15-Minute Cherry Upside-Down Cake Recipe

When it comes to entertaining, it's a good idea to have a few tricks up your sleeve. Perhaps you have a dish that you can practically make with your eyes closed that always receives high praise, or a quick dessert that is delicious and impressive. This cherry upside-down cake recipe by Jennine Bryant certainly fits into the latter category. Bryant is a food blogger and photographer at The Marshside Pantry. "I love how deceptively complex this cake seems, when really it's so basic and quick to make," she says.

Aside from the fact that you can whip this up in 15 minutes without even turning on your oven — which, according to Bryant, "makes it great for impromptu dinner parties" — the recipe is incredibly versatile. This is one of Bryant's favorite cakes to prepare and you'll soon see why. As Bryant remarks, "In the U.K., it's considered a classic dessert," and we're glad it continues to gain popularity on this side of the Atlantic. Regardless of whether you are planning to host anytime soon, you'll want to try out this tasty cherry upside-down cake recipe.

Get the ingredients together to prepare this delicious cherry upside-down cake

Thanks to the brief ingredient list, you won't be scrambling around for items for this 15-minute cake recipe. First, you'll need to mix powdered cinnamon with the cherries. The combination of the two creates the ideal balance of sweet and earthy flavors. As for the cherries, if you can get your hands on fresh ones, you'll have to take the time to pit them. (Alternatively, frozen cherries usually come pitted and are a good way to save time and enjoy this cake regardless of season.) The cake batter is pretty straightforward and requires butter, granulated sugar, eggs, flour, and baking powder. 

In case you're eager to make this cake, but have another fruit in mind, Bryant notes that the options are flexible. "The standard fruit to use is tinned pineapple, but you can really use most fruits: oranges, strawberries, apricots, plums, etc.," she says.

Combine the cherries with cinnamon and sugar

Start off by lightly greasing a microwavable bowl or cake pan and lining the bottom with parchment paper. You'll want to choose a bowl with a relatively flat base to have more area to spread out the cherries. Next, set out a mixing bowl, and add in the pitted cherries as well as 1 tablespoon of sugar and  ½ teaspoon of cinnamon. Mix everything together to properly coat the cherries with the cinnamon sugar to maximize the flavor in each bite.

Spread the cherry mixture across the bottom of the bowl

Next, you'll want to transfer the cherry mixture into the microwavable bowl you prepared. Carefully spoon the cherries into the bowl, spreading them evenly across the base to create a uniform layer of cherries. Keep in mind that, as the name indicates, the bottom of the cake will eventually be turned upside-down to become the top. To ensure that the cake looks its best, be sure that the cherries are well spread out to avoid any gaps.

Combine the butter, sugar, eggs, flour, and baking powder to make the batter

Next, set out a stand mixer to make the cake batter. If you don't have one, use a large bowl and a wooden spoon or spatula, and be sure to mix the ingredients together vigorously. Combine the butter, ½ cup sugar, eggs, flour, and baking powder in the bowl. Mix the ingredients together until they are well blended and you have formed a smooth batter.

Pour the batter over the cherries, and microwave it for seven minutes

Now that the batter is ready, it's time to assemble the cake. Carefully pour the batter over the cherries in the microwavable bowl. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to uniformly spread the batter across such that it covers all of the cherries. Transfer the bowl with the cherries and cake batter to the microwave, and cook for seven minutes on high. Leave the cake to rest in the microwave for an additional two minutes.

Turn the cake upside down onto a plate

After you have let the cake rest, the bowl should have cooled down enough to touch it. Remove it from the microwave — it's time to flip the cake! While the task might seem daunting, Bryant recommends to "put a plate on the top of the cake tin/bowl, and then flip it all over in one go." Once you've completed the flip, "Gently lift off the bowl, and peel off the baking paper." The dark cherry topping should now be visible. 

Serve the upside down cherry cake with whipped cream and fresh cherries

Bryant suggests serving this cake warm with whipped cream and fresh cherries, and we're definitely on board. If you love chocolate as much as Bryant does, take a cue from her: "I would definitely recommend chocolate drizzle," she says. If you hadn't already tried the combination, Bryant confirms, "It makes such a delicious pairing with cherries." Or, for something a little more indulgent, Bryant suggests, "Another great option would be ice cream (vanilla, chocolate, or pick your favorite!), or flavored creams such as almond cream." 

Although Bryant notes, "[It is] definitely best eaten fresh and still warm," she recommends storing leftovers in the fridge for up to three days.

15-Minute Cherry Upside-Down Cake Recipe
5 from 14 ratings
You'll knock it out of the park with this simple recipe for cherry upside-down cake. The best part? You'll spend less time shopping and more time eating!
Prep Time
Cook Time
upside-down cherry cake
Total time: 15 minutes
  • 1 ½ cups fresh or frozen cherries, pitted
  • ½ cup + 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided
  • ½ teaspoon powdered cinnamon
  • ½ cup butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  1. Lightly grease a microwavable bowl or cake pan, and line it with baking paper.
  2. Combine the cherries with 1 tablespoon of sugar and ½ teaspoon of cinnamon before placing the mixture into the bottom of the prepared microwavable bowl.
  3. In a stand mixer, combine the butter, ½ cup of sugar, eggs, flour, and baking powder until everything is thoroughly mixed.
  4. Pour the cake batter on top of the cherries in the microwavable bowl, and spread evenly, coating the cherries.
  5. Place the bowl in the microwave, and cook the cake on high for 7 minutes.
  6. Leave the cake to stand in the microwave for an additional 2 minutes.
  7. When the bowl is cool to the touch, place a plate on the top, and flip the whole thing over to turn out the cake.
  8. Gently lift the bowl away, and peel off the baking paper.
  9. Serve the cherry upside-down cake warm with whipped cream and more fresh cherries.
Calories per Serving 312
Total Fat 17.2 g
Saturated Fat 10.3 g
Trans Fat 0.6 g
Cholesterol 102.7 mg
Total Carbohydrates 36.8 g
Dietary Fiber 1.3 g
Total Sugars 23.3 g
Sodium 117.0 mg
Protein 4.2 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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