Mini Pineapple Upside Down Cakes

These 7 ingredient mini pineapple upside down cakes made in a muffin pan are a great party dessert to feed a crowd! Pineapple upside down cupcakes start with a box mix, take them to the next level with fresh garnishes.
mini pineapple upside down cakes with whipped cream, a cherry and pineapple slice on white plate
I went into Target and of course I stopped at the dollar spot. I found the cutest pineapple paper straws and had to buy them.

So my brain went into pineapple mode, brainstorming pineapple recipes I could share with you so I could somehow include the cute straws in the photos. Kind of sad that this whole thing was revolving around straws, huh?

This recipe is super easy to make with only 7 ingredients! Plus it yields about 20-24 pineapple upside-down cupcakes so if you need to bring a lot of dessert to a party or picnic, this is a great recipe to go with!

mini pineapple upside down cakes in a grid pattern on white background

The pineapple upside down cakes are so moist themselves, but I think the whole dessert gets elevated to the next level when you add the garnishes!

Add a swirl of whipped cream, cool whip, or vanilla buttercream to each cake and top with a fresh slice of pineapple and a maraschino cherry.

I like to use maraschino cherries with stems for garnish, so if you’re wanting ones with stems be sure to check the jar while you’re in the store because typically they are de-stemmed but my grocery store offered both.

Pineapple Upside Down Cupcake Ingredients

  • 20 oz can pineapple chunks
  • 1 box yellow cake mix
  • eggs
  • vegetable oil
  • brown sugar
  • butter
  • maraschino cherries
mini pineapple upside down cakes with whipped cream, a cherry and pineapple slice on white plate

How to Make Pineapple Upside Down Cakes using Cake Mix

  1. Preheat the oven to 350º F and spray a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a small mixing bowl, combine the brown sugar and melted butter into a thick paste. Place 1/2 tbsp of this mixture into each muffin cup.
  3. Place half a maraschino cherry, cut side down, into the center of each muffin cup. Add 3-4 pieces of chopped pineapple to each muffin cup, arranging around the cherry.
  4. In a mixing bowl, combine the cake mix, eggs, vegetable oil, and pineapple juice from the canned pineapple.
  5. Fill each muffin cup MAX 3/4 full with batter. Bake, then cool for 5-7 minutes before using a butter knife or spatula to release the edges, then flip the pan upside down and the cakes will come out.

Does Pineapple Upside Down Cake Need to be Refrigerated?

This really comes down to personal preference. If you’ll be eating the cakes within 24 hours, you can store covered on the counter. If you will be storing them for a longer amount of time, I would recommend storing them in the fridge and reheating before serving if desired.

how to make pineapple upside down cupcakes in muffin pan

What Kind of Canned Pineapple to Use?

I recommend using canned pineapple because it’s softer and has more juice, which is needed for the recipe.

You can use canned pineapple chunks, canned pineapple slices, canned pineapple tidbits, or canned crushed pineapple.

Canned pineapple chunks, slices and tidbits will all yield the same texture and end result. Be sure to cut the canned pineapple slices into smaller pieces so they will fit into the muffin pan.

Crushed pineapple is also a good type of pineapple to use. However, the texture and the look of the finished product will be slightly different since the pineapple is crushed instead of whole.

The good news is that pineapple upside down cupcakes are easy to make with any kind of canned pineapple in your pantry.

Can You Freeze Pineapple Upside Down Cupcakes?

  • Allow the cakes to cool completely.
  • Place the cakes on a baking sheet lined with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper. Place the baking sheet in the freezer to flash freeze them, about 1 hour.
  • Once frozen, wrap bundles of 4 in plastic wrap, then in aluminum foil. Place them inside a freezer safe bag. Freeze for up to 3 months.

To thaw: Place the bag in the fridge overnight.

mini pineapple upside down cupcakes on white plate

Tips for Making Pineapple Upside Down Cakes & How to Remove Them From the Pan

  • White cake mix can be substituted for yellow cake mix.
  • Allow the mini pineapple cakes to cool for 5-7 minutes in the pan.
    Use a butter knife or small spatula to go around the edge of all the cakes to help loosen them from the pan.
    Flip the pan upside down on a silicone baking mat. The cakes should fall out. If they don’t, use the spatula again to loosen the edges.
  • Serve them warm with a dollop of whipped cream or ice cream and an additional maraschino cherry!

mini pineapple upside down cakes with whipped cream, a cherry and pineapple slice on white plate
mini pineapple upside down cakes with whipped cream, a cherry and pineapple slice on white plate


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For a step-by-step of how to make this mini pineapple upside down cake recipe, watch this short video:

The BEST 7 ingredient mini pineapple upside down cakes! The cakes are so moist and I LOVE the presentation with the garnishes!

Mini Pineapple Upside Down Cakes

Yield: 20-24 mini cupcakes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

These 7 ingredient mini pineapple upside down cakes made in a muffin pan are a great party dessert to feed a crowd! Pineapple upside down cupcakes start with a box mix, take them to the next level with fresh garnishes.

Ingredients

  • 20 oz can pineapple chunks
  • 1 & 1/4 cups brown sugar
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • maraschino cherries, 12 halved plus additional for topping
  • 1 box yellow cake mix, 18.25 oz
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350º F. Spray two 12 cup muffin pans with non-stick cooking spray. Separate the pineapple juice from the pineapple chunks, but keep both.
  2. In small mixing bowl combine the brown sugar and melted butter, stir until it’s a thick paste. Using a cookie scoop or 1/2 tablespoon, Place 1/2 tablespoon of this mixture into each muffin cup. Using your fingers or spoon, press flat.
  3. Place half a maraschino cherry, cut side down, into the center of each muffin cup. Add 3-4 pieces of chopped pineapple to each muffin cup, arranging around the cherry.
  4. In a large mixing bowl combine the pineapple juice, cake mix, eggs, vegetable oil, and beat an electric mixer until combined, about 1 minute.
  5. Use a cookie scoop to add the cake batter to each muffin cup, filling them at MAX 3/4 full. Bake for 18-22 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the mini pineapple cakes to cool for 5-7 minutes in the pan. Use a butter knife or small spatula to go around the edge of all the cakes to help loosen them from the pan. Flip the pan upside down on a silicone baking mat. The cakes should fall out. If they don’t, use the spatula again to loosen the edges. 
  6. Serve warm or at room temperature. Optional: to serve top each cake with a dollop of cool whip or buttercream, a fresh pineapple slice and a maraschino cherry.

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Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving:

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