Citrus Almond Upside Down Cake

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What’s the best way to make the most of a pile of citrus fruit? Turn it into a moist, almond-flavored citrus upside down cake! The jewel-toned fruit is showcased to maximum effect when cooked with simple syrup—use a combination of blood and navel oranges and grapefruit for maximum effect.

Recipe makes 1 citrus upside down cake.


  • 1¼ cup sugar, divided
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 grapefruit, peeled & cut into ½-inch slices
  • 2 oranges, peeled & cut into ½-inch slices (preferably a mix of blood and regular oranges)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 2 tbsp orange zest
  • 1 tbsp grapefruit zest
  • ¼ cup neutral oil, such as canola or avocado


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line a 9-inch cake pan with parchment paper and brush all sides and bottom well with oil. Brush the paper too.
  2. Place ¼ cup sugar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer, and cook, swirling occasionally, until thickened, about 6-8 minutes. Pour syrup over bottom of pan.
  3. Arrange orange slices over syrup in pan. Cut into segments to fill in any gaps.
  4. Add dry ingredients (including remaining 1 cup sugar) to a large bowl and whisk to combine.
  5. Make a well in the center of dry ingredients, then add eggs and whisk to combine. Whisk in yogurt, citrus zest and oil until batter is smooth.
  6. Pour batter over citrus slices and spread to evenly coat.
  7. Bake cake until golden brown and a tester comes out clean when inserted in the center, about 40-50 minutes.
  8. Let cool completely in pan, then invert onto a serving plate.

Recipe Notes and Variations

  • The grapefruit adds a bitter contrast to the sweet oranges, but if you prefer you can use another large orange in its place.
  • Zest your oranges and grapefruit before peeling and slicing.
  • Use a serrated knife to cut off the peels for easier slicing, ensuring your slices will stay intact.
  • If you’d like to brown the top of the citrus upside-down cake a little more, toast with a blowtorch or broil it briefly before serving.
  • Do you still have a load of citrus on the counter? Try this refreshing Citrus and Beet Salad or these Candied Citrus Peels.


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    August 19, 2020 at 4:50 pm

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  • Westfan
    January 12, 2022 at 7:06 pm

    Could you substitute lemons for the grapefruit, or use half lemon and half grapefruit? I take statins and shouldn’t eat too much grapefruit. Especially Meyer lemons as they are sweeter? Thanks.

    • Imperfect
      January 14, 2022 at 11:09 am

      We haven’t tried it ourselves, but it sure does sound good so might be worth a try! 💚

  • kb
    January 13, 2022 at 10:44 am

    Just discovered this recipe today! Absolutely making it tonight with the grapefruit and blood oranges I have on the counter from my last Imperfect shipment!

    • Imperfect
      January 14, 2022 at 11:08 am

      Yay! Hope you were able to enjoy! 😍💚

  • Laurence J Richard
    January 17, 2022 at 4:22 pm

    HI, I have a highly gluten intolerant child and was wondering if I could replace the cup of all purpose flour with a second cup of almond flour? (Which, by the way, doesn’t taste like almonds at all so should I add some almond extract?) thanks, Laurence

    • Imperfect
      January 18, 2022 at 10:28 am

      All of our recipes can be altered to you and your family’s specific dietary needs 💚

    • Michelle
      January 24, 2022 at 7:38 pm

      I made the substitute last night. Used “Cup for Cup”. It was fantastic.

      • Imperfect
        January 27, 2022 at 3:43 pm

        Love to hear it so much! 💚

  • Diana
    January 20, 2022 at 4:15 pm

    This was great! I also added a bit of cardamon to the batter. Nice highlight with the citrus.

    • Imperfect
      January 22, 2022 at 8:32 am

      That sounds like such a delicious addition! So glad you tried it and loved it! 💚


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