Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

promised my Twitter friends last week that I would put this recipe on our blog, so here it is, fresh from the oven; smelling so good, cooling on its’ serving platter. This recipe has so much going for it; easy to make; looks like a million bucks, sweetly old-fashioned, with the most amazing sauce; it tastes even better than it looks. Simple to do ….

rrange pineapple rings, dark brown sugar and walnut halves in a 9" straight-sided pan…

hisk up the batter with pineapple juice, eggs, sugar, and vanilla….

ift your dry ingredients…I want my cakes light, so I sift . . .

sift with waxed paper, which is the way my mom taught me, and probably her mom taught her. But I bet people do it all different ways … This is me sifting flour : How do you do it?

ix the dry ingredients with the egg batter; pour it over the fruit, and pop it in the oven.

t comes out looking like this. Immediately turn it onto your serving platter and let it cool. (Hide it, protect it, there is huge temptation to pick out the walnuts or pull the sticky brown sugar from the sides.)

eanwhile you make the sauce with cream and sugar, and an inch-long piece of vanilla bean (slit it open, scrape the seeds into the cream, and throw away the rest) — chill the sauce well in a small pitcher.


nd here it is, with its pitcher of sauce, all ready to go where it went, which was to a Memorial Day Pot Luck with all our best friends. Serve the cake warm or at room temperature; each slice in a puddle of cold sauce.

ow, here’s the RECIPE! (It’s on page 112 of my Summer Book, or just click and you can print it out.)


46 Responses to Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

  1. Rosana Bongiovanni says:

    Maravilhoso, lindo e parece gostoso,humumumu………………

    • sbranch says:

      Google translate says that Rosana wrote: Wonderful, beautiful and looks nice, humumumu … … … … … …

      Obrigado Rosana!!! (I said thank you!!)

  2. Barbara I. says:

    Thank you for your wonderful receipes. Enjoy all of your work. Love your
    Blog. Makes me smile all day. Loved the flying pants.

  3. Karen P says:

    And there you are with a pic of the Summer Book open to the recipe page as you cook! “It warms the cockles of my heart!” 🙂 How do you keep your books from getting all sloppy when you cook? Maybe it’s just me and I’M a messy one?! I want to keep my SB books pristine! I think I need to keep looking to buy one of each for cooking….one for “perusing!”

    • sbranch says:

      If you look close at the photo with the Summer Book you will see that it’s propped up in a plexi-glass bookstand — we have them in my web store too. I usually keep it on top of the fridge with my “book of the season” for kitchen decoration — plus it keeps the book clean!

  4. Patricia says:

    Just a little suggestion Susan…instead of throwing the rest of the bean out after you take out the seeds you can throw them into a bottle of vodka- in a few months you’ll have homemade vanilla! This is what I do- I currently have a lovely amber colored vodka bottle with a few vanilla pods bobbing along in it just waiting to be poured into little bottles and given away as Christmas gifts in December. xx

  5. Aggie says:

    I always bake pineapple upside-down cake for DH b-day. I will make your recipe next month on his special day – thank you – looks delicious!

  6. Jeanne says:

    Can’t wait to try this, looks so yummy……..
    Love your blog, thanks.

  7. Sharon says:

    I am British living in Colorado. I have always made this dish with pears. To me it is a winter dessert served hot with hot custard sauce. My children love it! The custard sauce is made with “Birds Custard” which you should be able to find at most specialty stores. (World Market has it.) It’s in a tin, and is a powder that you mix with hot milk until it’s thick and creamy.

    • sbranch says:

      I’ve heard of it, haven’t used it yet! Thank you!

      • Susan, my husband is British and we both have dual Citizenship. You can buy Bird’s Custard on Amazon in either the powdered form (which you make in a pan on the stove) or you can also buy ready-to-eat cans of Ambrosia Devon Custard, which is just as delicious. Enjoy your next trip! We traveled on QMII when we moved to England (2010) and when we returned home to the US (2017). So much better than flying, and we could bring as much carry-on luggage as would fit into our stateroom. Great memories.

        • sbranch says:

          I agree, we love it for all the same reasons! Why didn’t I think to be born in such a way that I would have dual citizenship??? Big mistake!😂

    • Judy Young says:

      Gosh, I haven’t had Bird’s Custard since I left England in 1971! My Mum used to make small plain cupcakes and we had “cakes and custard” for dessert. To die for!

    • Donna Jones says:

      I live in California, but my BFF lives in England. Every time I go for a visit I smuggle packets of Bird’s custard home with me. And Marks and Spencer chocolate biscuits!

  8. Rae Ann R. from western Minnesota...soon to be back in Michigan... says:

    YUM…my favorite…I’ll have to make one this weekend…60ish and possible rain…thanks for sharing…xoxo…

  9. Cindy Maulin says:

    hi susan…my husband is in heaven..his all-time favorite cake is the Pineapple Upside~Down Cake..sooooooo, of course, I am whipping one up for him inspired by your blog…again… he has been on a “diet” and had been successful in losing 45 pounds..sooooo..this is a double treat!!! soooooo goood….. he is like a dog panting and pacing back and forth in anticipation of the funny!! gotta get him outta the kitchen though…..underfoot..but love him just then same. thanks again Girlfriend!!! xo love, cindy ( and jerry too..)

    • sbranch says:

      I’m happy for him! How GREAT he lost 45 pounds. Spectacular. You go Boy! Enjoy the cake xoxo

    • Pam Erselius says:

      Dear Cindy,
      When I read that your husband was in heaven, I thought you meant literally. I said to myself: how sweet that she’s still making him a cake!
      Then you said, “He’s been on a diet…” I thought, well, I guess so if he hasn’t been eating anything! You followed that by, “he lost 45 pounds” and I knew something was amiss in my understanding!!!!! HA HA HA…

  10. Elizabeth Holcomb says:

    Something is wrong. I’ve made this from the recipe in the Summer book several times and 50 minutes baking time equals a burned cake! I cook mine in a cast iron skillet and went down to 30 minutes baking time and it came out pretty good. Also, do you sift B4 measuring or After measuring the flour? Thanks for the help.

    • sbranch says:

      Well, that’s a difficult question — I’ve made this cake all my life — it was my mother’s recipe, and that hasn’t happened to me. I’ve never heard it from anyone else either — so the only thing I can imagine is that your oven is calibrated a bit high? I hate to put it back on your oven, but I can’t think of anything else. I sift the flour and then I measure it. I’m so glad you didn’t give up on the cake!

  11. Mary A. says:

    Always been one of my favorite cakes…glad you brought it to my attention today. Soo….yummy…especially as I looked at your photos step by step.

  12. joannalea says:

    unable to print recipe,my husbands favorite cake in the whole wide world,so please tell me what i need to do,thanks

    • sbranch says:

      Can you highlight it with your cursor, then copy it and paste it into an email? You can print it from there. Hope this helps!

      • Julie says:

        I will usually just go up to the top right on my computer screen and click on the three little dots. Print is one of the choices on the menu that drops down. Click on “print” and your menu of printers drops down. Choose “save as pdf” and you can capture not only Susan’s recipe but the beautiful illustrations she painted. I hope that will work for you.

  13. Pingback: Cake Of The Week: Pineapple Upside-Down Cake With Vanilla Bean Sauce | melaniejomoore

  14. Amylisa says:

    Thanks for posting this recipe. I will definitely make it. My mom always made pineapple upside down cake, but she’s gone on to heaven now and I never got the recipe. This looks somewhat different from hers, but I know I will always think of her when I eat it. It looks amazing, can’t wait to try it!

  15. My husband and I seldom have desserts, but an exception is when we travel in our darling (!) little trailer. I always make a special dessert to take along, and your pineapple-upside down cake will be my next choice! If you have time, I’d love it if you would take a look at our “Dinky”, so named not because of the obvious reason (its size). He’s named for Dinky, the dog which was tied to the car’s bumper in the movie “Family Vacation”.

    Thanks for the hours of enjoyment you give me.

  16. Barbara (from Virginia) says:

    I take leftover vanilla beans (that has been scrapped out) and put in a 8 oz. bottle with vodka to make my own vanilla flavoring (steep for 1 month).

  17. Linda Miller says:


    This recipe is very nostalgic for me as my mother baked it routinely when I was a child. So familiar, simple yet elegant, and might I add delicious. Yes, I have been guilty of pinching little pieces of the golden sweet edges off before it was served, but who hasn’t? Thanks for sharing this iconic recipe!

  18. Grace Johnston says:

    Thank you for this recipe, Susan. Pineapple Upside Down Cake was my dear dad’s favorite, and I make it every year on his birthday to eat while we talk about our memories of him. I’ve always used a box mix, but I’ll give this one a try. Homemade is always better!

  19. Ronak Mehta says:

    Hello, I read your article and your information is really amzing and very helpful for me. keep it up and Thank you very much:)

  20. ANN MEADS says:

    Thanks. I made the pineapple up side down cake. It easily popped out of the pan. So delicious..even better the 2nd day. ANN on Cape Cod

  21. Julie says:

    I have a recipe for shortbread that my mom used, too. It’s an “only for Christmas cookie” and it requires you to sift the dry ingredients 4 times! I used to have a battery operated seive that I used, but when it gave up the ghost, I used the kind of sieve you showed. I’ve never looked back! It does a fine job and even easier and faster than the battery operated one!

    • sbranch says:

      Yes… we hardly ever need anything more in the way of tools than the old fashioned tried and true. And a hand mixer! Voila!💖

  22. GiGi says:

    Try the cake by adding marschino cherries to the inside of the pineapple rings vs. the walnuts; yum!!!

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