Rosy-pink rhubarb makes a particularly pretty upside-down cake. We balanced the fruit's tang with a crunchy nut-and-brown-sugar topping.

EatingWell Test Kitchen
Source: EatingWell Magazine, Spring 2004


Recipe Summary

1 hr 10 mins




Instructions Checklist
  • To prepare topping: Coat a 10-inch ovenproof skillet (such as cast-iron) with cooking spray. Add corn syrup and butter; heat over low heat until butter has melted, swirling the pan to coat the bottom evenly. Remove from the heat; spread brown sugar evenly over the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle nuts over the sugar and arrange rhubarb, rounded sides down, in a circular pattern on top. Set aside.

  • To prepare cake: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Combine flour, nuts, baking powder and salt in a food processor or blender; process until finely ground.

  • Beat 2 egg whites in a large bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add 1/3 cup brown sugar, beating until stiff and glossy. Set aside. (It is not necessary to wash beaters.) Beat whole eggs with the remaining 1/3 cup brown sugar in another large bowl on high speed until thickened and pale, 3 to 5 minutes. Blend in orange zest and vanilla.

  • Whisk one-fourth of the beaten whites into the whole-egg mixture. Gently fold in half the flour mixture. Fold in the remaining beaten whites, followed by the remaining flour mixture. Spread the batter evenly over the rhubarb.

  • Bake the cake until the top springs back when touched lightly, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Loosen the edges with a knife. Invert a serving platter over the cake. Using oven mitts, grasp platter and skillet together and carefully flip them over. Let the skillet sit for a few minutes to allow any caramel clinging to it to drip onto the cake. Remove the skillet. Let the cake cool for at least 20 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Equipment: 10-inch ovenproof skillet (This cake can also be baked in an 8-inch-square glass baking dish. Heat corn syrup and butter in a small pan and brush over the bottom of the baking dish. Bake the cake for 30-35 minutes.)

Nutrition Facts

191 calories; protein 3.7g 7% DV; carbohydrates 33.2g 11% DV; exchange other carbs 2; dietary fiber 2.1g 8% DV; sugars 24.7g; fat 5.6g 9% DV; saturated fat 1.1g 6% DV; cholesterol 39.2mg 13% DV; vitamin a iu 119.5IU 2% DV; vitamin c 3.5mg 6% DV; folate 8.8mcg 2% DV; calcium 66.3mg 7% DV; iron 0.4mg 2% DV; magnesium 12.7mg 5% DV; potassium 153mg 4% DV; sodium 128mg 5% DV; thiamin 0.1mg 5% DV.

Reviews (7)

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7 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 0
  • 4 star values: 6
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 4 stars
I really like this cake. I have been making it every year since it appeared in Eating Well. The kind of pan you use could make a difference in how the cake bakes. I particularly like that this is a rhubarb recipe that doesn't call for a ton of sugar. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
THis was the absolute worst cake I have ever made. It was dry and tasted just awful though I love rhubarb. I followed the directions exactly. I am an experienced baker and have never had a cake so miserable as this one. I definitley recommend you delete it from your files Read More
Rating: 4 stars
We enjoyed this cake. The flavor is very good. The only problem with the recipe is that the center did not bake completely. Read More
Rating: 3 stars
Good cake! My husband really liked this cake. I liked making it in my cast iron skillet. A lot of steps if you aren't an experienced cook. It was tasty and pretty healthy as well. Pros: Tasty and healthy Cons: Lot's of steps involved Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Love this cake! I used brown sugar instead of corn syrup and cooked it in a cast iron skillet. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Rich in rhubarb flavor My family of rhubarb lovers really enjoyed this cake. The pecans and orange were a great compliment to the rhubarb flavor. The cake is light and not too sweet. Pros: Very flavorful yet light Cons: Complicated steps and multiple bowls Read More
Rating: 4 stars
Yummy!! I am so surprised...this cake turned out great. I used almond meal (I had it on hand) in cake instead of grinding pecans in processor. The orange flavor was a nice touch. Next time I will omit the corn syrup and just use butter and brown sugar. I will definitely make this again. Read More