Cakes/ Caramel/ Classic Desserts/ Dessert/ Fruit Desserts/ Holiday

Pineapple Upside Down Cake

April 16, 2015

Moist cake topped with pineapples and a thick caramel sauce. It’s made upside-down, then flipped over after baking.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake |

A few months ago, while I was wandering around on Pinterest (like I do about every 2 hours), I stumbled upon a photo of my banana upside down cake on the front page. I kept scrolling down and saw it again. And again. And again.

When you hit publish on any new post, you have no clue if people are going to like it or not, no matter how much work you put into it. All I know is that some posts just work. It might be the photos, the recipe, or even just luck.

With some spare time around the holidays lately, and a decision to slow things down for a while just to relax and have fun with the blog, I started digging into my Google analytics (as you can tell, when I decide to take a break from work, I basically start working on other stuff).

Apparently, that banana cake is still one of my frontrunners, which means you like either caramel, upside down cakes, or bananas. I’m assuming it’s not just the bananas, which is why I thought it would be a good idea to share with you my pineapple version of this cake, which is another family favorite. I know – there’s about a billion ‘favorites’, which says a lot about my family.

This cake is made with an irresistible caramel topping, delicious fruit, and delectably moist cake batter. It is the definition of heaven, and only takes 3 simple steps:

  1. Make the caramel by cooking butter and sugar until the mixture is thick and smooth. Then place in the pan.
  2. Arrange pineapples in the pan over the caramel. I use drained canned pineapple slices to make life easier, but you can also use fresh pineapple that’s peeled, cored, and cut into ¼-inch thick slices.
  3. Make the cake batter and pour it over the pineapples.

While the cake can be kept for more than a day, it will look appealing only on the first day it’s made. By the following day, the pineapples won’t look as attractive. Still, this fact didn’t stop me from nibbling it even several days later. Looking good is overrated, as Mama says.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake |

Optional Additions and Substitutions:

  • Add a pinch of cardamom to the dry ingredient mixture.
  • For a tropical version, add ¾ cup sweetened shredded coconut to the cake batter. You can also replace the sour cream with 1/2 cup coconut milk.
  • Add a tablespoon of grated orange zest to the butter and sugar when making the cake, and replace part of the sour cream (about half) with orange juice.
  • Some of the sour cream can be replaced with unsweetened pineapple juice.
5 from 2 votes
Pineapple Upside Down Cake |
Pineapple Upside Down Cake
YIELD: 9 -inch/23cm cake
Moist cake topped with pineapples and a thick caramel sauce. It’s made upside-down, then flipped over after baking.

Pineapple Topping:
  • 5 tablespoons (70g/2.5 oz.) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup (150 g/5.3 oz.) light or dark brown sugar
  • 6-8 pineapple slices , canned and well-drained, or fresh
  • 1 1/2 cups (200g/7 oz.) all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick/115g) butter, softened
  • 1 cup (200g/7 oz.) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (145g/5 oz.) sour cream
  1. Preheat oven to 350F/180C and butter a 9-inch cake pan. For an easy release of the cake later on, line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper.
  2. Make the pineapple topping: In a small, deep, heavy saucepan place butter and sugar. Cook over medium heat until butter is melted, sugar is dissolved, and mixture is bubbling. Pour into prepared pan and swirl pan until bottom is completely covered in caramel.
  3. Make the cake: In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  4. In a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter and sugar on medium speed for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Occasionally scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla extract. On low speed, beat in the flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating it with the sour cream in 2 additions, starting and ending with the flour. Do not over mix.
  5. Place pineapple slices in the pan in one even layer, pressing them into the caramel. Pour batter carefully over pineapples and smooth the top. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  6. Let cool for exactly 10 minutes on a wire rack, then run a knife along the edges of the pan and invert onto a plate. Let the cake cool completely.
  7. Serve warm or at room temperature.
  8. While the cake can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, it will look appealing only on the first day it’s made. By the following day, the pineapples won’t look as attractive.


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  • Reply
    April 16, 2015 at 8:19 pm

    My mother always made this when we were young and I haven’t had it in ages.. I can smell it right now…Yumm…. and with cream.

    I will need to try your banana upside down one.. Delish.



  • Reply
    April 17, 2015 at 12:06 pm

    This recipe just sounds so awesome, I decided to try it this weekend, hope it will come out well. Thanks for sharing and inspiring!

    • Reply
      April 19, 2015 at 6:49 am

      It’s such an amazing cake! I hope you’ll enjoy it! 🙂

      • Reply
        March 18, 2021 at 7:29 am

        Is it ok if we skip the sour cream?

        • Reply
          March 30, 2021 at 5:51 am

          It’s necessary for the recipe, the cake would be dry without it.

  • Reply
    April 18, 2015 at 1:57 pm

    איזה יופי של עוגה
    ראיתי לא פעם עוגות אננס הפוכות אבל אף פעם לא הכנתי
    נשמעת לי עוגה מאדדדדדדדדדדדד טעימה, במיוחד עם הקרמל למעלה
    מקווה לנסות בקרוב 🙂

    • Reply
      April 19, 2015 at 6:41 am

      You really should, Winnie! It’s really that good! 🙂

  • Reply
    Allie BakingAMoment
    April 21, 2015 at 10:41 am

    I can just tell by your gorgeous photos, how sweet and buttery this cake is! It looks amazing and I love the substitution ideas you’ve given too!

    • Reply
      April 22, 2015 at 4:55 am

      Thank you so much Allie! 🙂

  • Reply
    May 11, 2018 at 8:56 pm

    sounds like heaven! can’t wait to try it, with some of your suggested subs! thanks

  • Reply
    Maryanne Reall
    June 12, 2020 at 6:34 pm

    can I use yogurt instead of sour cream?

    • Reply
      Maryanne Reall
      June 12, 2020 at 6:35 pm

      and an 8 X 8 square pan/

    • Reply
      June 14, 2020 at 1:48 am

      Hi Maryanne, personally I think the cake is the most delicious with sour cream, but it’s possible to replace it with plain yogurt.

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