To prepare cupcakes, place muffin cup liners in 12 muffin cups. Coat each paper liner with cooking spray.
Weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 3 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.
Combine 1/4 cup granulated sugar and banana in a small bowl; set aside. Combine remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar, butter, and vanilla in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add banana mixture to sugar mixture, beating well. Add flour mixture and yogurt alternately to sugar mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture.
Spoon batter evenly into prepared muffin cups. Bake at 350° for 24 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes on a wire rack, and remove cupcakes from pan. Cool completely on a wire rack.
To prepare frosting, combine cream cheese and vanilla in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating just until smooth. Spread about 1 tablespoon frosting onto each cupcake. Sprinkle each cupcake with toasted walnuts, if desired.
When I first made these, I was not fond of the sweet frosting, but since I made a little adjustment to the frosting, I am in love with these! And so are the friends who have tried the cupcakes I've made! I just felt that the frosting was too sweet, but some people may like that. I recalled a dirt cake recipe that combined some cool whip into the cream cheese and powdered sugar mixture, and that was almost heaven when I tried that a while back! Sure enough, I followed the frosting recipe on here, and just added some cool whip until it was a nice thick consistency for spreading, and it did a great job toning down the sweetness, still giving that cheesy taste. Just delicious! After baking them, I cooled them for 10 mins in the pan, and then on a rack in the fridge. They were cooled and frosted in less than 30 minutes. They were so spongey and moist it was unbelievable! The cool whip added to the frosting makes a lot, so I have some leftover in my freezer for next time!
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