Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread Cake

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own - no frosting or ice cream necessary.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own – no frosting or ice cream necessary.

My mom has been baking this Upside Down Apple Gingerbread for years.  It’s a recipe she clipped out of a magazine sometime in the late 1960’s. The recipe was so popular that it made its way into her giant handwritten cookbook.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own - no frosting or ice cream necessary.

Sometimes old recipes are the best.

I rediscovered the recipe the other day when I was flipping through an old stack of handwritten recipe cards from my university days. The cake caught my eye because I have been buying bushels of apples at our local farmers market and all things apple were top of mind.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own - no frosting or ice cream necessary.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake that needs no accompaniment. If you can’t resist serving something alongside, choose whipped cream or crème fraiche.  (Anything sweeter might be over the top.)

It is especially good served warm.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own - no frosting or ice cream necessary.

I lined my pan with parchment paper because I was paranoid about the cake sticking. It worked but the apples didn’t caramelize like they would have against the bottom of a metal pan so next time I’ll skip the parchment paper like I did with this recipe for Rhubarb Upside Down Cake.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread

Ingredients:

For the topping (which begins as the bottom):

  • 4 apples, peeled, cored and cut into 8 wedges each
  • 1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. butter
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar

For the cake:

  • 2 1/3 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp ginger
  • 1 ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • ¾ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ¾ cup melted butter
  • 1 cup boiling water

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F
  2. Put the 1 Tbsp. and 1 tsp. of butter in a high-sided  9” pan and place it in the oven for a few minutes, until the butter melts. Remove it from the oven and use a pastry brush to coat the sides of the pan with the butter. Sprinkle the 2/3 cup of brown sugar over the melted butter in the bottom of the pan. Place the sliced apples on the sugar in a circular pattern.
  3. In a medium bowl whisk the flour with the baking soda, baking powder and spices.
  4. In a large bowl whisk the eggs with the ½ cup brown sugar. Whisk in the molasses and ¾ cup melted butter. Stir in the flour mixture. Add boiling water last and beat well.
  5. Pour into prepared pan.
  6. Bake at 325 F for 60-75 minutes, until the middle is set. (The variety and freshness of your apples will affect cooking time.)

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4 thoughts on “Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread Cake

  1. Alison Hendon says:

    I made this with 2 honeycrisp apples (I sliced them thinner) and it was amazingly good! Cooled in pan about 10 min., then inverted onto plate, came out beautifully.

    1. Hi Alison, Thanks for the feedback. The original recipe called for the apples to simply be quartered. Next time I make it (possibly this weekend) I’ll try, as you did, slicing the apples thinner.

  2. Tracey says:

    Waiting patiently for it to finish baking. Smells divine!

  3. Ruth says:

    A very yummy cake! I used 3 large Asian pears tossed with grated fresh ginger and lime juice and baked it in a bundt pan. Thank you!

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