A family of four were removed from a JetBlue flight earlier this month after trying to stow a birthday cake in the overhead compartment of a plane flying out of Newark Airport.

The family were due to fly to Las Vegas for mum Minta's 40th birthday, on a surprise trip to meet up with some relatives.

Her husband Cameron Burke told the New York Daily News that a flight attendant asked him to store the cake under the seat in front of him instead of in the overhead bin.

"A flight attendant nicely asked me to remove the cake from that compartment, so I moved it to another one," Cameron told the newspaper.

"She then asked me to move it to underneath the seat in front of me, I did."

Cameron said a different flight attendant then told him he "was being non-compliant."

Burke then said that two officials from Port Authority investigated the matter and determined there was no wrong-doing on his part, but his family was still removed from the plane.

The airline disputed Burke's account, saying the family placed the cake in an overhead bin meant for "safety and emergency equipment" and declined to remove it even after multiple requests.

"The customers became agitated, cursed and yelled at the crew, and made false accusations about a crew member's fitness to fly," Doug McGraw, a spokesman for the airline, said in a statement.

"After the customers refused to speak with a team leader about the situation, the Port Authority Police Department was called and the entire aircraft deplaned. The Captain determined the customers' behaviour demonstrated a risk for additional escalation in air and would not be allowed to fly."

McGraw added that the video currently "circulating does not depict the entire incident and only starts after the objectionable behaviour occurred and law enforcement was called."

It is the latest incident which has emerged since a doctor was thrown off a United Airlines flight last month.