This delicious Apple Upside Down Cake recipe makes a great holiday centerpiece. A fruity cake flavored with cinnamon, a truly indulgent treat.
I love apple desserts! And this cake is my new favorite! It’s full of fall flavors – Fresh apples and cinnamon flavors are a heavenly duo. This amazing upside-down cake is not only scrumptious, but it’s really simple to make too!
The Beauty of An Upside Down Cake
The beauty of the caramel apple upside down cake is that the top of the cake already frosted when it comes out of the oven. The fruit and caramel topping bakes underneath the cake and then inverted onto a serving plate with an impressive presentation. But it’s not just beautiful – it’s mouthwatering delicious!
For those of you with a sweet tooth, this cake goes perfectly with a scoop of Vanilla Ice Cream!
Why This Recipe Works
- Using Melted Butter not only offers flavor, but produces less air into the batter, making a cake with enough structure to hold the weight of the fruit.
- Cooking the apples in the topping creates a fruit infused caramel sauce that’s simply delicious.
- Using apple juice in the cake instead of milk gives the cake a second level of apple flavor.
- The Brown sugar and butter in the topping as well of the cake gives the recipe buttery caramel richness throughout.
How To Make Apple Upside Down Cake
- Slice the fresh apple, coat with lemon juice and set aside.
- To make the sauce, melt sugar and butter, mix in ground cinnamon.
- Pour the mixture into a round cake pan.
- Arrange the apples in the pan.
- Make the cake batter.
- Pour the batter over the brown sugar mixture and apples.
- Bake for around 30 minutes.
- Flip the cake onto a plate.
- Serve and enjoy!
- Apples: I used golden delicious apples, but you can use your favorite such as Honeycrisp, or Fuji. For a more tart flavor, use Granny Smith Apples.
- Brown Sugar: Brown sugar provides a wonderful caramel taste to the syrup, but at a push you can use granulated white sugar.
- Butter: I use salted butter in my baking, but unsalted butter works just as well.
- Flour: All purpose flour is best for this cake, when adding your baking soda and baking powder make sure they are fresh and not out of date as this can affect the rising of your cake batter. You can also use cake flour (just omit raising agents and replace like for like)
Step By Step Instructions
In a small saucepan, melt the brown sugar and butter together over medium heat.
Pour the mixture into the bottom of a cake pan to cool while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
Core, peel and slice the apples and then place the apple wedges into the cooled sauce forming a decorative, circular pattern.
Add the dry ingredients to a medium bowl. Then mix to combine.
In a separate large bowl, mix the wet ingredients
Add the wet to the dry and mix to combine.
Then spread batter over the apples being careful not to shift the pattern of the apple slices.
Remove cake from the oven and allow to cool on a cooling rack for just 15 minutes.
Invert the warm cake onto a cake plate. Some of the juices from the topping may run down the sides.
Slice and serve the cake while it’s still warm.
The gooey, soft apple topping reminds me of warm caramel apples on top of a light and beautiful cinnamon vanilla cake – just heaven!
Storing and Freezing Instructions ❄
- Storing this cake: Store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Place toothpicks around the edges and the middle and place plastic wrap over it. The toothpicks stop the plastic wrap from sticking.
- Freezing this cake: Let the cake cool, then place it in the freezer for a couple of hours (unwrapped). Once the outside of the cake is frozen, wrap with plastic wrap and then foil. Freeze for up to 3 months.
Tips & Variations
- Make sure you grease your pan well, non stick pans are a good choice for upside down cake.
- Allow the cake to cool for the full 15 minutes before turning it out or it won’t come out of the pan cleanly.
- To Turn the cake out, run a knife around the edges of the pan and in one motion flip the cake onto a plate. Leave the pan on top for a few minutes then lift.
- Don’t refrigerate the cake to cool. It could produce an overly dense cake.
- For an extra zing in the caramel, add orange zest to the mixture.
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Let’s Make Apple Upside Down Cake
For the topping:
- 2 medium-sized apples I used 2 golden delicious
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- ¼ cup butter
- ⅓ cup brown sugar packed
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the cake:
- 1⅓ cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup brown sugar packed
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup butter melted and cooled
- ⅔ cup apple juice room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- Preheat the oven to 350F Grease a 9 inch cake pan (that's at least 2 inches deep) and set aside.
For the topping:
- In a small saucepan, mix butter and brown sugar together over medium heat. Whisk occasionally, until butter has melted. Then cook while constantly whisking for 1 minute as mixture thickens. Remove the heat, and mix in the cinnamon. Pour into a the prepared pan and set aside to cool while you prepare the apples.
- Peel, core and slice the apples into ¼ inch slices. Add the lemon juice to the apples and toss to coat. Arrange the apples into the cooled sauce in a decorative pattern. Set aside.
For the cake:
- In a medium mixing bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, brown sugar, and sugar.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together the apple juice, vanilla, and egg. Mix well to combine. Add the flour mixture and mix to combine.
- Gently spread the batter over the apples (being careful not to shift the apples out of place). Bake 30-40 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
- Remove cake from the oven and cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes. Invert the warm cake onto a cake stand or serving plate. Some of the juices from the topping will go down the sides of the cake – that’s just fine. Slice and serve the cake warm.