Pineapple upside down cake is the perfect dessert to impress friends and family or take to the next pot luck. It looks fancy but is so simple to make and tastes delicious.

pineapple upside down cake ready to bake.
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Pineapple Upside Down Cake

We love making desserts as you have probably noticed. This easy Pineapple Upside Down Cake does not disappoint and it is so tasty.

Plus, doesn’t it just look so pretty? The presentation is simply amazing with the pineapple slices and cherries. Each slice looks gorgeous.

This is really so simple to make but turns out so amazing. What could be better than moist and decadent pineapple cake? Exactly.

We love it so much that we even make these Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes and Pineapple Upside Down Dump Cake.


  • butter or margarine – room temperature
  • packed brown sugar
  • pineapple slices in juice, drained, juice reserved
  • maraschino cherries without stems
  • yellow cake mix
  • vegetable oil and eggs called for on cake mix box

How to make pineapple upside down cake:

  • First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Next melt the butter in the oven using your 13×9 pan. This also saves you from dirtying up another pan.
  • Then sprinkle brown sugar all over the butter as evenly as possible. Make sure to use brown sugar as granulated sugar will not have the same impact.
  • Arrange pineapple slices on top of the brown sugar. We used a 20 oz. can. You can also use fresh pineapple but I think canned is best in this recipe.
  • Next, put a cherry in the center of each pineapple slice. Take any remaining cherries and arrange them around the slices. Just gently press them down into the brown sugar so that it stays neatly arranged.

pineapple upside down cake ready to bake.
  • Then add enough water to the remaining pineapple juice so that you have a cup.
  • Next, mix together the cake batter according to your box instructions. The only thing that will be different is the water should be substituted for pineapple juice. The pineapple juice will give it really amazing flavor.
  • Make sure the wet and dry ingredients are mixed together really well using a large bowl. I prefer to use an electric mixer.
Mixing bowl with cake mix, eggs and oil ready to combine.
  • Once combined, pour the cake batter all over the pineapple rings and cherries.
Cake mix poured into baking dish.
  • Finally, bake the cake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. As soon as it comes out of the oven, run a knife around the sides of pan to loosen it. Just make sure to do this immediately.

pineapple upside down cake on platter.
  • Use a plate that is heat proof and place upside down on to the pan. Turn the plate and cake pan over.

Do you let the cake cool before flipping?

I recommend leaving the pan over the cake for about 5 minutes before flipping. This will allow the brown sugar topping to run down and drizzle on the cake.

Then remove and let cool for 30 minutes.

Make sure to leave the pan as instructed because you want the topping to drizzle all over. This really makes it even more decadent. You definitely want all of that yummy brown sugar glaze on the cake.

pineapple upside down cake on platter.

Serve warm or cool. It is tasty either way so just serve it how your family enjoys it best. 

How long does pineapple upside down cake last?

The cake needs to be covered and stored in the refrigerator. If your pan has a lid, just use that.

However, plastic wrap or foil work just fine. It will last up to 3 days if stored properly.

Although, our family eats this pretty fast. We all love it.

Bite of cake on fork.

How do you keep the cake from sticking?

The melted butter in the bottom of the pan should help to prevent the cake from sticking. Just make sure the bottom of the pan is well coated.

You might need to swirl the butter around to make sure the pan is coated thoroughly.

As long as you do these steps, the cake should come out without any issues.

pineapple upside down cake on platter.

Can I make this cake the night before?

Yes, you can. Just make sure to refrigerate the cake.

We do this frequently and it helps to serve a great dessert for company or your family anytime you want. Make this ahead and have a great dessert to serve.

This is a great way to do it if you have a super busy day and need dessert. Just make it the night before and you will be set.

Pineapple upside down cake with yellow cake mix.

This recipe is a must try.

Slice of cake on plate.

Try this delicious pineapple upside down cake.

You are going to absolutely love this recipe. It looks so fancy and amazing but is super easy to make.

It is a win all around and sure to be a huge hit. I can’t wait for you to try this cake. Let us know once you try it and how you like it.

Since the recipe uses a cake mix, it is so very simple. The results are impressive and tastes so delicious.

Slice of cake on plate.

Print this easy Pineapple upside down cake recipe below:

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Pineapple upside down cake

4.60 from 10 votes
Pineapple upside down cake is the perfect dessert to impress friends and family or take to the next pot luck. It looks fancy but is so simple to make.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Cool 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 16
Cuisine American
Course Dessert
Calories 345


  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine
  • 1 cup brown sugar packed
  • 20 oz pineapple slices in juice drained, juice reserved
  • 6 oz maraschino cherries without stems drained
  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • vegetable oil and eggs called for on cake mix box


  • Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan).
  • In 13×9-inch pan, melt butter in oven.
  • Sprinkle brown sugar evenly over butter.
  • Arrange pineapple slices on brown sugar, next place a cherry in center of each pineapple slice, and arrange remaining cherries around slices; press gently into brown sugar.
  • Add enough water to reserved pineapple juice to measure 1 cup.
  • Make cake batter as directed on box, substituting pineapple juice mixture for the water.
  • Pour batter over pineapple and cherries.
  • Bake 40-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Immediately run knife around side of pan to loosen cake.
  • Place heatproof serving plate upside down onto pan; turn plate and pan over.
  • Leave pan over cake 5 minutes so brown sugar topping can drizzle over cake; remove pan. Cool 30 minutes.
  • Serve warm or cool.
  • Store covered in refrigerator.

Nutrition Facts

Calories 345kcal, Carbohydrates 49g, Protein 1g, Fat 17g, Saturated Fat 6g, Cholesterol 8mg, Sodium 266mg, Potassium 74mg, Fiber 1g, Sugar 35g, Vitamin A 114IU, Vitamin C 17mg, Calcium 91mg, Iron 1mg

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Pineapple upside down cake is the perfect dessert to impress friends and family or take to the next pot luck. It looks fancy but is so simple to make.

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Desserts on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you create delicious desserts on a budget and do not require a ton of time. Together, we are going to make something sweet that the entire family will love!

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