Instant Pot Pineapple Upside Cake is an easy, no oven needed, recipe that starts with a cake mix. AND – these are make ahead and can be individual, personal desserts. I know you want to make them right now!
When it was time to make a Pineapple Upside Down Cake for Kyle and Joel’s Great 8 Dinner, I had a few decisions to make. What kind of recipe did I want to make being the most important. I decided this recipe should be easy to throw together in the summertime.
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So let’s start it with a cake mix instead of being totally from scratch. I also thought, “since I want a summer cake, how can we not heat the oven?” Light Bulb (insert emoji here), my Instant Pot! I had been dying to try a dessert in my multi cooker so this was the perfect opportunity.
You may think the Instant Pot is mostly for meats and soups. But it’s also a Gr8 tool to use in lieu of your oven for dessert. There are lots of creamy dessert recipes, such as crème brulée and pots de crème, for the multi cooker, but not as many cake recipes.
This is because cake needs a dry environment to become “cake-y.” And you need to put water in your multi-cooker with desserts, otherwise they will just burn on the bottom. And water is the opposite of a dry environment!
To get around this, you must put the cake batter into a sealed container to “bake” it in the Instant Pot. You could tightly wrap a larger pan that fits in your pot in foil. Or Aozita makes sealable stacking pans (I haven’t tried them). I decided instead to make individual Pineapple Upside Down Cakes because I keep canning jars of all sizes on hand and they seal easily. And, individual desserts are always a nice surprise for both guests and family!
Since four 8-ounce jars fit comfortably in my 8-quart Instant Pot, I filled the first four jars and cooked them. Then, when I was ready to cook the second set of four, I filled the jars. I waited to fill the jars until ready to cook because I didn’t want the cake mix sitting in the jars and seeping down into the topping.
And be sure to turn the cakes out of the jars soon after removing from the multi cooker. Just run a knife around the edge between the cake and the glass and turn the jar upside down onto your serving plate or platter. Be careful, they’re hot! If you wait until the jars cool, the oil will solidify and make getting the cake out of the jar much more difficult.
*If you want this to be dairy free, be sure to check the cake mix you choose to ensure it is dairy free.