Someone Tried Making JB Hiap Joo Famous Banana Cake & It Tastes ‘90% Similar’

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For years, Hiap Joo Bakery & Biscuit Factory has captivated local hearts with their trademark freshly-made banana cakes, and for good reason;

These cakes are amongst the best renditions of banana cakes in both neighboring countries, if not the best.


Little wonder why they attract long lines every weekend without fail, really.

But here’s the thing. Ever since the borders closed because of the pandemic earlier this year, some have found themselves stuck without the tasty treat…

A notion that eats at their appetite every single night.

And though some have circumvented the depressing notion by incorporating a group buy option, the fact remains that it, at the end, still entails a significant waiting time. And when it comes to Hiap Joo Bakery & Biscuit Factory’s banana cakes…

Time is of the utmost essence because you simply can’t stand another moment without it.

Image: Giphy

Truly, it’s a blasphemy. One that should not have existed in the first place.

Someone Tried Making JB Hiap Joo Famous Banana Cake & It Tastes ‘90% Similar’

But it seems that the time for moping is over, as apparently…

There’s now a way out of this whole cake-less misery.

According to AsiaOnethey have uncovered a recipe on the Internet that claims 90% similarities to the speckled banana cakes that Hiap Joo does so well.

Heck, I would take one that has even 50% similarities to the original. That’s how good Hiap Joo’s cakes are.

But the fact remains that it’s the Internet.

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How trustworthy could it possibly be?

With that notion in mind, AsiaOne set about testing it out for themselves.

Incorporating several tips that the bakery had given ChannelNewsAsia in an interview, AsiaOne proceeded to use a wood-fired oven for the baking (like the original) and made sure to avoid mashing the bananas too finely as the bread needs to be slightly chunky and the pulp supposedly makes the cake lighter and fluffier.

They also used berangan bananas, which possess a slightly dry and starchy texture.

And The End Result?

After 7 steps and the usage of 7 different types of ingredients, AsiaOne presented its own rendition…

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A creation that supposedly tastes pretty darn good.


According to the article, the recipe wasn’t just easy to make, but also entailed a pretty similar taste to the original.

Testers have said that the cake was one that they would try again. And for the ones who’ve consumed the original, they said that it’s a “pretty decent” copy in terms of taste and texture.

The cake also ticks a number of boxes in terms of Hiap Joo’s trademark traits, such as being speckled and fluffy. However, it seems that the recipe is unable to replicate the wood-fired taste of the original.

Well, they do say that the secret is a 100-year-old oven, so that’s one notion that we might have to go without.


In conclusion, AsiaOne states that the recipe is a “pretty good” alternative to Hiap Joo banana cake while the borders remain closed.

You can check out the recipe and step-by-step process here:


  • 3 eggs
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 210g mashed banana
  • 150g cake flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 100ml vegetable oil


  1. Add eggs into a bowl and whisk until foamy
  2. Add sugar, mix well.
  3. Mash banana in a separate bowl; don’t make it too fine, anyhowly a bit.
  4. Add mashed bananas to the egg-sugar mixture, mix well
  5. Sift in cake flour, baking soda and baking powder in two batches, mix well.
  6. Add oil, mix well.
  7. Pour into a cake tin and put into a preheated oven (160 degrees Celcius) for up to 40 minutes, or until it browns at the top.

Alternative Versions

It seems that as the pandemic raged on, more and more alternatives to the delicacies we love have been replicated and posted on the Internet.

A while back, an unsung hero had unearthed several gems in the form of frozen food, that supposedly taste uncannily similar to the actual restaurant’s version. For instance, he discovered a frozen nugget brand that purportedly tastes 98% like McDonald’s.

He also found frozen drumlets that allegedly taste 96% like Pizza Hut’s.


Truly, he’s the hero we need, but don’t deserve.

And though one could preach that the copy will never quite be as good as the original, I feel it necessary to state that amidst the current situation…

A sub-par copy will still be infinitely better than having none at all.

And so, with that in mind, feel free to try out the banana cake recipe for yourself! And who knows;

You may just be able to start selling these versions because they taste so similar to the original!


P.s. Just don’t market them as Hiap Joo’s, because they’re not 100% similar.

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