The Best I have Ever Had - America's Test Kitchen's Upside-Down Apple Cake

Prep Time
Cook Time
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"Delicious! The recipe calls for light brown sugar-I made this with dark brown sugar and the cake came out just fine. I didn't use the cornmeal and ATK says its optional. I used a mixer also."

Original recipe yields 6 servings
  • CAKE


  • Serving Size: 1 (276.9 g)
  • Calories 525.3
  • Total Fat - 21.4 g
  • Saturated Fat - 12.8 g
  • Cholesterol - 122 mg
  • Sodium - 314.6 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 79 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 1.6 g
  • Sugars - 57.8 g
  • Protein - 6.2 g
  • Calcium - 119.4 mg
  • Iron - 1 mg
  • Vitamin C - 4.9 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.1 mg

Step 1

Preheat the oven to 350F, adjust the rack to the lowest position. Butter a 9" round, 2+" deep non-stick cake pan-set aside.

Step 2

Make the topping-

Step 3

Halve the apples from pole to pole. Cut 2 apples into 1/4" slices and set aside.

Step 4

Cut remaining 2 apples into 1/2" slices.

Step 5

Heat the 4 Tb of butter in a 12" skillet over medium-high heat-when foaming subsides, add the 1/2" apples slices and cook, stirring 2 or 3x, until the apples begin to caramelize, 4-6 minutes ( do not fully cook apples).

Step 6

Add the 1/4" apple slices, brown sugar and lemon juice-continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the sugar is dissolved and the apples are coated, about 1 minute.

Step 7

Transfer the apple mixture to the prepared pan and lightly press into an even layer.

Step 8

Make the cake-

Step 9

Whisk flour, cornmeal ( if using), baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl-set aside.

Step 10

Whisk white sugar, brown sugar and eggs together in a large bowl until thick and homogeneous. Slowly whisk in butter until it combines. Add sour cream and vanilla-whisk until combined. Add flour mixture and whisk until just combined.

Step 11

Pour the batter into the pan and spread evenly over the fruit.

Step 12

Bake, on the lowest oven shelf, until the cake is golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean-35-40 minutes.

Step 13

Cool pan on wire rack for 20 minutes then run a knife around the edge to loosen-place the wire rack over the cake pan-holding the rack tightly , invert cake pan and wire rack together to lift the cake off pan-place wire rack over a baking sheet to catch drips. Let the cake cool 20 minutes or more then transfer to a serving platter.

Tips & Variations

No special items needed.