Moist and flavorful this peach upside down cake is full of sweet flavor from caramelized peaches that are baked on a homemade soft and tender cake! Served warm out of the oven with a scoop of ice cream, it’s the best summertime dessert.
While I usually love my fruit crunchy, like a good crisp apple in the fall, this peach upside down cake with its fresh caramelized peaches and soft tender cake has me appreciating summertime fruit in a whole new way!
This summer cake recipe is easy to make and the fruit on the top is just stunning! The presentation only rivals the taste, which is moist, buttery, soft and sweet. This cake even inspired me to make a fall upside down apple cake!
From the browned butter juicy peaches to the spongy cake with a slight almond taste, you are going to love the pure melt-in-your-mouth texture that will become a summertime staple to make in your own kitchen as it has in mine.
What is an Upside-Down Cake?
If you have never had an upside down cake before, this cake actually dates back hundreds of years when they would line a cast iron skillet with fruit and then pour cake batter on the top.
Once done, the cake was then flipped so the cake part was on the bottom and the fruit on the top.
As it baked the juicy fruit infused the cake with delicious flavor and then when flipped it became a beautiful presentation not to mention all the delicious caramelized taste. One of the most classic examples of this type of cake is the pineapple upside down cake!
Ingredients for Upside Down Peach Cake
- Butter: Salted butter is great for the syrupy peach topping while unsalted butter is preferred for the cake batter.
- Sugars: You will need brown sugar for the peach topping and granulated sugar for the cake portion.
- Peaches: You will need 3 or 4 small fresh peaches or 1 small can of peaches drained.
- Extract: I prefer almond extract in the cake but you can use vanilla extract if you would like.
- Egg: One egg adds binding and moisture to the cake.
- Cake flour: This type of flour will produce a cake that has a soft and tender crumb.
- Baking powder: This adds both lift and rise and is a staple in baked goods.
- Salt: This is used in the cake batter to enhance the taste. If you only have salted butter, you may need only a pinch.
- Milk: This gives the cake an even more tender crumb! You can use buttermilk if you would like a tangier cake.
Fresh vs. Frozen or Canned Peaches
While fresh peaches will provide the best taste, frozen peaches or canned peaches can be used which is a great way to make this peach upside cake year round.
To use frozen peaches, defrost and drain completely before using so you don’t introduce additional moisture which could lead to a soggy cake.
Canned peaches will also need to be drained completely before using in the cake. You will need one small can of peaches to replace the fresh peach slices.
How to Make Peach Upside Down Cake
Next, make your peach layer. On the bottom of the cake pan place the softened butter, add the brown sugar and mix well. Spread it evenly across the bottom of the pan then lightly press the sliced peaches into the mixture.
To make your cake layer, first whisk together your dry ingredients to remove any lumps then set aside.
Then in a medium bowl, cream the butter, sugar and almond extract with an electric mixer. Add the egg and continue to beat until light and fluffy.
Last, alternate adding your dry ingredients with the milk beating on low speed until combined.
Spoon your cake batter evenly over the peaches.
Bake the upside down peach cake until down. Cool for 5 minutes and then flip your upside cake unto a plate. Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
Notes, Tips and Variations
- Warm flavor: For additional flavor add a teaspoon of cinnamon to the brown sugar and butter mixture.
- Nuts: Walnuts, pecans or sliced almonds would all be delicious and add some texture! You can add some to the cake batter, layer with the fresh peaches or add on top after baking.
- Other fruit: Don’t let peaches stop you! Try this upside down cake with nectarines, pears, plums, apples or pineapple.
- How to release the cake from the pan: First, run a knife along the edge of the pan then turn the pan upside down over a plate and it should release easily onto the plate. If you have waited too long and your cake is sticking, place it back in the oven for a few minutes to loosen the caramelized fruit.
- Homemade cake flour: To make your own cake flour, place one cup of all purpose flour into a bowl, remove 2 tablespoons and replace it with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch. Whisk well to combine.
Store leftover peach upside down cake in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 4 days. You can also freeze leftover cake wrapped tightly in plastic wrap for up to one month! While the cake may be more moist when thawed and the peaches browner in color, it will still taste delicious.
Serve a slice of your warm upside down cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or whipped cream! For the ultimate treat, make your own homemade whipped cream and peach ice cream.
To soften fresh peaches faster, put them in a paper bag and then leave them on the counter for a day. A fresh peach will have a slight give when you gently squeeze it.
While historically this was made in a cast iron skillet, I find it much easier to use a 7-8 inch springform cake pan. You could also use a round sized cake pan or square cake pan, although I like the higher sides of the springform pan.
Neither! If you flip it while it’s too hot you risk it falling apart and if it is too cold it will have caramelized too much and be stuck to the pan. The best is to wait 5-10 minutes before flipping your cake onto a serving plate.
I hope you enjoy this Peach Upside Down Dessert as much as we did, and a dessert served with a little ice cream is a dessert no one can refuse. Enjoy!
More Summertime Desserts to Try
- Pineapple Cream Dessert
- Fresh Strawberry Cheesecake Pie
- Tiramisu Ice Cream Parfaits
- Toasted Coconut Lemon Ice Cream
- Death by Chocolate Ice Cream Cake
Peach Upside Down Cake
- ¼ cup butter (softened) (56 grams)
- ½ cup + 1 tablespoon brown sugar (lightly packed) (112 grams total)
- 18-23 slices of peaches (3 or 4 peaches or 1 small can drained)
- ¼ cup butter
- ½ cup white sugar
- ¼ teaspoon almond flavouring
- 1 egg
- 1 cup cake flour **
- 1½ teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons milk (80 grams total)
- Pre-Heat oven to 350°F (180°C), grease and flour or spray a 7-8 inch (20 cm) spring form cake pan or regular pan, you can also line the pan with parchment paper.
- On the bottom of cake pan place the softened butter, add the brown sugar and mix well, spread evenly, lightly press peach slices into the mixture.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.
- In a medium bowl cream butter, sugar and almond flavouring, add the egg and beat until light and fluffy, add the dry ingredients alternately with milk, beat on low until combined.
- Spoon and spread evenly over peach slices. Bake for approximately 40-45 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes and then flip onto a cake plate, serve warm, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream if desired. Enjoy!
Updated from June 10, 2017.
Deborah Spencer says
I have not made this yet but was Ecstatic to find a recipe that you can use canned peaches! Peaches are one of my favorite fruits but unfortunately here in New England you just cannot find good peaches, our growing season is just too short. I grew up in the Midwestern states where they do have wonderful peaches. I love New England but miss the peaches.
Hi Deborah, so happy to help. I hope you enjoy it. And yes nothing like a fresh grown peach. Take care and let me know how it goes.
I totally agree with you regarding peaches 🍑. It’s my favorite fruit. I live in RI , and I never find good peaches here. Only once , a friend of mine , sent me a case of peaches from Georgia. Omg, real good ones.
I am going to try the recipe with can peaches.
You have a wonderful rest of the day!🌺
Pauline heck says
Can this be frozen
Hi Pauline, yes you can freeze it although the peaches might brown a bit, although you could cover it with ice cream or whipped cream. 🙂 Take care.
I never usually leave comments on recipes, but this is one of the best desserts I’ve ever made! I added some nutmeg and cinnamon to the butter and sugar mixture and, after adding the peaches, I splashed some rum (!) over the peaches. The rest of the recipe went according to what was written. It ended up tasting like something you’d buy at a restaurant. So good! Will definitely use again!
Hi Glen, thanks so much, so glad you enjoyed it. Great idea with the rum. Have a great week.
I made this with no problems! I even double recipe in order to make a 9 x 13 cake…no problems getting out either! Yet to taste finished product, however….I love the white cake recipe…I will be saving that! Thank you so much for the recipe Rosemary, something a little different than the normal cobbler, etc.
Hi Pam thanks so much, glad you liked it. Take care.
Lovely recipe! Would have liked a method to get the peach browned/glazed/caramel-y, any tips? I used canned peaches and found the bottom a little “soggy” but it didn’t affect the overall taste of the cake. I ommited some sugar in the batter but found I didn’t have too. Next time I think I will try with fresh peaches instead, although I imagine the peaches in the UK can be a little less sweet than the US.
Hi Suzanne, I think the bottom was a little soggy because of the canned peaches. If you find the peaches less sweet then maybe add a little sugar, make sure they are ripe but firm. They should should be fine. Let me know how it goes.
I found the same thing, the whole thing was quite soggy even though I strained the canned peaches and patted them with paper towel. The recipe does say you can use canned so I’m not sure why it would be listed if it makes it so soggy? I’m new to upside down cakes though, are they meant to be overall quite a soggy cake?
Hi Sammy, I really don’t know why it would be so soggy, I use canned all the time. Maybe less peaches would work better. Hope that helps. Take care.
I made this today with Bob’s Redmill gluten free 1 to 1 flour. I altered it by adding 3 more tablespoons of milk and a tablespoon of apricot jam for moisture (I cut down the sugar in the dry mis by about 2 tablespoons to accommodate for the jam). It is delicious and almost gone!
Thank you for a great and easy recipe. I did use a 9 inch pie pan as I got had gotten rid of my springform pan in my teflon clean up. I should have put foil under it as I did have some caramel spill over, but I’ll remember for next time.
Hi Mila, thanks so much and thanks for letting me know about using gluten free flour. Take care.
This is a wonderful recipe! Perfect hint of almond in the cake pairs well with the peaches.
I had an issue with the “upside down” part leaking out of my springform pan. I suspect it was a poor quality pan! Next time I will give it a shot with a regular pan.
Thank you for sharing.
Hi Deborah, thanks so much, or you can line your pan with parchment paper that should keep everything in the pan. Take care.
I was craving an upside down cake and thought this looked pretty good. It came out perfectly, tasted great with vanilla ice cream on the side too.
Hi Nayomi, thanks so much, so glad you enjoyed it. Take care.
Hi there, just wanted to know why is 1/4 cup of butter for the bottom layer 56.7 grams and for the cake mixture its 70.8 grams?
Hi Nabeelah, thanks I adjusted the grams, they were a bit off. Take care.
Awesome and perfect
I have a great pic
Can you use frozen peaches?
Hi Marty, I have never used frozen peaches before, but you could try it, I think it would be best to use the peaches frozen rather than thawed. Let me know how it goes.
I doubled recipe and used 9×11 pan and not nearly enough batter. Would recommend do triple cake batter for 9×11 pan.