pressure cooker upside-down cake
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pressure cooker cake
I had been searching everywhere to find a cheese and egg-centric apple cake that I had been served many times by fellow harried mommies in Austria over tea while our toddler children joined forces to destroy the house. Even my copy of Die Gute Kueche was no help.But I always thought that this not-quite-cake and not-quite-pudding texture would be a perfect candidate for the pressure cooker.

pressure cooker cake

Between desperate online searches, I remembered Veronika telling me that she used ricotta instead of their local cheese. I’m not a big fan of raisins, so I left them out – but Veronika’s always had them and plenty of walnuts, too.

Not part of Austrian tradition is turning this dessert upside down – but I really like the drama (plus, you have to do it anyway to get it out of the bowl).  The original likely didn’t use olive oil – but using olive oil in place of butter is something I really enjoy doing in my recipes (use the good stuff).

So here’s my best guess as to how to make this delicious sweet that I ate often and gladly while living in Graz. Austrian mommies: please leave your recipes in the comments – and now you know that you can make this cake in the pressure cooker!

Pressure Cooker Accessories Pr. Cook Time Pr. Level Open
6 L or larger   steamer basket, heat-proof bowl    15 min.    High(2)  Natural

4.8 from 8 reviews
Pressure Cooked Apple and Ricotta Cake
 
Author: 
Nutritional Information
(per serving)
  • Serves: 8
  • Serving size: ⅛th
  • Calories: 241.6
  • TOTAL Fat: 9.9g
  • TOTAL Carbs: 34.1g
  • Sugar Carbs: 19.9g
  • Sodium: 314.4mg
  • Fiber Carbs: 1.8g
  • Protein: 5.9g
  • Cholesterol: 38.9mg
Recipe type: pressure cooker recipe
Cuisine: Austrian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
This recipe only has a "hint" of cinnamon, if you really like the flavor it brings to the party, double it. Other great additions to this cake are ¼ cup of crushed walnuts and soaked raisins. Substitute apples with pears, mandarins, nectarines, peaches or apricots.
INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 apples, 1 sliced 1 diced
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ cup raw sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or the seeds of one vanilla bean)
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Prepare pressure cooker by adding water to the base, plus steamer basket and set aside.
  2. Slice one apple and dice the other and cover with lemon juice.
  3. Prepare a shallow and wide 4-cup capacity heat-proof bowl by adding a disk of wax paper at the bottom and oiling and dusting the interior with flour.
  4. Sprinkle the base of the bowl with raw sugar and arrange the sliced apples artistically.
  5. In a small mixing bowl, mix the egg, ricotta, sugar, olive oil and vanilla using a fork. Then, sprinkle the flour, cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda in the mixing bowl using a flour sifter, or fine mesh strainer.
  6. Blend well with a fork and then stir-in the apple dices. Pour into prepared bowl and lower into the pressure cooker, uncovered.
  7. Close the lid and set the valve to pressure cooking position.
  8. Electric pressure cookers: Cook for 20 minutes at high pressure.
    Stove top pressure cookers: Lock the lid, and cook for 15 minutes at high pressure.
  9. When time is up, open the pressure cooker with the Natural pressure release.
    Electric pressure cookers: Disengage the “keep warm” mode, or unplug the cooker, and open the lid when the pressure indicator/lid-lock has gone down (about 20 to 30 minutes).
    Stovetop pressure cookers: Move the cooker off the burner and wait for the pressure to come down on its own (about 10 minutes).
  10. Test for doneness by inserting a toothpick in the middle - if it comes out dirty lower back into the pressure and cook for a few more minutes (you can open the pressure cooker with the faster Normal release method the second time ; ).
  11. Turn the cake out onto a serving plate. Serve warm or chilled.

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how to make a pressure cooker cake

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92 Comments

  1. When you say heat proof bowl…how heat proof does it need to be? Oven-safe glass? Or would the metal bowl I improvise a double boiler with work? Thanks!

    1. Julia, click on “accessories” at the top of the page and scroll down to heat-proof bowls. I give examples of materials and dishes you can use.

      Ciao,

      L

  2. It looks DELICIOUS!!!!! Do you happen to know if this could be made gluten free?

    1. Absolutely. Replace the 1 cup of flour with your favorite gluten-free flour. Almond flour would do really well. Also, chickpea flour!

      Ciao,

      L

  3. Awesome preparation, now i shud find a vessel to fit inside my cooker ;)

    1. Good luck! Anything stainless steel, ceramic, aluminum, and silicone will do. Click on the “accessories” tab for more ideas.

      Ciao,

      L

  4. Do you think I could use a small springform pan?

    1. Leslie, absolutely. Wrap the base of it the spring-form pan well to make sure the steam doesn’t try to get into the seams – leave the top uncovered!

      Check for size, too. See if it will hold four cups of water before making this recipe.

      Ciao,

      L

  5. Looks delicious Laura. I’ve got some apples that are begging to be made into something like this! Yum.

    1. Come back to post a link to the picture, when you do!

      Ciao,

      L

  6. Hi-
    I agree with everyone else- this looks great!
    I have an electric pc- would you decrease the initial time on high?
    Thanks- I love your site and use your recipes all the time.
    Kate

    1. Kate, all of my recipes are written for BOTH stove top and electric pressure cookers. For electrics, use the longer time in the time range – for this recipe the cake should pressure cook for 20 minutes at high pressure in an electric pressure cooker. c

      Click on the “pressure cooking times” tab at the top of the page for more info.

      Ciao,

      L

  7. I live at 5300 ft and usually have to adapt baking recipes for the altitude. But with the pressure cooker I’m not sure what to do. In general I add 25% more time to all the pressure cooker recipes but does anyone know if I need to change the baking powder or baking soda amount?

    1. I don’t have personal experience cooking at high altitude. However, some ingredients like baking soda, start working immediately – even before they’re in the pressure cooker – so to be on the safe side I would adjust the amounts to what you usually use at your altitude.

      Ciao,

      L

    2. Thanks. I’ll give it a try.

  8. Looks Yummy!!!! Great one.

  9. I love the recipe but can’t find a way to print it….only how to send a link to it. Am I doing something wrong? It is no use to me if I can’t print.

    1. Apologies, the printer button is a little hard to find. It’s the gray and green picture of a printer under the post next to the BIG RED pinterest button.

      Ciao,

      L

  10. I am so sorry…..I finally found the printer button…

    Just too many options for me!!!!
    Thanks!

  11. Love your blog. Just purchased my first pressure cooker and your ideas are very helpful. Do you have a soup section? It’s winter and nothing better than a great soup.
    Looking for a Kale or Green Soup recipe for the pressure cooker. Any ideas? Also if you have a soup section how do I find it?

    1. You can find the pressure cooker soup recipe section on the left-hand side. Scroll down past the featured posts and you will see a listing of recipes by category and diet.

      Welcome!

      L

  12. Wow, I never imagined you could make a dish like this in a pressure cooker. I guess you learn something new every day! Looks fabulous! Now I just have to remember where I put my steamer basket…

    1. Frank,

      You can always improvise a trivet to hold up your “cake” with three aluminum foil balls!

      Ciao,

      L

  13. Made this lovely cake today, and served it with a bit of whipped cream. It’s moist and delicious. I use an electric PC and cooked it for the full 20 min. Perfection! Thanks again for a great recipe!

    1. Sounds like a fantastic topping. Thanks for coming back to tell us about it!

      Ciao,

      L

  14. I went out for tea in England and had a cake like this made with fresh blueberries. When I got home to the US looked high and low for a similar recipe. Will try this one. Thank you. Haven’t decided what fruit I will use, pears I think.

    1. Now I can’t wait for blueberries to come into season. Let me know if this was close to what you remember!!

      Ciao,

      L

  15. I love cake textures that are sort of in-between other categories – usually they come perfect for me – not too soft and not too hard!

    1. Yes.. always moist – and usually pressurecookable!

      Ciao,

      L

  16. Can I use a 6 qt pressure cooker for this recipe using the ingredient quantities listed here? New to pressure cookers and purchased the 6 qt since it’s just my husband and I. Haven’t used it yet and wondering if most recipes call for 8 qt?

    1. Most of the recipes on this website are written for 6qt pressure cookers. To make sure, you can check the bar at the top of the recipe. It states the pressure cooker size needed, any accessories, the pressure cooking time and opening method.

      I hope you enjoy it, and please come back to tell us how you liked it!

      Ciao,

      L

  17. Delicious as written. Then I used the other half of the container of ricotta to make it again with pears, substituting ground ginger for the cinnamon and adding perhaps a tablespoon of tiny shards of crystallized ginger to the cake. Even better! Can’t wait to try this with mango.

    1. Fantastic variation, thanks so much for sharing it!

      Ciao,

      L

  18. Its delicious but I wasn’t sure about doneness. I used the toothpick method but it didn’t come out completely clean. I cooked it on top of stove for 20 minutes. Should I have put it back in the pressure cooker?

    1. If the toothpick comes out dirty in the middle it means that the cake is not completely cooked and you should pressure cook it for a few more minutes.

      Ciao,

      L

  19. Hi,

    Do You have to use a steamer basket in a first place and the
    the heat-proof bowl over the steamer?

    Thanks

    1. Yes, the heat-proof bowl is on a the steamer basket in the pressure cooker – or you can use a trivet as well.

      Ciao,

      L

  20. I can’t wait to taste this but am I crazy, or did I miss where to put the vanilla bean? Unfortunately, I followed the directions and put the cake in the PC but when I looked back on my counter, I saw the vanilla bean;(

    1. The Vanilla should go in with all of the other ingredients – just added that to the recipe.

      Thanks,

      L

  21. Well, I sprinkled the vanilla on the “top” along with extra “sugar.” It came out beautiful and great tasting. I did a gluten free, egg free, low glycemic sugar (palm sugar), and homemade cultured cheese modification and it still came out moist and delicious. I used pears and blackberries! Great recipe, very healthy and the combinations are endless!

    1. Wow.. that’s a whole new recipe. Please share!

      Ciao,

      L

  22. How do you get it brown on top? did I put too much water in the bottom? Mine just looks steamed…

    1. The cake browned for me in several tests – it’s likely due to the Maillard reaction caused by the baking soda being pressure cooked at high pressure.

      Ciao,

      L

  23. Just discovering the marvels of your site! There are some 5.5 litre aluminum Presto PC on sale up here for $25 – I think I’ll try one as a starter! Oddly, this recipe brings me to an olive oil question. In another recipe I noted you offered substituting the “best olive oil” you coild find instead of butter. I have discovered that basic/standard blended cooking oil often has the most neutral flavour as compared to the variety of EVO out there. Only once have I experienced a true home-estate first pressed italian olive oil…and it was a small revelation of heaven, but perhaps wasted here. How do you select the olive oil you prefer to use in a specific dish?

    1. First, take a look at my pressure cooker buying recommendations – I detail why getting an aluminum cooker is not such a great idea, here:
      http://www.hippressurecooking.com/go-shopping/

      In many of my recipes I substitute butter with “your best olive oil” to get that “special” taste – I’m not looking for neutral. I’ve baked with both a grassy and peppy olive oils and an almost “buttery” olive oil and each contributes just a hint of their personality to the finished dish.

      Everyone will say how delicious the dish is but not be able to pick-out that “olive oil” flavor. I’m lucky, in that my husband’s family grows olives in Southern Italy so I have an endless supply of the “best olive oil”. However, when I lived in California and I had to buy olive oil, the “best olive oil” is the locally grown oil -the fresher the better- most “all Italian extra virgin” olive oils I found were just awful.

      I saute vegetables with plain ‘ol who-cares-what-it-tastes-like olive oil, but bake or finish with the good stuff.

      If you live in California, or nearby, try http://www.barianioliveoil.com/ – I used to buy it from the founders at the Farmer’s Market before they became popular. I bought a bottle of their olive oil at Whole Foods last year and it was still as good as I remembered – even though the price has tripled.

      Ciao,

      L

  24. I understand about reacivity in aluminum, but have been familiar only with cast iron in this respect. Is aluminum so much worse? Initial budget may dictate the terms of this experiment, though I would be far more comfortable with stainless.

    Thanks for your thoughts on the olive oil…I’ve yet to really develop a palate and understanding for it. I live in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada…so olive oil does not arrive here fresh off the tree. People tend to grab anything that says EVO, unless they know better based on a mediterranean background. I envy you your olive growers!

  25. I had some left over Ricotta and felt this was the best use for it. It was a different and delicious apple cake. I used a little more cinnamon, which gave it an overall darker color. I also did not have any raw sugar, so I used brown sugar.

    I believe the taste would have more delicate with the raw sugar. I sprinkled the cake with some powdered sugar before serving, for looks.

    Next time I may try a scraping of fresh nutmeg.

    Thank you for such a great recipe.

    1. swtgran, looks fantastic – what a nice touch to add the powdered sugar, too!

      Ciao,

      L

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