This nectarine upside down cake is infused with fresh basil. It’s a gluten free summer treat that goes perfectly with an afternoon cup of tea or coffee.
I know I’ve been all “omg, peaches are the best thing ever, I can’t get enough of them” lately. Truth is though, I’ve really been eating more nectarines than peaches instead. Here’s the thing, I bought peaches like three different times from different stores and I’d put them on the counter to ripen, they’d start to get soft but at the same time they’d start to wrinkle too, almost like they went from underripe to overripe with no “perfectly ripe” stage in between. And then, to make matters even worse because I can handle some wrinkly skin if the peach actually still tastes good, I’d cut into them (I never eat peaches without cutting them after a run in with a worm a few years back- so gross) only to find mealy, disgusting flesh staring back at me. Gross.
*This post is sponsored by Vital Proteins.
So I switched to nectarines and not just regular nectarines, white nectarines because they’re the best. If there’s one time in life you’re allowed to be racist, it’s when choosing your summer fruit.
I’ve never done an upside down cake and let me tell you, the decision of which pan to use caused me much anxiety in this whole process. I don’t seem to have the best luck with cakes, breads and other baked things coming out of the pan easily so leaving it up to fate in a bundt pan, cake pan or even worse, skillet, just didn’t sit well with me.
I read mixed reviews about using a springform pan. Some said it’s the best thing to happen to the upside down cake, others swore all the fruity, sugary delicious caramelized stuff would leak out the bottom.
I rolled the dice though, ignored the springform haters and this cake gave me zero issues coming out of the pan. None of that delicious fruit topping (which is really the bottom) escaped either.
There are a few non-traditional upside down cake ingredients in this recipe (would you expect anything less?). Besides using my favorite gluten free flour, this nectarine upside down cake also has a secret protein boost as well from Vital Proteins marine collagen.
Their unflavored wild-caught marine collagen is the perfect addition for not only some added protein but also some added joint, bone and skin health. Much like their grass-fed, pasture raised collagen dissolved perfectly in the mango melon soup I made last month, the marine collagen is totally undetectable in this cake.
And then there’s the basil.
I’m a sucker for the herb and fruit combination in the summer. Basil is definitely a crossover herb, it can play so well in both savory and sweet dishes and the juicy, ripe white nectarines in this upside down cake are the perfect way to showcase its capabilities in the sweet realm.
I’d say to enjoy it with an afternoon cup of tea but considering it’s been 95+ degrees here for over a week with humidity so high you start sweating just walking to the mailbox, maybe make that an iced coffee instead (try adding some collagen to that too – another recent favorite of mine!)
- 2 1/2-3 nectarines, sliced (I prefer white nectarines but either will do)
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar, divided
- 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped basil
- 1 1/4 cup gluten free flour mix (*see note)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 scoops Vital Proteins marine collagen
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste (or extract)
- 2 eggs
- 1/4 cup non-dairy milk (I used macadamia nut milk, any nut or coconut milk will do)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and liberally grease a springform pan with butter. Place pan on a parchment lined baking sheet and set aside.
- Combine the nectarine slices, 1/4 cup of the coconut sugar, coconut oil and basil in a small bowl. Toss gently until well combined.
- Arrange the nectarine slices in a circular pattern along the bottom of the pan. Pour any of the excess sugar/coconut oil mixture on top of the nectarines.
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, remaining 1/4 cup of coconut sugar, baking powder, marine collagen and cinnamon.
- Lightly whisk together the vanilla bean paste, eggs and milk in a small bowl.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until well combined.
- Dollop the batter over the nectarine slices in the pan and spread out evenly so that it covers the nectarines completely.
- Bake for about 30 minutes until center is set.
- Remove from the oven, release the sides of the springform pan and remove.
- Let the cake cool for about 5 minutes, just enough to be able to handle it and carefully flip the cake over onto a cooling rack so the bottom of the springform pan is now on top. Gently remove the bottom of the pan to reveal the nectarine layer.
- Let cake cool completely on cooling rack before slicing.