How to Make Bananas Foster

Bananas Foster is a dessert that originated in New Orleans, Louisiana (US). It’s fairly easy to make and very impressive to watch, not to mention delicious. Cut up the bananas first and cook them in butter, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt until they turn golden yellow. Then add rum and flame the pan using the rum fumes and a long match. Serve Bananas Foster over vanilla ice cream for a quick dessert that is sure to impress any crowd.


  • 2 tbsp (28.4 g) of butter
  • 2 bananas
  • 1 cup (200 g) of light brown sugar
  • of vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp (1.3 g) of ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • of rum
  • 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream

Makes 2 servings


EditCooking the Bananas

  1. Slice 2 bananas lengthwise and then in half. Peel each banana to remove the skin. Place the bananas on a chopping board and use a sharp knife to cut each in half lengthwise. Rest each banana flat on the board and carefully slice each one in half crosswise.[1]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 1 Version 3.jpg
  2. Melt 2 tbsp (28.4 g) of butter in a heavy pan over a medium heat. Place the pan on the stovetop and set the temperature to a moderate setting. Add the butter to the pan and stir it occasionally with a wooden spoon as it melts.[2].
    Make Bananas Foster Step 2 Version 3.jpg
    • A skillet works best for this recipe.[3]
    • Make sure that the pan has a lid as you may need it when you add the rum.
  3. Cook the sliced bananas in the pan for 2 minutes. Place the sliced bananas into the heavy pan with the melted butter. Gently stir the bananas as they begin to cook.[4]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 3 Version 3.jpg
    • While it is important to stir the bananas as they cook, don’t stir them vigorously otherwise they may break or turn mushy.
  4. Add the brown sugar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt to the pan. Place 1 cup (200 g) of light brown sugar, of vanilla extract, ½ tsp (1.3 g) of ground cinnamon, and 1 pinch of salt into the pan with the bananas and the melted butter. Stir the ingredients gently to combine them.[5]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 4 Version 3.jpg
  5. Reduce the heat to low and cook the ingredients for 2 minutes. Continue stirring the ingredients gently as they cook. Wait until the bananas begin to turn golden yellow and soften slightly, which should take approximately 2 minutes.[6]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 5 Version 3.jpg

EditFlaming the Pan and Serving the Dish

  1. Add the rum and gently tip the pan if you are using a gas stove. Pour of rum into the pan with the rest of the ingredients. Gently tip the pan to the side to ignite the flame. Once the pan has flamed, immediately remove the pan from the heat. The flames will extinguish themselves after 1-2 minutes.[7]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 6 Version 3.jpg
    • Have the lid for the pan sitting right next to you during this process in case you need to quickly extinguish the flame.
    • Be very careful as you tilt the pan to avoid spilling any of the hot liquid.
    • Tipping the pan to the side slightly will cause it to flame. This is because the hot rum will be close enough to the gas for it to ignite. The sides of the pan will prevent the ingredients from falling onto the stovetop.[8]
  2. Pour the rum into the pan and ignite it with a match if you’re using an electric stove. Add of rum into the pan and ignite a long match. Hold the match very carefully just above the fumes of the pan to ignite the rum. Pull your hand away quickly and take the pan off the heat. The flames will die down after 1-2 minutes.[9]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 7 Version 3.jpg
    • Make sure that there is nothing low-hanging over the stovetop while you do this.
    • Don’t let the ignited match touch the alcohol as it only needs it to be held in the fumes to work.
    • Alternatively, use a grill lighter rather than a match if you prefer.
  3. Remove the bananas from the pan when the flames are out. Gently lift up each sliced banana with the spoon and place 4 slices onto each serving plate. Don’t worry about removing any excess liquid.[10]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 8 Version 3.jpg
    • Alternatively, use serving bowls instead of plates.
  4. Place 1 scoop of ice cream on each plate. Transfer the ice cream onto the serving plates. Place the ice cream on top of the bananas if you don’t mind it melting faster. Otherwise, arrange the ice cream next to the bananas on the plate. Serve the dish immediately before the ice cream melts.[11]
    Make Bananas Foster Step 9 Version 3.jpg
    • If there is any extra sauce in the pan, drizzle this over the ice cream with a spoon.[12]
    • Bananas Foster is traditionally made with vanilla ice cream, however, try out different types to see what flavor you prefer. Praline or wattleseed are also good options.[13]


  • Bananas Foster is best served immediately and it isn’t recommended to be stored. However, the sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.[14]


  • Be very careful while you work with fire as you make this recipe.

EditThings You’ll Need

  • Chopping board
  • Knife
  • skillet with a lid
  • Wooden spoon
  • Long match
  • Slotted spoon
  • Serving plates or bowls
  • Ice cream scoop

EditRelated wikiHows

EditSources and Citations

EditQuick Summary

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