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This Pear Upside Down Cake has a brown sugar caramel, layers of pears and a tender, cardamom spiced cake! It is warming and a must bake for Winter. Serve it warm with a mound of vanilla bean ice cream or with a homemade whipped cream as the perfect end to a winter meal. 

Pear Upside Down Cake
Pumpkin Spice Bundt Cake Stunning Crumb
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Cardamom is one of my OBSESSIONS. I used it in these cardamom walnut snowballs, browned butter cardamom snickerdoodles, and in these easy rum refrigerator cookies. It is such a tricky, yet rewarding, flavor. Here I have paired it with a balance of cinnamon and clove that enhances the pear’s natural flavor.

The cake is easy with a flawless presentation just like this orange upside down cake or apple tarte tatin.

Pear Upside Down Cake

How to serve this upside down cake?

Vanilla bean and cream compliment the warming spices and pear in this cake. You could serve it with a generous scoop of vanilla bean ice cream like I did in the photos or use a generous spoonful of vanilla bean crème anglaise. Lean into the caramel aspect with my butterscotch sauce or salted caramel sauce. I also enjoy it with apple butter. A little crunch never hurt, so sprinkle on some toasted pecans or streusel topping!

Pear Upside Down Cake
Pear Upside Down Cake
Pear Upside Down Cake
Pear Upside Down Cake sliced pink cake plate
4.84 from 6 ratings

Pear Upside Down Cake

This Pear Upside Down Cake has a brown sugar caramel, layers of pears and a tender, cardamom spiced caked! It is warming and a must bake for Winter.
Prep: 48 minutes
Cook: 27 minutes
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 12 people


  • 3 Pears divided

For Caramel:

For the Batter:

Makes: 9inch round


  • Prepare our pears by peeling them and slicing them into quarters long ways. Slice out the core and thinly slice crossways, so you can fan them. Set aside.
  • Prepare cake pan by spraying bottom and putting in cut parchment.
  • Make brown sugar caramel by melting butter in a pot and add remaining topping ingredients. Cook until boiling and sugar has dissolved. Put this caramel in the prepared cake pan.
  • Arrange our pears in the caramel in the cake pan.
  • Whisk together our dry ingredients, remembering to sift our cake flour.
  • Put our butter in the stand mixer and mix to temp. Then add light brown sugar, and cream the two together until light.
  • Add the eggs one at a time. Add vanilla. Add buttermilk, alternating this with cake flour mixture.
  • Finish mixing the batter by hand.
  • Fold in any spare pears that didn't arrange nicely on the bottom or extra.
  • Dollop the batter on top of the pears arranged already in the pan and spread the batter evenly with offset spatula.
  • Bake at 350 for about 30- 45 minutes.
  • Allow to cool 15 minutes before turning out onto your favorite cake stand or plate! The caramel will continue to drip so if you wish to turn out on to a large dinner plate first and allow to cool before transferring to a cake plate or stand.



1, 9” Cake
Wrap and store for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Can be served room temperature or warm


Calories: 366kcal | Carbohydrates: 60g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 62mg | Sodium: 461mg | Potassium: 171mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 43g | Vitamin A: 421IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 118mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 366
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Pear Upside Down Cake
Pear Upside Down Cake

Hi, I’m Chef Lindsey!

I am the baker, recipe developer, writer, and photographer behind Chef Lindsey Farr. I believe in delicious homemade food and the power of dessert!

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