3 Hospitality Tips for Kids and Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake

Enjoy this Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake and simple hospitlity tips for kids!

Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake

For many people, there is something intimidating about entertaining. So I like to think of the words, “having people over,” which I’ve tried to incorporate into the way we’ve raised our kids. I like to say, “we’re having so and so over for dinner for Easter,” rather than, “Kids, get ready! We’re entertaining this weekend.”

The word just sounds so scary. So I’m glad my kids, who are almost all adults now, have learned that having people over can be fun and enjoyable for us, and also a huge blessing to others!

It really is not about us, it’s about the people coming in to our home, and I pray that is a good lesson our kids have learned. Why would it not be?

This time I asked my daughter, Abby, to help me out.

First of all, I want to brag a bit about this girl. She’s my baby, yes, but I love her style and creativity when it comes to cooking and helping me out!


She made this Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake for our guests.

Which I think is elegant and decadent, and perfect for Easter Sunday guests!

Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake

Here are 3 things I think are important for our kids to learn about having people over.

3 Hospitality Tips for Kids

1. Inviting people over is a gift to our guests. You never know the last time they had a dinner invite. People need each other.

2. Things do not have to be perfect to invite others in. Focus on making the food as good as you can, and adding a little ambience, but imperfect is okay and should even be expected.

3. It’s all about them, not about us. As much as reciprocation is nice, it should never be the defining factor of inviting others over. Think about the people who are coming and how you can make their lives better.

Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake

When children are young, hosting others is a huge deal and great teaching opportunity for your family. As they get older though, those early experiences will result in hospitality coming naturally to them, in your home and–eventually–their own.

So thank you to my talented, lovely 17-year-old daughter, Abby, for making the Easter cake, and photographing it as well.

Do you talk about the importance of having guests into your home with your kids?

Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake

Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake

Yield: 8

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes


  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 3 Tbsp. coconut milk
  • 1 1/ 2 cups light brown sugar
  • 1 1/3 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. coconut extract
  • 8 oz. Mascarpone cheese
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. coconut
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cup coconut
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 banana, sliced


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 8-inch round cake pan, then line the bottom with parchment paper.

Roughly mash the (2) bananas in a large bowl, then beat in the eggs. Stir in the oil and coconut milk. Break up any lumps in the brown sugar, then stir it into the banana mixture until well combine. Fold in the flour and the extracts.

Add the mixture to the prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour until done. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes; turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the frosting, beat together the mascarpone cheese with powdered sugar, adding in lemon juice and extracts until smooth and creamy. Spread over the cooled cake.

Puree the coconut in a food processor or chop with a knife to make it very fine.

To make the salted caramel topping, melt the butter in a sauce pan and cook on medium heat until it melts. Add the brown sugar, stirring constantly. Add the coconut and salt; continue to stir and add the extracts. Allow to thicken and cool, spreading on top of the other frosting, leaving 1/2 inch around the outside.

Garnish the top of the cake with sliced banana; serve.

(If the cake is going to be made up ahead of time, soak the sliced banana in lemon juice for a few minutes and drain, before garnishing the cake.)

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21 Responses to “3 Hospitality Tips for Kids and Salted Caramel Coconut Banana Cake”

  1. #
    Barb — April 16, 2014 @ 4:48 am

    Whenever I look at the beautiful photography on your website, I get hungry…… :o)

    • Sandy replied: — April 16th, 2014 @ 12:19 pm

      Wish we could share a piece together, Barb!

  2. #
    Christine from Cook the Story — April 16, 2014 @ 6:25 am

    What a great post, and a gorgeous cake!

    • Sandy replied: — April 16th, 2014 @ 12:20 pm

      Thanks Christine!

  3. #
    bridget {bake at 350} — April 16, 2014 @ 6:48 am

    Looks delicious!!! Way to go, Abby! :)

    • Sandy replied: — April 16th, 2014 @ 12:19 pm

      Thanks, Bridgie! xo

  4. #
    Mary — April 16, 2014 @ 7:23 am

    1 tablespoon of salt seems like a lot, and there is no mention of where to add it.

    • Sandy replied: — April 16th, 2014 @ 12:19 pm

      I fixed it, Mary. Thank you! :) And it’s “Salted Caramel” … yummy!

  5. #
    Wendy — April 16, 2014 @ 12:04 pm

    @Mary, it says 2 teaspoons of salt not 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons is a tablespoon) and it does say where to add it, you add it when you’re making the caramel sauce. I can’t wait to try it this weekend, thanks for sharing :)

    • Sandy replied: — April 16th, 2014 @ 12:19 pm

      Thank you, Wendy :)

  6. #
    naomi — April 16, 2014 @ 1:15 pm

    Love this post. Great tips and lessons to pass on to my kids. And of course the cake – to die for!

  7. #
    Sherry — April 16, 2014 @ 6:41 pm

    Gonna have to try this cake! And…….your posts are no longer coming to my email. Any idea why? I’ve checked spam and everything here and don’t find anything. I even tried to sign up again and it won’t let me, says I’m already subscribed.

  8. #
    Tieghan Gerard — April 16, 2014 @ 8:40 pm

    Great post as always and this cake?!? Amazed!! Abby did awesome!

  9. #
    Kathryn Bechen — April 17, 2014 @ 8:36 pm

    What a gorgeous daughter you have and what a wonderful lesson you’ve taught your children about inviting guests over and the true spirit behind the gesture.

  10. #
    Stacie — April 18, 2014 @ 3:09 pm

    I too entertain often and have the help of my 17 year old daughter. She, in turn, is very comfortable hosting her own friends over regularly. It is a great gift to give to children, the art of entertaining!

  11. #
    Laura Dembowski — April 19, 2014 @ 5:38 am

    This cake is gorgeous! Love all that caramel!

  12. #
    Shaina — April 23, 2014 @ 2:49 pm

    Those tips are wonderful to remind kids of, and the cake is simply gorgeous!

  13. #
    Erika — May 9, 2014 @ 7:46 pm

    This recipe looks delish! More than that though, I appreciate your tips for entertaining. I don’t generally enjoy having others over as our home is a constant ‘work in progress’, but these tips are just what I needed to hear…thanks :)

  14. #
    Regina — May 24, 2014 @ 5:27 pm

    Yummy and the photos are beautiful.

  15. #
    Jean — August 2, 2014 @ 9:11 pm

    I’m assuming that the finely chopped coconut is to go into salted caramel topping? You don’t say what to do with it. Be that as it may, you’ve done a great job with the instructions.

  16. #
    Allison — March 6, 2015 @ 12:39 pm

    made this cake today with my sister- in- law, caramel topping came out like a hard ball of cement. ( figured cooked it too much) We made it again following the reciepe when it came time for the coconut it was really thick and did not look anything like your picture when we were done. Are you sure you need the 1 1/2 cups coconut and the 2tsp of salt? The second batch was inedible due to the salt and the consistency of the caramel. BTW, we are bakers.

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