Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Pineapple Upside Down Cake Dennis Gottlieb/StockFood Creative/Getty Images
Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 35 mins
Total: 55 mins
Servings: 9 servings

The classic American pineapple upside-down cake is an old-fashioned cake baked in one layer. Pineapple and (usually) maraschino cherries are arranged in the bottom of the cake pan with brown sugar and butter. The pineapple rings and cherries make a decorative topping when the cake is baked and then inverted onto a cake plate.

This version includes pecan halves. The pineapple upside-down cake makes a fabulous dessert served warm with a dollop of whipped cream or ice cream on the side.

The classic cake is baked in a 9-inch cake pan with a layer of pineapple, maraschino cherries, and pecan halves.


  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar (firmly packed)
  • 1 can (14 ounces) pineapple slices (9 slices) 
  • 9 maraschino cherries (without stems)
  • pecan halves
  • For the Cake:
  • 6 tablespoons butter (softened)
  • 1 cup sugar (granulated)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 (6 1/2 ounces) cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup milk

Steps to Make It

Prepare the Pineapple Layer

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Heat the oven to 350 F.

  3. In a 9-inch square cake pan, melt the 4 tablespoons of butter; sprinkle with brown sugar. Arrange pineapple and cherries and nut halves on the sugar, making a decorative design.

Prepare the Cake Topping

  1. In a mixing bowl with an electric mixer, beat 6 tablespoons of butter; gradually add 1 cup of granulated sugar and beat until light and fluffy.

  2. Add the egg and beat well.

  3. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt; whisk to blend thoroughly.

  4. With the mixer on low, beat the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture alternating with the milk and ending with dry ingredients.

  5. Pour the batter over the pineapple slices and spread carefully to cover.

  6. Bake in the preheated oven for about 35 to 45 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center of the cake should come out clean.

  7. Let the cake cool for about 5 minutes before inverting onto a cake plate.

  8. Serve warm with whipped cream, if desired.

Peach Upside-Down Cake

Omit the pineapple and cherries. Melt the 4 tablespoons of butter in the pan and sprinkle with the brown sugar. Drain 1 can (15 ounces) of sliced peaches. Arrange the slices atop the brown sugar and butter mixture. Scatter pecan halves around the peach halves. Prepare the cake batter and spread over the peach layer. Bake as directed.​

Expert Tips

  • Pineapple tidbits or chunks may be used instead of the traditional rings. 

  • Replace part of the milk with juice from the pineapple.

You Might Also Like

Tropical Bundt Cake With Pineapple Coconut Topping

Quick Peach and Coconut Upside-Down Biscuits​​

Judy's Pineapple Cake With Pineapple Filling​​