This recipe for pineapple upside down cakes was originally shared with us via the website Just Baking, who I used to write for. The recipe is by Allen Williams, but he adapted this recipe from a Betty Crocker classic. We modified it a bit more to be dairy-free, we’ve added more options for dietary needs, and I’ve completely updated this post.
Pineapple Upside-Down Cakes with Chopped Pineapple or Rings
Allen uses chopped pineapple for more of a gooey topping. It makes the cake a little juicier, and offers more pineapple in each bite. However, we have included a pineapple ring option for a more formal presentation. (The picture at right shows Allen’s chopped pineapple version.) Allen also prefers to bake these as little cakes, but we have added a full cake option.
Special Diet Notes: Pineapple Upside Down Cakes
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, nut-free, peanut-free, optionally soy-free (choose your shortening wisely!), and vegetarian.
- ¼ cup dairy-free buttery spread
- ⅔ cup packed brown sugar (preferably dark)
- 1 cup chopped pineapple
- 1⅓ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup unsweetened or original dairy-free milk beverage
- ⅓ cup non-hydrogenated shortening (can sub coconut oil)
- 1 egg (see post above for vegan option)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 6 maraschino cherries
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
- Melt the buttery spread in a small pan. Add the brown sugar and stir to dissolve. Remove from the heat.
- Distribute the buttery mixture evenly between 6 large muffin cups (3½″ wide openings). Top with 1 to 2 tablespoons of pineapple in each well, followed by a cherry pushed down into the center.
- Place the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl and whisk to combine. Add the milk beverage, shortening, egg, vanilla and lemon and beat with a mixer to combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and then beat the batter on high speed for 3 minutes.
- Pour the batter evenly into each muffin well, to top the pineapple.
- Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cake comes our clean.
- Immediately turn the muffin tin upside down onto a cookie sheet. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving.
Single Cake Option: Prepare and bake the recipe in an 8-inch or 9-inch baking dish or cake pan. You can use the chopped pineapple, or use 9 pineapple rings and dot each one with a maraschino cherry (one each). Bake the cake at 350ºF for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.