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Classic Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

easy pineapple upside-down cake

A quick and simple recipe for a favourite old time classic…

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

This is a very quick and easy to follow recipe for a very yummy and moist pineapple upside-down cake!

This is from a classic recipe from my old school home economics book. Near the end of this post you can find the recipe to print!

The first time I ever made pineapple upside-down cake was during my cookery lesson back in High School when I was 12 or 13 years old. I don’t know why, but I still have the original H.E book from back then, and for many years I was just using it to make my favourite banana cake. It never occurred to me to turn more pages and try other top recipes from my school days.

I was reminded of this classic cake just a few weeks ago by a lovely Armenian lady. She asked me to bake it with her two little boys, as it was a cake her mum used to make back in Armenia! I was very surprised that she knew about pineapple upside-down cake. I was under the impression that it was a typical English cake from the 80’s that only us school kids were told to bake in cookery class.

Seems like Pineapple Upside-Down Cake could well be a favourite cake in many a country!? …

Please leave a comment and let me know where you know this scrummy cake from! It would be very interesting to know.

Out of curiosity, I looked at a few other pineapple upside-down cake recipes online, but was put off by the ‘complexity’ – many recipes talked about using buttermilk (hard for me to get as I live in Spain and I’ve never seen it here) and using other ingredients that left me thinking ‘maybe I’ll just stick to making banana cake’. But then I grabbed my childhood recipe book and jumped to the index. I was so happy to discover this long forgotten, simple and effective pineapple upside-down cake recipe. It’s really no fuss and is quick to make. There is even a simple recipe on how to make an accompanying ‘pineapple and lemon sauce’ – YUM!

Make sure you give it a try – your whole family will be delighted, and also left with wonderful memories of a very yummy, retro style ‘Pineapple Upside-Down Cake’.

(I made a second pineapple cake a few weeks later for a friend’s birthday – you can see the photo at the end of this blog post)

So, here goes…

Easy Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Easy to make Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

How to make Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

A simple recipe for Pineapple Upside-Down Cake


Serves about 5 people. 2 people if you are greedy like me! (My sister and I demolished this cake in a few minutes)

  • 1 small can of pineapple rings (you will need 4 rings. KEEP the pineapple juice!)
  • 4 glace cherries
  • About 2 full tablespoons of golden syrup (Lyle’s Golden Syrup is perfect for this! More info on this syrup after the recipe!)
  • 100g / 4 oz self-raising flour. Use a packet of baking powder if you only can get plain flour. You can also mix the flour with wholemeal flour if you like.
  • 100g / 4 oz soft margarine or butter.
  • 100g / 4 oz caster sugar. You can also use brown sugar if you prefer.
  • 2 eggs.

*Optional – a dash of mixed baking spice. A handful of sultanas.

Pineapple Upside-Down Cake ingredients
Ingredients for pineapple upside-down cake


  • First start by turning on the oven. 180ºC, or gas mark 4. Place the shelf in the middle of the oven.
  • Grease a medium sized cake tin or cake vessel. If you use a large cake tin then you will need to double all the ingredients.
A greased cake tin for pineapple upside-down cake
My greased pyrex vessel
  • Spoon in the 2 spoons of golden syrup to cover the bottom of the baking vessel (I used a pyrex dish). Drain the pineapple rings and place them on the syrup. Put a glazed cherry in the middle of each ring.
Pineapple upside-down cake - golden syrup and pineapples
Pineapple rings, golden syrup and glace cherries
  • Sieve the flour into a mixing bowl. Add in the margarine/butter, sugar, and eggs. (Now is the time to add in the mixed spice and sultanas if you want them in your cake). Beat well until the mixture is light and fluffy.
Pineapple upside-down cake mix with mixed spice and sultanas
  • Spread this mix carefully into your baking vessel, making sure to cover all of the pineapple rings.
Pineapple upside-down cake mix
Pineapple upside-down cake mix
  • Bake for about 45 minutes until the cake is firm. Use a skewer to test if it is fully baked in the middle.
  • If you see your cake is still raw in the middle, turn the heat down, place foil and a sheet of newspaper underneath the baking vessel, then also place foil over the baking vessel – this will prevent your cake from burning on the top and bottom. Disclaimer – if you do this, then keep checking on your cake, do not leave it unattended.
  • When your cake is thoroughly baked, turn it out onto a plate. Serve with either custard – or pineapple and lemon sauce…

Pineapple and lemon sauce

Pineapple and lemon sauce


  • Syrup from the pineapple juice.
  • A glass of cold water.
  • 1 heaped teaspoon of cornflour or arrowroot.
  • 1 rounded teaspoon of sugar.
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice.


Put the syrup from the tin of pineapples into a measuring jug. Add enough water to make 250ml / 1.5pt liquid. Put this into a small pan and add a rounded teaspoon of cornflour or arrowroot, a rounded teaspoon of sugar and 2 teaspoons of lemon juice.

Bring all this to the boil, stirring all the time, until thick.

Leave to cool.

Enjoy your Pineapple Upside-Down Cake!

Simple quick and easy pineapple upside down cake
Pineapple upside-down cake with pineapple and lemon sauce


Lyle’s Golden Syrup

Lyon's Golden Syrup for baking

A 454g tin of the classic Lyle’s Golden Syrup is the syrup that I use. (Also referred to as ‘Lion’s/Lyon’s Golden Syrup’) You may also use other golden syrups, such as the one by ‘Silver Spoon’.

Silver Spoon golden syrup

You may of course also know other brands of golden syrup to use. But my personal favourite is the Lyle’s Golden Syrup. You can purchase it in the beautiful classic 454g tin, or get it in the squeezy bottles. If you select his brand from the internet, be sure to check that it is actually the Golden Syrup, as Lyle and Tate now do many other sauces and syrups in squeezy bottles whose packaging looks very similar – such as the maple syrup, strawberry or chocolate syrups, and the treacle.

If you are a person that purchases on Amazon, you can use the official links according to your country below this Post.

A Taste of Home English Supermarket, Barcelona, Spain

If you are based in Barcelona like me – then you can pop down to the English supermarket in Barcelona’s city centre! –

Lyle’s Golden Syrup in ‘A Taste of Home’ Barcelona.

Lyle’s Golden Syrup on Amazon

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Lyle’s Golden Syrup – Amazon USA

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Lyle’s Golden Syrup – Amazon CA

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Lyle’s Golden Syrup – Amazon UK

Lyle’s Golden Syrup – Amazon AU

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Lyle’s Golden Syrup – Amazon ES

Lyle’s Golden Syrup – Amazon DE

Pineapple Upside-down birthday cake
Pineapple Upside-down birthday cake!

This ‘CLASSIC PINEAPPLE UPSIDE-DOWN CAKE’ Blog Post  is brought to you by…

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What Children Really Want

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