This almost effortless Gingerbread Pear Upside Down Cake is tenderly spiced with fall flavors, drizzled with an easy salted caramel sauce and studded with perfectly cooked pears. It is the perfect holiday cake to serve to guests (or have for breakfast) when you need a beautiful yet easy fall dessert.
What I love most about creating dessert recipes is the ability to make a rather simple recipe but have it turn out looking and tasting like it needed hours and perfect technique.
Epic in taste, yet almost effortless in the kitchen.
For this recipe, I wanted something a little milder and less “spiced” than some gingerbread recipes.
So this time I used half molasses and half honey, and seriously cut down on the amount of spices that I used.
The result is a tender and moist cake that is slightly spiced, drizzled in an easy salted caramel sauce, and studded with perfectly cooked pears.
How do you make a gingerbread cake?
This pear gingerbread cake is so easy to make, it’s almost effortless! For the full set of directions make sure you scroll down to the recipe card below.
Make the caramel sauce
- Melt the butter, brown sugar, and pinch of salt together until it starts to caramelize.
- Pour the sauce into a cake pan and arrange the pears in the caramel sauce and set aside.
Make the cake batter
- In a mixing bowl, make the gingerbread cake by creaming the butter and sugar together. Add the eggs, vanilla, honey, molasses, and mix until combined.
- Mix in the spices and dry ingredients, and then add in the milk.
Assemble and bake
- When the batter is smooth, carefully pour over the arranged pear slices.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes.
- Cool on a wire rack for a little while before inverting onto a serving platter.
Store this cake, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The caramel will harden a bit in the cold, but you can warm it in the microwave for a few seconds to warm it back up if desired.
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Upside Down Pear Gingerbread Cake
Caramel Pear Topping:
- 4 TBSP butter
- ½ cup dark brown sugar
- pinch salt
- 2 firm Bosc pears
Gingerbread Cake :
- ½ cup butter room temp
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup molasses
- ⅓ cup honey
- 1 cup milk
- 2 ¼ cup flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Preheat the oven to 325 F.
- Liberally grease a 10" cake pan with butter and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, melt the 4 Tablespoons of butter.
- Add in the sugar and simmer for 4 minutes, without stirring.
- Remove the pan from heat, and then carefully stir in the salt.
- Pour the caramel into prepared cake pan, using a rubber spatula to scrape the sides of the pan, and smooth evenly over the bottom.
- Arrange the pear slices on top of the caramel sauce in a pretty pattern. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat together 1/2 cup of room temperature butter and sugar untill light and fluffy.
- Add in the egg, vanilla, molasses and honey and mix until combined.
- Add in the spices, salt, baking soda and flour.
- Mix in the milk until combined and the batter becomes smooth.
- Carefully pour the batter over the pear slices and smooth to create an even layer.
- Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Cool the cake in the pan, on a wire rack, for 10-15 minutes, and then turn out onto platter by inverting the cake pan. You might want to loosen the edges with a dull knife first.
- Serve warm, with a dollop of whipped cream or ice cream, if desired. The cake is also good room temperature.