I gotta have one now!

  25. Banana and caramel? I can only imagine how good this is until I make it.

  26. oh my gooodness, i can seriously taste that already!

  27. Wowza Aimee! This looks so delicious!

  28. Woah – this sounds amazing! I haven’t made a poke cake before (just the ones with jello), but obviously I need to correct that. This one looks phenomenal!

  29. I love banana anything and this cake looks ridiculously moist! I’ve never made a poke cake either…gotta try this one. 🙂

  30. I just made an apple/caramel poke cake! Yours looks spectacular!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE! Wish I could have a big ol piece right about now!

  31. This looks fantastic! I totally want some for breakfast right now! 🙂

  32. This sounds amazing… banana and caramel=delish!

  33. Great recipe except for the Cool Whip,it leaves an after taste…When you spend time on a great recipe why settle for a under standard product…use the whipped’s so much better…..thank you for a sure fire hit recipe!! Mickey C.. Fort Walton Beach Florida

  34. Banana caramel, oh goodness this looks so lovely!

  35. Oh, lawsy, Aimee!! This looks so crazy good I can’t even handle it!

  36. I seriously want a piece of this right now! Pinned and Tweeting you!

  37. Amy

    I made this yesterday, and, oh, my goodness, it is dangerous! The only change I made was to add a layer of bananas on top of the caramel and before the cool whip topping. Oh, and I only had 8 oz. of cool whip, but it was still great. Thanks for the recipe!!

  38. Diane Gish

    insatnt or cook &serve pudding? does it make a difference?

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  49. Daphne

    You should put in a recipe box so we can save the recipes we can’t print out. That would be a great help! Then we could go back to them when we wanted to make them!

  50. Lindsay

    Quick question: does the cake part get really soggy? I am making this next weekend for my father who is my toughest food critic LOL, I just want it to be perfect!! 


  51. Anonymous

    I made this last night can’t wait to dig in tonight 

  52. Vickey Crouch

    So I made this last week, followed your recipe exactly…..sort of. First, I used a banana cake instead of a yellow cake. When it came out of the oven, the middle of the cake sank so much that I almost threw it away — so glad I didn’t! (It’s amazing what a little Cool Whip can do for a deflated cake!). I also left out the second box of pudding in the frosting. No matter, it was WONDERFUL!!! Hands down my favorite poke cake so far — thank you for sharing!

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