This Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake is gorgeous, and it features the two best flavors of the season! It’s a thick, soft, and moist pumpkin cake, with a topping of caramelized brown sugar and cranberries. This Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake is EASY too, and does not require a lot of effort!
Happy Nov. 1st! Can you believe it’s November already? How did we get here so fast?
Is November 1 too soon for eggnog stuff? What about gingerbread? I’m nearly ready to get out my Christmas decor, so in my mind, anything’s game! How do we feel about cranberries? In the case of this Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake, cranberries are paired with pumpkin so it really bridges the gap between fall baking and true holiday baking anyway! Right? That’s my theory and I’m sticking to it. How beautiful is this Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake?
I am SO excited for the holidays. This is my favorite time of the year. I really get ahead of myself though. Halloween was just yesterday and we’re still finishing up desserts like this Candy Bar Brownie Pie, Candy Bar Cookie Pie, and Leftover Halloween Candy Bar Brownies, yet I will probably start listening to Christmas music, like, tomorrow. I am part of the reason you see Christmas decorations in stores in September.
Getting a head start on holiday baking is also how I roll. I really like to extend and elongate all the festive activities as long as I can. The decorations, the movies and music, the food, all of it. Did I mention the decorations? I have A LOT of those. I’m an over-zealous holiday celebrator… well, minus Halloween and Valentine’s Day. They’re alright.
What’s funny about being such an over-the-top holiday person is that S.O. is very, very much NOT. He’s a scrooge in every sense of the word! His disdain isn’t for one particular holiday either. It’s basically all of them! He’s just not a holiday person. I think it’s the pressure? If you like the guy, you learn to find this behavior endearing and almost hysterical. But if it were up to him, holidays would pass by unnoticed and be just like every other day. If you’re like me, you have 3 different Christmas trees, each with a different theme. 🙂
At least he can get on board with the food aspect of holidays. It’s a big help having him around to taste-test (and then some). This Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake, for example. We found it to be a perfect cake for fall, Thanksgiving dinner, or even brunch. It could totally pass as a coffee cake. It’s moist and rich, and the cranberries are so pretty and festive, like red jewels. They’re also coated in brown sugar and butter, so they taste like a dream. Caramelized cranberries are something you don’t know your life is missing til you try them.
Plus, this Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake is easy. Super easy. As in, you don’t need a mixer and prep time is minimal. So you get an amazingly delicious, seasonal, festive, and pretty cake with little effort. That’s a baker’s dream, friends!
If you want to try other awesome pumpkin recipes, these Pumpkin Spice Latte Cookies are phenomenal! They’re so soft and chewy, with a hint of coffee, and a load of spice! These Pumpkin Nutella Whoopie Pies are really popular, and you really haven’t lived until you’ve had pumpkin and Nutella together. The Nutella Buttercream in those whoopie pies is insane! These Snickerdoodle Pumpkin Nutella Muffins are another good example of that power duo! And I’d be remiss if I didn’t include one of the most popular recipes on the whole blog – this Double Layer No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake comes together in 10 minutes flat!
Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake
- 3 tbsp. unsalted butter melted
- 3/4 c. packed brown sugar
- 2 c. fresh cranberries
- 2 eggs
- 1 c. canned pumpkin puree
- 2 tbsp. oil
- 1 1/2 c. flour
- 1 c. sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- dash of salt
- Lightly grease a 9-inch square pan.
- Pour melted butter into pan, covering the entire bottom.
- Evenly sprinkle brown sugar over butter.
- Evenly sprinkle the cranberries over the brown sugar.
- In a large bowl, combine eggs, pumpkin puree, and oil. Whisk until well-blended.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour and remaining ingredients. Mix until well-blended.
- Add the flour mixture into the pumpkin mixture, and stir until just combined.
- Carefully spread the batter over the cranberries in the pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near center comes out clean, and edges are golden brown.
- Cool for 15 minutes on a wire rack. Place a large platter on top of the cake, and invert.
- Cool for an additional 15 minutes. Best served warm. Enjoy!
Next up: gingerbread stuff! But if you try this Cranberry Pumpkin Upside Down Cake, let me know! I love to hear from you.
Angela @ Shake Bake and Party says
This sounds fabulous! I think I’ll be making this for Thanksgiving! Stopping by from Saturday Night Fever! : )
Awesome! So glad you like it! Thanks for the Saturday Night party! 🙂
Manali @ CookWithManali says
I LOVEEEEEE upside down cakes Sarah, they are one of my favorites! 🙂 Pumpkin and Cranberry sounds awesome! Pinned!
Oh, great! I’m so glad you like this recipe! I really love them too, but I don’t make them enough! I want to work on that! This was a fun seasonal version though. 🙂 Thanks, Manali!
Gayle @ Pumpkin 'N Spice says
I’m so excited for Christmas, too! Although I’m waiting a few more weeks to put up my Christmas decorations, I’m already thinking about what holiday goodies I want to bake. And I can’t wait to start watching Christmas movies! I absolutely love your creativity on this cake, Sarah! What a fantastic idea to combine cranberries with pumpkin. I love the touch of brown sugar, too. And gorgeous pictures! Pinned!
I looooove Christmas movies! I watch “Elf” like 8x every year! I’m totally w/ you on that. I get out my decorations way too early (I’m my mother’s daughter), but I swear it takes a few days to get them unpacked and set up. Haha! I can’t wait!! It will be so fun to see everyone else’s holiday recipes too. 🙂
Stacey @ Bake.Eat.Repeat. says
This is so pretty! I love the cranberries, so bright and festive! And I’m totally with you on extending Christmas stuff, I always have the Christmas music playing far before my husband is ready for it, and like to start the baking early, that way you can do more of it! And I swear my baking list gets longer every year, as there’s more and more favourites! Also, I’ve never made an upside down cake. Why? They always look amazing! 🙂
Lol! I feel the same about ALL of that! I am such a holiday person and I love every part of them! I can’t wait to dive into holiday baking! Soooo excited!
You totally need to add an upside down cake to your ever-growing list of baking ideas! Even a standard pineapple one is delicious. They’re honestly quite easy too! 🙂
It is a little too soon for eggnog but I will take cranberries anytime 🙂 Love love this cake!!
Hahaha! I am always getting ahead of myself. I agree it’s too soon for eggnog stuff, but I still can’t wait for it. I’m sure you’re getting super excited for holiday baking too! Thanks, Zainab! 🙂
Culinary Flavors says
I am preparing for Christmas too! This is a delicious cake perfect for all festivities that follow!
Isn’t it? The cranberries are so pretty and festive! Thanks so much for your comment! 🙂
Catalina @ Shades of Pink says
Love all those juicy, delicious cranberries, some powdered sugar and I am good to go 🙂
Ooooh, that’s a good idea! It would look like a dusting of snow! Haha! Thanks, Catalina. 🙂
Kathleen @ Hint of Joe's says
Your cake looks delicious, Sarah. I am new to your site and loving it. I can’t wait to look at all your recipes.
Hi Kathleen! So happy to have you here! I’m working on a Recipe Index right now, but you can find things pretty well by category! Thanks so much for stopping by, and I’m so happy you like my site so far! 🙂
Jaren (Diary of a Recipe Collector) says
This looks amazing!! I LOVE the holidays too! Thanks for linking up with SNF! Pinned to our party board!
Thanks so much, Jaren! Thanks for the party and the pin! Hope you have a fantastic weekend. 🙂
[email protected] in Pyjamas says
I love fresh cranberries, this cake looks delish! Thanks for linking up to Sweet and Savoury Sunday, stop by and link up again. Have a great day!!
I absolutely can’t wait to make this! I have fresh pumpkin in my freezer and a box of just picked cranberries on the flooor. This was meant to be!
Awesome! That’s perfect. You have exactly what you need! Let me know if you try it! 🙂
Can’t wait to try this! Thank you so much for linking up at Tasty Tuesday! Your recipe has been pinned to the Tasty Tuesday Pinterest board! Please join us again this week!
I don’t have a 9″x9″ baking dish. Do you suppose I could use a 9″ round one instead? The volumes for those are pretty close so it shouldn’t change the baking time …? I don’t know why I get antsy over this stuff, but I do. Any suggestions?
Hi Lizzie! Yes, I think that’d work fine! I’ve only made it in a square, but the proportions should be very similar! You might want to just watch the timer more closely and set it a little shy so that you can check it. You should be fine. I get antsy too – especially if I’m taking it to dinner or party or something! Let me know how you do!
Thanks, Sarah. I’m making it for a gathering at our home that night, so need it to be right. I’m “of the age” that acquiring a new baking dish that I might use once is not attractive. To gild the lily, I’m serving it with to-be-made-tomorrow vanilla ice cream containing a LOT of bourbon (the excuse being that the booze will keep it from freezing up too hard, uh, right).
Ah, I see! I always get anxiety when I’m baking to take things somewhere even though I bake ALL.THE.TIME. It’s funny. You should be fine with the round cake pan, just keep a watchful eye in case baking time should differ. Let me know how it goes! Definitely keep me posted on that vanilla ice cream… if it turns out, I’m going to have to borrow that recipe! Lol! The bourbon component is mighty intriguing! Good luck and enjoy your gathering! 🙂
The cake was simply delicious. Forgot to freeze the ice cream maker cylinder, so opted for Dulce de Leche ice cream, softened, that was f-a-b-u-l-o-u-s. A lovely recipe, thank you.
That’s awesome, Lizzie! So glad you liked it and that it turned out well for you! We loved it too. The cranberries are just so good. That ice cream… wow! Sounds amazing. Maybe drizzle some bourbon on it anyway? Haha! 🙂
Lou Lou Girls says
Oh my! This looks so yummy. Pinned. Lou Lou Girls
Kyla — HouseOfHipsters.com says
Sarah this sounds scrumptious! Thanks for sharing! I think it would be perfect for my new linky party starting this Saturday at 8pm called “Found & Foraged” Can’t wait to party with you at http://www.houseofhipsters.com
Awesome! Thanks, Kyla! I’ll be sure to stop by the party! Thanks so much for the invite! 🙂
Donna Wilson says
What size can of pumpkin do you recommend for this recipe?
Thank you in advance,
Hi Donna! A small 15-oz. can of pumpkin is plenty! You only use 1 cup, so you’ll have part of the can left. You could double the recipe and make it in a 9×13 and use the full can, or you could use the remaining pumpkin for another recipe! I hope that helps! 🙂
Donna Wilson says
Thank you.. Making this today for a work party
Great! Let me know how you like it! Hope you have fun at the party! 🙂
Eden Passante says
This recipe screams fall! Pumpkin and cranberries! Yes, please!
It’s sooo good!! Thanks, Eden!
This cake looks amazing! This will be on my Thanksgiving menu for sure!! Thanks for sharing on Tasty Tuesdays:)
It may not be the season, but I found rather a lot of cranberries at the back of my freezer as well as a can of pumpkin puree at the back of my larder, so your recipe was ideal for both. This is a very beautiful cake and it taste great too. Thank you for posting it.
That’s wonderful! I’m so glad you liked it! I think it’s such a really pretty cake, and I love how it combines those favorite fall flavors. I’m with you – I don’t care if pumpkin is in season, I want it year-round!! So glad you liked the recipe! 🙂
I’m looking at this recipe on election day of 2020… I have a couple of small pumpkins that should yield enough, but I only have dried cranberries. I don’t think extra sweetness is a big problem, but I wonder if i should soak them a little to restore the moisture…
Of course in the spirit of previous comments maybe I should soak them in bourbon!
YES!! ALL THE BOOZE TODAY! I think that’s the best idea I’ve heard in a long time! Haha.
But seriously, I think I’d do that too… soak them to plump them up. Do you have orange juice? Because that would be a really good way to instill moisture. I’d heat them a bit too and let them simmer. Just my thoughts. Please take care of you and yours!
Robin Tallman says
Sounds delicious! Would a 9 inch pan work for this recipe?
Robin Tallman says
I meant to say a 9 inch round pan 🙄
Yes! It would! That would be fine.