Easy Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake is a delicious dessert bursting with the flavor of cherries and tangy pineapples, topped with whipped cream, and lime zest. It’s also the simplest cake to make with no mixing and no measuring!
If you like Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain – then you’re going to love this cake. Seriously – this Easy Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake that feels reminiscent of a pineapple upside down cake, also feels like a dessert version of a pina colada.
And if I can eat a pina colada, I’m here for it. The texture is a little gooey, while the flavor has so much pineapple and cherry flavor. It all comes together to make a fruity and moist cake.
Then, to make it over the top, you can frost the cake with creamy fresh whipped cream, golden browned pineapple slices, and some lime zest. It all really screams summer vacation.
WHAT IS A DUMP CAKE?
Aside from tasting like a tropical getaway, this cake is such an easy recipe because it’s a dump cake. If you’ve never heard of a dump cake, it basically implies that you’re just dumping all the ingredients you need to make the cake into a baking pan and then…just baking it. No stirring, no mixing, no mixing bowl even, nada. Dump and bake, kind of like shake n’ bake, but with dessert.
How does such an easy dessert even work, you ask?
Dump cakes use simple ingredients to still make outstanding flavored cakes that really don’t taste like you cheated. Because we are definitely cheating here.
The way dump cakes work is that they take any kind of boxed cake mix and pair it with a liquid that has flavor. In this case, it's canned fruit, sometimes it’s pureed fresh fruit, and other times you can use juice, milk, or soda.
- First, you pour your liquid or fruit filling on the bottom of the baking dish
- Then sprinkle your cake mix all over the liquid
- Lastly, you either space out pats of cold butter or evenly pour melted butter all over the cake mix. This ensures that all the powder is “wet”. As long as all the cake mix is wet, it will bake into a delicious cake!
The best part about this cake is that you basically don't have to do anything, and it still comes out pretty impressive. Think of all the combinations you can make with a cake formula like this, they’re endless! I’ll list out some flavor options below.
WHEN TO SERVE DUMP CAKE
Dump cakes are perfect for those times when you need cake or dessert, but really don’t feel like making a mess, feel too lazy to even consider measuring your ingredients, you’re short on time, or you don’t want to spend money on dessert.
To call it what it is – it’s a lazy cake. But either way, they come together instantly and turn out delicious.
What’s great about them is that you'll likely nail it on your first time trying too. To me, they fall right in line with “no-bake” desserts, although they do in fact need to bake. The similarity is that they require MINIMAL effort.
You can even make dump cakes ahead of time. They really win the trifecta of flavor, ease, and prep.
If you’re looking for other insanely easy cakes and desserts you should check out these:
CHERRY PINEAPPLE DUMP CAKE
So, to make this Easy Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake there are a few things to know so that it comes out perfect.
- Right into your baking dish, pour in the can of pineapples including the juices, and smooth until the whole dish is covered. Spread out the halved cherries right on top.
- Next, evenly sprinkle out the cake mix on top of the fruit. Cover the whole dish and spread it out until it’s even.
- Lastly, the most important step is to take your melted butter and pour it all over the top of the cake mix. Make sure all the cake mix powder is wet from either the fruit or the butter
- Place it in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes. It’s finished when a fork in the center comes out with only a few crumbs.
- While the cake is baking, you can decide to brown pineapple slices in the oven to create more of the “pineapple upside down cake” look – totally optional! To do that, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, spread the slices out, rub the brown sugar on top of the slices. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
- When the cake is finished, you can eat it warm, but if you want to frost it, let it fully cool to room temp. You can top it off by spreading cool whip all over, then arrange your pineapple slices, and top it all off with lime zest.
- Avoid a powdery cake – One of the biggest gripes about dump cakes is that they can turn out dry if you were a little too lazy with the dumping. All the cake mix needs to be wet before going into the oven or the parts that are dry will turn out powdery. Take your spoon and pat the mix into the wet ingredients, ensuring that it’s all distributed evenly.
- I have not tried this, but I have a feeling that this cake would be amazing in the crock pot / slow cooker
- Canned crushed pineapple – you’ll need a 20 oz can of crushed pineapple with the juices. You could alternatively use fresh pineapple and instead substitute the juice with pineapple juice (3 cups altogether).
- Maraschino cherries – this recipe does have a retro feel to it and it comes from these classic cherries that remind you of topping off a frozen pina colada. Slice them in half and obviously remove the stems.
- Yellow cake mix – You can also use white cake mix. If you hate the flavor of a box cake mix and don’t mind putting in an extra 2 minutes of work, you can make your own dry cake mix and use that. It will still come out just as fantastic, if not better.
- Cool whip – In keeping this dessert as easy as possible, I stuck with prepared whipped cream. You can certainly make fresh whipped cream.
- Lime zest – The finishing touches on this cake that amps up the tropical vibe and freshness, don’t skip it! A little goes a long way.
You can also serve this cake with a scoop of ice cream!
Cherry Pie Dump Cake – Vanilla or chocolate cake mix + cans of cherry pie filling
Blueberry Dump Cake – Vanilla cake mix + fresh blueberries
Pineapple Upside Down Dump Cake – A twist on this recipe, put the pineapple slices down first, following with the juice and cake mix
Chocolate Dump Cake – Chocolate cake mix + chocolate pudding
Peach Cobbler Dump Cake – Vanilla cake mix + canned peach
This baking dish makes about 12 servings, each one being 256 calories.
Storing and reheating
This dump cake needs to be covered tightly and stored in the refrigerator. It will keep for 5-7 days. You can warm it in the microwave for 30 seconds if you'd like to eat it warm.
AS ALWAYS, IF YOU MAKE THIS – PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW!
Easy Cherry Pineapple Dump Cake
- Boxed vanilla cake mix
- 1 20 ounce can crushed pineapples with juice
- ½ cup Maraschino cherries sliced in half
- 1 cup whipped butter melted
- Lime zest
- Cool whip
- 8 Pineapple slices
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 375 and prepare a 9x13 baking dish.
Right into your baking dish, pour in the can of pineapples and smooth until the whole dish is covered. Then spread out the cherries right out top.
Next, evenly sprinkle out the cake mix on top of the fruit. Cover the whole dish and spread it out until it's even. Gently pat the powder down into the liquid from the fruit.
Lastly, the most important step is to take your melted butter and pour it all over the top of the cake mix. Make sure all of the cake mix powder is wet from either the fruit or the butter, pat it all down so that it spreads.
Place it in the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes. It's finished when a fork in the center comes out with only a few crumbs.
While the cake is baking, you can decide to brown pineapple slices in the oven to create more of the “pineapple upside-down cake” look – totally optional! Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, spread the slices out, rub the brown sugar on top of the slices. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.
When the cake is finished, you can eat it warm just like a crumble. If you want to top off the whole cake with cool whip, let it fully cool to room temp. Then spread cool whip all over, arrange your pineapple slices, and top it all off with lime zest.
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