Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake

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The smells of fall baking have been abound in my kitchen recently!

Apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin, and many more!

 This Caramel Apple Upside Down cake features a homemade, spiced cake topped with a simple, from scratch caramel apple topping. Perfect for a crowd, this quick and easy fall cake recipe is moist and has the perfect light cinnamon flavor. This is one of my best cakes, click through to uncover the autumn recipe that will have everyone asking for more!

Although I love fall flavors, the end of summer has always been bittersweet. It means the end of summer vacation and the beginning of another school year (hopefully this will be my last!).

Growing up in New England, apple picking has always been a fall tradition. When thinking of recipes I kept on going back to the aroma of caramel apples and freshly fried apple cider donuts found at almost every local farm stand.

Since I love apples, caramel, and fall spices why not put them all together in one cake? That is how I came to this Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake.

This upside-down cake features a moist, cinnamon and nutmeg spiced cake topped with a decadent caramel apple topping. The caramel soaks into the cake and takes this fall treat to the next level!

My good friend, who also happens to double as a taste tester (and is named Sarah!), said this was the best thing I have made in a long time. I definitely agree with her, I can’t stop eating it!

It is one of those cakes that you just can’t resist and will keep going back to.

So that you’re Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake can come out perfectly, here are my best tips!

  • The caramel topping should be cooked on medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes until it just comes to a boil and forms a homogenous mixture.
  • You can use any baking apples for this recipe, such as Granny Smith, Cortland, or MacIntosh. I like using Granny Smith as the tart apples work well with the sweet caramel.
  • The apples should be sliced thinly, ~1/4 inch thick. I found the best way to do this is to peel the apples, cut them in half, core them, then slice the apple halves into thin slivers.
  • When arranging the apples over the caramel, make sure they overlap (see picture below). This will give you the best presentation and allow you to use as many apples as possible.
  • When I have made this, I have had ~1/4 of an apple left over. You can try to stuff them in or just eat them like I did!
  • When the cake is done, you should be able to see caramel bubbling up against the edges of the pan.
  • Be sure to let the cake sit for 10 minutes before inverting it onto a serving dish.
  • This cake is best served at room temperature.

With these tips in mind, I highly encourage you to get in the kitchen and make this delicious cake. I promise you will not regret it!

I would love to hear how you like this recipe and I have to say it is my new favorite fall dessert. I will definitely be making this many more times in the coming months!

In the meantime, I have to go cut myself another large slice of this cake!

If you are looking for more cake recipes, look no further!

5 from 6 votes
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Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
50 mins
Total Time
1 hr 10 mins
 

This apple cake features a homemade, spice cake topped with a simple caramel apple topping. Perfect for a crowd, this quick and easy fall cake recipe is moist and has the perfect light cinnamon flavor. 

Course: Dessert
Ingredients
Caramel Apple Topping
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup light or dark brown sugar , packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 apples, peeled and sliced*
Cake
  • 1 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter , softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
Instructions
Caramel Apple Topping
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a 9 inch round cake pan.

  2. In a small saucepan melt the butter over low heat. Stir in the brown sugar and on medium high heat cook the mixture for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly. Mix in the cinnamon. 

  3. Pour the caramel into the prepared pan. Starting on the outside, arrange the apple slices over the caramel and set aside. 

Cake
  1. In a small bowl whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside.

  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer beat the butter and sugar on medium-high for 2-3 minutes until lightened in color. Add the egg and vanilla and mix on low speed until smooth, ~30 seconds. 

  3. On low speed, add 1/3 of the dry ingredient mixture. Once incorporated add ½ of the milk. Repeat this, ending with the dry ingredients. 

  4. Pour the batter over the caramel apple topping and bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. 

  5. Remove the cake from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes. Then invert the cake onto a serving plate and let cool. This cake can be stored for 3-5 days in the refrigerator. This cake is best served when at room temperature!

Recipe Notes
  • The caramel topping should be cooked on medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes until it just comes to a boil and forms a homogenous mixture.
  • You can use any baking apples for this recipe, such as Granny Smith, Cortland, or MacIntosh. I like using Granny Smith as the tart apples work well with the sweet caramel.
  • The apples should be sliced thinly, ~1/4 inch thick.  
  • When arranging the apples over the caramel, make sure they overlap. This will give you the best presentation and allow you to use as many apples as possible.
  • When I have made this, I have had ~1/4 of an apple left over. You can try to stuff them in or just eat them like I did!
  • When the cake is done, you should be able to see caramel bubbling up against the edges of the pan.

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94 thoughts on “Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake

    1. That sounds delicious, I love peaches as well! I would love to hear how you like the recipe once you make it 🙂

    1. Yes definitely, I am waiting for another excuse to make it again! Thank you, one of my good friends got it for me. I love it as well 🙂

  1. Eeeeek, I am a caramel addict and need to try your recipe. There are many orchards right around our neighborhood so it is the perfect time to use some of them for baking. I tried your lemon poppy seed coffee cake and it turned out delicious!

    1. I am so glad you like the lemon poppy seed coffee cake, it is great to hear! Fresh apples are perfect for this cake, I would love to hear how you like the recipe 🙂

  2. I love baking, but have’t made an upside down cake yet. I’m going to add this to my fall baking list once I go apple picking. Looks delicious!

    1. Thank you! Making an upside down cake is not really any harder than a normal cake. The cake also should come out of the pan very easily due to the caramel, which is always a plus! Enjoy, I would love to hear how you like the recipe!

    1. I am sure it would be even better with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream! I would love to hear how you like the recipe 🙂

  3. OMG… this looks exactly like what I have been dreaming about, but could never find the right recipe to fill the craving! Definitely going to try this!!! Mmm!

    1. I am glad that this recipe is what you have been looking for! I would love to hear how you like the recipe, enjoy!

  4. This cake looks incredibly delicious! Reminds me that Fall is just around the corner, along with apple season. I’m definitely saving this recipe and can’t wait to try it soon!

  5. This looks so yummy..I have heard about pineapple upside down cake, but with caramel and apples…great…should try out…

    1. This is definitely a fun and delicious twist on the traditional pineapple upside down cake. You can’t go wrong with caramel and apples, enjoy 🙂

    1. It definitely would be, or even a big scoop of vanilla ice cream! I would love to hear how you like this recipe!

  6. yum Caramel Apple cake!! Thats sounds amazing! I used to live in New England for two years and I remember how nice fall was there! Picking up apples or pumpkins ! Really felt like real autumn! Great recipe!

    1. Apple picking, apple cider, and apple cider donuts sum up a New England fall in one sentence. I have never lived anywhere else so it wouldn’t seem like fall without those things 🙂

  7. In France we have something called Tarte Tatin, same thing. It’s delicious with vanilla ice-cream. The most important thing is to select very good quality apples, very sweet.

    1. When I was making this recipe I was debating whether to call it a tarte tatin, so thank you for bringing that up! I am sure they are both delicious 🙂

  8. This looks great and not too complicated. My favorite kind of recipe. This is perfect for digging in warm with some creamy vanilla ice cream on the side! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Ice cream would definitely make this better! It definitely is pretty simple and I hope not too intimidating. Enjoy 🙂

  9. This cake looks so delicious! It would go great with a scoop of vanilla or even mint ice cream. I love adding cinnamon to any recipe that calls for caramel since they compliment each other so well. Definitely going to try this!

    1. I hadn’t thought of adding vanilla ice but that would have to make it even better, since ice cream makes everything better! I completely agree, the cinnamon really compliments the caramel and the apples of course. I would love to hear how you like the recipe 🙂

  10. I swear I cry a little bit every time summer ends. But I do love fall baking and fall flavours. Like this one! Looks so good. I can imagine what your kitchen must have smelled like baking this 🙂

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