Randy Mayor; Lydia DeGaris-Pursell
9 servings (serving size: 1 cake piece and about 2 tablespoons cognac cream)

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350°.

Step 2

Pour melted butter into an 8-inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray; sprinkle with brown sugar. Bake at 350° for 2 minutes. Remove from oven, and top with pecans and cranberries.

Step 3

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl; stir with whisk.

Step 4

Place sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended. Add egg yolks, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla.

Step 5

Add flour mixture and milk alternately to butter mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix after each addition. Beat the egg whites with a mixer at high speed until stiff peaks form using clean, dry beaters; fold into batter.

Step 6

Spread batter over cranberries. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes. Cool in pan for 5 minutes on a wire rack. Loosen edges of cake with a sharp knife. Place a plate upside down on top of cake pan; invert onto plate.

Step 7

Combine whipped topping and cognac, and serve with warm cake.

Ratings & Reviews

jenmax's Review

July 18, 2013
I used fresh frozen defrosted cranberries and they worked well. May try plums next. Cake was delicious, used ice cream, but felt it hid the flavor a bit, and next time will serve with fresh whipped cream or just a glass of milk. Husband and I liked the praline affect of the pecans and brown sugar a bit crunchy. Real butter flavor very noticeable. I whipped the egg whites before mixing the other wet ingredients so I would not have to get out the other mixer or wash beaters in between, and it was fine. Also some topping stuck in pan while flipping, which I just scooped back on, but some buttered or sprayed parchment paper in the bottom might help. Rmiller, you might buy an inexpensive oven thermometer to check your temp. Before mine was re-calibrated it ran 20 degrees cooler than it should have, so I had to adjust my temps. Or at least test center with a fingertip to be sure it is done, cook longer if not.

JenRaj's Review

October 12, 2012
For as much work as this took (with the whipped egg whites and alternating wet and dry ingerdients) it was not as spectacular as I expected. Thick batter and too much topping. If I make it again, I'll skip all the careful prep and add less cranberries and pecans. The taste is good though, just dense. There is another recipe on CL that is nearly the same, but with ginger. Not sure if the prep is the same so I wlill compare.

vpteacher's Review

November 13, 2011
A great holiday dessert. It is delicious and makes a nice appearance.

rmiller2's Review

December 23, 2010
This turned out pretty well. I liked the sweet and sour contrast between the brown sugar and the cranberries. Mine actually was raw in the middle, light and fluffy around the edges, and perfectly moist in between. The middle of the cake also sunk when it was cooling. I'm not sure why this happened, if it's my oven or the recipe. I also reduced the brown sugar to about 1/4 cup instead of 1/2 for the topping. The moist section was delicious though, probably wouldn't make this exact recipe again though.

SusieBeeonMaui's Review

December 16, 2010
Another great cranberry recipe-good job. Love the cognac cream idea. Here's my lightened up version of Nantucket Cranberry Pie which is really a cake, an upside down one at that! http://eatlittleeatbig.blogspot.com/2010/11/recipe-for-nantucket-cranberry-pie-cake.html

Jennifer3946's Review

December 16, 2010
This was simple to make and delicious. I cooked in a pyrex dish rather than a metal dish, but it still came out great. Be sure to bake for the full 45 minutes or the middle may be undercooked. I followed the recipe as written except I used frozen (fresh) cranberries and I put vanilla ice cream on top rather than whipped cream. Delicious!

estrellitazul's Review

December 08, 2010
I've made this cake every single year since it came out in 2001. It has a medium overall texture and the crumb is not dense. The lovely, buttery deepness of the pecan-scattered brown sugar is off-set by the bright tartness of still juicy cranberries. A bit of whipped cream to bridge the contrast, and you're set for the holiday or anyday. I love this cake! *i do prefer to bake it in a clear pyrex 8x8.

CompleteRecipes's Review

November 24, 2010
This recipe sounds delicious!!! I'm making a version of this cake recipe for Thanksgiving, with more cranberries and Chantilly cream, and just thought I'd share: http://completerecipes.com/Cranberry-Pecan-Pumpkin-Upside-Down-Cake-with-Chantilly-Cream.html I think my guests will be looking forward to the dessert the most :)

dory92064's Review

July 03, 2009
I love cranberries, but made this with some homemade brandied cherries that I needed to use. Used slice almonds instead of pecans and in addition to vanilla added 1/2 tsp almond flavoring. Very good recipe -- think it would be even better with cranberries. The carmelized topping is just the right amount of sweetness & crunch. Used fresh whipped cream & cognac -- a delicious topping for the cake! Definitley will make again.