A classic American cake! With this vegan pineapple upside down cake no one will realize it’s vegan! Caramelized pineapple, with a rich, moist cake will be the perfect summer staple!
Let me start by saying that if you’ve never had a pineapple upside down cake of any sort, then you need to run, not walk, to your local grocer and get all these ingredients ASAP. The second thing I’ll say is, you will be blown away by how close this vegan pineapple upside down cake tastes like the original.
It seems as though we have a thing for cakes. But more than that, it seems like each of you also have a thing for cakes. Every time we post one the crowd goes wild. It’s almost become a competition in our house to see how many vegan cakes we can create and which will become most popular (scroll down to get a list!).
Maybe it’s just a cake thing.
Either way, we are thrilled to be sharing this vegan pineapple upside down cake. It is everything you can imagine it to be and more.
Deliciously sweet with caramelized pineapples and a soft, rich, and moist cake. It’s literally everything you want in a cake!
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What ingredients do I need to make a dairy free pineapple upside down cake?
You only need 12 ingredients to make this deliciousness and that makes it all the more perfect! The ingredients that you need for this vegan pineapple upside down cake are:
- vegan butter
- brown sugar
- pineapple slices
- maraschino cherries (no stems)
- flour (can sub for GF)
- vegan sugar
- vegan shortening (usually labeled vegetarian or vegetable)
- baking powder
- dairy free milk (we used almond, use your favorite)
Can I use fresh or canned pineapple? What about cherries?
The choice is yours! The cake will come out no matter if you use fresh or canned pineapple. The same goes for if you use fresh cherries or maraschino cherries.
If you use fresh pineapple, you will want an easy way to core! Try this pineapple corer!
If you do use fresh cherries, you will want to deseed the cherry and then place both halves of one cherry in the center of each pineapple slice.
How do you make vegan pineapple upside down cake?
To start, you are going to heat your oven to 350°F.
Then you are going to pour in your melted butter into a 9-inch square pan. Take a little more softened butter and rub along the sides of your dish. Sprinkle brown sugar evenly over the melted butter.
Next, you are going to make 3 rows of 3 pineapple slices and place a cherry in the center of each pineapple. Place the pan into the fridge while you make the batter (Don’t skip this step).
In a bowl, cream together the vegan shortening and the vegan sugar. Add in the milk, vanilla, and applesauce and beat again until combined. Sift in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Beat together, scraping down as needed.
Remove the pan from the fridge. Pour the batter over your pineapples and cherries.
Bake your cake for 75-90 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Once done, very carefully remove from the oven and immediately place a heatproof serving plate upside down over your cake pan. Then, flip the plate and pan over at the same time.
Let sit like this for 5 minutes so the caramelized mixture drizzles down over the cake. Very gently remove the pan. Best served warm.
Cake can be stored at room temperature in an air tight dish for up to 3 days.
Can I make this Top 8 Allergen friendly pineapple upside down cake?
For allergen purposes, we are looking at the milk, butter, and flour.
You can swap out the flour for Measure for Measure flour from King Arthur. (Note, we haven’t ourselves made this vegan coconut cake gluten free; however, we’ve had successful trials working with this flour.
The butter should be soy free. Earth Balance Soy Free in the red tub is our favorite for that.
Any dairy free milk can be used. We used almond, but it you are allergic, just pick your favorite milk.
Can I prep vegan pineapple upside down cake ahead of time?
This cake is best served warmed right out of the oven; however it’s still possible to make ahead.
You can make this cake 3 days in advance. Beyond that, because this cake is so moist, you risk mold growth. So, I highly recommend, especially if serving guests that you don’t make it more than that far in advance.
Just make the recipe as directed and once completely cooked and cooled, put in an air safe container and store at room temperature. Warm when serving.
What other vegan cake recipes should I make?
Just because you have food allergies or preferences, doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be able to have great tasting desserts. We’d even venture to say that these are better than their “normal” counterparts.
These are some other dairy free cake recipes that you should try:
- Vegan Coconut Cake
- Vegan Strawberry Cake
- The Best Vegan Chocolate Cake
- Vegan Carrot Cake
- Vegan Lemon Pound Cake
- Try these vegan vanilla cupcakes in a cake pan
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Watch how to make a vegan pineapple upside down cake:
Vegan Pineapple Upside Down Cake
- 1/3 cup vegan butter, melted (but not hot)
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 9 slices pineapple (canned or fresh)
- 9 maraschino cherries w/o stems (can sub for fresh)
- 2/3 cup vegan shortening
- 2 cups vegan sugar
- 2 cups dairy free milk
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 2 2/3 cup flour
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Pour melted butter into a 9-inch square pan. Take a little more softened butter and rub along the sides of pan.
- Sprinkle brown sugar evenly over the melted butter.
- Make 3 rows of 3 pineapple slices and place a cherry in the center of each pineapple.
- Place the pan into the fridge while you make the batter (Don't skip this step).
- In a bowl, cream together vegan shortening and vegan sugar for 3 minutes.
- Add in milk, vanilla, and applesauce and beat again until combined.
- Sift in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Beat together, scraping down as needed.
- Remove the pan from the fridge. Pour the batter over your pineapples and cherries.
- Bake cake for 75-90 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Carefully remove from oven and immediately place a heatproof serving plate upside down over cake pan.
- Flip the plate and pan over at the same time.
- Let sit for 5 minutes.
- Very gently remove the pan.
- Best served warm.
- Cake can be stored at room temperature in an air tight dish for up to 3 days.
Did you make this recipe? Tag us @makeitdairyfree and use #MakeItDairyFree on Social so we can feature you!
This video was originally published on 6/28/19 and updated on 9/24/19 to add a video.