Easy Cranberry Upside Down Cake Recipe is made with fresh cranberries and warm cinnamon. This is a festive and beautiful cake. Just perfect for the holidays!
Why you'll love cranberry upside-down cake:
- Perfect for the holiday season: A beautiful cake to make for Thanksgiving or Christmas holidays, as it is packed with seasonal flavors and ingredients.
- Beautiful presentation: The vibrant red color of the cranberries against the golden brown cake this cake not only stunning but also delicious.
- Versatile dessert: This cake can be served warm or at room temperature, and it is great for breakfast or as a snack with tea or coffee.
- Great way to use up extra cranberries: Every holiday time of the year I always find myself with extra fresh cranberries. This is the perfect cake to make with some of those cranberries you may have in your fridge!
- Fun twist on traditional upside down cakes: Pineapple upside down cake may be a classic, but this cranberry version adds a delicious twist with sweet and tart flavors.
This cake was a hit last year. I adapted this recipe a little bit and came up with this one. I am glad I remembered to make it again this year again to share with you! This weekend it disappeared pretty quickly in my house. The best parts of this cake: the sweetness of the brown sugar with the tartness of the cranberries. You could make this easy cake for Thanksgiving. It is festive and just delicious.
- Why you'll love cranberry upside-down cake:
- What ingredients are in cranberry upside down coffee cake?
- How to make cranberry cake:
- Expert tips to make cranberry upside down coffee cake:
- Variations for easy cranberry cake recipe:
- What to serve with fresh cranberry cake?
- Some other delicious cakes to try:
- Easy Cranberry Upside Down Cake Recipe
The cranberries caramelize while they’re baking in the brown sugar and butter (use margarine, if you’re dairy-free). A spectacular cake that we make every year as soon as the fresh cranberries arrive in the markets.
When I think of Thanksgiving, I think of the cranberry sauce. I know. It’s about the turkey. The pies. I have a soft spot for cranberries. I’m not going to lie, I think a lot about the stuffing too.
When I started blogging this summer, I posted this upside-down dulce de leche and organic apple cake.
I also baked an upside-down banana cake with dulce de leche and an upside-down plum and mango cake.
I love the surprise of an upside-down cake. You flip your baking pan over, and voilà: gorgeous fruit that is baked to perfection on top of a scrumptious cake. I really like the tartness of cranberries. The vibrant color of the berries.
What ingredients are in cranberry upside down coffee cake?
(Full printable recipe is found below)
- Unsalted butter: used to create the base of the glaze and add moisture to the cake.
- Light brown sugar: combined with the butter to create a sweet and caramel-like glaze for the bottom of the cake.
- Fresh or frozen cranberries: the star ingredient, providing a tart and juicy burst of flavor to the cake.
- All-purpose flour: creates the structure and texture of the cake.
- Baking powder: helps the cake rise and creates a light and fluffy texture.
- Baking soda: also contributes to the rising of the cake.
- Sea salt: enhances the flavors in the cake and balances out the sweetness.
- Eggs: helps bind the cake together and adds moisture.
- Vanilla extract: gives a subtle flavor to the cake and complements the tartness of the cranberries.
- Sour cream: adds moisture and tanginess to the cake.
- Milk: thins out the batter and adds more moisture to the cake.
- Unsalted butter: combined with sugar to create a rich and moist base for the cake.
- Powdered sugar (optional): sprinkled on top of the finished cake for added sweetness and decoration.
How to make cranberry cake:
- Step 1: Prep your cake pan.
- Step 2: In a small saucepan on low heat, melt the butter and the brown sugar.
- Step 3: Add melted butter/sugar mixture to bottom to the cake pan.
- Step 4: Arrange cranberries over this mixture.
- Step 5: Stir together flour, baking powder and salt.
- Step 6: Beat eggs and sugar until fluffy. Mix in oil and vanilla extract.
- Step 7: Add 1/2 of flour to the mixing bowl and combine.
- Step 8: Stir in the sour cream and add in the rest of the flour mixture.
- Step 9: Spread the cake batter evenly over the cranberries.
- Step 10: Bake the cake for 45-50 minutes.
- Step 11: Allow to cool for 10 minutes then loosen from the cake pan.
- Step 12: Invert the cake onto a plate and serve and enjoy!
Expert tips to make cranberry upside down coffee cake:
- Be sure to use room temperature eggs. That makes sure that air gets mixed into the batter, which makes for a lighter cake.
- The flour, baking powder and salt need to be whisked together in a separate bowl before adding into the cake batter. Combining the dry ingredients makes sure they distribute evenly throughout the cake batter.
- Take care to not overmix the cake batter. When you add in the sour cream and flour mixture, it just needs to be stirred in until combined. That will keep the cake soft and fluffy.
- No mixer, no problem! The whole batter could be put together by hand. Beat the eggs and sugar until they're light and fluffy...it will take a little bit of arm power, but it could all be done by hand!
- Add a teaspoon of orange zest to the cake batter for a fresh citrus burst of flavor.
- If using frozen cranberries, they need to thaw and be drained before adding to the cake batter.
Variations for easy cranberry cake recipe:
- To give a taste of autumn to this cranberry upside down cake, try adding a teaspoon of cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice to the flour mixture.
- If you don't have sour cream on hand, you can substitute it with plain Greek yogurt or even buttermilk for a tangy twist. Both options will still give the cake that moist and tender texture.
- For a gluten-free version, you can use a gluten-free flour blend in place of the all-purpose flour. Just make sure to check the label and ensure that it contains xanthan gum for proper binding.
- If you don't have any cranberries are not your thing, you could substitute them sliced apples or pears.
- For a boozy twist, you could add a tablespoon of orange liqueur or brandy to the cake batter.
- To make this cake vegan-friendly, you can use your favorite non-dairy sour cream and make flax seed eggs in place of the eggs. Use vegan butter substitute instead of regular butter.
- Before serving the cake, drizzle some melted white chocolate on top. The white drizzle with the red cranberries would be very beautiful and festive, making it a perfect Christmas cake.
- To make it a little nutty, add in some chopped pecans or walnuts to the cranberry mixture before pouring it into the pan.
- Have some extra fresh cranberries on hand to garnish the cake!
What to serve with fresh cranberry cake?
- Whipped cream (homemade or store-bought)
- Vanilla ice cream
- Fresh berries
- A drizzle of caramel or chocolate sauce
- A dusting of powdered sugar
- Chopped nuts
- Hot cup of coffee or tea for a cozy dessert experience.
Some other delicious cakes to try:
- Vegan Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
- Orange Crunch Cake
- Sourdough Discard Apple Cake
- Gluten-Free Peach and Blackberry Cake
Did you make this? Please RATE THE RECIPE below:)
Easy Cranberry Upside Down Cake Recipe
- Butter a 9-inch round cake pan or a 9 inch x 9 inch square cake pan (You could line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper and butter the paper or you could butter it and spray around the sides with a baking spray).
- In a small saucepan on low heat, melt the butter and the brown sugar. Stir the butter and brown sugar until it is smooth. Add the glaze to the prepared pan and turn it around to cover the entire bottom of pan evenly. Because of the light brown sugar, it will be thick. Make sure you don't get it too thick when you are melting the butter. Arrange the cranberries evenly over the pan.
- Add the flour, baking powder and salt to a medium sized bowl and whisk together the ingredients.
- In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the and eggs and the granulated sugar until fluffy (about 2-3 minutes). Lower the speed, and mix in the oil and vanilla until combined.
- Add 1/2 of the flour mixture to the mixing bowl and combine. Make sure you scrape around the sides of the bowl.
- Mix in the sour cream until combined. Mix in the rest of the flour mixture.
- Carefully spoon the batter over the cranberries and spread evenly with a rubber spatula. Bake for about 45-50 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes our clean. Let the pan cool for about ten minutes and then run a knife around the edge of the pan.
- Carefully invert a plate on the pan and then turn over both the plate and the pan. That is the trickiest part of the whole recipe. Some cranberries make stick to your pan. You can place them right back where they came from on the cake.
Please keep in mind that the nutritional information presented below is an approximation and may vary depending on the exact ingredients used.