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Best Pineapple Upside Down Cake

This is the Best Pineapple Upside Down Cake.  Why do I say that? Well just look at that golden cake, topped with juicy pineapple slices, sweet maraschino cherries and a yummy brown sugar topping.  And the best part?  It’s a cake mix.  Yes indeed.

We use cake mixes every now and then to make a hectic schedule easier.  Life should be easy right?  Our Italian Almond Biscotti is just such a recipe – it’s one of our faves, and comes from a famous chef in Italy!

piece of yellow cake with pineapple slice and cherry on top sitting on a blue plate with pineapple upside down cake in text on a white background

Do you know this is the very first time I’ve baked a Pineapple Upside Down Cake?  No really!  I always see so many recipes for these yummy cakes everywhere and everyone loves them.  NOW I know why!

That yummy, buttery brown sugar that sinks into the bottom (top?) of this amazing Pineapple Upside Down Cake and mixes with the pineapple and cherries, well I’m a believer now!

piece of pineapple upside down cake on blue plate with slice of pineapple and maraschino cherry on top

And because it’s baked in a 13 X 9 pan, so easy to make and take to our next family get together,  you can make it literally in minutes!

So what is a Pineapple Upside Down Cake?

pineapple upside down cake with slice of pineapple and cherry on top on a blue plate with rest of cake in pan in the background

It really is only a few ingredients.  There are lots of recipes out there, mine is based on one from Betty Crocker, and there are other good ones too.


Melt butter in the bottom of your 13 X 9 pan and then generously sprinkle brown sugar, covering the bottom of the pan.

Next place the pineapple slices, and insert the maraschino cherries in the middle of the slices.

In a separate bowl, mix up your favorite yellow cake mix.  They usually call for eggs and oil.  Pour the cake batter over all and smooth the top.

Pop in the oven and bake at 350F/180C for 42 to 48 minutes.

When you take it out of the oven, invert the cake onto a heat proof plate right away, leaving the pan in place so that the lovely butter and brown sugar drizzle down into the cake.

That’s it!  Easy Peasy.  And you have the yummiest cake to serve to family and friends.  Only you will know how easy it was to bake!

If you like this recipe please give it a 5 star rating.

This is the Best Pineapple Upside Down Cake and the recipe is one of the easiest cakes to bake, full of butter, brown sugar & sweet pineapple goodness! It takes no time at all!
Yield: 8

Easy Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes

We use a yellow cake mix to make this moist and easy to make Pineapple Upside Down Cake. The cake batter bakes into the pineapple slices, maraschino cherries and brown sugar and butter in the bottom. Yum! Yum! 


  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 can pineapple slices , 20 ounces, drained and reserve the juice
  • 1 jar maraschino cherries , without stems, 6 ounce jar, drained
  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • 1/3 cup Vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs, large


  1. Heat oven to 350F/180C
  2. In a 13 x 9"square pan, melt the butter in the oven
  3. Sprinkle the brown sugar evenly over the butter
  4. Arrange pineapple slices on the brown sugar
  5. Place a cherry in the center of each pineapple slice
  6. (you can place the rest of the cherries around the slices, pressing gently into the brown sugar)
  7. Add enough water to the pineapple juice to measure 1 cup
  8. Make the cake batter as directed, using the pineapple juice mixture instead of water
  9. Pour the batter over the pineapple and cherries
  10. Bake 40 to 48 minutes (or until the cake is golden and a toothpick comes out clean)
  11. Remove from the oven and immediately run a knife around the side of the pan to loosen the cake
  12. Place a heatproof plate upside down on the pan and using oven mitts turn the plate and pan over
  13. Leave the pan on top of the cake for 5 minutes so that the brown sugar and butter drizzle over the cake
  14. Remove the pan and cool for 30 minutes
  15. You can serve the cake warm or cool
  16. Store covered in the fridge
  17. Easy as Pie!

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serving of yellow cake with pineapple slice and cherry baked on top on a blue dessert plate

This is the best Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe we’ve made yet. Let me know in the comments below if you make it!

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Judy Kahansky is an experienced writer and baker, creating delicious desserts (including pie!) for over 40 years. She loves to take classic and vintage recipes and update them to fit the busy lives of her readers. When not baking, Judy and her husband Mark are passionate golfers, travelers and dog lovers, spending as much time as they can with their sweet pup Millie.

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Sunday 19th of April 2020

We were camping and it was my brother's birthday. Pineapple upside down cake was one of his favorites. RIP, Les. So I came up with the idea to bake it over the campfire in a cast iron skillet. I followed the directions exactually. We can pretty much the temperature of the fire with our hand held over the smoldering wood. We had to check it often toward the end but it came out amazing. It had a slight Smokey taste but it was very delicious.

Judy Kahansky

Thursday 23rd of April 2020

Sound awesome Patsy! I would love to see a photo of that if you took one. :)

Alaina trout

Saturday 12th of May 2018

I like to use a lemon cake mix instead of white or yellow. On top of the pineapple the lemon flavor just gives it an extra zing.


Saturday 12th of May 2018

Hi Alaina, the lemon sounds interesting. Glad you enjoyed the post!

Linda Green

Saturday 17th of March 2018

I always make a pineapple upside down cake from scratch for my husband’s birthday.... but this year l am going to make yours and see if he can tell the difference !!! It sounds delicious and a lot easier. Lol


Saturday 17th of March 2018

Hi Linda! It really is delicious, and my family couldn't tell the difference at all. Please let me know how you make out, and post a picture too if you like! Best, Judy

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