How To Make This Easy Pineapple Upside
There are lots of variations on pineapple upside-down cake that use fresh pineapple and a made-from-scratch yellow cake.
These versions are delicious, but I wanted to make a bit of a shortcut version. Something super simple, that anyone could throw together on a whim for unexpected guests or last-minute gatherings.
This easy pineapple upside-down cake uses a yellow-cake version of my doctored cake mix to make a cake that tastes homemade, but comes together in no time at all.
How To Soften Ice Cream For A Cake
REFRIGERATOR METHOD: To soften in the refrigerator, transfer ice cream from the freezer to the refrigerator 20-30 minutes before using. COUNTER METHOD: Let the ice cream stand at room temperature for 10-15 minutes. MICROWAVE METHOD: Hard ice cream can also be softened in the microwave at 30% power for about 30 seconds.
The Classic Pineapple Upside
Does it get more retro than a pineapple upside-down cake? This beauty immediately conjures up visions of 50s and 60s kitsch, but the recipe has been around for close to 100 years now. Though usually a one-layer cake, this Duncan Hines double-layer pineapple upside-down cake is twice as nice! The same delectable flavors that made this a favorite for so long have been transformed into a darling layer cake with a creamy frosting center and cherries on top.
How could I resist? I decided it was time to make this pineapple confection!
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Crushed Pineapple Upside Down Cake
This Crushed Pineapple Upside Down Cake is such a delicious and EASY cake to make, and its the cake everyone in my family requests for me to make again and again.
The sweet brown sugar and butter glaze, combined with loads of pineapple, and a buttery delicious yellow cake, make for an unbelievable flavor you wont be able to resist.
Plus, it looks so pretty and fancy topped with maraschino cherries, with no decoration skills required.
I love eating a warm slice with some vanilla bean ice cream or topping it with some whipped cream, but honestly this cake is so good you dont have to add anything at all!
Can I Make A Layered Pineapple Upside
Sort of. You can make a yellow cake mix according to the boxs directions but add a full can of crushed pineapple in place of water. Add some diced maraschino cherries, if you like. Bake in two 8 round pans and layer with buttercream frosting and rings of pineapple between them, along with more maraschino cherries.
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Crushed Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe
Grab all the tools for making this easy pineapple upside down cake and my printable recipe below!
You can also watch my video tutorial here on my Youtube Channel for step-by-step instructions on how to make it.
Must-Have Tools for Crushed Pineapple Upside Down Cake:
- 1 20 oz can of pineapple tidbits, drained and juice reserved
- 1 20 oz can of crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 6 oz can of maraschino cherries, drained and stems removed
The Butter Vanilla Cake Aka The Queen Mama
This cake is FANTASTIC!!!! It just melts in your mouth and takes pineapple upside-down cake to the next level. Its now good enough to eat plain. The cake was the part that kept failing on me before but with the addition of butter-flavored shortening, heavy cream, a tad bit more sugar, and reducing the baking time, the results are perfection! The crumb is soft, yet firm enough to withstand that heavy, rich topping. And the flavor has so much more personality now! So buttery with the light hint of vanilla.
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Duncan Hines Pineapple Upside Down Cake
This Duncan Hines Pineapple Upside Down Cake is incredibly moist and buttery. It has a fine-looking pineapple and cherry topping glazed with scrumptious caramelized brown sugar. And boy, is it a piece of cake to make!
This old-fashioned favorite is made with Duncan Hines Pineapple Supreme Cake Mix, pineapple slices, maraschino cherries, and whipped topping.
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Whoever said you need to be a kitchen expert to make a stunning cake has never heard of this recipe. With this recipe, you can easily bake this classic favorite and fool your family into thinking youre a baking pro!
Improved Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe Read The Difference
I developed and published a pineapple upside down cake recipe several years ago. Its certainly loved by many, but the cake is prone to overflowing because theres quite a lot of batter. Additionally, it can taste overly wet and the instructions were never written very clearly. As a cookbook author and baker, Ive certainly improved my craft over the years! Though I kept the original recipe written in the notes below, I want to share my new and improved version with you.
My improved pineapple upside down cake recipe, written below, is much softer than my original. Using creamed butter instead of melted, cake flour instead of all-purpose flour, all white sugar instead of brown sugar + white, and using egg whites guarantees a huge textural difference. I adapted it from my white cake. Additionally, well skip the pineapple juice in the cake batter because it often produces a wet crumb. Finally, my new recipe doesnt yield as much cake batter, so we dont have to worry about overflowing.
The pineapple cherry topping remains the same. You dont mess with perfection.
- Old Cake Recipe : Overly heavy, wet, overflowed
- New Cake Recipe : Softer, pleasantly moist, reduced amount of batter
Were using the same ingredients in my updated cake batter just in different forms, ratios, and amounts. Baking is truly a science and Im happy to continue to deliver you well tested and improved recipes!
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How To Store Pineapple Upside Down Cake
This cake stores best in the refrigerator covered with foil. In order to keep the foil from sticking to the sugary pineapples, spray the foil with non-stick spray before lightly laying on top of the cake. Alternatively, you can stick a few toothpicks around the edges of the cake to hold the foil up.
Tips And Tricks For The Best Upside Down Cake:
- Add pineapple juice to the cake batter, it helps boost the lovely pineapple flavor!
- Drain the pineapple and maraschino cherries and let drain a little on a paper towel to soak up extra liquid, this helps prevent the cake from getting soggy.
- Add an extra egg, sour cream, vanilla pudding mix, and milk to the cake for a super fluffy sponge.
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How To Make This Gluten Free Pineapple Upside Down Cake With The King Arthur Flour Yellow Cake Mix
Making this Pineapple Upside Down Cake with the King Arthur Flour Yellow Cake Mix is also very easy. The biggest difference is that it yields 2 cakes. We also prefer the texture of this one, however, it is more expensive and not always available at local grocery stores. With that said, let’s get baking!
- First, make the super yummy sauce that will become your topping by melting the butter and adding the brown sugar. Pour this mixture into the bottom of your pans.
- Next, lay out the pineapple rings on top of the sauce.
- Now, to make the cake, put the cake mix, butter, mashed bananas, canola oil and pineapple juice in a bowl. Using a hand mixer mix on low speed for 20 seconds, then high speed for 2 minutes.
- Pour the cake mixture into the pan right on top of the pineapple rings.
- Bake both cakes on the center rack in a 350°F oven. Bake for 40-45 minutes until a toothpick or knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes, then run a knife around the outside to loosen. Then invert cakes onto a serving dish or cake stand. If the cakes don’t want to come out, allow them to cool another 10 minutes and tap the bottom to encourage them to release.
We like to serve this with a bit of coconut milk ice cream in the summer, but truthfully it’s completely amazing on its own. My favorite part is the outer edge where the sugar mixture gathers and gets slightly crisp. Mmmmmm, seriously so good!
The History Of Pineapple Upside Down Cake
As I pondered the recipe for this cake, I got to thinking about the idea of flipping a cake upside-down with fruit making its way to the top. Who came up with this idea, anyway? According to food historian Gil Marks, the original idea came from a variety of historic baked goods, including skillet cakes. Not everyone had an oven 100 years ago. So, baked goods like cornbread, shortcakes, and so on were baked in a skillet and then flipped.
It became trendy to put fruit on the bottom of the cake before baking. The French tarte tatin, for instance, was an apple tart flipped upside down. It dates back to the early 20th century.
There were a host of other upside-down treats available back then, as well, but the Pineapple Upside Down Cake is still causing party-goers to flip .
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Pineapple Upside Down Bundt Cake
Pineapple upside down bundt cake is a beautiful cake with the pineapple joined as an ingredient and decoration. The combination of the juice also makes the cakes flavor to get a nice balance of sweetness and sour. For those reasons, this cake is a perfect desert for any occasion. Let try this delicious cake your next time of baking.
of pineapple rings in juice
1 small jar
Add the flour with baking powder and salt into a bowl, whisking well.
Place the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat until creamy. Mix the vanilla into the mixture then add the egg, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
Beat into the mixture the flour mixture and buttermilk alternatively, starting and ending with the flour, mixing well after each addition.
Preheat the oven to 325oF and prepare a 12-cup bundt pan sprayed with cooking spray.
Drain the pineapple rings and set aside, reserving 2 tablespoons of the juice. Add the melted butter, brown sugar and the reserved pineapple juice into a bowl and mix well.
Pour the butter mixture over the bottom of the prepared pan. Arrange the pineapple rings in a single layer onto the mixture in the pan and place a cherry onto the center of each ring.
Pineapple Upside Down Cake Topping
I didnt change my original topping recipe. Sticking with tradition, the topping includes canned pineapple rings, maraschino cherries, butter, and brown sugar. I always use 10 pineapple rings , which is one 20 ounce can. Feel free to use fresh pineapple and cherries. Canned pineapple chunks will be a little messy and could spill down the sides when you invert the cake, so proceed with caution!
- My #1 Tip for the Topping: Blot the wet pineapples and maraschino cherries before using. The more liquid in the fruit, the more liquid that wont set. Excess liquid creates an unpleasantly wet cake.
I know youll appreciate this too: pineapple upside down cake is basically already frosted. Theres no extra decoration required the garnish is literally baked into the cake!
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Whipping Up This Cake Is As Easy As 1
1: Melt your butter in the bottom of a 9×13 pan and sprinkle the brown sugar across the melted butter. I love the tartness of salted butter but you might prefer unsalted butter. If you prefer to use a round cake pan, use a 10-inch cake pan.
2. Place your pineapple rings and maraschino cherries on top of the brown sugar.
3. Make your yellow cake mix according to directions, replacing the water with the reserved pineapple juice. I used a stand mixer with the paddle attachment but you could certainly mix by hand in a medium bowl or use a hand mixer.
Once youve got it mixed, pour the cake batter over the fruit and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 42-45 minutes or until the cake springs back to the touch.
Run a knife around around the sides of the pan then cool for a few minutes on a wire rack. Flip the cake onto a heat-proof dish or tray and leave the baking pan on top for five minutes so any excess liquid can drain down. Remove the pan and allow the cake to cool for 15 minutes before slicing and serving.
The top of this cake is ooey, gooey, caramelly, and delicious! The sweet pineapple flavor will leave you hankering for the tropics!
Some people prefer their Pineapple Upside Down Cake warm others like it cold from the refrigerator. No matter how you slice it up, its yummy! And talk about a moist cake!
Let The Marathon Cake Testing Begin
I pulled a recipe offline to test it out before his birthday. FAIL. So then I tried another popular one. FAILED. Ok so maybe it was me, maybe I just did something wrong. FAILS again. In all fairness, the cakes were actually ok but they needed more sin! More butter, more sugar, moresomething!!
Normally I dont do back-to-back recipe developing/testing/tweaking unless I plan on putting it on my blog but this was one challenge I couldnt turn down. My baby was getting his from-scratch pineapple upside-down cake and it had to be incredible. After making my own versions which were FAILS too LOL I was about ready to go back to my boxed gig but I just couldnt. I DO NOT LET ANY RECIPE WIN, EVER lol. I literally cant stop with a recipe until I get it right. After six cakes my kids were like not again please! lol Thankfully this is a very basic recipe with simple ingredients
So as I was making my final version, I decided to check in with my never-wrong intuition Thats when the idea to use heavy whipping cream AND milk instead of the other liquid combos I had tried Along with some other tips like adding that extra 2 tablespoons of sugar and shortening, whodathunkit! The results? OMG PERFECTION!! It was EXACTLY the texture and flavor I was going for. Soft but dense enough to witthstand that heavy, delicious topping! And a rich buttery flavor that wasnt just an after-thought.
I am converted and now LOVE pineapple upside-down cake or at least THIS recipe!
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Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Bringing back the retro classic! Youll love this Pineapple Upside Down Cake with the sticky caramelised edges on the pineapple. The ultra-moist, tender vanilla cake is studded with pineapple pieces and infused with pineapple juice. You cant help but smile at the sight of this cheerful-looking cake. Right?
My List Of Cake Making Essentials
- I’m a total sucker for a baking pan with a lid. This 9×9 set of two from Wilton is perfect!
- Kitchen Aid Hand Mixer. I’ve used this one for years, and I love it!
- Parchment paper – I like these pre-cut cookie baking sheets because you can cut them in half for a perfect square cake pan liner, or just trace your circle and get 2 out of one sheet!
- All Clad Measuring Cups – I know these are in investment, but they’re sturdy, beautiful and you’ll never have to buy another set again. I use them constantly!
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How Do You Keep The Cake From Sticking
The melted butter in the bottom of the pan should help to prevent the cake from sticking. Just make sure the bottom of the pan is well coated.
You might need to swirl the butter around to make sure the pan is coated thoroughly.
As long as you do these steps, the cake should come out without any issues.
Preparing The Brown Sugar Caramel
The first step in my pineapple upside down cake recipe is making the brown sugar caramel. I melted a stick of butter in the microwave and poured it into my buttered 9×13 glass pan. I then sprinkled in the light brown sugar, mixing the butter and sugar with my hands as I spread them out on the bottom of the pan.
Originally, I only used 1 cup of brown sugarthats what other recipes online used. However, after mixing in 1 cup, it just didnt look right to me, so I added a bit more, then even more, until I had added a total of 2 cups.
At one point I thought that 2 cups might have been too much sugar, but when I tried the cake, I knew that 2 cups was just right. I was VERY glad that I listened to my instincts and added more than 1 cup.
Making the brown sugar caramel for the upside down cake was a good example of how sometimes you have to trust your instincts and modify a recipe if it just doesnt look right as youre making it.
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Angela’s Tips & Recipe Notes
You dont have to use a bundt pan!
- You can use two 8-inch or 9-inch square or round cake pans.
- You could also bake this as a sheet cake in a 9×13 rectangular pan. *See modified cooking times below.
Modified Temp & Cooking Times
- Bake at 325°F for dark or non-stick pans. You can also bake the cake in 2 8-inch or 9-inch rounds for 22-27 minutes. Bake in a 9×13 pan for 21-26 minutes.
Yellow Cake vs. White Cake.
- A yellow cake is different than a white cake. A yellow cake mix tends to be bit sturdier than a white cake.
- A white cake is often a bit lighter and fluffier, so it does not hold up under the brown sugar butter sauce and pineapples as well.