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Pineapple Upside Down Cake (Low FODMAP, Gluten-Free, Paleo Option)

  • Author: Gail
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 8 1x


This Pineapple Upside Down Cake is incredibly easy to make and a showstopper for any occasion. Low FODMAP (with up to two cherries per serving), gluten-free, grain-free, lactose-free, and refined sugar free with an easy Paleo option.




  • ¼ cup ghee, plus more for greasing the pie dish
  • ¼ cup maple sugar
  • 540 ml (18 oz) can of pineapple rings in juice (reserving juice for batter)
  • 13 maraschino cherries or sweet cherries, pitted, fresh or frozen (if strict Paleo)*


Dry Ingredients:

Wet Ingredients:

  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup pineapple juice, reserved from the canned pineapple
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted and cooled to just above room temperature
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract


  1. Place an oven rack in the center of the oven and another one level below. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease the sides and bottom a 9.5” x 2” pie dish or pan with ghee.
  2. Prep for room temperature: put the eggs in a bowl of warm (not hot) water and let warm up for 5 minutes. Remove from water and set aside. Measure out ¼ cup coconut oil and heat in the microwave until just melted (about 35 seconds). Set aside to cool to almost room temperature. 
  3. Prepare topping: Melt ghee in the microwave and pour into the greased pie dish. Add maple sugar and whisk until sugar is combined with the ghee. Place pineapple rings in the bottom of the pie dish in a decorative pattern. Place cherries among the pineapple (see photos for an illustration or be creative, keeping in mind you want to have only 2 cherries per serving for low FODMAP). Blot any excess cherry juice with a paper towel. Set pie dish aside.
  4. Combine dry ingredients: in a large bowl, combine dry ingredients and whisk to combine. Set aside.
  5. Combine wet ingredients: in an extra large bowl, combine wet ingredients and whisk to combine.
  6. Make batter: Pour the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and whisk until combined. Pour the batter into the pie dish and use a spatula to spread evenly over the fruit topping. 
  7. Put cake in the oven on the center rack; place a baking sheet on the rack underneath to catch any overflow. Bake at 350° for 35 minutes or until batter is set in the center and edges are a light golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool in the pan on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Place a serving plate or cake stand upside down on top of the pie dish. Using hot pads, hold the platter or cake stand together with the handles of the pie dish and flip them over together so that the batter side of the cake is at the bottom with the fruit topping on top. Serve immediately. 
  8. Cover leftover cake and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


  • *Cherries: Up to 2 cherries per serving for low FODMAP (8 servings total). Maraschino cherries have not yet been tested by Monash University for FODMAP content. I can tolerate maraschino cherries as well as fresh cherries, but everyone is different, and it is still unknown whether the FODMAP content of maraschino cherries is the same as fresh cherries. If you are concerned about how your body might react to maraschino cherries, substitute fresh or frozen sweet cherries. However, please note that sweet cherries tend to bleed more into the other cake ingredients, so blot any excess cherry juice when making the topping. Technically, you could use up to 16 cherries and keep the cake low FODMAP as long as there were only 2 cherries per slice and 8 slices total.
  • If not low FODMAP: use as many cherries as you like – 13 is just the number that made sense to me for design symmetry.
  • Paleo option: Maraschino cherries are not Paleo compliant, so if you’re eating strictly Paleo, substitute fresh or frozen sweet cherries.
  • Storage: this cake is best served right away as it does not keep well. The topping will sink into the batter as time goes on and can make the batter soggy. However, the cake can be stored covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Sticking: in some of my recipe tests, some of the batter portions of the cake that touched the surface of the pie plate would stick and come off when flipping the cake onto the cake stand. Greasing the pie dish seemed to help but not completely rectify this problem for me, and I haven’t quite figured out why this recipe does this. If parts of the cake still stick to your pie dish when flipping, don’t panic – using a knife, carefully scrape any stuck pieces off the pie plate, keeping them in tact as best you can, and stick them back onto the cake. You should hardly notice the pieces that have fallen off. For the cake pictured in this post, I had two 1/2-1 inch small pieces stick towards the rim of the pie plate.
  • Recipe inspired by Sally’s Baking Addiction
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: pineapple upside down cake, low fodmap, gluten free, lactose free, refined sugar free, paleo, cake recipes, dessert recipes