Pineapple Upside-Down Loaf Cake

This one goes out to all those Friday nights when you just have the itch to bake something.

We’d just had tacos for dinner one Friday night a few weeks ago (with homemade tortillas—I mean, we really couldn’t have asked for much more), and after we’d scraped the last bits of salsa from our plates, I just felt like I needed to bake.

“Oliver, what should I bake for dessert?”

“Peanut butter upside-down cake.”

Y’all, I’ll let you know if I come up with a recipe for a peanut butter upside-down cake. But what I ended up making that night was a pineapple upside-down cake. I realized I’d never made one before, and we had half a can of pineapple left in the fridge, and it just seemed right, you know?

But let’s keep in mind that this was an unplanned baking session, so I didn’t have exactly what I needed for any recipes I stumbled across. Let’s also keep in mind that only two of us live under this roof, and a whole cake seemed a bit excessive.

A loaf cake, though? Just enough cake to enjoy over the weekend without still having enough leftover for a small birthday party by Monday? That would work.

So I “whipped up” this little loaf cake based on the basic concept of how the internet suggested a pineapple upside-down cake should come into being. I did some research on estimates of what exactly comes in a boxed cake mix so I could translate it into the “real” ingredients I had in the pantry & fridge. I melted some butter and threw some things in a bowl and sat down to watch the first 45 minutes of Iron Man while I imagined a pineapple-flavored sponge of disaster and sadness was gluing itself to the loaf pan in my oven.

But it smelled good.

When the time came to flip that cake onto the plate in true upside-down cake fashion, I knew that no good could come from my clumsy oven-mitt-clad hands and a cake with a full layer of sticky brown sugar between itself and the pan.

You know what? It came out perfectly. It didn’t stick to the pan, and it tasted delightful, and I thought, “Oh, maybe I can bake.” (Though I’ve been intending to try to make those cute little French macarons, and I’m sure they’ll be able to prove that I cannot, in fact, bake.)

I’ll count this one as a baking win and share it with you so you too can experience the adrenaline rush that comes with flipping a cake upside down.

If you try this Pineapple Upside-Down Loaf Cake at home, I’d love to hear what you think! Share pictures with me on social media by tagging @thesavvyplate on Instagram or Twitter or by mentioning my page The Savvy Plate on Facebook!

Pineapple Upside-Down Loaf Cake

A from-scratch pineapple upside-down cake sized for a loaf pan that you can prepare in only 15 minutes!

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 6
Author Savannah

Ingredients

for the topping

  • 2 tbsp melted unsalted butter
  • 3 pineapple rings (from a 20 oz. can)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (I prefer the pecans.)

for the cake

  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice (from the same 20 oz. can)
  • 1/4 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1 egg + 1 egg white

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Add 2 tbsp melted butter to a loaf pan, brushing some on the sides to grease the pan and letting the rest of it puddle evenly in the bottom. Arrange the pineapple slices in a single layer on top of the butter. (You may need to cut them to fit.) Sprinkle evenly with the brown sugar and then with the nuts.

  2. Add flour, white sugar, baking powder, and salt to a bowl and combine.

  3. Whisk together the pineapple juice, 1/4 cup melted butter, egg, and egg white, then pour into the dry ingredients and thoroughly combine.

  4. Pour the batter into the loaf pan, and spread evenly with a spatula as needed. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

  5. Let cake cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes, then loosen the edges from the pan with a butter knife. Cover the loaf pan with your serving plate then carefully flip the cake over onto the plate. (Be careful as your pan may still be quite warm!) P. S. If any bits of topping stick in the pan, just lift them out with your butter knife and patch the cake accordingly. No one has to know the difference!

 

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