This fantastic pineapple upside down pound cake takes the best of two kinds of desserts and puts them together in one wonderful pineapple upside down Bundt cake you’ll want to share with friends. Or not.

Pound cakes are the best, and I have lots of pound cake recipes on the blog. There’s not much more that beats the old fashioned gooey sweetness of a pineapple upside down cake. So by putting these two old fashioned southern desserts together, everybody wins!

If you’re looking for a pineapple upside down cheesecake, I can help you there, too!

overhead photo of a pineapple upside down pound cake on a silver platter

Variations on the Classic Pound Cake

The pound cakes that I make are not traditional in the sense that they don’t contain equal parts of flour, sugar, butter, and eggs.

But they are traditional in the sense that all my pound cake recipes start with one main recipe that I then alter to make other flavors.

Here are the ingredients and amounts for my (perfect) pound cake recipe:

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  • 12 oz butter
  • 19 oz granulated sugar
  • 1 slightly rounded teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla (best quality)
  • 5 large eggs, beaten
  • 13 oz cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 10 oz dairy (it used to be 8. You can use 8 if you want, but I think it’s more melty with 10)

PRO TIP: If you use an acidic dairy ingredient such as sour cream, buttermilk or yogurt, be sure to add 1/4 teaspoon baking soda per cup of acidic dairy along with the baking powder to keep the pH balanced

How to Make Topping for Pineapple Upside Down Cake

In a traditional pineapple upside down cake, the topping is generally made of

  • brown sugar
  • butter
  • rings of canned pineapple
  • maraschino cherries

Since the topping begins with cooking brown sugar and butter together, it technically falls under the category of butterscotch recipes. In the case of this cake though, the pineapple is really the star of the show.

The topping for my pineapple upside down Bundt cake is very similar, except rather than using canned pineapple and cherries, I use chopped fresh pineapple and leave out the cherries.

I also add a touch of salt to the mix, because I believe salt is necessary in all baked goods. You can read my post called What Does Salt in Baked Goods Do if you’d like to read more.

Where Did This Cake Recipe Come From?

I developed this recipe especially for a dear friend’s wedding. I made 5 different Bundt cakes for her wedding cake display, and since pineapple upside down cake is her favorite, I knew I’d have to include a pineapple upside down pound cake.

The cake went over really well, and the bride was thrilled I’d turned her childhood favorite into a pound cake!

A Note About Measurements

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07/17/2024 08:22 pm GMT

Pineapple Upside Down Bundt Cake Recipe

And now, here’s the recipe for the Pineapple Upside Down Bundt Cake. It’s my hope that by showing you the original recipe and this variation that you will be inspired to make your own perfect pound cake version!

I really hope you love this pineapple upside down pound cake, you guys! If you make it, please share a photo with me, either in the PCO Facebook Group or on instagram by tagging @onlinepastrychef and using hashtag #pcorecipe. Thanks, and enjoy!

Pineapple Upside Down Pound Cake

Jennifer Field
For those of you who love pineapple upside down cake but think it's a little "kiddish," here's a grown up version that everyone can agree on.
4.53 from 23 votes
Tried this recipe?Please give it a star rating!
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Cuisine American
Servings 16 servings
Calories 565 kcal

Ingredients

For the Butterscotch-Pineapple Layer

  • 3 oz 6 Tablespoons or 3/4 stick butter (salted is fine here)
  • ¾ cup packed dark brown sugar
  • heavy pinch of salt if using unsalted butter; wee pinch if using salted butter
  • about 6-8 oz chopped pineapple (fresh or canned in juice)

For the Cake

  • 12 oz unsalted butter
  • 18 oz granulated sugar
  • 2 ½ teaspoons best quality vanilla
  • 1 gently rounded teaspoon sea salt
  • 5 eggs , beaten
  • 13 oz cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 8 oz chopped pineapple (fresh or canned in juice)
  • 2 oz sour cream

Instructions
 

  • Make sure all your refrigerated ingredients are at cool room temperature.
  • Spray a 12-cup Bundt-type pan with pan spray. Flour it well, and tap out all the excess flour.
  • Make sure your oven rack is positioned one notch below the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350F.

For the Caramel Pineapple Layer

  • Melt the butter in a small sauce pan.
  • Add the sugar and salt, and stir until dissolved.
  • Let the mixture come to a boil. When nice and bubbly without any butter sloshing around the edges of the sugar, pour evenly into the prepared pan.
  • Arrange the cut pineapple on top however you want. I just used chopped, but half-rounds alternating in direction would look lovely.
  • Set pan aside.

For the Cake

  • Whisk together the cake flour and baking powder until well combined. Set aside.
  • Puree pineapple and sour cream together in a blender. Set aside.
  • Cream the butter, sugar, salt and vanilla until light and fluffy, scraping the bowl as often as necessary.
  • With the mixer on medium speed, add the beaten eggs a little at a time, beating well after each addition, until completely incorported. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  • Add the dry ingredients alternately with the wet ingredients, mixing on low just until each addition is incorporated. Begin and end with dry for a total of 3 dry additions and 2 wet additions.
  • Spoon batter evenly over the caramel-pineapple layer in the prepared pan.
  • Smooth the batter, and bake in your preheated oven until done. This takes 1 hour and 5 minutes in my oven. Start checking at 55 minutes and go from there.
  • Remove cake from oven and cover with a piece of foil. Let sit for 45 minutes, then turn out onto the plate you'll be serving it on.
  • Replace any pineapple pieces that might get stuck in the bottom of the pan and smooth down with an offset spatula sprayed with pan spray.
  • Spray a parchment circle with pan spray and press onto the gooey caramel layer. Then, wrap the whole cake very well in plastic wrap and let cool in the fridge.
  • Serve at room temperature. This cake doesn't need any glaze, but a little vanilla or caramel ice cream or coconut sorbet would go nicely with it.

Did You Make Any Changes?

Notes

Place a cookie sheet or some foil under on the rack below to catch any caramel that might spill over. I tried this using 1 stick of butter and 1 cup of sugar, and it did bubble over. Nothing leaked out when I reduced the measurements to 3/4 cup and 3/4 stick. But, just to be on the safe side...

Nutrition

Serving: 1/24 cakeCalories: 565kcalCarbohydrates: 112gProtein: 6gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 139mgFiber: 8gSugar: 82g
Keyword dessert, pineapple, pound cake
Did you make this recipe?Please tell us what you loved!

Thank you for spending some time with me today. Have a lovely day.

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39 Comments

  1. Hi Jenni, I just found this recipe – I know – a bazillion years after you first posted it. Anyway, I want to make this in a Nordicware 18 cup fluted pan, and multiply it a bit for a crowd. How would I need to adjust baking time and temperature for this endeavor?

    1. Hi, Lynn. You’ll need to scale everything up by 1/3, but I’d only increase the leavening to 1 1/4 teaspoons. I also recommend doubling the pineapple topping to make sure you have enough to go around. As to baking time, I am not entirely sure, but I would expect it would take about 1:20 or so to bake. Since it will take longer to bake, turn the oven temp down to 325F after about 45 minutes, and/or tent foil over the pan to prevent excessive browning. And please do a test run to fine tune your approach, especially if the cake is for a special occasion. I hope this helps, and I really hope you enjoy the cake!

  2. I made this today for party tomorrow. I cooled it in refrigerator per instructions but after cooling, does it need to be refrigerated? Thanks!

  3. Hello, thank you for this recipe! I was scared to try it but it was absolutely a breeze to make. I added two tbs. of milk powder to the pound cake and the overall flavor was amazing. Thank you again.

  4. I’m a little lost. In one printing of this recipe it calls for 10 oz of Dairy, yet in the actual instructions it says 2 oz. Can you clarify for me? Thanks!

    1. Absolutely. The first listing of ingredients not in the recipe card is for the base pound cake recipe–my basic pound cake that I alter in many different ways. The amounts in the recipe card are correct. Since you’re using 8 oz of pineapple and liquid (by weight) as part of the liquid, you only need 2 additional ounces of dairy. The base recipe calls for 10 oz of dairy (or other liquid), so 8 + 2 = 10. Sorry for any confusion, Cheryle. I hope you enjoy the cake!

      1. I’ve made your pineapple upside down Bundt cake at least a dozen times since I asked the question above, I love it!! Thank you for sharing your recipe.

      2. This makes me inordinately happy to hear, Cheryle! It really is a great cake. I should probably make another myself. Why should you have all the fun?! =)

  5. Are you weighing the flour and sugar since they are both referenced using ounces as opposed to cups ? If so what is the comparable measurement if a kitchen scale is not available?

    1. Hi, Carmen. Yes, all measurements are in weight. I always strongly recommend purchasing a kitchen scale for accuracy and consistency of results. Best $25 you can spend! Until you get one, you can measure out 3 cups of cake flour, whisked well to aerate, lightly spooned into the cup measure, and then swept level with a straight edge. The sugar is about 3 level cups as well. Depending on how sweet you like things, you can use between 2 1/2 and 3 cups of sugar and get good results. Enjoy the cake!

  6. Oh my, I was in search of a pineapple upside down cake and ran across your blog. I made the cake yesterday and it is heavenly! Quite possibly the best pound cake I’ve ever had. I can’t wait to try the Van Halen version now. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe!

    1. I am thrilled you like it, Amye! I’m a huge fan of pound cake, and I love that I have a solid base recipe as a springboard to making all sorts of flavors. I hope you put your own spin on it, and then come back and tell me all about it!

  7. Jenni,
    This pound cake looks amazing.
    Thanks for giving me the link to include in my upcoming Band Fruit Fundraiser Recipe Round Up! It will be published on 12/4/2013!

  8. 5 stars
    Can’t wait to try this out! In fact, it would be just the kind of baked treat that’s perfect as a holiday gift. I’d like to make the recipe in smaller loaf pan or maybe mini-bundts. Any suggestions on adjusting time or temperature for baking? I really need an oven thermometer because my oven has numbered dials (1-10) as opposed to temperatures. Therefore, temps are approximate… 8-/

    Thanks for sharing!!

    1. Wow–I’d be lost w/o my thermostat! Even so, an oven thermometer is Your Friend! I’d go w/the same temperature but the baking time will be reduced by half, give or take, depending on the pans you decide to use! Looking forward to your entry, TN!

  9. My wife brought home a slice of “pound” cake from a friend. She slipped the slice into my lunch today and I looked forward to nibbling the cake at lunch. The cake was moist, but as soon as I popped it in my mouth I could taste the cook used imitation vanilla and too many egg whites.

    I ate the rest of the slice and thought of the pound cake recipe bake by Mrs. Wade. This pound cake has been part of my life/memories for over 40yrs and I tend to compare all pound cakes to that one. My mom still has the recipe card from Mrs. Wade & I hope to have it someday in my collection.

    With that said, your VHPC would be my BEST way to enjoy this pound cake. If I was to change it? A simple caramel butter sauce with a hand full of fresh shelled pecans. I might smear a slice with a generous amount of softened butter and toast both sides. With a creamy hot of coffee, either way would be a HUGE treat.

    1. Oh, no! Sorry you had an anticlimactic pound cake experience! :/ I’d have been very disappointed, too.

      I hope you get the Mrs. Wade recipe one day. I based my VHPC on “Sally’s pound cake” recipe that a friend of mine shared with me. I tweaked it a bit, and voila! Give the VHPC a shot; I think it solves some of the problems that some other pound cakes seem to have. Namely: anemic taste. 😉 Using the best vanilla possible and enough salt to make it shine is essential.

      I like your sauce idea, and toasted pound cake is The Bomb! So glad you stopped by! 🙂

      1. You are most welcome, Tasha! I want folks to be successful with these recipes, so the more detailed I can be, the better. I hope you enjoy this pound cake. It’s one of my favorites!

  10. 5 stars
    Oh my goodness, this Pineapple Upside Down cake will be terrific with my cup of coffee right now! I will do my best to try your recipe, Jenni. I may not do justice to it. But I will be honored to try it out. Hmmm, will ponder, while I make an attempt. Thanks for sharing the recipe. I will get back to you soon!

4.53 from 23 votes (20 ratings without comment)

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