Plums are very common in farmer market stands during the summer. Unlike peaches and nectarines, this stone fruit is a little more tart. Ever so versatile, plums can be made into clafoutis, pies, or even tarts.

This cake lets the plum shine, alongside basil for spice and olive oil for moistness. Before you know it, you’ll be helping yourself to a third slice.

If you feel creative, substitute the plum for fresh blueberries or strawberries. The sparkling apple cider adds a little twist to this recipe, but if you don’t have any lying around, substitute with water or ginger ale.

Serve with another fresh plum and whipped cream on the side.

Upside-Down Cake with Plums and Basil

  • Prep Time:10 minutes
  • Cook Time:30-40 minutes
  • Total Time:40-50 minutes
  • Servings:6-8
  • Easy


  • 3 - 4 ripe red plums (pitted and sliced)
  • 2 fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2/3 cup fruity olive oil
  • 5/8 cup whole milk
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoon sparkling apple cider
Photo by Suyi Leong
  • Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  • Step 2

    Line a loaf pan with parchment paper and spray with some olive oil. Layer the bottom of the pan with cut plum slices.

    Image by Suyi Leong
  • Step 3

    Slice the basil into thin strips and tuck them into the plum layer.

    Photo by Suyi Leong
  • Step 4

    Whisk the flour, brown sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda in a medium bowl. In a larger bowl, whisk together all the remaining ingredients.

  • Step 5

    Mix the dry and wet mixtures together until well combined.

    Photo by Suyi Leong
  • Step 6

    Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake in the preheated oven for 30-40 minutes, until the loaf tops are golden brown and a toothpick stuck in the center of the cake comes out clean.

    Photo by Suyi Leong
  • Step 7

    Remove from the oven when done. Let cool on a cooling rack.

  • Step 8

    Let the loaf rest and cool in the pan for at least 30 minutes before inverting it out. Scatter some brown sugar over the top.

    Photo by Suyi Leong