Pineapple Upside-down Spam Cake

Okay, so I saw this dish served on an episode of Bizarre Foods (in Hawaii) and I simply had to try it, if only for the shock factor!


Now, of course, my favorite use of the famous “canned pork product” is that Hawaiin obsession, Spam Musubi, but this dessert of pretty freakin’ awesome, too!

After searching the net, I couldn’t find a single recipe, much less pictures…so…I made up a recipe myself, and baked a double batch for about 40 guests at my daughter’s 3rd birthday luau.

The cake got mixed results, most guests falling into one of three categories:

a. Those who were grossed out at the idea and wouldn’t try it. (30%)
b. Those who tried it and thought it was okay. (20%)
c. Those who tried it and liked it. (50% – including me.)

It was definitely a unique flavor, though everyone agreed that they wouldn’t have been able to guess that the “secret ingredient” was, in fact, Spam.

I really liked the sweet/salty combination a lot, and the “spammy” consistency that I was afraid of wasn’t even noticeable once it cooked in the cake. Vickie, who did her share of eye-rolling in the planning stages (but is always faithful to try anything I recommend) actually like it a lot, as well.

I’ll probably use even more Spam next time, creating an even layer, instead of just a slice under each pineapple ring.

Perk’s Pineapple Upside-down Spam Cake

1 box moist yellow cake mix
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/3 cups water
3 egg
1-2 cans Spam 1 cans sliced pineapple rings, drained
Maraschino cherries without stems, if desired

Heat oven to 350°F. In 9-inch square pan, melt butter in oven.

Sprinkle brown sugar evenly over melted butter.

Arrange pineapple slices over brown sugar. Place cherry in center of each pineapple slice.

Cut Spam into 1/4 inch thick slices and lay 1-2 slices over each pineapple ring.

In medium bowl, beat remaining ingredients with electric mixer on low speed 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly.

Beat on high speed 3 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.

Pour batter over Spam, pineapple and cherries.

Bake 50 to 55 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Immediately place heatproof serving plate upside down over pan; turn plate and pan over.

Leave pan over cake a few minutes so brown sugar mixture can drizzle over cake; remove pan. Serve warm.



PS – Chris Renner, by BBQ pard, suggesting replacing the Spam with diced Canadian bacon…which sounds awesome, too!


Filed under Deep End o' the Pool, Off The Grill, Reviews

19 responses to “Pineapple Upside-down Spam Cake

  1. Pingback: 3rd Annual Princess Gracie Luau « Rice Cereal Sucks

  2. Di

    DH had the kids try Spam this weekend. They didn’t like it. We got a great picture of our daughter in front of a spam sandwich, though! DH ate the sandwich. I shuddered.
    I would have tried the cake though. I LOVE pineapple upside down cake. I just got a recipe to make it in my dutch oven. :) It includes a tropical version with coconut.

  3. Di, how did they have it?

    I can’t stand the stuff right out of the can, either. For a lot of people (like Vic) it’s more of a consistency issue that a flavor issue.

    For sandwiches I like to slice it about 1/4 inch thick and fry it in butter until it’s crispy on both sides.

    Put that on a roll, with some sweet hot mustard…oh my!

  4. PS – It’s sure great to see you on online!

  5. Val

    You had me at SPAM….This recipes rocks. Thanks for posting. I can not wait to try it. YUM

  6. Val – Awesome! Let us know how it turns out!

  7. Wow! One of my all-time favorite cakes partnered with one of my favorite lunch foods. Too bad my wife has outlawed Spam in our house. Something about heaving up toenails when she came home to the smell of it in the house during the second pregnancy. The kids love it, but she can’t stand it, so…no more Spam in our house. :(

    Still, the idea is intriguing, and I have to admit to being tempted at the idea of this cake.

  8. Honestly, I did it on a lark and was pleasantly surprised at the outcome.

  9. Mindy

    I have a question about the pineapple upside-down cake recipe.
    On the box, the recipe calls for:

    1 1/3 cups water
    3 eggs
    1/3 cup veg’t oil

    I don’t see the water added to your instructions. Did you omit it or was that a typo?

    Thanks so much. Can’t wait to try this recipe!

  10. Mindy, oops! You’re right…I left that out. It’s in there now!

    Thanks for catching that!


  11. Mindy

    Thanks Perry!

  12. Al Thompson

    Was looking for something unusual to fix for a covered dish contribution to our church dinner. Found this, along with another similar one, on the web and decided it’s just the thing. Never really a Classic Spam enthusiast (WW2 memories), I discovered that Spam Light, with lowered fat and salt content, is actually quite good and I always keep a can handy. When fried it really does taste like ham and is great with scrambled eggs on fried on sandwiches. I intend to do this recipe, but with chunks of pineapple rather than rings, interspersed cherries, and small bites of Spam slightly crisp fried before the final bake-off. One of our male church members is a lifelong hobby chef, and could work in any fine restaurant. I can’t wait to see if he can figure this one out.

  13. Al, that sounds like a great plan! Please let me know how it turns out!

    For a simple twist on my Spam Musubi (you can do a search on the blog for that one) I like to cube spam-lite and fry it until crisp, adding some teriaki sauce at the last minute. I serve it over sticky rice with steamed pea-pods and carrot matchsticks…makes a very nice rice bowl!

  14. bk

    i couldn’t find the recipe nowhere either, but im dying to try it. thanks for posting

  15. You bet! Let us know what you think!

  16. I just searched for this recipe after my kids were dying to try it after the Bizarre Foods show, too! We thought it sounded gross until we tried Spam and scrambled eggs, and liked it, so now we’re curious about the cake.
    We’ll be making ours with a gluten free cake mix but the results should be the same.

  17. Ok, so we tried it. If I do it again, I think I would cut the Spam in smaller bits and pre-fry it. It was good, but the Spam was a little much to chew without being crispy.

  18. I agree, I’ve had made it again since this post and frying the spam made it even better. I dusted the spam on both sides with a little brown sugar and fried in butter to get a little caramel action going.

  19. Sherryl

    Sounds good. I’ve been looking for this recipe since I saw the pineapple spam upside down cake on TV. Found another recipe but this one looks easier because I buy the cake mix instead of making it from scatch.

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