Southern Pineapple Cake

Delight in the vibrant flavors of the South with this traditional Southern Pineapple Cake. Known for its moist, flavorful texture and rich frosting, this cake makes a perfect treat for any occasion, whether it’s a family gathering, a festive holiday, or a simple summer barbecue. In this article, we’ll dive into how to make this delicious dessert that’s sure to impress your guests with its sweet, tropical flair.

Ingredients You’ll Need

For the cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple (with juice)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the frosting:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut (optional)

Instructions to Make Southern Pineapple Cake

1. Prepare the Cake Batter

Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour a 9×13 inch baking pan or spray with non-stick cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Add eggs, crushed pineapple along with its juice, and vanilla extract. Mix until well blended. The batter will be quite wet, but this contributes to the final moistness of the cake.

2. Bake the Cake

Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Place in the oven and bake for about 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. The top should be golden brown, and the cake should pull away slightly from the sides of the pan.

3. Make the Frosting

While the cake is baking, prepare the frosting. In a medium bowl, beat together the softened butter and cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Add vanilla extract. Gradually mix in powdered sugar until the frosting is smooth and spreadable. If using, fold in chopped nuts and shredded coconut.

4. Frost the Cake

Once the cake is done, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool completely in the pan. When the cake is cool, spread the frosting evenly over the top. For an extra touch of Southern charm, sprinkle additional nuts or coconut over the frosting.

5. Serve and Enjoy

Slice the cake into squares and serve. This cake is best enjoyed at room temperature or slightly chilled. It pairs wonderfully with a cup of coffee or a glass of iced tea, making it the perfect dessert for any Southern dining experience.

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Why You’ll Love This Southern Pineapple Cake

Moist and Flavorful: Thanks to the inclusion of crushed pineapple in the batter, this cake remains incredibly moist and full of tropical pineapple flavor.

Easy to Make: This recipe is straightforward and uses common pantry ingredients, making it an easy dessert to whip up on short notice.

Versatile: This cake can be dressed up with nuts and coconut, or kept simple without these additions, catering to different tastes and preferences.

Perfect for Any Occasion: The Southern Pineapple Cake’s rich flavor and appealing presentation make it a hit at any event, from casual gatherings to elegant celebrations.

Southern Pineapple Cake is not just a dessert, it’s a testament to the simplicity and richness of Southern cuisine. Try baking this delightful cake today and bring a taste of the South into your home. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or just looking for a delicious treat to enjoy with your family, this cake is sure to satisfy.

Serving and Storage Tips for Southern Pineapple Cake

Serving Tips

  • Room Temperature: For the best flavor and texture, serve the Southern Pineapple Cake at room temperature. If you’ve refrigerated the cake, take it out about 30 minutes before serving to allow it to come to room temperature.
  • Presentation: To enhance the presentation, consider garnishing the cake with additional shredded coconut, a sprinkle of chopped nuts, or even a few pineapple slices on the side. This adds visual appeal and hints at the flavors inside the cake.
  • Pairing: This cake pairs beautifully with a variety of beverages. For a refreshing match, try serving it with iced tea or a lemonade. If you’re looking for something warmer, a cup of coffee or hot tea complements the sweetness perfectly.

Storage Tips

  • Refrigeration: Because of the cream cheese frosting, it’s advisable to store the Southern Pineapple Cake in the refrigerator. Cover it tightly with plastic wrap or keep it in an airtight container. Properly stored, the cake will last for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.
  • Freezing: This cake freezes well, both frosted and unfrosted. To freeze, wrap the cake tightly with plastic wrap and then with aluminum foil. For convenience, you might consider slicing the cake before freezing; this way, you can thaw only as many pieces as you need at a time. Frozen, the cake will keep for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
  • Avoiding Sogginess: If you’re storing the cake in the refrigerator and are concerned about it becoming too moist, you can place a paper towel both under and on top of the cake slices in the storage container. The paper towels will absorb excess moisture and keep the frosting from becoming runny.
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By following these serving and storage tips, you can ensure that your Southern Pineapple Cake maintains its ideal texture and flavor, making it a hit any time you serve it. Whether enjoying a slice as a sweet end to a meal or as a delightful afternoon treat, this cake is sure to bring a taste of the South to your table.

1. Can I use fresh pineapple instead of canned pineapple for this cake?
Yes, you can use fresh pineapple instead of canned, but there are a couple of things to keep in mind. First, you’ll need to finely chop the fresh pineapple and include some of its juice to match the moisture content of canned pineapple. Canned pineapple typically comes with juice that adds essential moisture to the cake, so if using fresh, you might need to adjust by adding a bit of pineapple juice or water to ensure the cake doesn’t turn out dry.

2. What can I substitute for the nuts in the recipe if I’m allergic or don’t like them?
If you’re allergic to nuts or simply don’t care for them, you can omit them without any additional substitutions. If you still want to add some texture and flavor, consider substituting with seeds such as sunflower or pumpkin seeds, or you could use dried fruit like raisins or chopped dates.

3. How can I tell when the cake is perfectly baked?
The cake is done when it’s golden brown on top, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs but no wet batter. Additionally, the edges of the cake will start to pull away from the sides of the pan. Since oven temperatures can vary, start checking the cake about 5 minutes before the recommended baking time expires.

4. Can this cake be made ahead of time?
Absolutely! This cake actually tastes better the next day, as the flavors have more time to meld together. You can bake the cake and apply the frosting one day in advance. Just be sure to store it in the refrigerator, covered, until you are ready to serve. This makes it a great option for parties or events where you want to prepare food ahead of time.

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