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Savory Cast Iron Skillet Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Recipe

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Welcome to the wondrous world of a timeless classic – the cast iron skillet pineapple upside-down cake.

This retro delight combines the tropical sweetness of pineapple and cherries with a moist, fluffy cake that appeals both aesthetically and gastronomically.

For homesteaders and lovers of homemade goodness, this guide is your key to mastering this culinary gem.

Whether you’re a baking novice or a seasoned home cook, we’ll delve into the finer nuances of cooking this magnificent dessert.

From sourcing and preparing the right ingredients, to mastering the cooking process, and finally, unveiling the beautifully caramelized pineapple topping with a perfect flip – every step contributes to the creation of this timeless classic.

Let’s embark on this sweet journey that teems with bright flavors and inviting aromas, promising a delightful culinary adventure that’s perfect for the homesteader’s kitchen.

Discover the joy of making a cast iron skillet pineapple upside-down cake, where tradition and taste come together in one delectable treat.

Gathering and Preparing the Ingredients

An embodiment of sweet, tropical delight and soft, fluffy cake, the iconic Pineapple Upside-Down Cake is a romantic symphony of flavor and visuals.

Quite beloved by taste buds across the world, it’s a dessert that honours the timeless juxtaposition of fruity and creamy, all wrapped in a divine caramelized delight.

To start on this flavoursome journey, gather the needed artillery — the ingredients:

  1. Pineapples: The star of the dish is none other than luscious Pineapples. Eight rings of canned pineapples would do justice to the cake, but for those who prefer a burst of absolute freshness, feel free to take a fresh pineapple, chop it into slices and enjoy the experience. Remember, in this dessert, pineapples hold the mantle of beauty and taste alike.
  2. Cherries: For a stunning burst of color and a delightful tartness, half a cup of maraschino cherries are the way to go. They adorn the pineapple rings in the cake, adding an element of lovely contrast both in taste and color.
  3. Sugar: A cup of granulated sugar is essential to create a perfect harmony of sweetness within the tender crumb of the cake.
  4. Brown Sugar: To create the signature caramelized topping, half a cup of packed brown sugar is in order. The molasses in the brown sugar intensifies the caramel flavor, giving that irresistibly deep, sweet taste that characterizes the pineapple upside-down cake.
  5. Flour: One and a half cups of all-purpose flour form the backbone of the cake, creating the perfect canvas for the flamboyant tastes of pineapple and caramel to shine on.
  6. Baking Powder: A teaspoon of this leavening agent ensures that the cake rises to the occasion, literally!
  7. Salt: A gentle pinch of this wonder ingredient brings out the cake’s diverse flavors.
  8. Eggs: Three large eggs form an intrinsic part of the cake, binding the ingredients together while providing moisture and tenderness.
  9. Butter: To make the cake irresistibly rich and moist, half a cup of unsalted room temperature butter is needed.
  10. Vanilla extract: A teaspoon of this aromatic enhancer imparts a wonderful depth of flavor to the cake.
  11. Milk: Half a cup of any variety (whole, reduced-fat, or non-dairy) is required to create a soft, fluffy cake crumb.
  12. Shortening: 1/4 cup works in harmony with butter to create the irresistibly moist and tender crumb of this classic pineapple upside-down cake.

With these ingredients in tow, a newbie or expert baker alike is poised perfectly to embark on the delightful journey of creating a heavenly Pineapple Upside-Down Cake.

Mastering the Cooking Process

In baking a delightful Pineapple Upside-Down Cake, the process doesn’t stop at gathering the perfect ingredients.

Proper cooking techniques and knowing the nuances of your baking equipment play key roles in achieving a scrumptious finish.

Let’s turn our focus now to one significant yet often overlooked factor, using a cast-iron skillet.

This timeless, multipurpose kitchen tool lends a unique charm to the baking process, and if used correctly, can ensure your cake is cooked to perfection.

The key to baking the perfect Pineapple Upside-Down Cake (or any cake for that matter) in a cast-iron skillet is preheating.

Let your cast-iron skillet warm up in the oven while it preheats.

This step ensures an even distribution of heat, promoting consistent baking and a golden crust.

Casting the iron skillet’s bottom with a layer of butter before arranging the pineapples and cherries is also crucial.

The butter melts and melds with the brown sugar, creating a delicious caramel-like concoction, perfect for the pineapples and cherries to simmer and caramelize in.

The heat of the skillet facilitates this process beautifully and takes the flavor up a notch.

When it comes to the cooking time, start to check the cake around the 25-minute mark.

Do the old toothpick or knife test: insert it into the center of the cake and if it comes out clean, your cake is done.

The thickness and heat retention property of the cast-iron skillet might cut down the baking time slightly compared to a traditional cake tin.

Lastly, remember that cast-iron retains heat for longer.

Thus, it continues to cook your cake even after you’ve taken it from the oven.

Timing the removal just right is essential.

Take it out a couple of minutes prior to the prescribed baking time in your recipe.

Allow the cake to cool in the skillet for a maximum of ten minutes before flipping it upside down.

It should then fall right out, perfectly baked and beautifully caramelized.

Using a cast-iron skillet for baking your Pineapple Upside-Down Cake adds a rustic charm while ensuring an evenly baked, moist and superbly caramelized delight.

Don’t forget though, that the charm of any dish lies not just in its taste, but in the love with which it is made and shared.


Savory Cast Iron Skillet Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Recipe

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Get ready to embark on a flavorsome journey with this delightful Fresh Pineapple Upside-Down Cake recipe. This classic dessert is elevated to new heights by using fresh-cut pineapple slices, creating a burst of absolute freshness.

  • Author: Sheri Ann Richerson
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 1 cake 1x


Units Scale

For the Topping:

  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 8 fresh pineapple rings
  • A handful of maraschino cherries

For the Cake Batter:

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, thinly sliced
  • 3/4 cup milk (whole, reduced-fat, or non-dairy)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • A pinch of salt


  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. If you have two skillets, even better, you can make both cakes at the same time, which is perfect for gatherings and hungry guests.
  2. Begin by preparing the tantalizing topping. In your cast iron skillet, melt 1/4 cup of butter in the oven. It only takes a few minutes, and the fragrance that fills your kitchen is pure magic.
  3. Once the butter has transformed into a luscious pool of golden goodness, remove the skillet from the oven. Now, it’s time for the pièce de résistance: fresh-cut pineapple slices.
  4. Place these vibrant slices on top of the brown sugar in the skillet, and for that extra touch of delight, nestle a maraschino cherry in the center of each pineapple slice. The fresh pineapple not only adds a burst of absolute freshness but also brings beauty and a vibrant flavor that’s hard to beat.
  5. In a mixer bowl, combine all the batter ingredients. The beauty of this cake is its simplicity – no need for sifting, whisking, or complex mixing. Just toss everything into that bowl and let the mixer do the work.
  6. After your batter is well-mixed, divide it evenly between two bowls. If you spot some small butter bits in the batter, don’t fret; the cake will still turn out beautifully.
  7. It’s time to pour this delightful batter over the fresh pineapple slices. Be gentle and swift, pouring the batter on top without disrupting the arrangement of those gorgeous fruit slices.
  8. Bake your cakes for 30 minutes, until the sides are bubbling, and the top is gloriously browned.
  9. Once your cakes are out of the oven, let them cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack.
  10. Then comes the exciting part: place a flat cake plate over the skillet and gently invert the pan onto the plate. If needed, use oven mitts and an icing spatula to make sure none of that delectable topping is left behind.
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Perfecting the Flip and Serving

Following the glorious aroma wafting through your kitchen and the visual allure of the cake baked golden in the skillet, let’s proceed to the next pivotal stage of baking a Pineapple Upside-Down Cake – the flipping.

While it may seem intimidating, with due patience and care, you can execute the flip with panache.

Let the cake cool undisturbed for about 10-15 minutes after taking it out from the oven.

This cooling period allows the caramelized topping to harden slightly, thus preventing a sticky disaster during the flip.

However, don’t leave the cake to cool for long in the skillet, as then the caramel hardens too much, resulting in the cake being stubbornly held in by the skillet.

Now, if you’re looking to fully embrace the homesteader spirit, consider serving the cake directly from the cast iron skillet.

It’s a rustic and charming presentation that adds to the cozy, down-to-earth appeal of this classic dessert.

Choose a serving plate, preferably flat and a bit sturdier than your regular plates.

The diameter should ideally be larger than the skillet’s, so that the lip of the skillet has a good, full resting spot when you perform the flip.

Before you flip, loosen the sides of the cake gently using a butter knife.

You’ll start to sense the cake releasing from the skillet.

Now, place your serving dish upside down on top of the skillet.

Carefully maintain a firm grip, preferably using oven mitts or kitchen cloths for safety – remember, the skillet can still be pretty warm to handle.

Use your strength and confidence to the fullest for these crucial seconds.

Without any second thoughts, flip the entire assembly in one quick, smooth motion.

After a momentary pause, a slight shift in weight indicates the cake sliding off.

Lift off the skillet.

If a few pieces of the pineapple or cherry stick behind, carefully scrape them off and gingerly place them in their rightful spots.

And voila, you reveal an incredible, appetizing Pineapple Upside-Down Cake!

If you’re opting to serve the cake directly from a cast iron skillet, gently slide the cake into a new, clean cast iron skillet.

This transfer ensures that the pineapples and cherries remain visible for presentation purposes, providing a fresh and appetizing look for your guests.

On the other hand, if you prefer to serve the cake directly in the skillet without flipping it, simply keep it in the skillet after loosening the edges and let it cool for a few more minutes.

Then, it’s ready to be served directly from the skillet, retaining its rustic charm and delicious appeal.

It is this very unveiling that makes this particular cake so much fun, every occasion turns into a reveal party!

This Pineapple Upside-Down Cake, with its heritage rich in the warmth of the American kitchen, not only speaks to our palettes but also to our hearts.

Its unique preparation, rustic charm, and irresistible flavors make it a delightful treat to prepare and enjoy.

Whether you choose to transfer the cake to a serving platter, a new cast iron skillet or serve it in the original skillet, your Pineapple Upside-Down Cake is sure to delight all who have the pleasure of savoring it.

Happy baking and most of all, happy indulging!

As you immerse yourself in the savory elements of this guide, baking a perfect pineapple upside-down cake will cease to be an intimidating prospect.

Even as you take your first bites into the juicy pineapple, the delectable cherries, and the moist cake beneath, the delightful medley of textures and flavors will be a testament to your newfound baking prowess.

Remember, the key to a successful pineapple upside-down cake in a cast iron skillet is patience, accuracy in measuring ingredients, and keen attention to baking time and temperature.

Once you master these, the joy of serving and sharing this delightful dessert with family and friends will, undoubtedly, be an experience immeasurably sweet.

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