Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cake

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Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cake

Last night I was busy making some icing for cupcakes for Jack’s school.  He was ready for bed when he came into the kitchen wanting to taste the icing.  I explained that he had already brushed his teeth and that he didn’t need any sugar.  Nonetheless, I turned away for a few minutes and then I heard a loud “yuck” followed by the sound of him spitting into the trash can.  In an effort to be sneaky and get a taste of the icing, he inadvertently got a big swipe of pure vegetable shortening.  Needless to say, he learned his lesson.

You know, life is like that in a lot of ways.  Often times we set out for something and end up with something completely different in the end.   Sometimes that end result is the sour taste of failure.  Other times we might end up with something we  didn’t set out for, but something that is ultimately better in the long run.  Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case for poor Jack, but it is true in many cases.  We set out to accomplish a particular goal and end up with a much sweeter victory than we could have expected.

Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cake


Southern Bite is a great example of that for me.  I didn’t set out to build a recipe blog or write a cookbook.  In fact, when I started my goal was for it to be a restaurant review site.  That initial goal was a failure of sorts, but the blog evolved into something that I have more passion for than I could have ever imagined.  Sharing my recipes with y’all, helping you get a home cooked meal on the table, and preserving the recipes of my family are all amazing things that I’ve been able to do but weren’t the initial goals for me.

I think the lesson here is that sometimes our plans and God’s plans aren’t exactly the same.  And just when you think you’re a failure, you might end up with successes beyond your wildest dreams… just in a slightly different direction.  We all face disappointment and regret at some point, but you’ve just got to keep on keeping on.

I hope some of y’all needed to hear that.  I know I did.

Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cake

Only 6 ingredients and perfect for Fall!

Y’all this Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cake is crazy easy and ridiculously delicious – plus, it’s purdy, too!  It’s ooey, gooey and just perfect for Fall.  Y’all enjoy!


Caramel Apple Upside-Down Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6 to 8 servings
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, divided
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
  • 1 (15.25-ounce) box yellow or butter flavored cake mix
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup water
  1. Preheat the oven to 325° F. Add ½ cup (1 stick) of the butter and the brown sugar to a well-seasoned, medium (about 10.25") cast-iron skillet. Place the skillet over medium heat, and stir until the butter is melted and the mixture is combined. Remove from the heat.
  2. Melt the remaining ½ cup (1 stick) butter in a small bowl in the microwave. In a large bowl combine the cake mix, eggs, melted butter and 1 cup water. Mix well.
  3. Place the sliced apples in the skillet on top of the caramel mixture arranging them in whatever fashion you like. Pour the cake batter on top of the apples. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Immediately cover the skillet with a platter and invert to remove the cake.

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  1. I have never seen “butter flavored cake mix”. What would an alternative homemade version be?

  2. Judy Waggoner says:

    Could this be made in a 13×9 pan ?

  3. OMG… I could not stop laughing, bet that little guy doesn’t try that again any time soon !
    I had a similar episode with my g’daughter and a bar of unsweetened baking chocolate… I still can see her face–all screwed up with such a questioning look and me trying not to laugh while I was saying ‘ I tried to tell you ‘
    kids can give you the most wonderful memories no matter how they originated–good or bad…enjoy your time with them. Thank You for sharing with us.
    Can’t wait to make this cake !

  4. Needed these words of encouragement today – thanks!

  5. LOVE that this uses cake mix! I am totally making this!

  6. Winnie Mom says:

    Made this last night and used a yellow cake mix. Only thing I did different was sprinkled about 1 cup chopped walnuts over the apples. Turned out wonderful. I think next time I will use 2 apples and cut the slices a little thicker. I did not have granny smith apples but used honey crisp apples (my favorite).
    Entire family enjoyed this. Thanks for your recipes that are simple to make.

  7. OK – this is just like pineapple upside down cake but using sliced apples instead of pineapple slices. Such a cool dessert for this time of year! I’ll be trying this because I love caramel-apples! In fact this might be a great “take to church” cake. We have a pot luck coming up! Thanks for the recipe idea! I’ll be in touch!


  8. how does the caramel come into the recipie ? is it just from all the butter and apple brown sugar . I make pineapple upside down alot , but I also use the pineapple juice from the pineapple for the flavor.

  9. This looks ideal for Thanksgiving. Can it be made the night before? If so, would it need to be refrigerated?
    Thanks for providing what looks to be a fantastic cake.

    • This is one of those things that just really is best right out of the oven. But, you can certainly make it ahead and yes, I would refrigerate it. I’d also warm it slightly before serving. Enjoy!

  10. Thanks Christy, for all you do for your readers. I enjoy reading all your stories about your family and friends..and all the recipes you share with us…. I don’t know what I would do without God in my life!!! You keep on sharing, people have no idea what they are missing without God in their life…you have no idea how many lives you have spiritually lifted…You keep on truck’n girl??? Roz

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