candy corn upside down cake

The internet is a beautiful thing.

It introduces us to wonderful things like adorable animals, outrageous comics, useless knick-knacks, and amazing recipes that, without the internet, I would never know existed.

I wouldn’t know they were missing from my life, but they would be. I’m sure there would be an emptiness somewhere inside me.

One of these things was on Serious Eats last week. It got planted in my brain and I couldn’t get it to go away. I wouldn’t even know that I was thinking of it but I was… all the time… There would be moments that it would just randomly pop into my head all, “Hey there, remember me?” “Don’t you want to make me?”

What was this magical thing? Candy corn upside down cake.

Mind = Blown.  I know.

Of course we all know about pineapple upside down cake, but CANDY CORN upside down cake? That’s just madness. MADNESS!

Since I’m one of two people in the world who actually happens to love candy corn, I was immediately excited over this concept. A lot of you don’t love candy corn. I know this. BF is one of you.  So when I came home from the store, dumped my groceries out onto the counter, and starting rambling on about this magical “candy corn upside down cake” he got a disgusted look on his face, “Candy Corn?? Gross.”

Joke was on him in the end though, because guess what!


Like, eating-crumbs-from-the-bottom-of-the-cake-plate loved it.

What happens is this: the candy corn, already made of sugar, melts and mixes with the brown sugar and butter, and forms a super-caramelized candy coating on top of the cake…It’s not the prettiest thing in the world, but I’ve definitely seen worse.  And sure I felt a little silly melting butter and then sprinkling it with brown sugar… and then sprinkling that with candy corn.  Over the top?  Maybe a little.

So those of you who love candy corn, prepare yourself for pure sugary bliss.

Those of you who hate candy corn, PREPARE YOURSELF FOR PURE SUGARY BLISS.  Please give it a try.  At the very least, I definitely found my new cake base for upside down cake.  It’s so light and delicate and … well, just make it.  You’ll see.

Candy Corn Upside Down Cake

[ Printable Recipe ]

For the Glaze:

  • ⅓ cup (about 5 tablespoons) butter
  • ⅔ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 ½ cups candy corn

For the Cake:

  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup milk

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line the bottom of a 9-inch square baking pan with parchment (I used a 9-by-2” round cake pan)

Melt ⅓ cup butter and pour into the pan.  Sprinkle brown sugar evenly over the butter.  Sprinkle candy corn evenly on top.

In a medium bowl, sift or stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and granulated sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing after each until just incorporated.  Add vanilla extract and stir just to combine.

Add the flour mixture alternately with the milk, in 2 to 3 additions (flour-milk-flour-milk-flour), scraping the sides as necessary. Beat on low speed until fully incorporated.  Carefully pour the batter into the pan (If you try to pour it all in at once, it will push all of your candy corn to the side).

Set a cookie tray under the cake in the oven, in case the candy bubbles or drips. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean, 45 to 50 minutes.

Let cool 5 to 10 minutes in the pan, then VERY CAREFULLY invert the cake onto a plate.  Leave the pan in place for several minutes so the gooey mixture can drip down over the cake. After the dripping is done, lift off the pan (I had to pry mine with a fork). Serve while warm.

[ Adapted from Serious Eats ]