Apple Cider Upside-Down Cake – A Retro Recipe Re-Run

Posted on Oct 10 2012 - 6:42am by RetroRuth

Fall is here and it is time for apples!!! Since I have been hungry for this cake and will probably make it this week, I thought it appropriate to trot this recipe out from the archives so that you could all make it, too. This was an amazing cake that lasted hardly any time at all in our house, so I encourage you to give it a try. Enjoy!

Okay, okay. I know. Apple cider AND desserts two weeks in a row. It’s unheard of here on the Mid-Century Menu, where everything is supposed to be scary all the time. But,  I was so disappointed with the lack of cider flavor in last week’s Cider Eggnog Pie that I had to try again this week. I mean, you understand, right? It’s all for legitimate scientific testing. I set out to find a mid-century recipe full of cider flavor, and I need to find it.

Plus, I wanted Tom to buy me more cider.

I am happy to say that I succeeded on both counts.


This is Apple Cider Upside-Down Cake. And it is delicious.

Cider Eggnog Pie002

This is another fun recipe brought to you by our friends at the Apple Kitchen Cook Book, from 1966.

What can I say? ‘Tis the season for apples!

Apple Cider Upside-Down Cake001


I have to admit though, this sucker is kind of an ugly cake. But what it lacks in good looks, it makes up for in sheer cider flavor.


I think my favorite part was when I got to cook the apples in cider for that double apple flavor that makes us all crazy.

Except I have to admit I cheated a little bit on this one, which I normally don’t do. I took the cider drained off from the apples and, instead of guzzling it down like I wanted to, I substituted it for the water in the cake mix. And I am not sorry.


Not. At. All.

Especially when it gets this kind of reaction from Tom:






The Verdict:

Really yummy and very easy. Normally I don’t use cake mixes for cakes, but this one was really good with a cake mix. But you could probably sub your favorite spice cake recipe or even gingerbread….oh…wait. That was just a really good idea. I know what I am making later this week, after we scarf our way through this whole cake. Apple Cider Upside-Down Gingerbread!

*If you make this recipe, be aware that my cake was done WAY earlier than 55 mins. It took about 40. Check your cake for doneness according to the package directions!

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I love everything retro, vintage, mid-century, kitsch and all things atomic! A 21st century housewife just trying to fit the 50's. I have a passion for vintage recipes and an enormous vintage cookbook collection that I keep testing, even though by now I should know better. Creator of Mid-Century Menu (, No Pattern Required (, and I Ate The 80's (

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3 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Laura October 10, 2012 at 10:30 pm - Reply

    Tom’s expressions just crack me up! I have four boys who are big fans of my cooking. It’s nice to have such a crowd of enthusiasm, but nothing lasts long around here. I think I’m adding this one to my “to try” list. It looks wonderful!

  2. Jen October 26, 2012 at 8:05 pm - Reply

    This looks delicious—who doesn’t love apples and apple cider? Will have to see if I can find a gluten-free cake mix; I’m not one to use mixes, either, but this might be worthwhile, especially as a Thanksgiving bring-along.

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