Instant Air Fryer Easy Pineapple Upside Down Cake

I love baking. My Weight Watchers app is very upset at how much I like baking. And not to toot my horn, but I am pretty good at it. I love baking elaborate cakes and croissants and all those sweet recipes that should come with a side of insulin (I kid you not, once I made a Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding and OH MY WORD it was crazy good!).

That said, I never used anything other than my oven when it came to baking. I was a
quite a traditionalist and I would even say a baking snob when it came to even the thought of using an air fryer to bake in. Seriously, I never even gave it half a thought. But as I started to fall more in love with my Instant Air Fryer Ovens, that little Bake button kept nagging me. So I decided to give it a shot and if you have tried my Air Fryer Cuban Rum Cake, you know not only CAN you bake a cake in them….but you SHOULD bake a cake in them!

So I give you one of my all time favorite cakes, the Pineapple Upside Down Cake. This recipe is not only faster and easier, but it comes out fluffier and with one the most delicious crumbs of just about any cake I have ever baked from scratch.

There are few a tips and tricks when baking in the Instant Air Fryer Ovens. Below are 2 videos to get you started cooking the Vortex Plus and the Omni/Omni Plus. The first is a Beginner Tutorial on cooking in the Omni and the second video is a Beginners Guide on cooking in the Vortex Plus.

Instant Air Fryer Easy Pineapple Upside Down Cake

recipe by Lana Horruitiner-Perez

**This Recipe makes 2 cakes. However, you can halve the recipe and only use 1/ 2 of the Boxed Cake Mix and 1/2 of the Jello Pudding Mix.**

  • 1 box Betty Crocker Yellow Cake Mix (It has to be Betty Crocker. It has been tried with other box mixes and it just ever turns out the same. Try me, I’ve eaten my fair share of this cake.)
  • 1 3.4oz box Jello Instant Pudding (not the Quick Serve one, but the regular Vanilla pudding mix.)
  • 4 large Eggs
  • 1/2 cup cold Water
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil
  • 2 – 8 oz cans or a 20 oz can Pineapple Slices
  • 5 Maraschino Cherries
  • 4 Tbl Butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  • Pam Spray (not the Baking Pam with Flour)


2 – 8 inch Cake Pans and Foil

Spray the 8 inch Cake Pans with Pam spray. Make sure to spray the sides as well.pam

Make a foil collar as shown in the pictures below and place around the cake pan. Set aside.

foil cake pan
Pull out a piece of foil that is about 3 to 4 times longer than the cake pan.

In a large bowl, add 1 package of Box Cake Mix, 1 package of Instant Vanilla Pudding Mix, 4 Eggs, 1/2 cup Water, 1/2 cup Pineapple Juice from the Can (reserve the Pineapple Slices), and 1/2 cup Vegetable Oil. Mix with a electric mixer until smooth. Set aside.

**You can make 2 separate kinds of cake. If you want one cake to be plain or a different flavor, don’t add the Pineapple Juice until after you separate the batter into 2 bowls and then add 1/2 the Pineapple Juice to one bowl and add either 1/4 cup water or other liquid.**


cake batter

In a small mixing bowl, add 4 Tbl Melted Butter and 1/2 cup Brown Sugar. Mix together until smooth.

Add half of the Butter Sugar mixture to each cake pan. Spread evenly on the bottom of the pan.

.brown sugar butter pan

Place 4 Pineapple Slices and 5 Maraschino Cherry halves in each pan arranged according to the picture below.

pineapple cherry

Pour half of the cake batter over the Pineapples and Cherries. Use a spatula to delicately smooth the top.

Baking in the Vortex Plus

A great tip when baking in the Vortex Plus is to place the Baking Tray upside down on the bottom of the oven. This allows for the most distance between the Fan and your food. This helps keep from over browning before the inside is fully cooked. 123

Close the door and press “BAKE” and set the Temperature at 325° F for 30 mins. When it displays “ADD FOOD” place the Cake Pan on the bottom tray and then place the empty baking tray on the top level above it. This diffuses the air and slows down the browning on top. This is a great tip when baking any cake int he Vortex Plus.cake vortex plus

Baking in the Omni/Omni Plus

Place the Baking Tray on the Middle position (do NOT use the black drip tray). Press “BAKE” and preheat the oven to 325° F and set the Time to 30 mins. Press Start and make sure the “CONVECT” is set to “LO”. 

When the display says “ADD FOOD”, place the cake pan on the baking rack. cake omni plus

**When the display reads “TURN FOOD” just ignore it. You don’t need to turn or rotate.**

At about 25 minutes, use a toothpick to check for doneness. The toothpick should come out clean. 

Once the Cake is done, remove it from the air fryer oven and place on a cooling rack for 10 mins. Then invert onto a plate (I use a 9 inch pie pan.) and allow to cool for 45 more minutes and serve.

Buen Provecho!pineapple upside down cakepineapple upside down cakeslice pineapple upside down cakeslice pineapple upside down cakepineapple upside down cake

4 Comments Add yours

  1. Pam M. says:

    Made this today and it is delicious! I did have to cook it a little longer. I used fresh pineapple slices which may have added extra moisture? I also put the drip tray above the cake partway through because it was browning enough. I learned this trick from Lana’s tutorial which is very helpful as I am new to the air fryer game. Thank you for a delicious recipe that was fun to make in my Omni Plus!


    1. drlanaperez says:

      Hi! I'm so glad you liked it. Yes, that's a great point. Using fresh pineapple will make it take a little longer to cook. One of my favorite desserts at Cheesecake factory is their Pineapple Upside Down Cheesecake. It's 2 of these cakes with a Cheesecake with a pineapple swirl, stacked in between. I think that's my next mission. 🙂


  2. SHARON says:

    Looking for a way to on burn the top of a loaf of banana bread in an umni plus.


    1. drlanaperez says:

      Hi. I good tip when baking to keep the tops from over browning is to use the black drip tray on the upper level at about 1/3 of the way through cooking. This blocks the air flow but keeps the heat in.


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