Easy Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Recipe

For the most part, we tend to look down on canned fruits and vegetables as being inferior to fresh ones, and in many cases we're right. Canned produce, however, does have its moments. When making tomato sauce, for one thing, canned tomatoes are actually superior to ones just off the vine. Canned pineapple, as well, may be better for cooking than the fresh kind. It's less acidic, so canned pineapple is a much better option for a Jell-O dessert, for example.

In upside-down cake, recipe developer Ting Dalton feels canned pineapple is "more aesthetically pleasing" due to the fact that "the perfectly cut rings of [canned] pineapple [are] what give this cake its nostalgic retro feel of the seventies." She also says that this cake "never fails to please," but notes that it's also "super easy to make." Canned pineapple rings and all, Dalton's upside-down cake is a pretty traditional one. It does, however, involve a scratch-made cake rather than the boxed mix called for in many recipes. That being said, it's still an easy recipe and, in just an hour's time, you'll have a delicious, retro-looking, homemade pineapple upside-down cake!

Collect the necessary ingredients for pineapple upside-down cake

In addition to the aforementioned pineapple rings, the cake topping is made with brown sugar and butter. You'll need butter for the batter, too, plus granulated sugar, eggs, flour, baking powder, a pinch of salt, vanilla extract, and milk.

Make the cake topping

As you're getting started with things, preheat the oven to 300 F. Butter the sides of a 9-inch springform pan, then line the bottom with parchment paper.

Mix the brown sugar, honey, and ½ stick (4 tablespoons) of butter and melt them together in a pan over medium heat. Spoon the sugar mixture into the base of the springform pan, then arrange the pineapple rings on top. (You may have leftovers.) Dalton says the brown sugar topping "adds another depth of flavor to the pineapple rings" and soaks into the cake itself.

Make the cake batter

Beat the remaining butter together with the sugar until well-combined, then add the eggs one at a time. Fold the flour into the batter along with the baking powder, then stir in the vanilla and milk. Don't over-stir the batter! Once all of the ingredients are combined and the mixture is relatively smooth, go ahead and spoon it over the pineapple rings in the pan.

Bake, flip the cake, and serve

Bake the cake for 35 to 40 minutes, using a skewer to check to see when it's done. You know the drill: skewer comes out coated with raw batter, cook the cake a little longer. If it comes out clean, you're good to go. The top of the cake should also look golden.

Let the cake sit for 10 minutes, then remove the sides of the springform pan. Invert the cake over a plate, peeling the paper off the pineapple if necessary. The cake can be served just as it is, or you could add a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream. Dalton says the cake should last for up to 4 days in an airtight container. She feels that a slice of this cake would be "great served with a cup of tea for an afternoon treat."

Easy Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Recipe
5 from 43 ratings
This easy recipe will guide you through making a sweet and delicious pineapple upside-down cake.
Prep Time
Cook Time
pineapple upside down cake
Total time: 1 hour
  • 4 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened and divided
  • 2 (8-ounce) cans of pineapple rings, drained
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • pinch salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  1. Preheat the oven to 300 F.
  2. Butter the sides of a 9-inch springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  3. Combine the brown sugar and 4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter in a small frying pan and melt over medium heat.
  4. Spoon the sugar mixture into the base of the pan.
  5. Arrange the pineapple slices over the sugar mixture.
  6. Beat the remaining butter with the sugar until smooth, then stir in the eggs one at a time.
  7. Fold in the flour, baking powder, and salt into the batter, then add the vanilla and milk and stir until just combined.
  8. Spoon the batter over the pineapple rings.
  9. Bake the cake for 35 to 40 minutes until it is golden in color and a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  10. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
  11. Remove the sides of the springform pan and carefully invert the cake onto a plate so the pineapple is on top (you may need to peel off the paper).
  12. Serve the cake as-is, or top with ice cream or whipped cream if desired.
Calories per Serving 473
Total Fat 24.9 g
Saturated Fat 15.1 g
Trans Fat 0.9 g
Cholesterol 121.1 mg
Total Carbohydrates 59.4 g
Dietary Fiber 1.1 g
Total Sugars 39.3 g
Sodium 139.4 mg
Protein 5.0 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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