Slices of apple, soaked in a rich vegan caramel sauce, are arranged atop a soft, spice-infused cake, creating the delightful Apple Upside Down Cake. This dessert is a splendid amalgamation of gooey textures and warm, inviting flavors, making it an ideal treat for autumn.
This Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake is an essential recipe for autumn. It features a tender cake with hints of cinnamon, paired with succulent apples caramelized in a buttery sauce. Upon flipping the cake, the luscious toppings cascade their flavors into the cake, enhancing its taste and moisture. A highlight of this cake is its effortless elegance—no elaborate decoration is needed, as the stunning apple topping becomes a natural, baked-in adornment.
This delectable caramel apple upside down cake is a quintessential autumn treat, blending a moist and fluffy spiced apple cake with soft, ideally cooked apples, topped with a rich caramel layer. Remarkably simple to prepare, it’s a comforting, effortless autumn dessert. What’s more, it’s completely free from gluten and dairy, yet so delicious that everyone will adore it.
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Embodying the essence of autumn, this caramel apple upside down cake is a masterpiece. It features a harmonious blend of sweet and tart apples, cooked to just the right level of tenderness without becoming mushy. The cake batter is infused with generous amounts of cinnamon and ginger, enhancing its warm, spicy flavor. Topping it off, a luxurious caramel layer partially soaks into the cake as it bakes, creating an irresistibly decadent result.
The cake is incredibly soft, moist, and tender, melting in your mouth with each bite. It epitomizes comfort and simplicity in baking, requiring no specialized equipment like stand or hand mixers, nor a thermometer for caramel preparation. The recipe is straightforward and virtually foolproof. Remarkably, this cake is both gluten-free and dairy-free, yet indistinguishably delicious. Its oil-based composition ensures it remains soft, fluffy, and moist for an extended period, though its longevity is a different question entirely.
This isn’t just any vegan apple cake – it’s an Apple Upside Down Cake with a twist! One of my earliest recipes was a caramel apple upside down cake, a perennial favorite deserving of its place in my recipe collection. I make this cake at least once every autumn and have refined the recipe slightly over the years. The cake has evolved into something even more extraordinary. I’m excited to share the latest updates with you!
This scrumptious Caramel Apple Upside Down Cake features: • A tender and moist texture, reminiscent of this delightful apple cake with a unique twist! • Rich in flavor, akin to the much-adored apple cinnamon bread. • Simple to make, requiring no complex ingredients or techniques. • Ideal size for a cozy family gathering or a small group. • A perfect use for your freshly harvested apples ?
In this quintessential autumn dessert, slices of apple, softened and infused with buttery caramel, form the top layer. The cake is ingeniously assembled upside down in a baking pan, following this sequence:
Once it’s baked, this delightful cake is flipped to reveal its beauty, ready for indulgence! Serve each portion with a generous dollop of vanilla ice cream or a lavish topping of vegan whipped cream for an irresistible treat. Here’s why I’m absolutely smitten with this simple apple upside down cake:
– A Heavenly Combination of Caramel and Apples – Imagine succulent apples, bathed in a rich caramel, atop a soft, spiced cake that reminds you of my Vegan Apple Muffins. Each mouthful is a symphony of flavors!
– The Essence of Comfort – The blend of vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg in both the caramel and the cake creates a cozy, heartwarming dessert perfect for autumn.
– Impressively Simple – Crafting this vegan apple upside down cake is a breeze. Just assemble the layers, bake, flip, and voila – a masterpiece of flavors awaits!
Apple Inverted Cake Garnish
This garnish is uniquely prepared beneath the cake, and once the cake has cooled a bit, it’s turned over onto a plate for serving. The delightful caramel taste is a result of the fusion of butter and brown sugar. This, combined with vanilla and apples, makes the garnish not just an addition but a highlight of the recipe. It’s irresistibly delicious. Note Here’s a delightful fact: As previously mentioned, the beauty of an apple inverted cake is its self-garnishing feature. When you flip the cake, the embellishment is naturally in place!
Some adjustments to the topping based on my original recipe:
– I’ve modified the topping by reducing the amount of butter. Additionally, the cinnamon has been decreased, with more added to the cake itself.
– To prepare, combine the butter and brown sugar in a saucepan and heat them together. Allow the mixture to cook for about a minute. This process slightly thickens it, imparting a rich, caramel-like flavor that becomes more pronounced during baking. This technique isn’t widely used in many recipes, but it significantly enhances the taste. For comparison, in my pineapple upside down cake recipe, we simply pour melted butter into the cake pan and then sprinkle brown sugar over it. This method doesn’t yield the same depth of caramel flavor, which is acceptable for that recipe. However, taking an extra minute for this process here adds a lot of value.
– Next, layer the apple slices over the butter and brown sugar mixture in the pan. Aim to fit as many slices as possible. More caramelized apples have always been a hit!
To prepare an apple upside-down cake with a vegan twist, begin by creating the apple topping. In a small saucepan, melt vegan butter and brown sugar, whisking until the butter is fully melted. Remove the pan from heat and blend in cinnamon and vanilla for flavor. For a salted caramel version, add 1 teaspoon of salt along with the cinnamon and vanilla.
Transfer the caramel mixture into a prepared cake pan, spreading it evenly. Layer apple slices over the caramel – don’t hesitate to use plenty for a rich apple flavor.
Now, focus on the cake batter. In a large bowl, mix together flour, different types of sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Add in melted vegan butter, applesauce, soy milk, and vanilla extract, stirring until the mixture is just combined, being careful not to overmix.
Carefully pour this batter over the arranged apples in the pan.
Bake the cake until it passes the toothpick test – it should come out clean when inserted in the center. After baking, let the cake cool for 5 minutes. Then, carefully invert it onto a serving plate.
Serve this delightful vegan apple upside-down cake with options like vegan vanilla ice cream or vegan whipped cream. Enjoy this sweet treat!
Expect a Heavier Texture in Upside Down Cakes
From my extensive experience with baking hundreds of upside down cakes, I’ve observed that they inherently have a denser texture. This holds true unless you opt for a store-bought cake mix. The unique characteristic of serving the cake upside down plays a role in its density. As the cake bakes, the toppings, which are initially at the bottom, add weight and compress the cake’s crumb underneath. Consequently, an upside down cake will not exhibit the same lightness as a white cake. Interestingly, if you bake the same batter in a traditional right-side-up manner, the cake would feel considerably lighter. Is this explanation clear?
This particular apple upside down cake is remarkably soft and doesn’t feel as heavy as a pound cake, yet it isn’t excessively light. I am confident you will appreciate its distinctive texture, which beautifully complements the caramel apple topping. I’m eager to hear your thoughts on it!
– Can this be made gluten-free?
Yes, simply use a high-quality gluten-free all-purpose flour for the batter.
– Can pre-made caramel be used?
Absolutely! You can use my homemade caramel sauce or salted caramel, or even store-bought vegan caramel. Warming jarred caramel in a saucepan first is advisable for a smoother, more even coating over the apples.
– Is it possible to use different fruits?
Indeed! You can try a combination of apples and pears or replace apples with other fruits like pineapples, rhubarb, strawberries, bananas, cherries, apricots, figs, and more. Depending on the fruit, you might want to adjust or omit the warm spices in the caramel and cake. For more tips on using various fruits in upside down cakes, refer to The Kitchn’s guide.
– How should leftovers be stored? Can you freeze the cake?
Leftover cake can be refrigerated, covered, for up to 3 days. You can also freeze the entire cake or individual slices for up to 2 months.
- Apple Topping Ingredients
- 1/2 cup vegan butter
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 medium apples, peeled and sliced into 1/4 inch slices
- Cake Ingredients
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup melted vegan butter or oil
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/4 cup unsweetened soy milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Lightly grease the sides of a 9-inch cake pan, leaving the bottom ungreased. Set aside.
Apple Topping Preparation
- In a small saucepan, combine vegan butter and brown sugar. Heat over medium, whisking occasionally until the butter melts. Cook for about 1 minute with constant whisking.
- Take off the heat and blend in the cinnamon and vanilla.
- Spread the mixture into the bottom of your prepared pan and arrange the apple slices on top.
Cake Batter Preparation
- In a large bowl, mix the flour, both sugars, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
- Add the melted vegan butter, applesauce, soy milk, and vanilla. Stir until just combined.
- Carefully pour the batter over the apple layer in the pan.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then invert onto a serving plate.
Serving and Storage
- Serve warm, optionally with dairy-free vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.
- Store any leftovers in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.