Caramel Walnut Upside-Down Pear Cake

I don’t know about you, or other warm and compassionate human beings, but when I’m reunited with long-lost friends…I get excited.

Excited to see their beautiful little faces and the glittering personalities behind those faces.

Do you know what my friends see upon coming home to me?



They see sugar, they see butter, they see cake, they see cookies, they see pudding.

My friends seem to think that I was somehow born as the human embodiment of sweets.

Darcy…dessert…same difference.


I had two friends return from abroad, so naturally I was jazzed to see them.

After I shamelessly express my enthusiasm for their homecoming, I oddly received basically the same response from both girls. It went a little something like…

“Ohheyyeahtotallymissedyoutooolet’sgettogether! …You’re baking something for me right?

I swear I’m only loved for my good fattitude.

Whatever, I’m just gonna focus on how much I love rich, gooey, caramel-coated cakes instead of question the validity of my friendships.

And I love this one a whole big fat lot.


The original recipe was for a banana cake, but one my ladies has a distinct disdain for nanners. I’ll never understand it, but I’m forced to accept it.

No doubt, bananas would be absolutely divine for this cake…next time I make it, I’ll definitely give them a go.Banana haters go home.

All the same, the pears totally worked out. A light, crisp pear-ish flavor  cushioning all the rich caramel makes for a pretty sweet contrast.

This might just be a weird thing in my head, because I tend to have a lot of those, but I think of pears as being one of the more elegant fruits. Kind of like the Meryl Streep of produce.. kinda maybe?


This is a really great cake for the recipe repertoire.

Scrumptious, one pan, simple sort of stuff.

I think it would make a pretty impressive dessert for a dinner party if you’re the classy broad who  does that sort of thing.


I can also confidently assure you that this particular cake does a darn dandy job of saying “Welcome home from Brazil with your fancy smancy Brazilian manicured hands.”

And saying you lug it with you into a  Mexican restaurant, your waiter will surely love you and give you some major ego boosting if you bulk up his tip with a piece or two.

Just saying, it can never hurt to have people with tacos on their side on your side.



Caramel Walnut Upside-Down Pear Cake

Adapted from bon appétit

For the Topping

  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 1 cup golden brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp light corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup walnut pieces

For the Cake

  • 1 & 3/4 cup cake flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 (15 oz) can pears, completely drained and mashed
  • 3 tbsp sour cream
  • 1 tbsp bourbon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


Spray 8-inch round cake pan with 2-inch-high sides with nonstick spray. Bring butter, sugar, and corn syrup to boil in medium saucepan, stirring constantly until butter melts. Boil syrup 1 minute. Stir in nuts. Spread topping in prepared pan. Let topping cool completely.


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Sift first 4 ingredients into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter and both sugars in large bowl until blended. Beat in eggs 1 at a time, then mashed pears, sour cream, rum, and vanilla. Beat in dry ingredients in 2 additions just until combined. Spoon batter into pan.
  • Bake cake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 55 minutes. Cool 15 minutes. Cut around cake. Place platter over pan. Holding pan and platter together, turnover. Let stand 5 minutes, then gently lift off pan. Cool at least 15 minutes for topping to set. Serve warm or at room temperature.


3 thoughts on “Caramel Walnut Upside-Down Pear Cake

  1. Pingback: Beauty & the Feast

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