Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

Apple Upside Down Cake Without Oil Or Butter

Apple Upside Down Cake

The apple cake is one of the most popular homemade desserts in Italy.
Likewise appreciated are tarts and ciambelle.
At my home,
ciambella was also very popular.

When I was a child, Grandma baked almost every day something I ate for breakfast and merenda.

What I’m going to share is the recipe for a very special apple upside down cake.
Have you ever tasted it?

Apple Upside Down Cake

Apple upside down cake

It is the recipe of the first experiments in the kitchen and, for me, the first dessert I remember together with my grandmother’s ciambella. Although, for the ciambella, as for the apple pie, I should use the plural because nonna had many different versions of both.

It sounds unbelievable, but I had never published a homemade apple cake recipe on the blog. Here you can find the rustic apple cake with buckwheat flour, but no recipe from home. I am happy to fill this gap with an apple upside down cake that, in my opinion, an apple cake lover should try.

The characteristic of this cake is that Grandma used plenty of apples and raisins for a little modest amount of batter. Basically, you pour a little batter over a box of fruit, letting it find its place through the apple pieces. During cooking, in contact with the apples, the batter remains soft and smooth as if it were a cream.

The trick to a successful cake

What I share as a trick was something that Grandma (and all the people of her generation) knew well: fruit is all different.
Depending on the variety, but also the climate, the fruit may hold a surprise which, in the oven, could become a problem for the cooking.
Did you know that an apple is about 85% water?
When making a dessert with fresh fruit, after washing, drying, and cutting it, let it rest in a bowl with a couple of tablespoons of sugar for a few hours or overnight. It will have time to release its water.

I leave you with the recipe. It is an apple upside down cake of almost spring in this February of warm, sunny days. I’m waiting for March to see if winter has given way to the new season.

Buona cucina, Monica

Don’t miss my newsletter!

To receive unpublished recipes, tips, and food stories, sign up for the Tortellini&CO newsletter. You can disable it anytime.

Keep in Touch.

If you like, follow me on InstagramPinterest and Facebook.

Apple upside down cake.

Food Tips

To decorate the upside down cake, I used icing sugar. To prevent it from creating an unattractive effect (lumpy and wet!) when it came into contact with the fruit, I dusted the entire surface using a sieve, then I used a kitchen brush to create the striped effect you see in the photos and which remained as you see it, with that woven effect that I like very much.

You can use purpose or spelt flour.

In the original recipe, nonna also added 100g of finely chopped candied citron.

Apple upside down cake

serves 4-6
mould, 20 cm diameter

apples, 500g
flour, 150g
caster sugar, 150g + 4 tablespoons
Normal eggs, 2
sultanas, 100g
icing sugar to decorate
salt, a pinch

filtered juice of half a lemon, optional
rum, if you like


Soak the raisins in water and rum (half water and half rum) for about an hour.

After this time, peel the apples, remove the core, and cut them into small pieces.

Put the apples in a large bowl, add one or two tablespoons of sugar, stir.

Drain the raisins and pour into the bowl of apples, stir again, cover with plastic film, and leave to rest in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight.

Then separate the fruit from its liquid and set it aside.

Mix flour, salt, and sugar together and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 180C degrees, static function.

Beat the eggs with an electric whisk, add the dry part, and incorporate with the whisk.

Add part of the liquid of the apples a little at a time until the batter is soft and smooth.

Line a baking tray with baking paper, sprinkle the bottom with two tablespoons of sugar, pour in the apples then pour the mixture over the fruit.

Add the batter turning the mold with your free hand.

Place the cake in the oven, lower the temperature to 170C degrees, and bake for about 35 minutes.

Test the cooking with a wooden toothpick: the cake is ready when it comes out dry.
If it seems to be getting too dark, cover the cake with aluminum foil.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool before flipping.
Dust the upside cake with icing sugar and brush the surface to create the woven effect.

Apple Upside Down Cake

Apple Cake


  • Mimi
    Posted 2 May 2023 at 12:40 AM

    What does “slow” mean when describing the batter?

    • Post Author
      Posted 2 May 2023 at 12:07 PM

      Thank you for the question. Writing about the batter, I meant not slow but soft (lol). I rewrote the recipe, buona cucina. xo, Monica

Leave a comment


© 2024 Tortellini&Co. All Rights Reserved.