Gluten Free Upside Down Apple Cake

This was the first gluten free cake I ever made and is one that has recently been requested  for a bake sale by a non-gluten free colleague at work!


It probably isn’t as famous as its associate, the upside down pineapple cake, but everyone prefers apples to pineapple surely?! If you are a fan of apple desserts like me then you will love this!


Ingredients (serves 10)


  • 1 big cooking apple or 3 small granny smith apples
  • 3/4 cup of butter (I use unsalted)
  • 3/4 cup of brown sugar


  • 3/4 cup of butter
  • 1 1/2 cups of brown sugar (caster sugar also works)
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup of milk (this can be substituted for water)
  • 1 1/2 cups of gluten free plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of cinnamon



  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C
  2. For the topping, melt the butter and sugar in a pan on a low heat and continue to mix the mixture loads to ensure that the melted butter does not separate from the sugar
  3. Once the mixture has melted and is mixed, pour this into the cake tin and add the peeled apple slices into the mixture in your desired pattern
  4. In a mixing bowl mix together the butter and sugar
  5. Add the eggs and whisk the mixture for approximately 2 minutes
  6. Add the milk (or water) and vanilla and continue to whisk
  7. Add the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon and whisk for a further 4/5 minutes
  8. Pour the mixture into the cake tin onto of the topping and bake in the oven for 45 minutes (Or until a knife placed in the centre of the cake comes out clean)
  9. Once cooked, remove the cake from the oven and place a plate or cake case base on top of the cake tin and flip it over
  10. Then slowly remove the cake tin (the apples should now be on the top) and allow the cake to cool!



  • If step 3 is proving difficult because the butter is hard, pop the bowl into the microwave for roughly 20 seconds to allow the butter to soften (make sure that it does not turn into liquid though!)
  • It took me a few attempts for the apples not to sink into the mixture and the key is to do the topping first and cover the sugar and butter mixture completely with apples, allowing this mixture the cool down and set whilst you are making the cake batter
  • This recipe can also be made into cupcakes/muffins! Just ignore steps 1-3 and add the apple into the mixture before step 8. The cooking time for these should be roughly 20 minutes.

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