Real Recipes From Real Home Cooks ®

banana upside-down cake

(6 ratings)
Blue Ribbon Recipe by
Bruce Tracy
Ogden, UT

I tried this first in a cast iron Dutch oven, and because not everyone has that type of pot, I converted it to a more common cake pan. If you bake this in a Dutch (camp) oven, use 2 cake mix boxes.

Blue Ribbon Recipe

Yum, yum, yum! This banana upside-down cake is fantastic. Enjoy warm and cold... it's delicious both ways. Bananas are the star of this dessert. The banana flavor from the cake mix and the warm caramelized bananas on top are divine. We love the flavor cherries add. They are sweet but not overly sweet and pair well with the banana flavor.

— The Test Kitchen @kitchencrew
(6 ratings)
yield 12 -15
prep time 20 Min
cook time 40 Min
method Bake

Ingredients For banana upside-down cake

  • 1 c
    brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 6 Tbsp
    butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 c
    Kirsch (cherry brandy), optional
  • 6-8
    bananas, peeled and sliced lengthwise
  • 1 jar
    maraschino cherries, drained and lightly chopped (10 oz)
  • 1 box
    banana flavored cake mix, plus ingredients per box
  • 1/4 c
    poppy seeds, optional

How To Make banana upside-down cake

Test Kitchen Tips
A butter cake mix with 1 tsp of banana extract can be substituted for a banana cake mix. If you do not want to use the brandy but want the flavor, substitute with 1/4 cup water and 1 1/2 tsp almond extract.
  • Butter and brown sugar in a baking dish with cherry brandy.
    Evenly spread the brown sugar and butter in the bottom of 9x13 cake pan. Pour in the optional Kirsch.
  • Bananas laid in the baking dish with cherries sprinkled on top.
    Press the bananas, flat side down, into the brown sugar and butter. Sprinkle chopped cherries over the bananas.
  • Banana cake mix poured on top and poppy seeds sprinkled on batter.
    Prepare the cake mix according to box directions and carefully pour over the fruit. Sprinkle the poppy seeds over the batter.
  • Banana Upside-Down Cake baking.
    Bake in a preheated 350 F oven for about 40 minutes. Check with a toothpick or table knife and add a few more minutes if not done. It will pull away from the edges a bit when ready.
  • Banana Upside-Down Cake on a serving platter.
    Let it cool for 20 minutes. Place a cutting board on the cake pan and then flip it over. Serve from the cutting board. Note: The alcohol in the Kirsch evaporates, leaving a slightly nutty cherry taste.