Easy Plum Upside-Down Cake

Prep Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
1 hr 15 mins

In this version of the classic upside-down cake, the plum slices replace traditional pineapple and are arranged decoratively like rooftop shingles, completely covering the bottom of the pan.


  • 12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

  • ½ cup packed light-brown sugar

  • 3 medium plums (about 12 ounces), halved, pitted, and thinly sliced

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest (about 1 lemon)

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 ⅓ cups cake flour (not self-rising)

  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • ¼ teaspoon allspice

  • ½ cup milk


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place 4 tablespoons butter in an 8-inch square cake pan. Heat in oven until butter melts, about 4 minutes. Remove from oven; sprinkle brown sugar evenly over butter. Arrange the plum slices like rooftop shingles. Start at one end of the pan, then stagger and overlap the slices so the bottom of the pan is covered.

  2. In a large bowl, cream remaining 8 tablespoons butter with sugar and lemon zest. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until combined after each.

  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together cake flour, baking powder, salt, and allspice. Add flour mixture to butter mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the milk and starting and ending with the flour.

  4. Pour batter into cake pan, and spread evenly over plums. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, about 50 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes, then invert cake onto wire rack to cool again slightly before serving.

Cook's Notes

Let the cake rest no longer than 10 minutes before turning it out or the topping may stick. If it does stick, dip the pan bottom in hot water, then try turning it out again.

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