As most of you know, I’m not a big baker. I only do it when forced, and I tend to rely on the same old recipes over and over and over…and over. So I really love an easy crowd-pleasing recipe, like this Vanilla Bean Cake baked upside down with cherries in the bottom of the pan. It’s simple, fast, and tasty: just my style. How fun would this be for the Fourth of July or any other summer cookout? Tastes amazing with ice cream.
Cherry Vanilla Bean Cake
- 1 box of vanilla cake mix, such as Trader Joe’s Vanilla Bean Bourbon Mix
- 1 jar of cherries, such as Trader Joe’s Dark Morello in light syrup
- 1 stick of butter, melted
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup of cold milk
Drain the jar of cherries into a small bowl, reserving all the cherry juice for drizzling later. Set the bowl of cherries aside.
Preheat the oven to 350 F.
Meanwhile, mix the batter: melt the stick of butter and combine with the two beaten eggs. Stir, then add the dry mix, turning by hand until just combined and lumps are gone.
Pour the cherries into the bottom of a square glass baking dish. Pour the batter on top.
Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to one hour in a glass baking dish (mine took a bit longer, but that’s how my oven is). It’s ready when the center is set and a knife or toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
To serve, drizzle some of the remaining cherry juice over top of the cake, and serve with whipped cream.
Things didn’t go as planned? That has happened to me before when making an upside-down cake. It seems like it should be so easy, yet things can quickly go wrong when you use a different-sized pan than usual, it’s really hot outside, or you just forgot to leave enough time for the cake to cool before you need to leave for the party. The last time I made this, the center totally collapsed on me! Luckily, the rest was edible and I concealed the sunken middle with whipped cream and cherries for presentation’s sake, but if a similar cake disaster ever strikes you, here is a great resource for fixing things quickly.
Enjoy! Light, fruity and delicious on a hot summer day. Vanilla ice cream is practically required 🙂