Upside down pecan cake is better than any pecan pie out there! It has all the flavors of a classic pecan pie but is way easier to make and more delicious too! I mean only a monster would turn down a tender cake with a sugary, caramelized pecan layer on top! To be honest, this might be the only dessert recipe you’ll need this holiday season.
Here’s why this pecan upside down cake is my favorite:
It’s no secret that I love easy, shortcut recipes that totally still hold up in the flavor department! This cake uses yellow cake mix as a huge shortcut (shhhh no one will know, it can be our little secret) and highlights a caramelized topping that looks (and tastes) like it took hours to accomplish! There’s something so comforting about a bundt cake and this one just happens to be one of the best ones out there!
Ingredients for pecan upside-down bundt cake:
- Brown sugar (either light or dark will both work)
- Light corn syrup
- Melted butter
- Chopped pecans
- Boxed cake mix (any yellow cake mix will do)
- Vegetable oil
- Large eggs
- Sour cream
How to make pecan upside-down cake:
- Grease the bundt pan and preheat the oven.
- Make the pecan topping and add it to the bottom of the prepared bundt pan.
- Combine the ingredients for the cake batter.
- Scoop or spoon the batter over the pecan mixture.
- Bake the cake, then let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
- Invert the cake onto your serving plate.
My top tips for making pecan upside down bundt cake:
- Grease your bundt pan super well! Butter or nonstick spray will do the trick. You’ll want to be sure you get all the edges so that none of the pecan topping sticks to pan when the cake is flipped.
- Don’t over-mix the vanilla cake batter! The best way to have a super tender, buttery cake is to make sure you don’t over-mix!
- Coarsely chop the pecans. You don’t want to use whole pecans because they won’t form to the grooves of the bundt pan very well. Just a course chop on the pecans is all you need!
- Rather than pouring the cake batter on top of the pecan mixture, i recommend scooping or spooning the batter on top to ensure none of the nuts are disrupted underneath.
- Flip the cake while it’s still warm. Let the cake sit for a couple minutes when it comes out of the oven so you don’t burn yourself. After about 10 minutes of cooling flip the cake. You don’t want the cake to cool and have the topping stick inside of the pan!
Sure! I’d recommend using walnuts if you don’t like pecans. They’re similar in texture and taste!
The sour cream does a great job adding moisture to the cake. If you don’t have sour cream on hand, plain greek yogurt can be substituted in its place. A little goes a long way for this fluffy cake!
I only recommend using a standard, rounded bundt pan for this recipe so the pecans can fit into all the grooves. Although the decorative bundt pans are very pretty, the pecan topping doesn’t form well to them.
The best way to keep this cake fresh is my storing it in a cake saver or airtight container and setting it in the fridge. It’ll keep for up to 3 days!
Upside Down Pecan Cake
- (1) 10 inch bundt pan
- 1 whisk or rubber spatula
- 1 serving plate
For the pecan topping:
- 1/2 cup melted butter (1 stick)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar light or dark
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup chopped pecans
For the cake batter:
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 3 eggs
- 1/4 cup sour cream or plain greek yogurt
- 1 cup water
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 10 inch bundt pan.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar and corn syrup.
- Add in the chopped pecans and mix one more time.
- Transfer the nut mixture to the bottom of the pan and use a spatula to spread it into an even layer.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the cake mix, vegetable oil, eggs, water and sour cream.
- Mix until a smooth batter forms, then evenly scoop or spoon it on top of the nut mixture (trying to not disturb or move the nuts underneath).
- Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool for 10 minutes, then place a large plate on top of the bundt pan and invert it so the cake is now on the plate.
- Bang the top of the pan a few times to ensure the cake is released, then slowly lift up the bundt pan, making sure to be careful with the caramelized pecans underneath.
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