A beautiful addition to your fall spread, this simple cranberry apple upside-down cake is full of flavor. Complete with a brown sugar butter glaze, bright cranberries, apples, and a moist cinnamon spice cake.
- 6 Tablespoons (90g) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup (100g) packed dark brown sugar
- 1 medium apple, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced*
- 1 heaping cup (130g) fresh or frozen cranberries*
- 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup (200g) packed dark brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature and separated
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/2 cups (190g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/3 cup (80ml) buttermilk*
- Lightly spray a 9-inch pie dish with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside. Make sure your apples are sliced and ready to go.
- For the topping: In a small saucepan, melt butter on low heat. When it begins to bubble, whisk in the brown sugar. Continue to stir until smooth. Then, leave on heat for about 2 minutes until it begins to bubble. Stir, then remove from heat and allow to briefly cool for a couple minutes. Layer the sliced apples and cranberries into the dish and pour the butter/sugar overtop. Set aside.
- Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C).
- Make the cake: In a medium bowl, toss the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger together until combined. Set aside.
- Using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on high until creamy – about 1 minute. Add the brown sugar and beat on medium-high speed until creamed together, about 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Beat in the egg yolks and vanilla on medium speed until everything is combined, about 2 full minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients in three additions alternating with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients, and mixing each addition just until incorporated. Do not overmix. Whisk or beat the 2 egg whites until thick and foamy, about 3 minutes. Fold into cake batter. The batter will be smooth, velvety, and thick.
- Spoon or pour batter over the apples/cranberries and bake for 40-44 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the very middle comes out clean. Allow to cool for exactly ten minutes before inverting onto a large serving dish or cake stand. Serve warm or at room temperature. I prefer it at room temperature. Leftovers keep well covered tightly at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 2 days.
- Apples: Use your favorite variety of apple. I tested this recipe once with Granny Smith and once more with Honeycrisp. Loved them both.
- Cranberries: Somewhere between 1 cup – 1 and 1/4 cups cranberries is good.
- Buttermilk: You can substitute whole milk for buttermilk if desired. You could also use lower fat or nondairy milk in a pinch, but the cake won’t taste as rich and moist.
Keywords: cranberry apple upside down cake, cranberry apple cake