Mini Upside-Down Apple Crumble Cake

These mini upside-down apple crumble cake recipe was SO fun to make! The idea started when I saw cute little upside-down peach cobblers on Pinterest–I decided to experiment and create my own version with apples and a few other variations.

These mini cakes have several different layers. The base is a delicious, spongy cinnamon cake filled with tiny pieces of apples and includes buttermilk, keeping the cake extra moist. The middle layer is an oaty, sugary crumble that adds a nice chewy texture. The top layer is made from thin apple slices covered in sugar, butter and cinnamon. All of these layers are baked and then topped with a delicious creamy glaze!

I know what you’re thinking, that’s a lot going on! Trust me, it’s not as much work as it sounds! All of the different layers come together quickly–it shouldn’t take more than 20-25 minutes to assemble. Plus, they bake for a short 20 minutes, so you don’t have to wait long to enjoy them!

Necessary Equipment Mini Apple Crumble Cake

This recipe calls for using JUMBO muffin tins, not regular-sized ones. I’ve used normal muffin tins for this recipe, and there just wasn’t enough room for all of the layers. So, if you don’t already have jumbo muffin tins I highly recommend getting some!

However, if using jumbo muffin tins isn’t an option, you can try using normal-sized tins with a few modifications. First, you’ll make 24 mini cakes, rather than 12. Also, the top layer of apples may be too large, so you’ll want to cut them even thinner and also slice them in half. When filling the muffin tins, make sure not to fill them all the way to the top and definitely don’t let them overflow. Leave 1/4 inch on top so they have room to rise without spilling over the edge. With the amount of batter this recipe makes, this tends to only be a problem with normal muffin tins, not the jumbo ones.

Mini upside-down apple crumble cake has quickly become one of our family’s new favorite desserts! With the delicious combination of soft and chewy textures, plus the perfect pairing of apples and cinnamon, it’s hard not to love these. Give them a try and let me know in the comments below what you think!

Mini Upside-Down Apple Crumble Cake

Recipe by Maddie Saxey
0.0 from 0 votes


Prep time


Cooking time






  • Apple Topping
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted

  • 6 Tbsp light brown sugar

  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice

  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 2 granny smith apples, peeled and sliced into thin slices (about 16 slices per apple)

  • Oat Topping
  • 1 cup whole rolled oats

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted

  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed

  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 2/3 cup all purpose flour

  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt

  • Cake Batter
  • 2 cup finely diced granny smith apples, peeled (about 2 apples)

  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour

  • 1 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda

  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt

  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon, divided (half for the apple chunks)

  • 1 tsp cornstarch

  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 large egg

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup buttermilk

  • Glaze
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

  • 3 Tbsp heavy cream


  • Preheat oven to 350° F, and apply cooking spray generously to 2 jumbo muffin tins (12 muffins total). Set aside.
  • Apple Topping: Peel two apples and slice into 16 slices each (32 slices total). In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar and cinnamon. Add the lemon juice and melted butter, then mix well. Toss the apple slices in the mixture until well coated, and then add 2-3 apple slices to each jumbo muffin tin and press into the bottom.
  • Oat Topping: mix together rolled oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, flour, and salt. Then mix in the melted butter. Evenly divide the oat topping into each of the muffin tins and lightly press down to make room for the cake batter.
  • Cake Batter: In a standing mixer, beat the butter and sugar on high until creamy (about 2-3 minutes). Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the egg, vanilla extract, and buttermilk. Mix on medium speed until completely combined.

    Peel two apples and dice into small pieces (about 1/4 inch cubes). Toss in a small bowl with one teaspoon of cinnamon and set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, one teaspoon of cinnamon, and cornstarch.

    Add the dry ingredients to the standing mixer and mix on lowest speed until there aren’t any pockets of flour. Fold in the diced apples with a rubber spatula.
  • Bake: Evenly distribute the cake batter in the muffin tins. Smooth over the batter with a knife so that it’s even. Bake for about 20 minutes. Once a toothpick comes out clean from the cake batter, they’re done. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes in the tin.
  • Removing the Cakes: Slide a knife around the perimeter of the cake inside the tins to ensure no edges will stick. Place the cooling rack upside down on top of the muffin tins, and then flip both over together. Shake the tins a little to make sure all the cakes separate from the tins. If enough cooking spray was used, all of the cakes should come out together. If some apples are stuck to the bottom of the pan, just remove them with a fork and place back on the cakes.
  • Prepare the Glaze: mix the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and heavy cream together in a small bowl. Drizzle the glaze over the cakes.

    Best served warm. Enjoy!


  • Store any leftovers in the fridge.

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