Cranberry-Raspberry Upside Down Cake

upside down cake

The color of this cranberry upside down cake with raspberry alone is enough to bring me great joy these days. It is snowing here in MN, which is a blessing and a curse. Snow is a blessing, because it brings new life to the cold and allows my boys to go snowboarding and sledding in the evenings. It’s also a beautiful blanket over all that was gray just yesterday. There is nothing worse than a winter in MN without snow. The cold, dark, seemingly endless season would be unbearable without it. The curse of snow, is that it is…well…cold and I am not a fan of cold. But, I digress.

Outdoor winter scene | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

The cake’s ruby top is a mixture of tart cranberries and sweet raspberries (my son’s suggestion, after tasting the ALL cranberry version, which he found too tart). The Raspberries both sweeten the cake and also creates a more luscious texture. I personally love the tartness of the cranberries alone, but they have so much natural pectin that the consistency was more like tight jam then I wanted. The cake underneath is rich with butter and almond flour. I served it with ice cream for dessert and then had it for breakfast the next morning with coffee. 

Cranberry-Raspberry Upside Down Cake

24 ounces (6 cups) cranberries (fresh or frozen)

10 ounces (about 2 cups) raspberries (fresh or frozen)

2 cups sugar

2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened

1 teaspoon lemon zest

2 teaspoons vanilla extract – click here to make your own

3 eggs, room temperature

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 cup almond meal

1 cup buttermilk

To make the cake:

Grease an 8-Inch Springform Pan with butter and line with parchment

Preheat oven to 350°F

Combining cranberries and sugar | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

In a saucepan heat the cranberries and 3/4 cup sugar over medium heat, just until the cranberries start to burst and sugar melts.

Simmering cranberries and sugar | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Turn off the heat and stir in the raspberries.

Greased pan | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Pour the berries into the prepared pan.

Mix the batter:

Cream together the butter, 1 1/4 cups sugar, zest and vanilla until light and fluffy, about 5-8 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and add the eggs, one at a time, scraping after each. In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and almond meal. Add half the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, mix to incorporate, then add half the buttermilk. Repeat with the remaining flour and buttermilk. Mix just until it is all smooth.

Cranberry upside down cake batter | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Spread the batter evenly over the berries.

Cranberry upside down cake | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Place the pan on a baking sheet covered with foil, just in case the berry juices leak from the pan. Bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. Let the cake cool for about 30 minutes.

Cranberry upside down cake with raspberries | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

Invert the cake onto a platter.

Eat warm or room temperature.

Cranberry upside down cake with raspberries | ZoëBakes | Photo by Zoë François

With ice cream or nothing at all.

Share this post

42 thoughts to “Cranberry-Raspberry Upside Down Cake”

    1. Hi Maile,

      You can buy almond flour/meal at most grocery stores. It is sold by Bob’s Red Mill and is in the baking or health food section. You may also check the gluten-free products.

      Thanks, Zoë

  1. Oooh pretty! I did one similar a few years ago (a horribly photographed early blog post) with cherries (looks the same) and it is very pretty and there is something so festive about it. I think your son is right – rasberries would cut the tartness of the cranberries, right? And I am so jealous of the snow! It is beautiful! Happy Hanukkah and Happy Holidays, Zoë!

    1. Hi Lindsay,

      You can omit the raspberries, but the top will be a bit tighter and more tart. You can try increasing the cranberries to make up for the raspberries, but you may want to also add a touch more sugar to them.

      Thanks, Zoë

  2. This cake looks delicious. I made a cranberry tart for Thanksving and it tasted tart and wonderful but it did not look as pretty as this one! I discovered your blog through LHJ article with Ina Garten! Great article. I want to make your chocolate caramel matzo.

  3. An 8″ springform? I lined the sides and left a good 2″ margin above the pan and the cake filled it. Smells divine. Hope it’s as lovely as yours.

  4. looks delicious! I have a 6″ springform pan – should I adjust the ingredient amounts? And if so, how? Thank you!

  5. Oh this is lovely! I was just wondering what to make for the Christmas Eve service at church. 🙂 And I’m wondering . . .what do you think would happen to the yummiest factor if one were to zest an orange into the berry mixture?

  6. Served it to my wife and our parents this morning with whipped cream and it was a big hit. Only issue with mine is the 8″ springform was too small..moving up next time, and there WILL be a next time!

  7. Dear Zoë

    have nominated your lovely blog for the Sunshine Award. Congratulations!

    Please pick up your award and the information on paying it forward on :

    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


  8. Happy New Year, Zoe! I can’t believe I’ve been following you since Jan, 2007!
    This looks like a wonderful cake. My hubby loves my pie made from this combo. I’ll have to try it!
    Zoe, I have questions about square metal baking pans. i’m just learning about how metal pans are better for cakes than Pyrex. But I’m finding that the corners are rounded on the pans! Is this usual? I was thinking of making and maybe selling fudge. As a pastry chef, do your square pans have rounded corners? Thanks so much.

  9. Hi Zoe,
    This is such a yummy cake. However, I had trouble getting the center to bake. I just returned the cake to the oven hoping that another 10 – 15 minutes will firm it up. Thanks!!!

    1. Hi Karen,

      It is a very dense cake and takes a long while to bake. Do you bake with an oven thermometer? This is a great way to know if your oven is baking true to temperature. Sometimes ovens run hot or cold and that will effect your baking times.

      I hope the cake turned out well for you!

      Thanks, Zoë

  10. I made this gorgeous cake for Thanksgiving, and it was a huge success. I also added a layer of granny smith carmelized apples in between the cake and the raspberry mixture. I have had requests to make it again for Christmas, It was perfect delicious and refreshing at the same time after a heavy meal. Thanks so much

  11. I think this recipe is fabulous. We have made it several times, but each time I’ve had trouble with too much fruit and batter to fit a 8″ springform pan. I did it again each time because I had more than a year in between bakes. This time I weighed the fruit so I know I had the exact quantity that the recipe calls for and I even removed more than a cup of fruit before adding the batter. It just poured over the edge of the pan as it baked and my pan was 8 1/2 inch. I removed some of the batter after it was in the oven for a few minutes and made four little cakes with the fruit I had taken out earlier and I’m eating some of the cake that pooled around the outside of the pan now (it’s delicious). If you follow the recipe, this requires a 10-inch springform pan, definitely not an 8-inch one.

  12. Can I use something other then almond meal? I hate to buy it and only use 1/2 cup then the rest just waste in my cupboard!

    1. Why don’t you make your own almond meal by grinding almonds in a food processor, coffee grinder or high speed blender. That way you can make just the amount you need – 1/2 cup of almond meal takes probably a bit less than a 1/2 cup of almonds.

  13. I made this for Thanksgiving tomorrow and scooped a bit of batter and berries out to make a mini cake for myself and its SOO good! This is absolutely my new favorite upside down cake! I also put about a Tbsp of orange zest in with the berries and a replaced the lemon zest in the cake with orange because I was lazy. Also, it looks gorgeous! Definitely a centerpiece dessert in my opinion!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.