Peach Upside-Down Cake

Peach Upside-Down CakeIt must look like I am OD’ing on sugar right now because this is my third sweet and baked recipe in a row, but what can I say? I had these perfectly ripe peaches sitting in my pantry, and I needed to do something about them before they started to spoil. Since I’m not a big fan of eating fruit on its own, I just had to bake them into something delicous AND pretty: like a Peach Upside-Down Cake, a classic from America’s south.

This cake is really, really simple to make and although it does have a fair amount of sugar, it’s fairly low in fat. Plus all that fruit (it also has applesauce in it) makes it, I daresay, not unhealthy.
Peach Upside-Down Cake
One of the great joys of eating this cake are the contrasting textures created by the gooey caramel at the bottom of the pan, the smooth, silky peaches, and the tender cake. Like a lot of dishes originating from the south, this one screams classic comfort food. At the same time it’s beautiful enough to show off with.
Peach Upside-Down Cake
Upside-down cakes are traditionally made in cast-iron skillets, so if you have a 9-inch skillet, use it. If not, use an 8- or 9-inch cake pan.

I need to run, but not before I give you the recipe. It’s Thursday already, and the weekend’s in sight! Hooray!
Peach Upside-Down Cake
Peach Upside-Down Cake

4-5 peaches, halved, pitted, then each half cut into four slices

2 tbsp vegan butter

1/2 cup sugar

Melt the butter in a 9-inch cast-iron skillet. If using a cake pan, place the vegan butter in the pan and place it inside a preheated 350-degree oven until the butter melts.

Tilt the skillet or pan so that the butter coats the sides.

Sprinkle the sugar to evenly cover the bottom of the pan.

Arrange the peaches in a decorative pattern at the bottom of the skillet or pan. If you’re not a patient person or like a more freestyle look, you can just scatter them around in an even, single layer.

Set aside.

Measure out 1/2 cup of soymilk, add 1 tsp balsamic vinegar to it, and set aside to curdle, at least 5 minutes.

Whisk together to mix and aerate:

1 cup all purpose flour

1 tsp cinnamon powder

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

In a smaller bowl, mix together:

2 tbsp canola oil

4 tbsp applesauce

1 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp of the curdled soymilk

Add this to the flour mixture, mixing until just blended with a hand-held electric mixer or a whisk.

Add 1/2 cup of applesauce to the remaining curdled soymilk, mix, and then add to the batter in three batches, mixing well after each addition and scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl.

Pour the batter evenly to cover the peach slices.

Place in the preheated 350-degree oven and bake 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Remove the skillet or pan and tilt it on all sides to loosen the cake. Be sure to use oven mitts because the skillet is screaming hot!

Cool for 2-3 minutes before unmolding.

To unmold, place a serving platter, face-down, on the skillet or pan. Make sure you have your oven mitts on and check again by tilting the pan that the cake has loosened from the sides of the skillet. If not, run a knife along the edge.

Now turn the skillet upside-down in a quick motion and tap slighly if needed to loosen the cake. Carefully lift up the skillet.


Spoon any of the gooey, caramel-y juices remaining in the skillet on top of the cake, and enjoy warm or at room temperature.

For another fruity, pretty dessert, cook up my Tarte Tatin.

(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.

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  1. says

    Aww this looks so good! Makes me speechless! Wish I could have a slice! And congrats for your blog being featured in foodbuzz. Keep rocking :)

  2. says

    That slice of cake is awfully good…feeling like grabbing that plate rightaway :) I am not a big fan of peaches but this cake with the caramalized topping is really tempting me.

  3. says

    Holy Cow Vaishali! It really looks amazing!! I have been wanting to make a plum upside down cake for some reason lately. I will try your recipe with plums instead of peaches. It should be good but with peaches it looks really nice.
    Best. Maria

  4. says

    Don’t feel guilty Vaishali;-) I have been doing the same thing! I bought peaches for 99 cents a lb (the stores every week put one fruit for sale for 99 cents a lb most of the times).. don’t know how much i got.. had fresh, had grilled then peach pie, yet to post.. of all the cakes, i like the fruity ones the best… beautiful.

  5. says

    Ha,I was thinking Vaishali,you are into too much sugar these days..haha..but happens sometime..
    Hey,I have one upside-down cake recipe with me too.havent tried yet..But your baking looks perfect..professional..
    And really can imagine the taste of “contrasting textures” you mentioned..WHat a delight !!

  6. says

    I love love LOVE your blog.. I cannot say enough :) Being a bengali, I was raised hard-core non veg, and converted to vegetarianism (not entirely vegan yet but I aspire to be) after realizing the heinousness behind farming practices and the slaughtering of animals for food and (quoting you) “the needlessness of it all”.
    Your blog is a wonderful space, your write-ups, your recipes are amazing! I have read each one of your entries and I’m hooked. I’m going to visit regularly. I too, like many other converts have recently realized that there are SO many wonderful vegetarian/vegan choices… I enjoy cooking more than ever before and its one of the best decisions I’ve made for myself. Thanks to you and all the other inspirations I have.
    Btw, I’ve already tried some of your recipes and they were such a HIT! I’m waiting for a party to make your Mango Cheesecake 😛 Looks so yumm and its vegan! what could be better?
    Thanks a LOT for this wonderful blog. Thanks a lot for being soo inspiring. Its great to live a conscious life – I’m glad there are people like you :)

  7. says

    Lovely looking cake Vaishali…I love upside down cakes and usually make the ever-popular Pineapple version.Peach is a fantastic alternative..yummy yummy!!

  8. says

    Pooja, thanks. Not sure what you mean about the Foodbuzz, though….?

    Pavani, Gita, Vegandinners, Soma, Hema, Thanks!

    Sharmila, the vinegar curdles the soymilk without heating. You do have to let it sit a few minutes.

    Uma, Ann: Thanks!

    Maddy: Thanks for your kind words. You sound like a kindred soul, and I’m glad you enjoyed reading the blog. Here’s to conscious living– may our tribe increase! :)

    Divya, Thanks!

  9. says

    I love cakes with fruit in it and this looks pretty good. I have been meaning to try upside down cake for a long time now, but haven’t tried it yet. Looks good.

  10. says

    The cake looks beautiful, it often happens with me as i cant resist the temptation of buying fresh fruits available so cheap and then having no choice i make desserts with them :)

  11. says

    Beautiful cake!! I’ll be getting some peaches from a local farm soon and I will add this cake to my list of things to make with peaches!!
    Peace, Stephanie

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