Mini Kumquat Upside-Down Cakes


We've been in our new home for now just a year and half. There have been LOTS of projects accomplished. Some exciting (hello new back yard landscaping), others unexpected and heart breaking (oh, hi new roof that no one will notice is new but still cost a small fortune). But honestly one of the most rexciting things about our home has emerged in the last 6 expanding garden! Raised beds are popping with life, there's a green house waiting to be built and chicken coops to bring in...lots on the "fun" to-do list, for sure.

I'm finding nothing more rewarding than the fruits of your hard work - do you even want to know how OCD I am with neem oil these days!? (No leaf miners on my watch!) And even though we've dipped our first toe into the Spring season, it's very much still citrus season here in Southern California. After harvesting a pretty epic haul from two tiny kumquat trees that anchor our garage this week (you can peep my whole curb appeal make over on The DIY Network) I found myself at a lack of recipes outside of my go-to snap pea kumquat and bulgur salad....yeah, that's an OG recipe link for y'all.


So I decided to try something new. A classic cake recipe with a new twist - mini kumquat upside-down cakes! In all honestly I've never made an upside-down anything in my life and figured it was time. Armed with several mini 4 inch spring molds, I spent an afternoon experimenting and they turned out so adorable and so incredibly delicious that I just had to share the recipe with you.

These are easy to make and very much appreciated by your tart yet still super sweet-toothed friends, so go on and make at least 4...but try very hard to give at least one or two away. I hope you find yourself buried in a pile of citrus this weekend  - TGIF to you!



INGREDIENTS (makes four mini 4 inch cakes )


  • 4 tbs butter, melted

  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar

  • 1 cup kumquats, thinly sliced and seeds removed


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 1/3 cup packed light-brown sugar

  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar

  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange

  • 1 large egg

  • 1 large egg yolk

  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

  • 3/4 teaspoon coarse salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

  • 3/4 cup milk

  • 3 tablespoons greek yogurt

  • Juice of 1/2 lemon


Preheat oven to 350F. For the topping, melt the butter and mix in brown sugar until dissolved. Pour sugar mixture into bottom of spring mold just enough to cover. Arrange kumquat slices in 1-2 compact layers. Place on a baking sheet and set aside.

For the cakes, mix butter sugar and zests in a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix on medium until light and fluffy, about 4-5 minutes. Add egg and egg yolk, beat for another 1-2 minutes. In a large bowl add flour, baking soda, nutmeg and salt, mix well. In another bowl mix baking soda, milk, yogurt and lemon juice. Whisk together until fully incorporated.

Add flour mixture in three batches to the sugar and butter mixture, on medium. Between each flour batch add in 1/2 of the milk mixture. Beat until fully incorporated. Pour cake batter into each spring mold, filling only half to 3/4 full. Bake for 35 minutes, allow to cool before releasing from spring mold and flipping upside down onto a plate.