This easy pineapple upside-down cake takes less than 15 minutes to put together but it’s a total show-stopper. You’ll absolutely love it!
Can I tell you something? Before last month I never had an interest in pineapple upside-down cake—making it or eating it—because it reminds me of ham prepared like this, and I really don’t like ham. (Am I a weirdo for comparing cake to ham?)
BUT! I’m headed to Honduras in a couple of weeks (!!!!) so I wanted something tropical to get myself in the mood. And I also wanted to make something super easy because I have so much to do before I leave. Like cuddle Cookie and cry at the thought of leaving her.
This easy pineapple upside-down consists of a yellow cake topped with pineapple and maraschino cherries that have gotten all caramel-y and delicious thanks to a generous helping of butter and brown sugar.
Top your cake with some whipped cream and you have yourself a festive dessert equally suited to end a fancy dinner or to accompany a cup of tea on a lazy Sunday.
Why you’ll love this easy pineapple upside-down cake:
- It takes literally 15 minutes to prepare (not including baking time)
- The cake layer is a box mix so it’s virtually fool-proof
- Did I mention that it’s EASY???
How to Make Easy Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
Pour melted butter into a 13- by 9-inch baking pan. (You don’t need to spray the pan with cooking spray first—the butter is more than enough to keep the cake from sticking.) Sprinkle brown sugar over that, then top with pineapple rings and maraschino cherries; press the fruit lightly into the brown sugar.
Note: be sure you reserve the juice from the can of pineapple rings—you’ll use this in the cake layer.
Next, combine pineapple juice, white or yellow cake mix, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth; this will take about 2 minutes.
Baker’s tip: if you don’t have enough pineapple juice (you’ll need 1 cup) or if you accidentally discarded it, you can substitute water to make up the difference. No problem—the cake will still be delicious!
Pour the cake batter over the pineapple and cherries and smooth the top with a spatula.
Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove your upside-down cake from the oven and immediately run a knife around the edge of the cake.
Invert a cutting board or large serving platter on top of the pan and flip both the pan and the cutting board over. Leave the pan on top of the cake for 5 minutes, then carefully remove it. And voilà. Pineapple upside-down cake achieved!
Can you even believe how easy that was? I’m so glad I got over my ham-phobia so I could experience the wonder that is easy pineapple upside-down cake :).
Did you make this easy pineapple upside-down cake? Awesome! Be sure to post a picture on Instagram and tag @theitsybitsykitchen so I can see (and share!).
This easy pineapple upside-down cake is simple enough for even a novice baker to prepare with success. But it's still completely delicious!
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter melted
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 20-ounce can pineapple rings
- 19 or 20 maraschino cherries
- 1 15.25-ounce box white or yellow cake mix*
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- whipped cream for serving if desired
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (or 325 if you’re using a dark pan).
- Pour the melted butter into the bottom of a 13-by-9-inch baking pan. Sprinkle the brown sugar over the butter in an even layer.
- Drain the pineapple rings, reserving the juice for the cake. Arrange the pineapple over the brown sugar and place a cherry in the center of each pineapple slice. Arrange additional cherries around the slices; lightly press the cherries and pineapple into the brown sugar.
- Measure out 1 cup of the reserved pineapple juice (if you don’t have enough add a little water). Combine the juice, cake mix, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla (if using) in a large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer set to medium speed for 2 minutes, until batter is smooth.
- Pour the batter into the pan and gently smooth the top. Tap the pan on the counter a couple of times to eliminate air bubbles, then bake 38 to 44 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and quickly run a knife around the edge of the pan.
- Place a large serving platter or cutting board on top of the pan and flip them both over. Let the cake pan sit on the platter/cutting board for 5 minutes, then carefully remove. Cool cake for 30 minutes, then serve (topped with whipped cream if desired).
- Cake will last loosely covered in the fridge for up to 2 days.
*I used Betty Crocker yellow cake mix.
If you forgot to reserve the juice from your can of pineapple (or if you don't have enough juice) you can substitute water.
Adapted from Betty Crocker Sheet Pan Desserts