My mother makes the best apple cake, and has for as long as I can remember. Big cinnamon-y chunks of apple nestle into a coffee cake I would call “unbelievably” moist, but really, should not be hard to believe considering that my mother is also the one who brought us another of the best cake recipes on this site, The Chocolate Chip Sour Cream Cake. The cake gets better the second day, when the apples juices seep further into the cake and I have seen the conviction of many a chocolate-obsessed/fruit dessert non-believers crumble upon trying a single slice of it. The apple cake, it’s some good stuff.
Not above pilfering content for my website from my nearest and dearest, I talked my mom into coming over (and heaving up all 51 stairs–she likes to count them) on Sunday to bake the cake with me for the New Years dinner at my in-laws today. I wanted to get the recipe down, but also to get the back story on the cake recipe. In bits and pieces, I remember it being called at different times a “German Apple Cake” and a “Jewish Apple Cake”, though what made it either was unclear. I suspected that if was indeed German, it came over with her parents as they escaped the Holocaust. I imagined that my grandmother and her mother before her must have made this cake often, as it uses such simple ingredients but the final product is so much better than the sum of its parts.
As it turns out, the actual story is, uh, a little less romanticized. My mother has been making this cake not for 60-something years, but since I was a kid. And the recipe, it didn’t come from her mother or her mother’s mother (“My mother? Bake a cake? Ha!” my mother said.) but a clipping that a neighbor gave her from some now-defunct magazine. Entirely crushed that the recipe involves no escapes from terror, no bits of the old country, no tales of war rations or ingredients that don’t translate well into English, I briefly considered where my more interesting history of the cake should be the only story I tell, but alas, I am a terrible liar and find the vast expanse between my version and the actual truth to be as funny of a story as any.
My grandchildren, however, will be able to talk all about how this recipe was passed down their crazy Grandma Deb (with the awesome hair, I hope they’ll add), because we’re not getting rid of it any time soon.
One year ago: Bronx-Worthy Bagels
Two years ago: Flower Cupcakes
Mom’s Apple Cake
Refreshed: September 2015 with fresh photos, a couple additional notes and a slightly streamlined process. Hooray!
For the apples
6 apples, Mom uses McIntosh apples, I use a mix of whatever looks good
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
5 tablespoons (65 grams) granulated sugar
For the cake
2 3/4 cups (360 grams) flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon fine sea or table salt
1 cup (235 ml) vegetable oil (safflower, sunflower, olive and coconut oil also work, as does melted butter)
2 cups (400 grams) granulated sugar
1/4 cup (60 ml) orange juice
2 1/2 (13 ml) teaspoons vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 cup (130 grams) walnuts, chopped (optional and to be honest, we never use them)
Heat oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a tube pan. (I use this one or an equivalent one-piece tube.) Peel, core and chop apples into 1-inch chunks.Toss with cinnamon and 5 tablespoons sugar and set aside.
Stir together flour, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together oil, orange juice, sugar, vanilla and eggs. Mix wet ingredients into dry ones; scrape down the bowl to ensure all ingredients are incorporated.
Pour half of batter into prepared pan. Spread half of apples (and their juices) over it. Pour the remaining batter over the apples and arrange the remaining apples on top. Bake for about 1 1/2 hours, or until a tester comes out clean.*
Cool completely before running knife between cake and pan, and unmolding onto a platter.
Do ahead: This cake is awesome on the first day but absolutely glorious and pudding-like on the days that follow, so feel free to get an early start on it. I keep it at room temperature covered with foil.
* Tip: The apples love to hide uncooked pockets of batter, especially near the top. Make sure your testing skewer or toothpick goes not just all the way down to the bottom, but does a shallow dip below the top layer of apples to make sure it comes out batter-free. Should your cake be browning too fast, before the center is baked through, cover it with foil for all but the last few minutes in the oven.
1,993 comments on mom’s apple cake
Yum, that looks awesome! I think every grandmother — or future/potential grandmother — should have her own version of apple cake (mine does, and it indeed came over with her from Russia, so you can take heart in the fact that there are stories just like the one you imagined, though the disparity is very funny). My grandma slices the apples very thinly and adds raisins, but it’s basically the same. Shana Tova!
Could you use a bundt pan? What is the real difference between tube v. bundt?
I made it in a bundt pan! I put about half the apples in first, then half the batter, then more apples, and then the rest of the batter. It was probably done a little earlier, but I pulled it out of the oven at 1:20 noticing that it was looking pretty browned (er, maybe slightly burnt) at the top. I was worried I had overcooked it but I tried it the next morning and it was great! However, since the apples are completely in the pan, they don’t get crisp. I don’t know if they would get crisp in a tube pan, but mine were pretty mushy (which I’m 100% fine with).
This was delicious!
I am currently watching mine bake as I’m typing. I used a Bundt pan as well and it is currently overflowing in the oven (thankfully I have a sheet pan underneath catching the mess. Not sure how it is going to turn out but I shall report back with the final verdict.
How did it work with a bundt pan? I’m trying that now. I put batter, apples, batter and apples.
Thanks Deb and Mama
I’ve just put mine in the wood burning oven, in a Bundt tin ..oh Lordy there’s plenty to go wrong now! … following instructions to the tee I put apples on top
.. forgetting in a Bundt the top will be the bottom!!! ..I should have read comments first as well with all of you clever people who did it the correct way round. The proof will be in the pudding, I’m going to eat it no matter what 😆
Now for the clean-up 😭
Hi. Has anyone frozen this cake? If so, did it come out OK?
YES!! Freezes perfectly … I usually double wrap it (one layer of plastic, one layer of aluminum foil). A friend brought me a ridiculous number of apples, so I made two and froze them.
It freezes well.
Lots of Granny Smiths in my fridge. Could I use these and increase the sugar? If so, how much more?
You don’t need to make an adjustments.
I made a ‘lightened up’ version of this subbing half the butter for applesauce (so 1/2 c butter + 1/2 c unsweetened organic applesauce). Still delish! Baked in a Bundt (batter , apples, batter, apples) and was lovely. Thanks for sharing!
This cake is really delicious! I used a variety of apples which I had on hand including Granny Smith and Honey crisp. I substituted a quarter cup of applesauce to reduce the oil to 3/4 of a cup. I used a fluted bundt pan which was a mistake because the batter slightly overflowed the top of pan. Baked it for 1:20 minutes. Next time I’ll use a deeper flat sided Bundt pan.
Sounds amazing. If you’re using the walnuts, do you add them to the cake batter?
Well, oops. I decided to sprinkle them under the two layers of apple 😐
My mother makes the same EXACT recipe from a magazine clipping given to her by my Dad’s mother. Weird!
Mmmm I LOVE APPLE CAKE so I am so excited to make this!
Are there any pics of you on this site? Do you have crazy hair or something or were you just saying that?
I’d like to try these in individual 4” round cake pans – has anyone tried them in a cake pan? Thanks!
did you try it in the individual 4″ round cake pans?
I did – it made 6 adorable cakes. My pans are 3” tall, so I made a collar with parchment and was glad I did. I didn’t keep track of how long they cooked, just set the timer for 40 mins and then kept checking every five minutes or so.
Hii is there any way to make this gluten free?
Here are comments from people who have made this without gluten — there are even more comments if you do a word search for “gluten”, you will find them:
Ok, a tribute to your site. I am a petrified cook. My mother was amazing amazing amazing and died unexpectedly before I learned to do anything. (True story: I have an email from her telling me how to hard boil eggs with her apologizing for not teaching me anything in the kitchen.) So what little I do has been self-taught from Food Network and the internet. Your site gives me the courage to ask questions I’m sure are stupid and no one else would ask, like “Can I use my bundt cake pan for this? And what’s the difference between a tube pan and a bundt pan anyway, except for straight vs. patterned sides?”
And then every time I come here with a question I am sure will make me the laughingstock of the foodie cognoscenti I discover someone else has asked it first and I don’t feel so alone in my kitchen anymore.
So thank you Kaitlin for beating me to my exact question. Thank you Deb for creating a site where I can come with these questions. And thanks to all the others here who have created a place where it’s ok to just be learning.
I love this post so much. Sorry for your loss. Keep experimenting and asking questions.
I got married fairly young (20) and had not paid much attention to my mother’s cooking. As my wedding date approached I started to get nervous about how little I knew about cooking. I told my mother, and I will never forget her words. She said, “Honey, always remember if you can read, you can cook.” To this day, some 50 years later, I still read recipes and do very little instinctual cooking! Mom was right.
I think my tube pan is a a chubby 12-incher. Will that make a flat and sad cake?
My grandmother makes a very similar cake in a bundt pan. I liked to make up stories that it was from her mother’s mother and filled with mystery and mystique and then she told me she got it out of a Home and Garden magazine only 20 or so years ago.
I like my version better, so I’m sticking to it!
This seriously looks INCREDIBLE! I must make it!
That looks so wonderful and fall-ish. I love apples in the fall and use them in every possible way, but never before in a cake! This might be the inspiration I needed.
This is identical to my recipe for Jewish apple cake. I love it!
The difference between a tube and a bundt is that a tube pan is smooth and a bundt pan has decorative elements, and you serve the cake flipped out of the pan, or upside down. So, I don’t know that a bundt would work for this. Technically, I guess you could put the apples in first so they’d be at the top and not the bottom when you flipped it out, but of course we haven’t tried it this way so you’d be the guinea pig for it! (And do let us know if it works fine.)
I believe you can also bake it in one layer in a 9×13 pan, and I suspect in two loaf pans, but um, don’t quote me on that (unless it works awesomely). To give you a guideline, the cake was barely halfway up the pan when we put it in the oven, and rose quite a bit, but very slowly. Hope that helps!
isn’t a tube pan also two parts (the bottom/tube and the edge – like the pan you use for angel food cake)? Or is that something else again entirely?
I use a one-piece tube pan. Others mention in the comments using a two-piece kind — doesn’t sound like it’s been an issue.
Interesting. You have a link to a 9″ two piece tube pan on Amazon. I bought it because I wasn’t happy with the one I had. The dark interior and exterior caused the cake to burn and the apple juices ran out the bottom.
I am so sorry. I don’t think I ever noticed the words “2-piece” when I linked to it (it’s possible the description has changed in 8.5 years since I linked to it but who knows) because it looks exactly like mine in color and shape. The color shouldn’t have been a problem (it hasn’t been for me with the same color, although I think the photos show that the cake gets to a medium brown on the sides) but leakage? Ugh, again, I’m sorry, I hadn’t realized the link wasn’t to the right pan or that 2-piece tubes were a problem here (or I’d warn in the headnotes). See this comment and this.
I take credit for the burning because I know to lower oven temp when using dark pans. I’m very impressed that you get that wonderful, moist cake out of a one piece pan.
As an aside, this is one of my family’s favorite cake. My 38 year old son it’s the best cake he’s ever eaten.
I think that when you cut into it on the first day, with those moderately dark sides, etc. it’s a “good” cake. On the 2nd and beyond though, it’s a “great” cake because the apples have more time to soften it and the firmer edges aren’t noticeable.
Oh no! I make at least a dozen of these every year, and I always use a 2-piece tube pan I inherited from my grandmother. Maybe it’s an issue with that particular pan?
Looks amazing! I am going to make today. How far in advance can you make it from the ideal day to eat? Thanks Deb!
Easily 3 days. It’s good at 5 but 2 to 3 is peak.
I use a two piece pan and it’s fine.
What can I use instead of orange juice,as my daughter is allergic to oranges?
I made your apple cake with a two piece tube cake pan that is years old and it came out perfect!
Be used the exact linked (2 piece) pan. Half dozen times and it’s perfect! This is my go to easy dessert.
Ugh *I’ve used
I have a two piece tube pan too and mine also leaked. Thanks to you I realized I needed to put a sheet pan under it and just fixed it. :) Thank you!
I made this today and looks and feels delicious and moist.Have to take it to my daughter tomorrow. However I halved the recipe and made it in an 8″ cake pan. I gave it half the time 45 mins but it was no where ready had to give it another 25 mins. Waiting to taste it!!
The link is to a one piece tube pan. I had to scroll down on the Amazon description to find where it said that it was 1 piece, but I finally found it.
The link she provided in the recipe is a one piece tube pan. The picture of the pan did not indicate that it was 2 pieces…so I scrolled and scrolled down far enough where it finally did say that it was a 1-piece tube pan.
I halved the recipe and baked it in one loaf pan because I was running low on apples. It worked great!
I made it in a 9×13 and it’s absolutely perfect.
I made the apple cake in 2 – 9” loaf pans, after mixing the apple chunks throughout the batter. Beautiful and Delicious.
I think the two piece pan folks are referring to is the Springform pan. Its often used for cheesecake. Another two piece pan is the Flan pan but it is shallow.
No it’s a 2 -piece tube pan where the bottom and inner hole part are separate.
In Nebraska we called 2-piece tube pans, “Angel Food Cake” pans. I’m making this a second time with such a pan. The first time around I used a bundt pan. Both time my baking time was much longer than the recipe suggests. I don’t know why. The cake was fine it just took a long time.
Deb, I’ve made this cake twice now for friends since you posted recently on IG. One was for the man who mills and bags our livestock feed down the road. His wife has had a terrible few years and is on oxygen. I learned today that this cake absolutely brought her to tears, as it’s the exact same cake she ate as a kid. She is allegedly mystified at how I could have reproduced her family’s apple cake 😂 So funny to know this cake has circulated in magazine clippings for decades. Thank you so much.
I made this cake today for a Rosh Hashanah dessert in a bundt pan. A few minor modifications: I substituted the sugar for 1 cup honey and 1/2 cup coconut sugar. I substituted the OJ for apple juice/cider. I used 1 stick of butter and 1 cup of olive oil. I made a cinnamon honey glaze to drizzle on top after it cooled. I used some of the apples on the bottom of the pan, then mixed the rest of the apples into the batter and poured over the apples at the base of the pan.
The cake was amazing! Moist and delicious with good apple flavor. However, no joke that the cake *really* rises…so much so that it was hard to get the cake out of the bundt pan (if you use a bundt pan, cool cake completely before trying to remove).
I meant 1 stick butter and 1/2 cup olive oil!
What type of honey/cinnamon glaze did you use on top? Thanks!
Dividing the batter in two and using two 9×13 pans works very well. I do not own a bundt or a tube pan so I decided to try with what I had. I also substituted the sugar for Stevia and my husband and daughter didn’t notice the difference. This is an amazing and beautiful cake! Will keep this recipe forever. Thanks for sharing with us.
My mom made a cake very similar to this (and that woman could NOT cook!). She mixed the batter and apples together and baked in a bundt pan. The apples were only lightly covered. When it came out of the oven the and was flipped out it had the most wonderful chewy caramelized crust. She drizzled with a cream cheese frosting!! YUMMY
I have baked this in a bundt pan as well as a 9 x 13″ pan. The bundt is good, but you can’t really run a knife all around the edges down the whole cake, so you take a chance of bits not coming out clean (can be covered up with a sprinkle of powdered sugar). The 9 x 13″ is good. But I sometimes want somethings smaller and have easily halved the cake both in my small bundt and well as 8 x 8″. In all cases it worked well and people loved it:-).
Can you use lemon juice? No oranges in the house!
Yes, although I might dilute it a little. Apple juice or cider work too.
I made this in a 9×13 pan and it worked great. Delicious! I’m not sure any will make it until tomorrow, but we will try! I cut the sugar in half (only used 1 cup in the cake) because I ran out. I actually like it a lot with less sugar and may never try it with more. Thank you for another amazing recipe.
I feel the exact same way. I’m not a horrible cook, and my mom taught me a thing or two, but something about this website keeps me coming back despite the fact I’ve only made one or two receipes that have been posted. This is the only “food blog” I read, and I do just that; “read” it. The stories that go along with each post are just as wonderful as the photos and receipes themselves! Thank you!!!
My Irish Nana (may she rest in peace) made a cake just LIKE this and I always regretted not getting the recipe from her. I can’t wait to make this! Oh, the childhood memories it will stir!
I love your recipes! I was wondering the same about whether I could use my bavarian bundt pan, and whether I could just layer the apples and batter so that it is batter on top and bottom. Also, whether milk could be substituted for orange juice.
Yeah, I love fruit desserts but I hate citrus in my baked goods. Do you taste the orange?
No, not really. It’s only 1/4 cup.
I replaced it with reduced apple cider. I highly recommend the substitution.
I’m intrigued- how do you make reduced apple cider? Is it concentrated? Thanks in advance!
We use reduced apple cider (but there it’s reduced a lot more than you’d need it here, if at all) in these caramels, for reference.
It’s gotten to the point where I only check this site while I’m eating something… everything looks so fabulous that I get insanely hungry otherwise. Thanks for this Deb! I can’t wait to try it– my Nonnie will be SO proud.
As a member of the not so into fruit for dessert and all hail chocolate, this looks pretty good. I bet the husband would like it…maybe it’s time for a trip to the orchard.
Don’t think of it as dessert, think of it as breakfast! I make it with whole wheat flour and have it with a scoop of plain yogurt, feeling rather satisfied that I’ve hit all the food groups. : )
This looks amazing. I am going to the apple orchard hopefully next weekend so this might need to be made with the fantastic apples. This looks great!
Do you think it will taste good for the break fast on Yom Kippur? That’s when I am baking it! L’shana tova.
For those of us who fast it won’t work for breakfast but i bet it would be great for the break the fast supper.
Has anyone made an egg free version or does anyone have recommendations? I am contemplating a flax egg..thank you!
YUM. I’m making this this afternoon, though I’ll have to substitute grapefruit juice for orange juice.
Would you be willing to share the coding for the the part that posts your year-ago and two-year ago posts? I’d love to have one . . .
As soon as I go apple picking in a couple of months, I am making this sucker. Looks incredible!
My mother has made a very similar recipe for years (hers includes currants, which are quite nice with the apples). She always uses a 9×13 pan, and the cake comes out very dense and moist. This cake was the first thing I made for my husband and his family (before we were dating even). I like to think that it played a small part in catching his interest – it’s that good!
Thank god for this post. I was telling my friend less than two hours ago that I needed something to bake tonight. It’s in the oven as I type, and it smells amazing. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
This looks amazing! I guess I know what’s for dessert tonight (and breakfast tomorrow, etc.) I’ll definitely be making it in a bundt pan – I guess I’ll just have to eat it upside down – oh, the sacrifices I make :)
This looks delicious, I love apple cake!
Ohhh that looks good! I bought the ingred to make apple cake just this last weekend.I will have to try your recipe too!
This type of weather makes me want to bake apple cake, plant mums and roast marshmallows.
Stupid question but i’m a baking novice…i’m going to make this the day before a dinner party – do you keep the cake in the fridge overnight and reheat in the oven when it’s time to eat? or do you keep it out at room temperature. I’m afraid of the bugs coming out for it, and I don’t have anything to succesfully cover it with. Also, should it be reheated?
Love this recipe! Can it be made in advance and frozen??
Yes, it freezes well.
You can leave it out overnight, covered. This cake keeps so well and tasted even better the next day!
also, as someone who just ordered that tube pan online for this cake…i hope you’ll show us more recipes in the future so I can utilize it!
I will definitely be making this recipe on Sunday! I will be going apple picking then and have been waiting for a wonderful recipe — this is it!
Btw, I love to read your stories, too, so fun :-)
I’m a new reader of this blog and I have one thing to say: you are absolute hell on my diet! Here I am, trying to be good, munching on carrot sticks and eating cottage cheese, but all that falls by the wayside when I see these drool-worthy pictures and fabulous recipes. I guess I’ll have to start sharing some goodies with my friends, else I might end up gaining weight instead of losing it. This apple cake is definitely getting a try out this weekend. I’ll console myself for the diet cheating by reminding myself that apples are good for you :-)
I was just looking at my apple cake recipe..it’s almost the same except the apples are sliced and it only has 1/2 tsp cinnamon! It’s the first cake I ever baked in my life…I was 19 (too many years ago!) I always thought it needed more cinnamon but recently I traded 1/4 C of the oil for maple syrup and that gave it enough flavor. I like the layered effect that yours has..it’s much like my Jewish coffeecake with struesel layers. Think I’ll chop my apples this time and layer them like yours. Thanks for this!
Picked a bunch of small apples at a local orchard and would love to get the ratio right – anyone have an estimate in weight or volume of apple cubes? 6 cups?
Can you google how much one apple weighs and then you can find out how much 6 apples weigh, approximately as apples vary in size. Then weigh your smaller apples to that amount.
I came here to ask this exact same question! I have all kinds of apple sizes after we went apple picking.
I had the same question. Googling it, I came up with 154 grams for a medium Macintosh apple. That’s 5.5 oz.
We just made this yum-mazing cake! Incredible! We didn’t have a Bundt pan so did it in a spring form pan. More apples for everyone! Thank you!!!!
Absolutely gorgeous! It is on my list of apple cakes to make this week.
I have made a very similar cake using apple cider or juice instead of orange. For those who don’t like the citrus in their cakes, this works quite well. Lovely photo of the recipe card—-priceless.
Has anyone had success baking this in something other than a tube pan? Also, I’ve never seen a recipe that mixes in the eggs after the dry ingredients. I’ll probably still follow the recipe as it’s written because it just looks so good, but maybe someone can explain this unorthodox technique to me!
I baked one recipe split between two 9” disposable cake pans (gifts for new neighbors) and it worked great. I think I baked for ~50 minutes, turning the temp down 25* halfway through.
(Got rave reviews, btw) 😊
I have had this exact recipe for at least 30 years, except that mine doesn’t say MacIntosh apples, it just says apples. It’s a wonderful recipe.
AAAh this cake looks heavenly! I need to bake this ASAP! Happy New Year!
It looks like my question about the bundt pan has been asked. But I’m thinking maybe there’s no reason a springform pan wouldn’t work? I have both a bundt and springform pan (in addition to layer cake pans and two pie plates and a tart pan) and I have a hard time justifying a new one.
Ooh, apple cake, definitely German! When I was in Berlin a few months ago, I ate Apfelkuche every chance I got — which was basically once a day. Often for breakfast, I might add…
This is the s*&t! Nothing better thans a spiced, moist apple cake and it’s even better ’cause its a family recipe.
Wherever it came from, it looks fabulous! I’m looking forward to trying it out!
It’s in the oven as I type. Num.
I’m trying to carve out the time to bake your Challah…I thought maybe tomorrow night.
Now I have a problem…Challah, or Apple Cake, Challah, or Apple Cake…(lather, rinse repeat..)
Such a dilemma. Maybe both this weekend?
Deb, thanks so much for this trip down memory lane. I grew up on Long Island, the sole Lutheran amidst a neighborhood full of cherished Jewish friends. I was invited to Bar/Bat Mitvahs, Holidays (High and otherwise), and actually ended up teaching at a Jewish Day School after college.
Can we count on you for a wonderful recipe for Noodle Kugel?
MemeGRL, just for the record, I totally want to give you a hug. Do you happen to live in the weird and wacky South like I do? If so, come have a glass of wine and let’s try and make an fabulous, edible mess in the kitchen!!
Seconding Elissa’s question – where do the walnuts get added? (And I’m guessing, from the photos and from this step being missing, that you prefer the cake without nuts?)
I have a fluted bundt pan that never seems to get used. If I use 2/3 of the batter to fill in the pattern of the bottom (really the top) and sides of the pan and create a chunnel to put the apples (in the center of the batter in a ring inside the cake) and follow up with the rest of the batter so that the cake has a bottom, then I won’t have to buy a tube pan. The apples won’t get browned at all even if they sink into the pan, but it would be fun to try it and see what happens. I wonder if this would work for that chocolate chip sour cream cake, that could be fun to try, too.
I made the honey cake and received rave reviews from co-workers and from my husband’s co-workers as well. Now I have to make this cake and buy this cake pan as well. Deb, your site is so inspiring. Thank you.
Ha! I just made this for Rosh Hashanah also. It’s so good-I don’t know why i don’t make it any other time of the year. My mom gave me the recipe too but she doesn’t remember where it came from….
Hi Suzanne — It’s not special code. I just do it manually (groan).
Baking beginner — You don’t need to reheat the cake, or at least that is not common–unless you really want to serve it warm, in which case, go for it. Room temperature or the fridge are fine overnight. Foil or plastic wrap–once the cake has completely cooled so condensation doesn’t dampen the top of the cake–is fine to wrap the pan in if you don’t want to unmold it.
Bee Cake — Yeah, the arrangement of the ingredients is pretty odd–and was even more so before I edited it. (Adding baking powder long after the flour, etc.) I am sure it will also work if you whisk the eggs in with the wet ingredients, but can assure you it works this way too.
Gwen — The walnuts could be mixed in in the end, I suspect. It’s funny because the recipe doesn’t say and we’ve never used them. But I am sure the end would work.
I tried out this cake tonight, and I’m happy to report that it bakes great in a loaf pan. I made half the recipe and it all fit nicely in my bread loaf pan. Delicious!
We have something in common! This exact recipe was considered a family heirloom. I remember adding it to my family tree history for a school assignment. My father made up stories about it – something about escaping Poland with it. And then one day my mother came clean, it was just a recipe my mom got at the tennis club from one of her friends. The horror!
Well, the apple cake is still one of my favorites. My mom makes it for me every time I visit.
It’s funny – I just made a very VERY similar cake for the holiday from Arthur Schwartz’s new cookbook, and for years my mom has also made a similar cake. In fact, it’s my absolute favorite cake!!
It’s says 6 apples but what should that come to in cups? Apples are so many different sizes
I tried out the cake substituting milk for orange juice (which I didn’t have), and baking in a 13×9 pan for 1.5 hours–worked out great! And it’s very tasty. I’m going to try the challah tomorrow. My Jewish boyfriend will be happy.
This looks absolutely wonderful. I would have thought the apples would be dry, but I suppose it’s more like a apple cake/pie combo so the moistness is still there. Love it, want it.
I made this with apple juice rather than orange juice and it was incredible. (Didn’t have orange juice in the house.) Thank you so much for sharing the recipe! :)
Does anyone else get kind of grossed out when a recipe calls for a cup of vegetable oil? The cake does look fantastic and I would love to make it. Is there a good substitute?
I used melted butter.
I substituted applesauce for half the oil and it came out great! Read somewhere years ago that you can do this to lighten a recipe and and it has worked for me many times.
I think Deb told me to use applesauce in place of 1/2 oil. I almost think that consuming a healthy dose of oil is worth it for this cake.
What a fantastic use for my tree full of apples that are about to turn into sauce! I imagine it might also be divine with pears, although completely different…
Leslie – vegetable oil – canola oil is the best – is so good for you! It’s the kind of heart-healthy fat we need in our diets!
It looks gorgeous and must taste heavenly! A wonderful home recipe!
That looks fantastic. And what’s better, it goes well with a funny story.
Awesome-looking cake! And so easy, I must try it. Love the backstory, too. (Or should that be “bakestory”?)
Leslie, I’m not sure what’s gross about vegetable oil, but you probably could use grapeseed oil or even olive oil instead (I’ve used both in muffins and they tasted fine).
Leslie…you can use melted butter. Or half applesauce and half oil or butter.
Oh Deb. Manually? There has got to be a way to code this . . .I’d go research it but I have APPLE CAKE to eat. We love it. Thank you so much for sharing it.
PS I layered the walnuts pecans on top of the apples.
Oh awesome, this is basically a carrot cake base but with apples!
Hi love, i live in Australia and have made a many a recipe of yours. I just made your spinach quince, it was bliss, best ever great idea with the pie crust! just one question … what is ‘half and half’ ? my mother did’nt know either , i dont think we have it here. Oh and i have a request if you might like to consider =D a lime and coconut cake? i’ve been tying to find a recipie aboslutly everywhere, and not smart enough to come up with one myself. I can see it now… crumbly coconut on top mmm. i have no idea how make up my own recipie. Thanks for the fantastic websites im sure everyone really appeciates it .
Love from Australia!
Half-and-half, also known as half cream in the United Kingdom, is a simple blend of equal parts whole milk and light cream. It averages 10 to 12% fat, which is more than milk but less than light cream. Due to its lower fat content than cream, it can’t be whipped.
Oh yay, it is dairy free! I am avoiding all dairy as we live in China and the dairy here is all contaminated at the moment. Thank you!! It is in the oven now- 25 minutes after reading the recipe! :) Smells great already!
Heh heh, I felt the same way when I found out that our family’s “traditional” Christmas Eve Beer Cheese Soup did not have some illustrious familial past, but instead was something Grandma saw in a magazine and started making. Ah well, that doesn’t diminish the absolute deliciousness of the soup.
Oh dear. Apple cake is my FAVORITE and my friend won’t give up her awesome recipe. I’m TOTALLY making this in hopes my recipe trumps hers for not giving it up. LOL! Thanks for posting. :)
okay okay stop I have had enough!!!! Now I have to make this one also?? I am going to the store down in my village-hoping for Macintosh apples and I am making this today.
Wow it’s amazing how many names this cake gets. My grandmother used to call it Jewish Apple Cake, here in MD its reffered to as Carolina Apple Cake, and I’ve also heard it refered to as Ma’s Bunt Apple Cake.
Whatever you call it, it still tastes amazing!
Holy connoli, this looks delectable!. A decadence of cinnamon, apples and cakey goodness! I melted at the mere site of this cake. Although I am not an expert baker of cakes ( maybe bread) & tremble at the thought of making one ( I don’t like to fail when cooking/baking ), I can’t wait to try this out. It looks too simple to mess up and too yummy not too face my cake-make fears.
I made this last night and it was AMAZING! Thanks for sharing!
I grew up in the Bible Belt South (didn’t even meet a Jewish friend until grad school) but grew up with this much beloved Jewish Apple Cake. When I was a freshman in college my mom sent one in a care package (mails beautifully, by the way) because it’s a pretty effective “I love you.” I haven’t made it in a year or so, but will have to do so soon. Thanks for the reminder. BTW, I need to get my recipe out to check, but isn’t this a huge cake? Lots to share…
I like that you posted your mother’s apple cake recipe. I just posted my mother’s apple crisp recipe this week and it will always be one of my favorites. I am also going to have to check out your mother’s chocolate chip sour cream cake.
I made this yesterday about 4.6 seconds after I read the recipe – it’s great! I used a bundt pan, as it was the only pan with a hole that I had, and it worked just fine! Mmm-mmm.
Happy New Year from Israel and thanks for sharing this recipe with us!
Though the tube pan I have has been bought in Germany….. it is definitely too small for your Mom’s Apfelkuchen, what size of pan should I get??
As you were describing the cake at the beginning, I kept thinking, there’s no way this could be the same recipe as MY mom’s apple cake, right? WRONG. It’s exactly the same recipe. We call this the ten-pound-apple cake because it’s so damn heavy!!! And, delicious.
PS I’ve used gala apples before, successfully.
This cake looks incredible. My keyboard is covered in drool. I have no shame.
I’m actually going to rush home and bake this tonight AND I WON’T SHARE ANY WITH ANYONE.
I made your honey cake for the holiday, and everyone loved it, along with a brisket from 95 Gourmet magazine and a noodle kugel.
WHY didn’t you show me this before? I have a zillion apples sitting here!
I am going to get right to it! It’s gorgeous, and my favorite cake of all time.
Happy New Year.
Do you have a tube pan with removable sides?
I have springform pans and a tube pan, but none like this one.
Makes it easier to take the cake out? I will find go buy one. Didn’t know they existed.
that looks amazing! just made my first apple +cinnamon cake and loved it. this sounds awesome – thanks for the recipe!
Another key difference between tube pans and Bundt pans if the volume they can hold. Tube pans come in various sizes but generally they are larger than stylized Bundt pans which typically hold about ten cups. I use an Angel Food cake pan as my tube pan it is quite large. If I were to transfer the batter from that pan into a Bundt pan it would overflow the Bundt pan and create a disgusting mess in the oven. I have to use a additional small pans to contain the extra batter when I want to put one of my pound cakes in a Bundt pan. I make a pound cake that is about the same size as this cake. It fills a Bundt pan and not quite a 9 * 5 loaf pan. Oh, one other thing. The original Bundt pan was large – it held/holds about 15 cups so if you have one of those you probably can put this recipe in it with no problem.
Today is the coolest day Nashville has seen since early spring – PERFECT baking weather, especially when it comes to apple cake!
That cake looks soooo freeking good!! I’m going apple picking again in a couple weeks, so this is what I’m making…I’m getting tired of the same old apple crisp or pie!
One of the reason that oil is used, rather than butter, is so that the cake can be parve, and eaten with either a dairy or meat meal, right? It is, after all, a Jewish holiday cake. And as many have already said, using a vegetable oil is much better for our health and hearts.
I just made an orange cake for a second night dinner, which would be a MENA (middle east north African) version of a Jewish New Year cake–more like an upside down cake with slices of oranges but a similar dense batter cakey-ness. I think it’s important that some of the apples remain outside of the cake to get that soft sweet caramelized gooey-ness which is probably always the best part of such cakes…
I live in Zurich and there were Bundt -tins aplenty. I bought a flexible silicone one and am looking forward to the resulting cake – I am sure it will be fine. The oil is a bonus – I am trying to avoid dairy for a few weeks, so this is perfect :0)
Thanks for sharing.
Well, I just popped this in the oven in my bundt pan, but must have done something wrong as my pan was just about full before it went in the oven–am worried about how much its going to rise. . .I also subbed buttermilk for the OJ, as I had the buttermilk in the fridge and thought it might be a nice flavor along with the apples and cinnamon–will post a review and update after its done cooking. Crossing my fingers. . .
Wow – this looks amazingly good. My husband loves apple pie, so I bet he’d be over the moon for this cake! Thanks for posting.
Shannon – half and half is sort of like a light cream that many Americans add to their morning coffee (I believe it’s a mixture of half regular milk and half heavy cream). In some countries they call it “light cream” or “half cream.” :)
This looks DELICIOUS!! Is there a substitute for eggs by any chance for this one? My daughter has diary and egg allergy and I would have loved to make this cake for her bday. Or if you know an good cake without diary & egg that I can make and everyone else to enjoy as well. please let me know! Her bday is next month.
My mom made this!!! I remember being grossed out my the orange juice as a kid..I know…random!
She lost the recipe but now here it is. She always made it in a 9X13…I do remember it puffing up and spilling over though so maybe it is too much batter for that pan?
An update: just took it out of the oven after 90 minutes, and while the cake did not spill out of the bundt pan as I had feared, putting the apples in first (a la apple upside down cake) resulted in a not so clean release from the pan. So I scraped out the stuck bits, used them to fill in the whole left by the bundt pan tube, and am now looking for a glaze I can use to “pretty it up” a bit. It smells great!
Wow! This apple cake looks so good. I will try the recipe! I love the picture of the hand written recipe card. Thanks for the wonderful blog I read on a daily basis now!
Haha, awesome!!! That’s exactly the recipe from my (German) grand-mother. I loooove this apple cake :)
It’s best when it has rested for a day!
So, my mom got this same recipe from a coworker years and years ago and she’s been tinkering with it ever since. Here’s what I know about her tinkering successes: the bundt pan works just fine. If you want to put the apples in first, spray it really well with non-stick spray first. If you don’t like to use a whole cup of oil, you can use up to half applesauce/half oil and the cake is still yummy and moist. Also, if you get a wild hair (as my mom would say with a completely straight face) – add a little rum to the apple mix. (If you’re me and you add more than just a little, you get this fabulous rum-apple cake which smells oh-so-good! I have to go bake now.)
The rum is exactly what I was thinking. Nice to know someone has already tried it with good results.
I’m going to make this cake with my son when he get’s home from school today. No walnuts in the house but I do have pecans, so they’re going in! I will probably mix them in with the apple and spice mixture myself. I love fruit desserts(and chocolate ones too, heck anything dessert) but it’s rare to find one that isn’t just pie or a tart. Thanks for the recipe!
Shannon, half and half is a light cream. It has about 12% butter fat in it. It’s called half cream in the UK.
this looks do good. I love apple cake especially with some whipped cream . I m in heaven thinking about it only. :-)
It is definitely the season for baking with apples. Your cake is beautiful and looks delicious! Wish we could have a tasting party!
Just visiting everyone in my blogroll today gathering recipes for National Apple Month (October) Looks like I’ve harvested not only a delightful Apple Cake recipe but also memories in the making…GREAT post!
Thanks soooo much for sharing!
don’t forget to add this recipe to your apple recipes in your topic index!
Certainly DOES look like your mom makes the best apple cake – what a phenomenal recipe!!
just picked 30 lbs of cortland apples last weekend… this might be a must-bake!! :)
Apple Cake with Rum Sauce has been a family favorite for years! Rum Sauce is drizzled over the top, and add a scoop of vanilla ice cream and that is perfection. This version looks like a great one to try.
½ cup butter
½ cup evaporated milk
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp rum flavoring
Microwave butter, milk and sugar 2-3 minutes until sugar is dissolved. Add vanilla and rum flavoring. Serve over Apple Cake (or sawdust… ; )~ )
Sorry, that is 1/2 cup of sugar in the Rum Sauce recipe above…
I got this recipe from a friend about 5 years ago. I get so excited when the apples are in season and I can make this cake. It is especially good with hot custard poured over the top.
Well I made the cake this evening and I must say it was fantastic. I used a mixture of Granny Smith and Fuji, 3 of each-no Macintosh where I live. The cake fit into a spring form pan with a tube insert for the center. I though this cake would billow over and I would be eating out of my oven, but it all stayed in and It puffed up just a bit over the top of the pan so it was really pretty. thanks for a great recipe!
Tula, the benefit of cooking for your friends, and giving it away is that you don’t HAVE to eat ALL of the calories, and they do. Thus, they become larger at a faster pace than you do, so when you’re standing next to them in pictures, its all relative, ha ha. AND you get to keep cooking the amazing food on this blog! Whoo hoo, LOVE this stuff!
LOVE it, never seen orange juice in a cake before!:)
Anything with two cups+ of sugar will surely taste good… I’ll try it with half that!
You make it look so easy – yum!!
This is something that I am positive I can and will make. Like right now. And it will probably be gone by tonight.
Thank you Deb!!!
PS you were super cute on Martha that day!
This cake is in the oven. I baked it with my six year old after school today, and am planning it for before-dinner snacks tonight. The kids will be forced to eat it still warm… but I don’t think they’ll mind.
I didn’t notice the missing directions for walnuts until I’d started mixing — I decided to mix them in with the apples.
For those who made the cake without a citrus juice, how did it turn out? I would think that the acid in the orange juice (or the buttermilk) would be needed to help the baking powder do its job, and the cake might rise less if you used apple juice.
As I was admiring your mom’s recipe card, I realized I have that same Martha Stewart conversion card that’s peeking out from behind it on my fridge!
I made your mom’s cake tonight and it came out beautiful!
I did a post on it tonight.
Deb, I can’t wait to make this cake, but please tell me what size tube pan, and by “prepared” do you mean greased and floured?
I’ve made a very similar recipe using either 2 loaf pans or a bundt pan.
When I make it in the bundt, I put the apples in the middle.
Deb — I love your site and visit it religiously (no pun intended today!) but have never posted until now — my mom also makes this cake and calls it “Special Apple Coffee Cake” (not sure why it’s “special” — just delicious).
The only difference in our recipe (probably my mom’s modification) is that our apple mixture uses 1/3 c. brown sugar instead of white and also has 1/2 c. raisins (and no nuts). We use a bundt pan and put in 1/3 batter, then 1/2 the apple mixture (being careful not to touch the sides of the pan so it doesn’t burn), then 1/3 batter, the other 1/2 of the apples, and finally the rest of the batter.
It has definitely made believers out of non-fruit dessert people, as you mentioned, and whenever I make it I always do so about 2 days in advance and have it sit on the counter to let the flavors come together and moisten further. We bake it for 1 hr, 15 min. at 375 and in case you hadn’t tried and were wondering, it freezes beautifully!
Thanks for all the terrific recipes and inspiration!
p.s. My mom says she originally found the recipe 40 years ago in a Mazola Corn Oil ad!
Love the recipe card. totally reminds me of my Greek gramma’s handwriting. and I have been dying for a good Jewish apple cake recipe. you’re nice to share. I might be disowned for doing that in my family!
Unlike almost everyone esle who’ve made comments, I haven’t eaten or made this apple cake. So, I for one, say “thank you Deb’s mother”. Now — how about your chopped chicken liver recipe? your family’s beef brisket recipe? Pretty please.
This looks delicious! I’m not big on fruit desserts, but I do love pretty much anything with apples!
OOOOOO, it’s a good thing I’m stocked with apples from the farmer’s market. Mr Chiots has been begging for some baked apple goodness, this should work.
oh my this is gorgeous! i can’t wait to try it :-D thanks!
An absolutely gorgeous apple cake.
My Mom used to make this cake when I was a little girl. I made it for my little girl a few years ago. It’s a good cake to make in the fall. When we were kids we would spread butter on our piece of apple cake. I better not do that now!
My mom made a cake just like this. Thank you for bringing back some nice memories.
My grandmother makes a variation of this cake in a 9×13 pan – she puts the batter (including walnuts) in the pan, glops some spoonfuls of cherry pie filling on top and swirls it in a bit, then tops it with thinly-sliced apples overlapping in rows or patterns. And like the one described above is always better the second day! Makes a great breakfast on the run.
Oh I have to make this! I really have to make this. I am usually just a silent admirer of your blog but this recipe is to awesome to keep my mouth shut! Thank You!!
Oh no! Now I have to decide between making this or the honey cake for Shabbat. Thanks for a delicious-sounding dilemma!
Ok, I have to have this. My friends have golden delicious trees. will this work? they are a bit tart so will I have to compensate? I’ve never baked with fresh apples before so hurry and let me know before they give all their apples away!
My grandma, bless her soul, made exact sort of cake. In a bundt pan. Or a loaf pan, or a skillet, or a cookie sheet (when I was reaaaally little, she made a slightly flat, but golden brown and delicious version of this cake on a cookie sheet, it was nicknamed Cake-slash-Dunes).
I’ve learned to make it, making it with her, at the tender age of, oh, about six, and since I’ve made it in every vessel from a glass casserole dish to an antique cast-iron duck pan.
My friend Helen makes my other friend Mary’s (rather blonde) version of this cake in an electric Dutch oven, my grandma would often add sweetened, condensed milk or cottage cheese to hers and I, I’ve made this cake with red currant puree instead of apples once.
Awesome, it was not, but point remains – this cake is extremely flexible – no-one I’ve come in contact with so far has had a written or otherwise set recipe for it, yet the only way to truly screw it up is to forget the flour (which we’ve done, don’t worry;).
Now, where’d this wonder come from? Neither German, Jewish or Russian origins could be ruled out, but being as simple as all things truly brilliant, it may have appeared from the primordial goop along with the first amphibians or from the dip dish at one of Adam and Eve’s first housewarming parties…
Either way, it was known as “sharlotka” among my childhood friends and their parents.
Hoiwever , I must say that your version is quite a bit more virtuous than mine – with, oh, I don’t know – half a stick of butter, it’s hardly a health food.
I never realized apple cakes were so popular! My friends and co-workers certainly weren’t familiar with my Dutch version, but they learned to love it fast.
I’ll have to try this one, too. More the merrier.
This is such a great dessert for the new season! Looks so cozy and delicious!
I have just made my first ever “Dorset Apple Cake” which obviously originates from the county of Dorset here in England. The quantities/ingredients differ slightly, no walnuts, the zest of an orange rather than orange juice and all spice rather than cinnamon, but in essence the same thing and totally delicious. I made mine in a square 9 inch pan and it came out fine (beginners luck maybe?). My apples came form a tree in a friends garden so I have no idea what variety they were but they were cooking apples rather than eating apples and tasted great when cooked. Can’t wait to make this again!
Keep on bloging Smitten Kitchen, even though I have to convert your american measurements to the European equivalent it’s so worth it. I love your work!
Hmm, I guess I know why I woke up early, now. To make this. I’ll let you know when I’m done . . .
Duessa — I am actually a big fan of baking with those yellow apples, as they are a little less juicy so make things around them less wet. You shouldn’t need to adjust the sugar.
I actually made a version of this recipe this past weekend, because we had a LOT of apples in the house. The only difference was that I added some orange zest, a little more baking powder, and I did put it all in a bundt pan, mainly because I don’t own a tube pan. The recipe I had also stated to cook it for an hour and a half, but I had to turn off the oven at an hour and ten minutes, otherwise it would have dried out. Maybe my oven is hotter then I think it is. But the most important thing was that apple cake is DELICIOUS! And for those that don’t bake too often it really is an easy cake to bake, and it is perfect for the fall. Thanks Deb for putting forth this great cake for others to enjoy.
I have to make this cake. I have a similar recipe that’s wonderful, but this looks even better. From your photos it looks like the cake is served top side up, not inverted. My tube pan does not have a removable bottom, so I should flip it out of the pan and then fip it right side up again?
Made it last night. It’s great but my apples did not stay on top like yours did. I wonder why.
Strangely enough for a cup of oil it was not the least bit greasy and it worked well eating it out of hand. My Son and Husband had to drive harvesters until late in the night to try and beat the coming rain . They drive and eat at the same time and this was a good choice for them…plus they liked it. Thanks
I made this cake yesterday in a 13×9 inch pan (I didn’t layer it, I just poured in the batter first, then put the apples on top) and have a note of caution: it won’t take an hour and a half to bake. Mine burnt a bit on the bottom (cake abuse!) and it wasn’t even in there for the full hour and a half.
I know, I know, you’re supposed to check on the food you have baking in the oven. I was distracted and forgot!
At any rate: the parts that weren’t burnt were OMG DELICIOUS. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Hey everyone — Please keep in mind that baking times can vary wildly from oven to oven, depending on how the ovens circulate heat and whether the have been calibrated correctly. I always recommend that people start testing for doneness 2/3 of the way through a baking time, especially if your oven runs warm. Ours runs cool, and this took well over 1.5 hours to bake! (Most frustratingly, I may add.)
Thank you for your comment. The apple cake has been in my oven in a normal cake pan for 2.5-3h so far, and I’ve decided to check in another hour (instead of every half hour after the first 1.5h prescribed baking time). I have done over 30 recipes of yours and this is the only thing as well as the french toast casserole to not have been 100% reliable. I am a little worried the outer parts of the cake will be burnt, but oh well.
I also have to say that I very strongly believe it’s either because I did not have a bundt/ tube pan or because our oven has unsuspectingly started running low…
What size is your normal cake pan? 2.5 to 3 hours sounds bananas long to me. Do you have an oven thermometer in there?
Hi Deb, replied a week later to say that my oven was running low ! I just received my oven thermometer today. Thanks for coming back to me though ! xx
Oops, thanks for the update. I’m catching up on comments I missed while I was on vacation, so my reading is a little out of order.
Found what it was ! My oven runs at least 20° low. Did your “tarte tatin anew” and your blueberry muffins (TO DIE FOR! Never had a muffin this good, where I come from they are always stale and dry) and both were undercooked until I blasted heat on them for 10′. So I got an oven thermometer and am hoping to never have baking issues.
… explains why your jacked-up banana bread was always so small since I moved into my new flat.
Oh that looks delicious! I’m definitely going to try it because I always buy more apples than I intend to eat (with the intent to use the surplus to bake something yummy). Thank you for also adding the recipe card photo to Flickr, makes it easy to fave and and remember where I got the recipe from :)
oh my heavens…this cake looks so wonderful.. I am going to bake it this weekend. Thanks for such a great recipe. I can smell it right now
Totally my fault. I just thought I’d throw the tip out there for those who are planning to use a different pan or are new to baking. I should have known better!
Deb, this looks wonderful. I love homey deserts and will try this later this afternoon. Many thanks to you and your Mom for sharing!
You are right; it is even better the next day!
This looks fantastic! I think my family would love this for Sunday dinner. It looks easily vegan-ized, so I may toy with making a vegan version later(but not for my dairy and egg eating lovies, just me). Thanks!
Did you ever veganize it? I usually use flax/chia eggs as a replacement, but 4 eggs seem like a lot to replace.
I think that is the most delicious looking apple cake I have ever seen. Just from the photos alone I can see how great the texture would be if I bit into it…mmmm…apple-y and soft…
Oops. Sorry. Got distracted there. Time to wipe drool off keyboard.
This is literally the same recipe that my friend’s mom gave me about 4 years ago for the holidays, and that I’ve used ever since as my own. Which is funny because as you were describing it, I was thinking “There’s no way it’s better than Barbara’s!” And, it’s the same! Well, there is a slight different. The first step is to beat the eggs UNTIL FOAMY (emphasis in the original). Do you think it makes a difference?
When I was doing a little research, I came across a version from an old Gourmet that had the separated and whipped egg whites. I like the idea, actually–it would lighten the cake up. However, I stuck with this because this is how my mother always makes it.
In fact, in almost any cake you can separate out the egg whites, whip them and fold them back in in the end for an airier cake. It’s a great trick for pancakes and waffles, too.
I saw that the handwritten recipe calls for 3 cups of flour and then the typed version calls for 2 3/4 cups. Which is right?
Thanks!! Looks SOOOOOOOOOOOOO good.
I made your mom’s cake this morning and it was absolutely wonderful! Thanks for sharing.
I baked this today and it’s incredible. A friend of mine is going to give me challah making lessons tomorrow, so I’m going to take this over as a thank you. This is the first recipe I’ve made from your site and I’m so encouraged to try even more. Thanks!
No way! My grandmother and mother make the EXACT same apple cake, and have passed the tradition on to me. I am, incidentally, amused to report that our recipe comes not from the old world or even an old neighbor, but instead from a 1960s Catholic church community cookbook.
I made your Apple cake last night and I put it into my silicone bundt pan and it worked fine (I did make a point of trying to mix in some cake batter into the apple bits on the bottom of the tin which would be the top of the cake)
I used only one cup of sugar as I find many american recipes use much more sugar than I am used to, and even a cup of caster sugar made quite a sweet cake.
I also found that the top of the cake burned quite badly (which wasnt too bad as it became the bottom but I had to cut a lot off) and I turned the oven down a bit.
I took it to work and it was very well recieved, and a recipe I would make again. I think I might add some allspice and mace and cloves to make the flavour a little more complex, but I did like the way the apples retained the flavour so the cake was quite tasty!
I just made your Mom’s Apple Cake. It’s really good. I mistakenly
baked it for an extra 15 min and it was still moist.
Great recipe. Thanks for sharing:P
This is the second recipe I’ve found that’s calling for so much sugar. The other was the zucchini bread, and for that I didn’t use all that was called for.
I’m just wondering how sweet this apple cake really is and if I want something less, how much should I go for?
my friend mona is bringing this to a dinner party at my house tomorrow night, i cannot wait….
I love apples and this sounds like a great cake idea.
Hey I hope you didn’t already answer this question, but I did not see it addressed. In my experience apple sizes can vary wildly, esp if using grocery store ones versus local, and I have messed some stuff up lately by using not enough small, local apples. Can you give me an idea of the size of the apples–small like local, small orchard grown ones? Large like those huge granny smiths found in grocery stores? Perfectly inbetween?
Thanks for sharing–and thanks to your mom also. This looks wonderful.
the cake looks wonderfully delicous. i tend to use butter more than oil –
do you know why sometimes one is used rather than the other? and is it
possible to substitue one for the other? melted butter instead of oil
in this cake. thanks.
I made it in a bundt pan last night, and it turned out beautifully. However, I found that I only had to cook it an hour and five minutes. And I put a little more than half of the dough in the first layer to make sure the top of the bundt cake didn’t collapse with all the apples.
it was fabulous! thanks deb!
I’m baking this cake right now…. The batter is fabulous! I only had a big round spring-form pan, no bundt or tube, so I’ll let you know how that turns out. I used the walnuts and layered them in before the apple/sugar.
One question however…. about how many cups are 6 macintosh apples? That variety isn’t sold here, so I picked 6 apples from the supermarket at random — and ended up with a lot more apple than your photos show. I didn’t hold back but chucked them all in. Apples shrink when they cook, right?
PS To BlueRose, I skimped on the sugar too
I made this last night with great success! I subbed milk for the apple juice, which turned out fine. One thing – the batter is pretty thick. I was so absorbed with scraping out the remnants of the batter from the bowl and not pouring it down the tube in my pan, I let it all collect on one side of the pan. Since this was my second layer of batter, it promptly sunk to the bottom. To prevent having a cake with all cake on one side and all apple on the other, I mixed it all together in the pan. So instead of having a clearly layered end product, I have a yummy cake with apple pieces studded throughout. Mine baked in exactly 90 minutes.
Sugar questions: You can of course cut back on the sugar, but keep in mind that you should not just look at measurements such as “2 cups” and jump to the conclusion that a cake is overly sweet (which this is not). It is simply a huge cake, 1.5 to 2xs the volume of most single-layer cakes. That said, I am pretty sure my mother often cuts it back by a 1/4 cup. I think you could drop it as low as 1 2/3 without the cake particularly suffering. Hope that helps.
Apple questions: McIntoshes are actually on the small to medium size, but you can of course use any old apple you like. I simply put that in there because my mother has always baked with them, and I have always snacked on them as she baked with them, and they have this uber-apple-y flavor I always associate with early fall.
Oil questions: You can substitute melted butter or margarine for the oil. However, I just wanted to throw one thing out there–butter is, of course, my favorite things to put in cakes. It’s flavor is unparalleled. However, I have found that cakes that use oil tend to stay just that more moist, just a little big longer. Perhaps a half-swap of butter would give you the best of both worlds.
Hope all that helps!
I made this Wednesday night and it is absolutely delicious. I think the next time I would substitute brown sugar for part of the white sugar and use buttermilk instead of orange juice (because I think buttermilk makes everything better). It was a huge hit though!
I just took the kids apple picking. They picked twenty-five pounds of apples. Believe it or not, we are almost out. I was planning to take them again, and I will give this a try before they all get used up.
Thanks for the recipe!
I ended up using 1 cup of sugar instead of 2 and the cake didn’t suffer at all. It’s perfectly sweet, just the way I like it.
I made it! Thank you. The recipe is a keeper! I made it in a square pan … see it at http://sleeplessinwisc.blogspot.com/
Hi Smitten Kitchen.
I made this recipe last night and it was such a hit at work. The only thing is that the bottom ended up being a bit hard .. I should have cooked it about 10 minutes less ..
Thank your mother for the recipe :)
I made your Mom’s Apple Cake the other night and had a piece for breakfast the next morning – incredible! I followed your recipe exactly: perfect, perfect, perfect! Thank you for sharing!
I am now obsessed with your mom’s apple cake. I made it last night and it is delicious!!! ( I’ve had it for every meal since then.)
I’ve made this recipe a zillion times when I was younger. Then I got more health conscious. I haven’t made it in years because I cannot justisfy a full cup of oil in a cake. I should experiment with lightening it up a bit. I do miss it, it is a delicious cake.
I just made this today and all I have to say is wow! It is so easy to make and comes out incredibly moist and flavorful. I gave half to my mom and she called me while she was still eating to let me know how good it was. I’ll be making this recipe again very soon!
I made your mom’s cake and it was delish. My husband loved it. Thank you for sharing. See the pics and my blog at http://gengandchip.wordpress.com/2008/10/04/autum-days-are-here-again/
Hi. I´m a brasilian guy, and made this cake. It´s fantastic! I will make more times.
Wow – this is gorgeous… and it just made me sort of wistful about being a kid! My mom made the Jewish apple cake all of the time when I was growing up. I think the only difference was she sliced her apples. The chunks are gorgeous.
This cake is just wonderful. I made it in a bundt pan, putting the apples on the bottom first. Did not come out as cleanly as I would have liked but tastes amazing. I was a bit skeptical about the batter because it looked more like cookie dough, but once all the eggs were incorporated it looked just like the picture. Thanks for the recipe, love your blog.
Forever the multi-tasker, I decided to bake both your Mom’s Apple Cake, and the Challah on the same day.
Deb, my kitchen has never, ever smelled better than it does right now! I am twitching, because the Challah is still VERY hot, and all I want to do is rip into it and slather it with butter. The Apple cake is waiting patiently for my mom, my daughter and her family to come for dinner tomorrow night. Thank G-d that there are two loaves of Challah- I’m quite sure that one loaf will be gone before morning.
Beautiful recipes, Deb. Thank you!
I have always emphatically proclaimed that I DO NOT BAKE. Since stumbling upon your site, this is the 4th thing I have baked (and I’ve done two of your recipes twice – the blueberry bars and homemade oreos). I’m glad I read through the comments because the cake is in the oven right now and I was just lamenting about how long 1 1/2 hours is to wait. I am hoping that this comes out as wonderfully as the other baked goods have. Keep ’em coming!!
Thanks, Deb’s mom (via Deb of course)! I can always use another apple cake recipe. It looks fantastic!
This looks absolutely fabulous! I’m heading to my very first Thanksgiving Potluck next weekend and am very much looking forward to showing up with this! Apples? Cake? Delish!
WOW….I just made this and it’s WONDERFUL! The only mod I made was the cooking time. It took 2 hours and 15 minutes. This recipe is going in my “permanent” file. THANK YOU!
This cake is absolutely magnificent and mouth-watering. And your pictures are just perfect!
My 4 year old and I just made this cake, and it turned out great! I baked it in a 9×13 pan for 55 minutes and it’s perfect! Thanks!
This looks so wonderful! I will definitely try it.
I am always looking for easy recipes, and this looks pretty straight forward indeed. Judging from the comments left, others’ have been thrilled with it!
Apple recipes are a hit this time of the year! Thanks so much for sharing this! I might just bring it to Thanksgiving dinner :-D
my cake came out kind of hard–any ideas what might have happened? (the apples were nice and soft, though)
This cake was my Saturday project and it was just perfect. We had a nice family dinner and this was the perfect ending to our meal. I was just wondering, do you think that it would be ok to add sugar to the greased pan before pouring in the batter to add that caramel-y crunch that some coffee cakes have? Or would it just burn? I’m new to baking and apprehensive about testing ideas that could turn out to just be disasters.
I wanted to share my baking experience with this recipe. As a novice baker, I was impressed at how quickly the recipe came together and at how many of the ingredients I already had in my meagerly stocked pantry. A few things for other novices coming to the plate: first, the batter is super thick. But don’t be alarmed. Second, as others have noted, oven temperature is critical. I already knew my oven ran hot, but even with my adjustments the timing was still off and the cake was overdone. The flavor, however = MAGNIFICENT. Deb, thanks so much for sharing your wonderful gifts with food and photography with the masses.
Thanks to all your encouragement and ideas, everyone–especially Donna and Jenya and Jen, and others whose comments I can’t find right now. Redengine88, I wish I did live in the south to take you up on your kind offer. I made it in a 9×13 baking dish since I had so so many apples and figured this would be the way to go.
HUGE success. Fall heaven on a plate. Joins the similar apple cake from the NYTimes as my new favorite way to eat apples. http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/04/magazine/04Food-t.html?scp=3&sq=apple%20cake&st=cse
Thanks to all and happy fall!
Deb, keep ’em coming. And thanks too for your assiduous follow-up!
I made this cake this weekend and it was a huge success! It smelled so good coming out of the oven that my husband and I dove in and sampled a slice before it was fully cooled. It was everything you said it would be Deb – flavorful, moist and full of cinnamony apple chunks. I cooked it in a 12 in springform pan and it took almost 1 hour 50 minutes to fully cook in the center. I’ve got an oven thermometer and it read 350 the whole time. I also couldn’t find McIntosh apples so I used a mix of granny smith, gala and golden delicious. My new favorite!
I made this yesterday and it is fabulous! I also had to bake an extra 15 minutes in a standard tube pan. There were still a few crumbs on the tester when I pulled it out, so I let it cool in the pan about 10 minutes assuming that it would cook a little bit more, and it pulled away from the sides of the pan perfectly so I could pop the center out with the cake. I cooled it fully before inverting it off the cone, then back onto the platter. It cuts beautifully with a serrated bread knife. I got tons of compliments and requests for the recipe. I was also thinking that this would be a good one to try with rhubarb (only probably mixing in the rhubarb) Thanks Deb!
whoah! That sounds and looks amazing. Thanks for sharing it…I am sure my crew here would love to devour that.!
mama to 6
one homemade and 5 adopted
Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. The pictures were so gorgeous I had to bake it! The smell while it was on the oven was scrumptious.
My husband loves it! We couldn’t wait for it to cool off. Delicious!
Your pictures look beautiful, and you had such a great story to tell, I just couldn’t stop going back to the blog, like it was calling me (that, and the 4 kg apples I bought 2 days before you posted it!). I did not even resist 1 week before trying the recipe! Brought it to my family for the week-end, everyone loved it.
I bake it in a bundt pan, starting with half of the batter, but next time I will put less. As the bottom is not flat, half of the batter makes a really high piece of cake without any apples, which is a shame! :-)
ok… just put it in the oven.. but OMG the batter was THICK! I’m not sure how it’s going to turn out… when I tried the 1/2 the batter thing, it barely covered the bottom of the pan…
wait and see, I guess!
lol.. umm.. i seem to have messed this one up
Made this last week, and the two of us ate the ENTIRE thing in a matter of 4 days. Shameful. Had to tell you that this is my newest favorite cake… Thanks!
Hey Deb – I made this last night for a family dinner and WOW everyone went bonkers!!! Thank you so much!!!!!!!!!!!!
PS – I love the picture of your mom’s recipe card – it makes everything so personal and lovely.
OMG! This is in the oven RIGHT NOW! WE are having it for a brunch kind of thing!!!! I’m sure with the ease and readiness of ingredients this will make it into my family recipe book! Thanks so much !
Made this cake and took it to a gathering of ladies. Everyone loved it, but everyone had a version of the cake that was easier and made less dirty dishes. I think I will try theirs next time!
Perfect for Rosh Hashana or breaking the fast at Yom Kippur. Looks delicious! I have made coffee cakes into individual party favor sized portions by making them in muffin tins (layers and all). Do you think that would work for this recipe too? They would make great favors for Thanksgiving. P.S. The history of the recipe is even more entertaining then if it had been passed down for generations. :-)
I blew off a whole morning of work and made this instead. It is AMAZING! My kids agree. Best cake ever.
I just made this cake last weekend after a trip to the orchard. It was fantastic and so delicious! Thanks for the great recipe!
I think I might try this delicious looking cake with my next batch of sad apples!! mmmmm
I would like to emphasize the *greasing of the pan*. Clearly I took this important step too lightly, you can have a chuckle at my expense by looking at the photo (http://www.flickr.com/photos/65017068@N00/2920837833/) of my apple cake disaster.
Otherwise, a very moist cake that fills your house with a supremely delish aroma of apple cinnamon. (Of course we still ate it, we just served chunks instead of slices!)
How beautiful of you to share such a recipe! I find my best come from my grandmother. The index cards where you can barely read the writing :) This looks absolutely delicious!
Amazing! I’ve never had an apple cake before and didn’t know what to expect. Oh. My. God. The aroma of it baking was almost too good, and when it came out of the oven I knew I was going to be obsessed. I baked this as a thank you for some family and friends who helped us move house and got nothing but rave reviews. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe!!
I baked mine in a bundt pan with the apples at the bottom, as suggested, and it turned out beautifully. Thanks again!
I have an Apple Cake recipe…almost the same, but without the orange juice. I bake mine in a 9×13 inch baking dish and put a cream cheese frosting on top. One of the best!!!
I don’t know what went wrong. I tried making the cake today but it didn’t turn out right…more like apple pie filling. I followed the recipe. The only thing I can think of is maybe I didn’t have enough dry stuff (seemed a little liquidy when I put it in the pan). It was good anyways…used it on top of ice cream.
This apple cake is AMAZING. I made it yesterday and it was a major hit – we rated it a “10”. I used my own judgement and added the walnuts to the apple mixture since the recipe didn’t tell me when to do so. Also, should the cake cool before being turned out? My cake was still somewhat warm and came out 1/2 at a time. I actually had to carefully scrape the bottom of the pan to get the other 1/2 out and then piece it back together. Trust me, no one cared! It went down just as well and didn’t look too bad but I would like to correct that for future times. I also made the challah on this site and it was incredible too. My family was absolutely delighted with both…and with me :).
The apple cake was divine! I made it for break fast and it disappeared in no time but luckily I did get a slice and it was fantastic. It didn’t hurt that I made it with butter rather than oil, I’m sure. I’ll be making this again. Say, tomorrow?
This is my grandmother’s Jewish Apple Cake–except her apples are sliced and there is a bit less cinnamon. It’s a family favorite and definitely in my top ten of cakes. But, one thing I always wondered–what makes it Jewish?
I made the cake yesterday with my mother, and it’s by far the most delicious cake I’ve ever eaten!! Even the smell of it while it was in the oven was amazing! Thanks a lot!!
In response to Laura–I’d guess that it’s “Jewish” because it’s made with oil rather than butter. This would allow the cake to be permitted in a meat meal and stay within the traditional Jewish dietary laws which prohibit mixing meat and milk in the same meal. On the other hand, I made mine with butter and it was heavenly.
I made this for my husband’s birthday this week. Oh my goodness! it was yummy good. I used Fiji apples and I baked it in a 9×13 since I didn’t have a tube pan. It was very easy to make and tasted very good. Not an overly sweet dessert which I loved.
I second Beth’s comment. I made the cake last weekend in a 9×13 pan (Using my fave baking apple, Haralson) and it looked and tasted fantastic. Another amazing recipe from the Smitten Kitchen! Thanks!
Ugh… maybe I should have read the part about a single layer in a loaf pan… I wasn’t sure how much it would rise, and just split the batter in half in loaf pan. It’s at the top of the pan already and I still have about 30 mins to go… That’s ok… I’m sure the part that spills over the top will be just as yummy!
I’ll let you know how it turns out…
I just took it out of the oven…still cooling in the pan. If it tastes 1/2 as good as it looks I know it will be a winner!
Love your webstie your pictures…I love to cook with the help of pictures and yours are awesome!
Finally had a chance to make this cake and it’s amazing. This recipe is definitely a keeper. In fact, I’ll be making it again later in the week, since we’ll be seeing a foodie friend who’s lactose-intolerant. She’ll be thrilled to have something so yummy that she can eat without suffering.
Update… The cake was fine without being baked in a tube-type pan although even with a convection oven it took ages (this is one thick cake!). What appeared to be an over-abundance of apples turned out just fine. I took it to a party where there was some pretty stiff dessert competition, and I was secretly hoping there would be a piece left to take home. Alas, there was none….
Not having a bundt or tube pan, I used 8″ round cake pans for this recipe. I doubled the recipe and made this in three pans (one good quality, two not-so-great). In a heavy, high-quality pan, the recipe works fine as stated: just grease n’ go. In a cheaper pan, grease the pan, line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper, grease the paper as well, and take the cake out five minutes early.
The two cakes in the cheaper pans: well, we ended up eating the cake out of the pan, since the bottom had affixed itself in a burnt glory. Despite this inconvenience, each bite was delicious.
The cake in the good pan: looked and tasted like the best of autumn. So good.
Hope this info helps someone else!
I also used a round cake pan and used 1 cup light brown sugar and 1 cup white sugar. My goodness, i didn’t know i could make such a delicious cake!
I brought it to a friends house for a dinner party and everyone was impressed. I shall definitely be making this one again. Thank you for the recipe!
Made the Apple cake for our Oktoberfest party last weekend… hugh hit! Used 7 Empire apples which are smaller then Macs, thought I could have used another 2…I love apple anything. Making another tonight.
This is my first time to comment on your wonderful blog, I love your recipes, you inspire me to cook more and cook better for my seven kids and hungry husband.
Bu tonight I didn’t do any of the cooking my oldest daughter( 12) and son( 9) did,
I just got to taste the fruit of their labors your dear apple cake, I had to wake up my daughter just to tell her how amazing this cake is!
The next thing we are going to be trying is the peanut butter ganache cake.
Thanks so much for inspiring us!
The cake looks so good and I’d like to try it.
Would it be OK to post it on my blog, links and credit to you, of course?
My blog is here: 1 Family. Friendly. Food. (http://wflavors.blogspot.com/).
By the way, I was thinking, my gradparents (now dead) have also survived Nazi Europe and immigrated to Israel. But no recipes were passed from my grandma, which was a wonderful cook, and that is kind of sad for me. My mom hardly cooks and never baked, so i guess she didn’t have much interest in recipes. I was too young to learn something from my grandma. I just have some blurry memeories of her food…
I’ve made this recipe twice in one week- one for family and one for the office. I ended up using freshly picked apples (Mac’s) and it was super yummy!!! The cake stays so moist 2-3 Days after-if it lasts that long :) I did add the walnuts but only sprinkled them on top, it added a nice crunch. Thanks for the recipe!
Wow, this looks incredibly delicious! If you’d like to try something with a little island flavor, I also recommend an excellent cake recipe involving pineapple, found here: http://www.mauipineapple.com/index.php/recipes/desserts/41-desserts/69-allspice-angel-food-cakes. It’s called the All Spice Angel Food Cakes with Maui Gold Pineapple Curd and Oven-dried Maui Gold Pineapple. Enjoy!
Made it today for a friend, it was really awesome and everybody loved it so much! Thanks a lot Deb!
By the way, a 26 cm spring form pan is perfect for those who don’t have a tube pan.
Hi..Just noticed that the recipe says coffee cake but I cant see coffee in the recipe. How much coffee do I add and when?
I’m going to a party at my friend’s sukkah tomorrow. This cake is coming with me!
A coffee cake is called that because it is usually served WITH coffee.
Thanks for that!! I’m Scottish and here a ‘coffee cake’ means it’s coffee flavoured lol.
Funny how there are so many recipes with names that have nothing to do with the ingredients. Deb could probably do several posts about that.
Great cake! Made it for a brunch this morning, and it was a hit!
I made this cake yesterday. My house smelled amazing while it was baking. But the true payoff came when my 15 year old son came home from youth group, cut a huge slice and said “Mom, this is cake is so good…Dad, you gotta try this” Dad’s response, “Could be the best apple cake you have ever made” Truly a keeper!
Just wanted to tell you that this cake is FANTASTIC! I made the cake on Saturday. Eight women gobbled up most of the cake on Sunday, and when I brought reminder to work today it didn’t last until lunch. Definitely a keeper!
I LOVED this cake. I made it for some family that visited last weekend — my sister-in-law can’t eat dairy right now, which limited my options. Everyone raved about it. Forgot to dust it with powdered sugar like you did in the pic.
I loved this cake, moist and great for days. I made it for a meeting and got raves. Turned out just like the picture. Thanks.
I tried it in a bundt pan and it took much less time to cook. In fact, I didn’t check on it until about 1 hr 15 minutes had passed. Of course it was overdone at this point and when I flipped it out the outside was completely charred. It’s still edible if you cut off the burned outside edges, but only the center and near the apples is very moist.
If anyone wants to try a bundt pan, I’d set your timer for 50 minutes and start checking it often for done-ness after that.
I made this cake yesterday and I’m not sure it will survive past tomorrow morning…it’s that good. This is going into my permanent apple/fall dessert file!
I just made this for a dozen people at a pumpkin carving party over the weekend and everyone loooved it. One carver called it ‘the best apple cake she’d ever had’. I made it in 2 loaf pans because that’s what I had handy, and turned down the heat a wee bit halfway through the baking time because the tops were getting quite brown. It was still dense and moist and lovely though, and not too sweet.
I served this at brunch this weekend to rave reviews! Thanks for sharing the excellent recipe.
I’ve made this twice now, and can say for sure–this is my favorite apple cake. Thanks so much for sharing!
Definitely works in 2 loaf pans (or half the recipe and use 1, if your roommate complains that you’re “making her fat” with all of these SK recipes… ) :)
Delicious, a perfect way to use the macintosh apples I bought at the farmers’ market! :)
will be making this apple cake today. pasty chef here, love it all. thanks
I made this apple cake and served it for Dinner. First I cooled the cake down very well.made several slices , and heated up my cast iron gill on the oven top, coated each slice with butter, and gilled for two to three on each slide, and served it with homemade ice cream. OUTSTANDING !!!! the beautiful gilled marks bring out a very beautiful flavor of the cake with it very moist texture. Reginaldi
I made this over the weekend with a friend of mine. He’s a huge fan of Alton Brown and some things were changed to follow AB’s recipe for Apple Cake. We prepared the cake Saturday night, put it in the fridge and then baked it Sunday night. The cake was amazing, but was more brown than Smitten’s and had us all thinking of gingerbread cookies. I’m looking forward to making this again for Thakesgiving, and following just Smitten’s recipe!
Deb – Tried the apple cake last night and it was fabulous. I thought it strange to add the eggs to the already-mixed, dryish dough, but it turned out fine. In fact, ‘incredible’ was the word my husband used. Thanks for the recipe!
Wow! Made this last night (photos here) and it turned out great. I added some cranberries, and would probably use more apples next time, maybe mixing some into the batter itself. Rhubarb would be an excellent addition, too.
The cake came out super-rich and dense, like pound cake. It took nearly two hours to bake, which may be the result of altitude (or maybe a miscalibrated oven). But the result is stellar.
Thanks for this recipe! It’s quick and easy, but very tasty and homey. Excellent with whipped cream. I reduced sugar by a third and everyone thought it was fine. I ground the walnuts finely, mixed them with the flour, and reduced the flour by about 1/3 cup. This gives the cake a little more flavor and texture.
An update: The cake remained moist from Friday through today, when I brought it to work and a cow-orker declared, “When I’m on death row, I want this cake for my last meal. This is the best cake I’ve ever had in my entire life.”
what is the ideal sized “tube” pan to use? I went looking for one today and found an angle food cake pan made by Chicago Metallic and also a Coffee cake ring pan that has a much larger sized hole in the middle.. measurments are (3″h X 3.5″ cake width), its much flatter and has a 12 cup capacity.. can you recommend the right sized pan for me?
My apple cake is currently in the oven – can’t wait to see how it turns out. Was out of OJ, so I used a little honey, a little milk…can’t wait to have a fresh slice.
High altitude (4,700′ in my case) adjustments: increase flour and liquid by 2T flour, 1T OJ. Bake at 370 about 1 hour 20 minutes.
Changes from not checking the pantry before you started: substitute brown sugar for half white sugar in cake base; all brown sugar in apple mix. Add nutmeg in apple mix because you like nutmeg. Use 5 eggs because you only have some “large” free-range blue and green eggs that look kinda small.
And? Still comes out great.
WOW, I’m a non baker, but this was easy and taste great. I made this twice in one day!
very nice! Rave reviews from the coworkers. I used a springform pan and found the edge got a little brown by the end of cooking (almost 2 hours), but it was moist and delicious none-the-less :)
I made this cake because it was requested as a birthday cake. I do not eat sugar but was given rave reviews. I used 8 apples, that was the only change I made.
Huge hit and really easy to make.
ladies, i am a virgin baker (first time baker, hehe). Can’t wait to see how this gorgeous cake turns out! recipe says 350 but my oven is fan forced so i set it at 200? hope i’m right! Help?
about the sugar issues for those European bakers:
Caster sugar is much more finely ground than American granulated sugar. The volume measurement will therefore not be the same, try going by weight. A cup of American granulated sugar weights 8 oz, so if you measure your caster sugar by weight, not by volume, it should, by volume, be something that looks more ‘right’.
Celine: rule of thumb for convection ovents: redauce time by 1/4 or temperature by 25 degrees (F) (not sure if this rule works for degrees C).
Yum! I made this delicious cake today and even though I forgot the vanilla and used a bundt pan it still turned out. That’s my kind of recipe, very forgiving. Thank you!
Deb! I baked this cake for my husband’s company’s fall dessert contest and it just won 2nd place! :) Thanks a million. My husband says there are many people saying that I was robbed of first place as they absolutely loved this.
Amazing cake – have made it twice now, both times fantastic. Made it with Bramley cooking apples today (was all I had to hand) and it was still outstanding. I used a little more sugar for coating them as they are extremely tart. Thank you for sharing this fab recipe.
Still haven’t got the answer if one can keep an apple cake in fridge for 5 days. Its still in the round tin I baked and covered this with alum. foil. Thanks for an answer.
I did it yesterday and i reduce sugar and oil. I used canola and olive oil together .
the result is fantastic.
A lot of flavors and a good moist .
Thank you so much for this recipe .
My daughter loves it +++
My post about it is in french …so if you want to see it , it’s here
noel Vanderwee, why don’t you try it and see for yourself if it’s still edible and good? You don’t need to ask someone to figure it out yourself.
Hi Noel — This site gets a lot of new comments every day and sometimes, direct questions slip through the crack without me getting to respond to them.
We’ve never made this cake five days early before. I don’t see why it wouldn’t keep–in fact, I am sure that it would–but in my kitchen at least, my preference is to not keep cakes in the fridge too long because something gets lost in texture and flavor. Instead, I freeze cakes when I want to bake them early: triple-wrapped in plastic and then leave them in the fridge for a day to defrost, then out on the counter for a couple hours to get them back to room temperature before serving them.
Has anyone ever topped this cake with any kind of icing? I think I will make it for Thanksgiving.
This is what I am looking for, my daughter called and wanted my recipe that I have for my Jewish apple cake, to no avail I can’t find it. So I do a search and this is the ONE that appears to be the closest.For some reason I was thinking that the recipe called for 5 eggs, but all other ingredient measures seem to have boggled my memory, and the 1 1/2 hour bake time is what is called for. I got this recipe from an ex boyfriends mother over 30 yrs ago and I will say that it is without a doubt the best apple cake you will ever eat.
I just went back and read that you are from MD, that’s were I am, and the boyfriends mother,Baltimore MD. I just wonder if this is the same recipe.
I made this tonight instead of the typical apple pie and it was a HIT. Thank you!!!!
Hi! Greetings from Singapore. I made this a few weeks back and it was sooo yummy. I made them into lil cupcakes and friends, people at work & family all loved them. Thanks ;)
Hello and Happy Thanksgiving! First time poster here, but long time reader. Made this cake today for Thanksgiving, and it was the hit of the desserts. Thank you! My oven is hot and it was done 20 minutes early, thanks for the reminder to check. Can’t wait for some awesome Christmas recipes.
I made this with half of the stuff in a layer cake pan and the other half became muffins. Haven’t tasted the cake but the muffins are great. A bit more spice with the apples (ginger, etc) might add something.
I have made this cake now twice, do i love it ??? Does my husband love it???????????Yes!!!! Delicious!!!!!! My original apple kuchen was a little different, but since I’m always trying new recipes I gave this a chance. Love this cake!! Thank you.
I had a vision of making a fruit cake this year instead of a fruit pie and when I saw this apple cake, I knew I had found the answer. This replaced apple pie as one of our Thanksgiving desserts this year and it was a huge success. The two day old version is perhaps even better, as I just had a piece to get me through the morning. Also my husband made the chocolate peanut butter bars a few weeks ago and though I scorned them as being overkill–I then ate about 15 of them.
ps—I do not weigh 200 lbs.
Ohhhhhh! I had to make this cake when I saw the pictures. I raided my mom’s pantry for tube pan. I must say the cake taste as I imagined. I brought into work. I kind of debated about sharing it. Heh-heh. It was well received. I can’t wait to make it again.
Needed to come up with a Thanksgiving dessert, something OTHER than pumpkin pie (blech). A little hunting online led me to this lovely recipe. No such thing as a tube pan in my house so made it in a 9×13. Got to bakin, discovered I had exactly one and a quarter cup of white sugar, so I subbed one cup of brown sugar for white. Most of the apples on top sank in so it wasnt as pretty as Deb’s photos but no one complained about THAT. My dad the foodie (loves to cook, loves to talk about cooking, loves to watch the family devour the feasts he prepares) gave the best compliment; “that was incredible, please take the rest home with you or I’ll eat it all!”
making this cake for the third time now. it’s too good!
I made this cake today in a regular (not Bundt) round cake tin, but halved the amount, based on the photos and comments, and got a very delicious regular sized cake. I’m also grateful to trickie (#136) for pointing out the similarities between this recipe and Dorset apple cake. I had the most incredible Dorset apple cake 6 years ago while on holiday (in Dorset, England) and try as I might I couldn’t recreate it. Most Dorset apple cake recipes predictably use butter not oil, but I’m going to try out my existing (and not half bad) recipe with oil instead and see what happens!
Made it again:
— added used fresh orange zest in with the apples, cut back on the cinnamon a bit (I have a very strong and sharp cinnamon).
— divided batter into thirds – batter, apples, batter, apples, batter. Better distribution of apples in the “cake column.”
–made a thin crumble for the top (brown sugar, butter, pecans, slight bit of flour). The crumble needs to be put on the top just before it’s finished baking.
My mom passed away 3 years ago and she use to make this same exact cake. Like your mom, she got it from some small magazine clipping. She actually would sometimes add blueberries instead of the apples…it’s really yummy! Her recipe didn’t call for the salt, but the next time I think I might try and include it. :)
Made this cake twice in the last two months. Excellent. Upped the spice levels to make it really Christmas-sy, and even added a little chilli powder to warm things up for frosty days. Great recipe. What more can I say, apart from thanks for sharing.
Thank you for sharing this recipe. I’ve already used it several times during the last 2 months and each time, it has been a hit. What a simple recipe… the cake is hearty and satisfying. I had to pass the recipe onto a Jewish friend who said that it was better than his grandma’s! (but he’d never tell her)
Thanks for the recipe. I made it over the holidays and the house smelled great. I don’t know whether it was the kind of oven that we had but uncooked batter was still oozing at the recommended baking time and it took about an hour more for it to be fully baked through. But it was greatly appreciatedand coffee was demanded as an accompaniment.
While we are discussing tweaking recipes, I wanted to say that I have been baking a similar cake every Thanksgiving and New Years for many years. I substitute chopped pecans for the walnuts, and also add about a cup of fresh cranberries to the batter. The combination of the sweet apples and the sour cranberries is delicious. I use a bundt cake pan, and simply combine all the ingredients together. I also let the batter sit in the mixing bowl for 20 minutes while the oven is preheating.
When the cake is cooled and on a platter, I brush it with a boiled glaze made of one cup brown sugar, 1/2 stick butter, 1/4 cup milk…..with an addition of a good splash of Jack Daniels whiskey! EVERYBODY wants this recipe.
Pans- I have a tube pan but it doesn’t fit in my miniscule oven, I used a heavy layer cake pan and one less egg. Fabulous!
Thanks so much for the great recipe and for allowing the comments, they helped me answer almost all my questions. I was surprised how thick the batter was, and I had the same problem with the top getting stuck in the bottom of the bundt pan. Using the bundt pan it took just under an hour to cook. I switched pecans for the walnuts and added a smidgen of cloves and nutmeg……….now I’m off to find a recipe for some caramel pecan drizzle to cover up the mess on the top of the delicious cake.
OH and I upped the recipe by 1/2 and it was enough to make a bundt pan and the oval corning ware dish ( about 8X11) Thanks again Deb!
This is really making my home smell like a slice of apply heaven goodness. I couldn’t find vegetable oil at the store today, so am using canola instead. I also don’t own a tube pan, so am using a 9 x 13 glass pyrex layering in there with batter, apples, skimpy bits of batter left, and then the remaining apples. I am praying that in about 20 minutes or so, this cake will be amazing. I will post back if it is incredible as it smells in here. Thank you for the post!
I must say that i was delighted trying this recipe but I am greatly disappointed in how this turned out.I finally gave up and took it out of my oven after 3 and a half hours and still is not done. It is incredibly gooey the top of it is burnt and the bottom part of the cake is either burnt or incredibly gooey to the point that it looks like I just put it in the oven. I know I didn’t mess up on any of the ingredients and I followed the directions to a T. It is hard to describe how disappointed I am.
Three and a half hours? Have you checked that your oven is functioning at the proper temperature? An oven thermometer may help.
I have a thermometer and it works perfectly. And my oven is working perfectly also so I have no idea what is wrong.
Do you think this recipe could be use for a wedding cake?!!
I usually go for the light recipes.
This time, you win. . .
Am making it now – woo hoo
Thank you so much for sharing this recipe!
Ive made it for a friend as a birthday present.
And she loves it!!!!!! =D
This cake is great!! An ideal treat anytime! Regarding the 3.5 hours cooking time, if the person is using a spring form tube pan that has the double bottom, make sure the second bottom is removed. Example: the spring form pan can be used as a tube pan with it’s own tubular insert, and attached to it the “second” bottom that can be used for regular round cakes, such as a cheesecake. If both bottoms are on at the same time, the “tubular” portion of the cake will not bake correctly. If, when pouring the batter into the tube pan, you cannot see through the hole to the counter surface, then you have a two bottomed pan.
Thanks for sharing this recipe! I was looking for a recipe to get rid of some unwanted prunes and pears and thought this might do the trick. I used the prunes and pears instead of the apples and it’s not as good as apple cake, but still pretty good. I wish I hadn’t forgotten the salt–you can taste that it’s missing. I think it needed some lemon zest, too, to make up for the lack of tartness in prunes and pears. Maybe some orange zest? I added about a cup of ground almonds instead of the walnuts and substituted apple-pear sauce for 1/2 the oil. I also used amaretto instead of 2/3 of the vanilla. I’m not sure you could still call it the same cake but if this recipe can stand up to that kind of shenanigans, I think it’s a good sign. :)
I’m looking forward to making this! One question though: it sounds like there are two layers of apples, but in the close-up shot (3rd photo), I see only one layer. What gives? Is that a one-layer version, or is it just really really condensed?
Not sure which picture you meant — if the last one, that isn’t the actual cake but a wee “tester” we made in a ramekin (with, yes, one layer of apples and not two) to show you all the texture of the cake’s interior.
I love this recipe! I’ve now made in twice in the last 2 weeks!
Once as a full cake and once (last night at midnight..!) as cupcakes.
Works really well both ways! And the cupcakes look beautiful with the cinnamon apples on top (plus a few well placed dark chocolate flakes to melt in while baking).
Can’t wait to make more things!
I love this recipe!the cake is the most amazing, warm,and delicious cake ever. My mom makes this cake all the time and its just amazing. i think i said that already but ill say it again.AMAZING!!!
This is a great cake. Since there is no meat or dairy products in recipe, it’s parve, great for any meal. My original recipe came from a calendar. I use a Bundt pan, well greased, layering 1/3 batter, 1/2 apples, 1/3 batter, 1/2 apples and remaining batter. For ease in releasing from pan, be certain apples do not touch pan sides. I have used fresh pears or fresh peaches for a change of taste. Always comes out great.
Thanks for sharing this receipe – I simply loved it – the cake came out just as pretty as yours and the taste was amazing and to top it all it was so simple.
I hope someone see’s this….Years ago.. over twenty, i was reading Country Living magazine and found a wonderful pie recipe of apples, sour cream, walnuts and i made the crust and laticed the top. it was the most wonderful pie i’ve ever had. I had to hide it from the husband to make sure we all could share it. my sister and her hubby even took a piece. Now all these years later i’m getting reminded of it and asked about it but have lost the recipe. Does anyone know of a recipe like this. It was so beautiful i didn’t want to cut it and even took a photo of it. I don’t want to crumb the top…….surely someone else found it and loved it as much as we did…….thanks..(your cake looks wonderful by the way)
This recipe is DELICIOUS!! I love it. I am new in the baking world and I did this recipe. It was fun to do it and it was worth all the work. Thank you for sharing! I love this site.
I made this cake and I just loved the moist and delicious texture and flavor! I was happy to post my result on my blog.
Just a response to tendr…there are 2 recipes from Country Living Mag. One is called Dutch Apple Pie and the other is called Apple Custard Pie w/ Cinnamon struesel. They each use sour cream, walnuts and apples. Hope this helps.
This is sooo delicious, quick and easy once you have the apples chopped up. Mine got a little dry around the sides because of the long baking time, but it was beautifully flavoured, moist and totally more-ish. Thanks :)
everyone who hasn’t – MAKE THIS!
Thanks so much for this great recipe:) I made it last night and it really was so easy once the apples were chopped up. I took the tips above and used a little less oil and even a little less sugar and it still turned out moist and sweet:) I love your site!
I have NEVER written on a recipe website before despite years of avid cooking. Hands down, this was the BEST CAKE EVER. My family is sitting around with dreamy stuffed happy faces, some actually hummed as they were eating. I’m converting to Judaism, LOL, just for the cake!!! I suggested we make vanilla ice cream to serve with it next time, and my children actually said, “no mama, it’s perfect as is.” No to ice cream, a first! The thought that this will be moister and yummier tomorrow has me wishing the night away so that I can eat some sooner. I’m taking a piece to my trainer tonight so he can finally understand when I say, “I’m a really good cook, it’s hard not to resist.” Let’s see if he can say no to this!!!
Hard to stop at one piece. so good. and I baked it in a 9 x 13 pan and it worked great.
INCREDIBLE…. I made a smash with this cake this week-end!!!!! My in-laws loved, no, ADORED it!!!! thank you so much!!! I am planning of keeping it in my BEST recipes section!!!!
This is one delicious recipe. Question, though: I’ve made this four times and each time it was burnt mightily at the bottom. Any ideas for how to avoid this? I’ve tried lowering the temperature, and I’ve cooked it both in a tube pan (bought ‘special!) and a springform.
I just made this cake today for my husband’s 30th birthday. He always requests that I make an apple cake, but I had yet to find a recipe that was to his preference…until today! This cake turned out SO GREAT! I baked it in a 9×13 silicone dish and baked it for about an hour at 350. So wonderful!! I could not find McIntosh apples so I ended up trying pink lady apples. I think I somehow also got two jonagold apples as well… I must say this recipe is a keeper. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe and the wonderful pictures. I found you blog from the pioneer womans blog. Again, thanks. My hubby loved it :)
Hi! Made this cake today because I had several apples waiting to be made into something. I used Pink Lady apples, and a bundt cake pan, and it turned out delicious – even though the top stuck to the pan so it doesn’t look as pretty as it could. It did take over 2 hours to bake though! Thanks for a really delicious cake!
This was my mom’s signature cake, and has become mine. It seems to be an “east-coast thing”. Now that I am in Alaska, no one has ever had it, and I impress them every time! I use the “ugly apples” leftover at the end of the week (bruised, wrinkled, etc.) I skip the layering and mix the apples in at the end, they stay mixed throughout the cake. I use a bundt pan, but don’t try to remove until the cake is TOTALLY COOL. I sprinkle with powdered sugar, or make a glaze with 2 cups powedered sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla, 1/3 cup melted butter, and enough milk to make is runny enough to drizzle. It also works in bread pans and regular cake pans. …better the second day, though it never lasts that long!
Apple cake is in the oven! :)
Hi Deb! I am writing from Brazil to let you know I simply love your mom’s apple cake recipe, even though I haven’t made it yet. I was looking for a good apple cake recipe and I found yours to be one of the best, not to mention I love the story that goes with it. Thanks for sharing such wonderful recipe!
I made this cake and brought it into work. Everyone asked me for the recipe, I made about 20 copies and they were all gone by the end of the day. THank you for sharing this wonderful recipe!
Cherish, I did the exactly same thing yesterday and got several enthusiastic compliments. A few weeks ago I tried it with only one cup sugar and otherwise followed the recipe pretty closely and came up with a cake that was really too dense.
This time I took some liberties, adding lots of liquid to compensate for our dry desert air and altitude, used about 1 2/3 cup of sugar, and instead of one teaspoon of salt I used almost 2. The result was a lovely somewhat lighter cake with a great crumb and wonderful flavor. The only problems were a slightly oily flavor (I used soybean, probably a mistake), and that the slices broke into two pieces at the middle apple layer.
Next time–and trust me, there will be a next time–I’ll mix most of the apples in and put some pieces on top, and will try something like canola oil in the hopes that I won’t actually taste it.
I made the recipe EXACTLY as the directions specified. The walnuts aren’t mentioned as to when to add so I added them to the apple mixture. But my main concern is when the recipe said to POUR the mixture into the pan. My batter was not pourable — it was a little wetter than bread dough, sticky but certainly not pourable. One cup of oil, 1/4 cup of OJ, and 4 eggs just wasn’t enough to moisten it to a consistency as the one you show in the picture. I actually threw out the first batch because I figured I must have measured incorrectly, but the second time it came out exactly the same. Any ideas as to why? Thanks!
Did the cake work out? Did it taste okay? Whether it had to be spread or poured in your case, I’d think that all that matters is that the results are satisfactory. Anything differences in consistency may be due to variances in measuring or ingredients.
I made this cake yesterday as a birthday cake for a good friend. While baking I was kind of scared cause it took forever (the first time I used my new oven so I was carefully) and it looked so different…but it turned out wonderful! Everybody loved it!
Thanks for this recipe :)
This cake just keeps coming out better and better. This version has a slightly spicy molasses-ey smell, a slight lemon tang, and is so moist it’s almost juicy.
This time I ran out of white sugar, so I substituted one cup sucanat (wholesomesweeteners.com) for white sugar. Sucanat takes a while to dissolve, so I beat the heck out of it in the stand mixer along with the other wet ingredients, then beat in the flour mixture. I made my usual altitude adjustments (less flour & baking powder, more moisture), added about a tsp of lemon juice to the apples, and sort of pushed the apples into the batter in both layers. Oh, and I used canola oil.
I was surprised that this version took only an hour to bake (I’ve started using a thermometer, and the internal temperature was about 200 degrees). And that apparently canola oil is the key to getting rid of the oily taste. And that the sucanat gave it a slightly molasses-ey spicy aroma. The lemon actually brought out the salt; I increased the salt last time because the earlier version was bland, but next time I’ll reduce it again.
I love the incredible moistness, but I have to say that I’ve yet to find a version of the cake that doesn’t fall to bits when it’s cut. But I wouldn’t change a thing. People who want fancy cake can get theirs somewhere else.
I am baking this cake tonight. Can I use apple cider instead of orange juice and can I use pecans instead of walnuts?
I have not tried these adaptations. You will have to let us know how it goes.
I made the cake last night, splitting the mixture between one large (for my husband’s work) and one small (for my coffee date with friends) loaf tin. Anyway the small loaf tin was much thicker and higher and took about an hour longer to cook, and even then the bottom was quite burnt (although not inedible) and the inside not quite cooked! I sliced it up and grilled it before serving to try and get it a bit more cooked. The bigger, flatter one was a bit more of a success cooking-wise, so I will remember that for next time.
I used rice bran oil – being the most neutral-flavoured oil I have – and used 1 cup wholemeal flour and it tasted really delicious. Reading these comments has been very interesting – I also had a thicker mixture that had to be spread, but I can see now it doesn’t really matter.
Thanks for a great recipe – I can’t wait to try it again!
Hi Deb, great great site. thanks for sharing your expertise and recipes. i stumbled upon this site while searching for apple cake recipes and would want to let you know that i tried this recipe you posted… tastes soooo good though i had a little bit of problem with it. I didn’t have a tube pan so i baked it in a 10″ spring form pan. I don’t know what i did wrong as i followed everything here (except the pan) that the bottom of the cake burnt. I had to cut off the whole bottom about 1/4″ thick. I used canola oil by the way. Do you think that was a contributor (or probably just the temp of my oven)? I set it at 175 but I really don’t have a thermometer so I couldn’t check if it was precise. 50 minutes into baking I started smelling burnt cake already but I couldn’t stop it coz it’s still not bake. I bake a total of 1 hour and 35 minutes. Probably the next time, I’ll like the bottom with a double sheet of cookie pan? what do you think?
nonetheless, I am very thankful for your recipe and your site. I would definitely bake this again. Will post a link to your site as soon as I have posted my finished product in my site. thanks a lot.
I just made this cake and I must have tried to flip the bunt pan too early or something because when I tried to get the cake out only half of it came out but it was half like a layer kinda so after taking the suggestion from my sister I manged to get the top half (would have been bottom half if it had flipped right) back into the pan and have covered it with plastic wrap while the pan cools (the cake is already cool to the touch or at least not hot) I’ve cleaned up the big chunks that were left on the counter and it tastes great. Hopefully if I try this again it will come out of the pan like it’s supposed to but we’ll eat it anyway.
Oops forgot to mention that I used apple juice instead of orange juice since my ‘nephew’ who I often watch is allergic to citrus.
Dear Smitten Kitchen, I was looking for an apple cake recipe and stumbed upon your site. I followed your recipe to the T and it turned out fantastic! So simple, so great tasting, with ingredients we can easily find at home. If there was a rating, this goes beyond 5 stars! I am going to bake many of your other recipes. Thank you for sharing! Regards, Doris.
I came upon this recipe while looking for fruit cakes that could be adapted to vegetables, and I wound up substituting grated turnips and carrots for some of the apples, successfully. I’m now calling my version the clean-out-the-crisper cake.
I had this recipe bookmarked for a while. Yesterday, I finally got the tube baking pan and fresh MacIntosh apples. Everything else was already on hand. I followed the recipe exactly. But to my surprise, the batter turned out too liquid rather than thick as other reviewers noted. The consistency was more flowing than that on the picture. I had to add more flour. The cake took nearly 2 hours to bake through. It looked really nice. I tasted this morning and was disappointed in taste and texture.
Even though it is baked through, the crumbs are very dense and so moist as to be almost wet. Not the consistency of the pieces in the photo. Deb has explained that she took the photo of a cake baked in a small ramekin. I would like to see the photo of a slice of the actual big cake. The small cakes have a single layer of batter and apples, while the big one has to layers of both and is therefore much heavier, which might explain the density of the crumb.
The cake tastes too strong of veg. oil (I used grape oil, which is my usual choice for baking, since it is neutral in taste, so I was surprised to taste it so strongly in this cake).
Verdict: right now, it is not a cake I would serve for company (which is a shame – it is so huge, I doubt my husband and I can conquer it without help; maybe I’ll have to try freezing it). However, I am not giving up on this recipe. Too many people had success with it, and it still sounds enticing. When I have a surplus of apples and eggs, I will try it again, this time with less oil and maybe some other changes.
I just finished making this and put it into the oven, and I realized I did it wrong. I put a layer of apples down first in the bottom, then batter, apples, batter. Hopefully the apples in the bottom won’t burn. I guess I’ll just have to turn the cake over. Oops.
Am I the only person who has trouble getting the cake out of the tube pan? After I lifted the cake, still on the tube, out of the sides, I couldn’t get the cake off the tube without it breaking. I tried one spatula, then two, and finally had my husband push the tube out while I held the cake up with the two spatulas. There must be a more efficient way? Please help!
hi hi everyone….i have modified this recipe a bit, i used self-raising flour instead, so i didnt have to add baking powder. also, i have ommited the vanilla, changed orange juice to lemon juice, added in the chopped lemon zest….OMG!!! let me tell u, it turned out so so so successfully :) i wish i could post photo and show to all of u……i also want to thank smittenkitchen.com for giving me this inspiration :)
oh, i forgot to mention…i used first harvest of granny smith apples to substitute MacIntosh, OMG so sweet n lovely!!! 1 thing i would like to share with all, instead of using plain ground cinnamon, i used dutch cinnamon, which is sold in a small packet, my apple cake turned out to be so so so yummy in the tummy!!!
My, oh my, oh my… This is absolutely fantastic. I made individuals cakes with gala apples in over-sized muffins pans so I wouldn’t have to cut a cake for work! They worked really well, I think that next time I will grease the pans a little bit more, I am having trouble removing the little pieces of deliciousness from the pan…
In my opinion, the citrus is a necessary bit of acidity, it adds a brightness and depth to the cake.
sounds yummy!!!! about to make it!!
Quick question… when I made the apple/cinnamon/sugar mix, there was quite a bit of liquid that gathered in the bottom of the bowl. Was I supposed to pour that on the batter with the apples, or would that make the cake too mushy?
Also, I borrowed my mom’s tube pan to make this recipe, and it was her mother’s. When I showed my mom the recipe that I was making for dinner tomorrow, she laughed at the fact that you still had the center of the pan in the cake. She said that you might not know this trick, but that your Baubie probably did… when the cake is done baking, take it out of the oven and flip it over onto a bottle. She said that her mom used to use a Coke bottle, but now they are plastic (so use a wine bottle or something like that). When the cake is done cooling, you can easily remove it from the ring, then flip it onto a serving plate. Thought that was a fun bit of “baking with Baubie” for you!
I am happy to report that it works in a bundt pan! Delicious, in fact. It did rise above the rim of the pan, but that was no problem.. I layered the apples and batter, because I wasn’t quite sure which side up I would serve it…in the end I served it “upside down” (the curvy bundt part on the bottom) and my guests gobbled it up. Also served a whipped cream/creme fraiche mixture and honey mousse. Thank you Deb!
Made this recipe for the Rosh Hashana holiday. I substituted agave syrup for about 1/2 of the sugar… took more time to bake, but turned out delish! Guests loved it. Just gobbled up the last leftover bits. :)
I brought a piece of the delicious last version to work and decided to experiment with freezing it. I’m happy to say that the cake froze well, and seemed to hold together better than the very crumbly un-frozen version. This means that instead of waiting until I can share it with others (or face the danger of fermented or stale cake when I keep it for myself), I can freeze slices and eat them forever!
This is one of the few non-chocolate desserts I actually crave. Oh, and while visiting my folks in CT I got copies of the apple cake recipes my mom had on hand and–sure enough–one was an exact replica of this recipe, and another was a variation with butter instead of oil!
Oops–forgot to say that the THAWED version held together better than the original.
Congrats on the new babe! If he’s anywhere as delicious as this cake, we are all in trouble!
I made this cake this past weekend. It is so freaking good I can barely even stand it. I brought leftovers into work today and all my friends were practically falling over themselves in joy and ecstasy after their first bites. And it just gets better and better the second and third day. This recipe will definitely be a High Holiday tradition in my family!
I scrolled down all the comment in hopes someone would ask this question but they didn’t! By the looks of the photos you must have to have a pan that the bottom drops out along with the middle tube thing (for lack of a better word) :) Mine doesn’t do that. Do you think it would be impossible to remove from a regular tube pan successfully?
I made this last night for work this morning and it was fantastic! On the suggestion of a friend who had made this, I did sub out a 1/2 cup of the sugar for brown sugar. I checked the cake a little more than an hour into baking and found the apples and walnuts on the top were getting a little singed, so I did lightly cover it with foil for the last 25 minutes or so. Next time I make it, I will leave out the nuts – the flavor was great, but the way I incorporated them (with the apples) made the texture a little off to me. It is a fabulous recipe – very appley and delicious!
Can you specify what kind of sugar I am supposed to use? Love the recipe and planning on trying to make it this weekend for Yom Kippur.
This cake is WONDERFUL!! I’ve made many apple cakes in my life but this by all means is the TOP. The cake doesn’t go soggy around the apples and the cake itself has a moist texture and overall an excellent taste!Excellent choice for a tea/coffee party!
I made this last year and it was delicious. My husband raved and said it tasted similar to a cake his mom would bake. Since then I have found my (deceased) mother-in-law’s recipe and learned it is identical! Clearly she got it from the same magazine. He, too, made it sound as if it had come over on the boat with his ancestors!
This cake is amazing! I just made it tonight. I halved the recipe and baked it in a 9-inch cake pan (for about 40 minutes), and misread the recipe so I put the apples on the bottom. Oh, and I didn’t have orange juice, so I replaced it with a tablespoon of Cointreau and one of water.
In any case, it is fantastic and I will be making it again and again and again. I just discovered this blog a few weeks ago and it has quickly become my favorite cooking site on the web. Thank you!
i’m making this recipe today since my parents arrive tomorrow for a week’s visit… i’ve only ever used my tube pan once before, so i’m hoping this will become a standard recipe in my house. i am wondering about replacing some of the oil with applesauce, but thinking that maybe i’d better just follow the recipe for the first time around!
My daughters and I just made this cake – Yummy! It was enjoyed by all! I used a bundt pan and it worked great. We put the apples in the bottom of the pan and spread them up the sides a bit. We used gala apples and cut the sugar in the batter by half (actually used 3/4 c brown sugar and 1/4 c maple syrup) – it was still plenty sweet. I think the biggest difference with the bundt pan is that the cake was done in an hour. Next time (and there will be a next time) I think I will only bake it for 50 – 55 min.
I just made this cake and it is really good.
I made 1/2 of the recipe and baked it in 2 mini bundt pans and 2 mini tube pans. I used Macintosh apples and reduced the sugar in the cake by a little more than 1/4 cup. I also used canola oil.
My kids loved it and so did the people at my husband’s work. Great recipe.
I made this recently and substituted half the oil with plain non-fat yogurt. It was delicious! Making it again tonight in cupcake form instead of bundt pan form. Turning the cake out of the bundt pan resulted in a few apple pieces falling off since I put them in before the batter. It wasn’t the prettiest. But I look forward to the cupcakes turning out cuter.
I love this! Instead of oil I used equal parts applesauce (seemed appropriate) and I added 1 tablespoon of Grand Mariner (which also seemed appropriate) A great fall dish.
My daughter (now 40) brought this recipe home from school in a cookbook her grade 2 or 3 class put together for Mother’s Day. It was one of our favourite recipes. With our many move: I lost my copy, hand written by her. Since we’re Canadian and our Thanksgiving is fast approaching, my mind naturally went to wanting to make this cake. You can just imagine my delight in finding this recipe!
It’s exactly the cake I used to make. As soon as I saw the ingredients, I remembered it!
The cake turned out very good, but I had made substitutions based on what I had on hand – I used lemon juice instead of orange juice and after making the cinnamon-sugar, I only had about a cup of sugar on hand for the batter, so the other cup was raw sugar. I also added a heaping teaspoon of cinnamon to the batter. I baked the cake in jumbo muffin tins and got a dozen mini-cakes. I mixed about half the apples into the batter and then put the rest on top. They tasted great, and weren’t too oily or dense. The one I tried fresh from the oven was the best, but they were still a hit at work the next day.
Oh, I forgot, I also used a stick of butter for half of the oil.
mine is in the oven right now! i love reading all of the substitutions and additions – it reminds me that i DO know how to bake and have license to do whatever i want in my kitchen – so the apples and cranberries (above had a great suggestions for adding this) after being tossed in the sugar,cinnamon and a dose of lime juice, went right into the batter with half white/half brown sugar with some nutmeg(freshly ground) in the batter for good measure. I am using my tube pan aka angel food cake pan and i am raring to go. one comment was that this was a crisper clearer cake – i am using just that – apples that got neglected and now have a chance to shine in a lovely cake from one of my favorite foodie blogs – thanks again smitten
I made this today in a 9×13 glass dish. 325 degrees for an hour. Love it! It’s exactly the way I thought it would be. Thank you so much.
A wonderful recipe. I’ve made it several times and it’s always a great success. However, on one ocassion I misfired on the time and as I was taking it out of the pan, it flopped out with the inside still raw batter. Never mind, I scooped it all up, put it into a baking dish and popped it back into the oven. It was served as a pudding with custard sauce and still got rave reviews.
i just made it last night in two 9′ square pans cuz i wanted a flatter cake for cutting in the office. subed half apple sauce and half oil. iit is just the cake i was looking for. thanks!
Just a warning that I tried to cool the cake upside down and because of the weight of the apples, a good chunk of the cake fell out before it was completely cooled. Next time I’ll be cooling it upright.
I’ve made this several times, using Granny Smith apples (Australian – New Zealand cooking apples). They dont break up like your Macintoshes but stay soft but chunky throughout the cake. It always works a treat, with or without walnuts.
I use a turban mould… I think that’s like an American bundt cake mould, lots of decorations around the side. Anyway, it always rises way over the top of the mould, but comes out smoothly so long as you take it out before it cools.
I just follow the recipe exactly, use all the liquid left over from the apple/sugar/cinnamon mix and bake in a fan overn for 1 hour 30 minutes at 180 degrees Centrigrade… hasn’t failed me yet, and people keep coming back for more!
I made this cake this weekend and it was fabulous. We’re already talking about when I’ll make it again. Thanks to you and your mom for sharing this recipe.
This was great, thanks for sharing! By the way, for anyone interested, you can *totally* get away with not peeling the apples. There are no tough or awkward peely bits to eat around.
Also, for anyone thinking about using a bundt pan…make sure you fill the layers as directed. I thought I’d like a nice apple topping on my cake…but it stuck horribly. There is something to be said for following the directions.
Mine baked in about 1 hr. 10 min. with the convection fan going.
Hi Deb or anyone else who has made this cake!
Maybe I am being neurotic, but I hate to waste good ingredients through my own ignorance.
The recipe shows, 2 3/4 cups flour, sifted . . . Does this mean that I measure first and then sift? I’m pretty sure it does, but I so really want this cake to turn out right!
“Flour, sifted” = Measure it, then sift it. [Had it said “sifted flour” then you’d sift it first, measure it second.]
Thank you, Deb—Much appreciated!
Amazingly moist and delicious. I was low on cinnamon so I subbed out about a teaspoon and a half for garam masala; and added a teaspoon of fresh orange zest. It turned out MARVELOUS :-) Thanks for making my craft club’s annual pumpkin-carving night a tasty one!
i have mad this. just loved it and so did all my guest! thank you! bless you for sharing. Lois
holy cow! what a delicious and beautiful cake! just took this sucker out of the oven and have to pray it will last until my dinner party tomorrow evening… i’m going to need a boyfriend force field… too bad I can’t find one of those on amazon.com!
this will most likely take the place of pie for thanksgiving! and every dinner party from now on…
I have made this twice now with amazing results – both times in a bundt pan.
For the first one, I put all the apples on the bottom with almonds and some butter and extra sugar to caramelize them. Tasted great, but all the weight from the apples and almonds caused the cake to collapse.
The second time, I put half the apples on the bottom (which becomes the top), and the other half in the middle. I put the almonds on the top (which becomes the bottom). Worked great!
Thanks for the great recipe!
Our last three farm share baskets have had about a dozen apples apiece and this recipe is getting good use! I’m also using a bundt pan. I’m doing the recipe as written and then flipping the cake twice (so what would ordinarily be the top of the bundt cake is the bottom.. apples still on top). It makes for a weird display.. but I like it.
Great recipe. Many thanks!
I LOVE this recipe!!!!!!! I cake bake at ALL! but I made this work! thanks very clear instrutions!!! I will use this for ever BIG hit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
HOW DO U PRINT THIS RECIPE?
There’s a “print” link at the bottom of each post, before the comments begin.
Do I have to use a tube pan? Would a 9 x12 or 11 x 14 work as well? I have a crowd coming.
Yum! I halved the recipe and baked it in a 9″ round cake pan for 40 min. I also substituted half the oil for applesauce. It looked, smelled and most importantly, tasted lovely! Thanks for another wonderful recipe!
I made this cake this morning and had to cook it for very close to two hours. Has anyone else had this prbolem? I just took it out of the oven.
I had to write like all those before me and tell you that I just got tons of compliments for the cake – I too made one substitution. Instead of orange juice, which I kept forgetting to get from the store, I used cranberry juice and I also used 1/2 less sugar in the batter portion of the recipe. I made the cake for our Halloween potluck and it was my 2nd time making it in two weeks. The first time I made it because I had a hankering for apple cake. I will probably experiment with it more too and try some of the suggestions above. Thanks for putting this recipe up. I always like recipes that seem easy and this was very easy. :-)
I just made this cake today. I hope it comes out ok because the measurement for flour differs. The homemade recipe calls for 3 cups of flour, but the print out recipe calls for 2 3/4 cups of sifted flour. I used the printed recipe and I’m wondering why the cake is taking so long to be cake-like. Every time I test it for doneness it doesn’t see to be cooked enough. I finally gave up the oven, so I hope when it cools it will be ok. Do you think it’s the 1/4 less flour or is it supposed to be like this?
I made this cake. Mine was disappointing. I used a heavy bundt pan (no tube pan). There wasn’t room for all of the apples, and I, too, was unsure about adding the juice to the batter in the pan, so used only part of it. Also, I used 1/2 c butter, 1/2 c oil.
Baking time is deceiving—tester wasn’t clean after 1 h, 45 min, so took cake out anyway. Cake is dry. Maybe tester wasn’t clean due to hitting apples? The “crust” is very dark and thick, too, maybe due to the butter and heavy pan?
Next time, I might add the apple liquid to the batter in the bowl and also bring cake out of oven sooner. ALSO will get a tube pan!
Thanks for the recipe. I look forward to making it again.
marianne — There is less flour in this adapted version to make the recipe more user-friendly. My mother’s version has you sift an unspecified amount of flour and measure 3 cups from it, which is a pesky way to do it. This one has you sift the flour that you’ve already measured, dialing it back to account for increased volume.
Just made the cake today, because it’s Autumn and this was at the top of a google search. Well, I must have a small bundt pan, because I could have halved the recipe and it would have been plenty. As it was, I had to transfer some to a small ceramic baking dish, which took about 45 minutes to cook. The Bundt pan was taking almost 2 hours, and I finally took it out. From my experience, if the cake is dry today, it won’t be tomorrow…with the apples in it and all. I prefer cooking it as a sheet, just cooks faster and is easier to manage. Also, my husband doesn’t eat Wheat, so made it with Gluten free flour and olive oil, and ran out of white sugar so added some brown. Next time I’ll try to halve the recipe and use half oil half apple sauce. my husband likes it, but my daughter won’t try it…what kid doesn’t like apple cake??
I just found your blog last night, I’m really glad I did! I am excited to make this cake, but am wondering if anyone has advice on baking in the small loaf pans to give as gifts. I have no idea if I would need to change the temp and where to start with time.
I made this cake this weekend using fresh picked apples from the tree in my mom’s backyard for her birthday and had rave reviews. It was amazing. I could NOT stop licking the bowl clean after pouring the batter into the pan. (I’ll risk the raw egg issues for that much deliciousness!) The Orange-Vanilla cake seems like it would be amazing on it’s own.
Made this last night and my roommate could not wait for it to cool enough to eat a slice! I used a 9 x 13 calphalon pan and still layered the apples (I used 4 Macs and 2 Granny Smiths) in between the batter. It only took 1 hr 20 mins for mine to cook all the way through. Absolutely delicious!
Your apple cake is now in my oven and after reading all the comments, I am optimistic about the results. I have a question that I have not seen addressed: What is the desired amount of chopped apples in measurement (cup) terms?
made this twice in the last week. i did it with LOTS of apples (6, but some were really big) and the second time i mixed the apples with the batter before putting it in the bundt. delish. thanks!
Alright, I’ve made this cake twice already this month and my co-workers and husband’s co-workers love me. The recipe is perfect, especially if you add the nuts. I plan on making this for many Fall seasons to come.
YUM!! Mine looked *exactly* like the picture. The bottom got a little dry and is a bit of a crust to cut through, but the flavor is fantastic. So nice to have a mix-in-the-bowl recipe that doesn’t require softened butter. Moist, homey, not too sweet, and lovely scent of apples and cinnamon. Will be making this often.
Deb, I noticed someone asking about a good substitute for the 1 cup of oil called for in the recipe. I have used applesauce for a substitute for half of the oil in many other cake recipes. I tried this with your recipe and and it turned out great. I used the bundt pan (would do it in the tube pan next time to get the beauty of the apples on top!) and I did several loaf pans so I could share with neighbors. It all worked out great! I will definitely make this delightful cake again. Thanks! Happy Harvest! Rosie
Just made mom’s apple cake for the second time. I used the last of the apples we had from when we went apple picking. It came out marvelously. I just substituted 8 oz of sugar-free applesauce for the oil. It really is a scrumptious, beautiful cake.
This cake is on it’s way into my oven right now, but with one small change… I’m using Granny Smiths! ;) Can’t wait to taste!
Deb! What an amazing recipe! It was everything I could do to hold myself back from getting a second slice! I made mine with Granny Smith apples. The tart apples were a nice contrast to the sweet cake. And I don’t know about you, but the crust was my favorite part! So crunchy and sweet! Wow, this recipe is absolutely gonna be a keeper for me!
PS: So sorry for those who tried it and didn’t get optimal results. They don’t know what they’re missing. ;D
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention I halved the recipe and baked it in a 9×5-inch loaf pan. The baking time was about an 50-60 minutes, but I lost track near the end.
Okay – first? I just found your blog and I am ADDICTED and DROOLING. I subscribed, I IM’d your url to all my friends and I’m in LOVE.
Second – You inspired me to make this apple cake to take to my boyfriend’s parents house for Thanksgiving. It’s the first time I’m meeting them and I trust that this cake will ensure that they will like me. I have a question, though… how many days in advance can I make this cake so that it will be fresh and delicious? I was thinking of making it on a Sunday and then bringing it to them Wednesday. I’d keep it in an air tight container. Is that too soon in advance?
Thanks so much!
Jozette — It keeps well, it is very moist. But more than a day or two, I’d keep it in the fridge.
Made this cake tonite, absolutely delicious. I did not change a thing.
im baking it right now while typing thz…but im not sure abt the quatity of d apples to use as the size here in Japan r different…can u roughly give me an estimation how many cups or grams i shld use?i used 3 large apples but cant fit into the pan as too much,so kept half of it…please advise…btw the aroma is killing me,dunno how it will turn out….
I’d also like to know a gram measurement for the apples. The size varies so much among the varieties. Fuji, for example are larger than Macs, so I’d use 5? Or maybe still 6 since Fuji is a subtler taste?
I’ve never checked the weight but also don’t ever use less than 6 apples. No adjustments are needed, unless your apples are unusually small, then use a 7th.
I made this the other day for a picnic with a couple of friends. I was a little scared it did not turn out right because of the batter’s consistency. The cake baked for about 40 minutes as well, so I was scared it was under baked. Once I cut into the cake however, it was pure magic. Thank you for this great recipe. It was extremely easy and delicious, coming from a 19 yr old college student. Thanks! (:
I made this tonight, much too late to go to the grocery store, so I made a bunch of substitutions for what I had available:
-I only had 4 apples, so I substituted grated carrots for the rest.
-Pomegranate juice instead of OJ
-6 egg whites + 2 tsp oil instead of the eggs
I baked it in a 9×13 pan, and it came out fantastic! Perfect thing to greet my dad who just arrived from the airport!
I loved this cake! I just made it for a big group of guys (my husband and his friends) and they all loved it. One of them even asked for it for his birthday. :)
And I did make one substitute to make it a little bit healthier: instead of using 1 c. oil, I used 1/2 cc. oil and 1/2 c. unsweetened apple sauce. And for WHEN I make it again (not if), I will most likely decrease the sugar by 1/2 c.
Thank you so much!
Hello! I’m sure I found a recipe for poached quince cake on smitten kitchen just a few days ago, but now it seems to have disappeared….is there any chance you just took it off the site, and might send it in an email? Or if I’m wrong, and you never had a quince recipe up here, I would still love to see any quince dessert recipe that you might have….
Deb, thanks for your help. Sorry I haven’t responded sooner. I’m making the cake again because it was a huge hit!! Thanks so much for a “forever recipe”!! Marianne
Wow! First of all, these comments span over a year! You rarely see that for a recipe.
Secondly, my cake is in the oven ( in a Bundt pan) and by the texture I am sensing this one will come out great.Tried making a different Bundt cake recipe a month ago with the hand picked apples and it wasnt that great I think I overcooked it.Will be watching this one closely… Thanks for the great post!
My Mom has been making this cake for, oh, almost fifty years, and I’ve been making it for my family for at least thirty…..I made six of them for my son’s bar mitzvah luncheon years ago. It’s a wonderful cake that will make your reputation as a great cook. One elderly gentleman tasted this once and told me he could make me a millionaire if I wanted to go in to business – on this cake alone! It freezes well, and like other comments, tastes even better the next day. It’s also great for breakfast with a cup of coffee or glass of cold milk.
Wow the stunning pictures ALONE sold me on running out and buying a tube pan! haha. I think that pan will only exist for this recipe! I’ve made this recipe twice already, the first time I made a half recipe (using granny smiths) which didn’t look nearly as amazing because the apples were more spread out, but it was still delicious. The second time, I finally found McIntosh apples in my store and made the full recipe. It really did look like your picture…well I sorta singed a few apples on top but it still looked good :) And it was DEVOURED when I brought it to church. Thanks for sharing such a great recipe!
Just made this lovely cake for our thankgiving dinner tomorrow. and it came out amazing looking. I did it in a cathedral style bundt pan so i didnt put any apple on the top(my bottom). heres a link to my face book album i upload all my cakes to
http://www.facebook.com/Bobwich and its under photos and bobs cakes
I just made the cake this year for Thanksgiving dinner and it was a hit I will add this to my keeper box. I also cooked mine in a bundt cake pan. It took a bit to get it out but it came out whole and delicious.
This is a foolproof cake, i love your recipe. i have substituted every kind of pan, lemon juice & apple juice for the orange, decreased the amt of sugar & even changed the type of flour, depending on what i happened to have in the pantry. it always turns out perfect every time.
This cake was sooooo great! I tweaked it by making it vegan and it was delicious and super moist. Instead of the 4 eggs, I used 4 tablespoons of corn starch, 1 cup of soymilk and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. Thanksgiving was complete with this!
I made this cake (http://cookingupaphd.wordpress.com/2009/12/13/apple-cake-two-ways/#more-290) with just two slight variations (a bundt pan instead of a tube pan and I added a glaze). This cake was a huge hit.
Delicious! Made this cake for Christmas dinner and everyone commented on how good it was. I got a little concerned when the top became very brown with 10 minutes left of baking but I simply put aluminum foil on top and let it finishing baking. Also used a tube pan and lined the bottom with parchment paper which made removing the cake from the pan very easy. Thank you for a great recipe.
Thank you for posting this recipe with such appetizing pictures. I am thinking about making this cake but am not sure if the recipe calls for all-purpose flour or cake flour. Could you help me out? Thank you.
Evonne — All-purpose. You can assume that in any recipe that doesn’t list the type. Enjoy!
Hi Deb, I’m new here!
I was just looking for an apple cake recipe and 3 days ago and I found this one! It was our dessert for our New Year’s Eve Dinner! Everyone enjoyed it and the taste was really delightful! Thank you for sharing such a delightful cake recipe! I’ll try more of your older posts! Happy New Year 2010! Reagards, from Venezuela!
This is awesome. I’ve already made it couple of times in past 2 months.
So, I royally bunged this up but it came out fantastic anyway. Hooray for tasty accidents.
I managed to put the 2 cups sugar in the apples and then five, count them FIVE TBSP of cinnamon in that as well. I don’t know what I was thinking. New stove, overly excited to bake something in it. I suppose.
So I put the 5 TBSP of sugar in the cake.
Then I realized I was out of veg oil, so I used applesauce.
Then I mixed the eggs in with the wet ingredients instead of adding them later. I swear I read the recipe twice before I dove in!
Duh, duh, duh!
At this point, I just had to run with it and then Then I remembered I lent my tube pan to a friend over the holidays so I baked the cake in a 9×13 Pyrex. I really had to pack those apples in there. Boy howdy!
The result was spectacular. I think baking it in a flat pan is what saved me. The apples and sugar and cinnamon oozed into the cake as it rose and took care of all those bungles I made. The cake was moist and delicious and pleased my husband because he LOVES sweet apple desserts where the apples are the sweetest part.
Next time though, I’d like to get it right for the sake of trying it out the way it’s supposed to be made. Cheers!
Oh, and I baked it for an hour instead of an hour and a half. Since it wasn’t as dense as the tube pan, it didn’t take as long.
So, I had to make this. Note that my husband is mildly (wildly) obsessed with apple cake and in his life-long hunt for the perfect apple cake has ended with my Mom’s. Which is totally different from this one. My Mom makes it for him all the time and silently wonders how a person cannot tire from eating the same cake again and again and again. But no other apple cakes will do! Oh, he will EAT others but hardly ever will he even compare them to the one-and-only apple cake.
Until today. I made this cake, although I didn’t have orange juice in the house and replaced it with homemade quince juice (and forgot that it is actually quince syrup, duh!). But it turned out very nice, I thought. The husband, well… The husband uttered the highest praise: “This might almost rival your Mom’s apple cake. Make this again.” And then he went for a second piece.
So, there. I’m having a slice for a before-bed something-or-other. Thanks for the recipe and tell your Mom that this made my day. And my permanent stash of go-to recipes.
This cake is glorious! Why all the changes and substitutions people — don’t mess with perfection! Though I do have to admit, I did have to substitute one ingredient, ONCE… was out of orange juice, and I have a rather prolific lime tree, so I used lime juice instead… absolutely phenomenal!
Since I discovered this recipe almost a year ago, I have made it quite a few times, I’ve done it in a tube pan, I’ve done it in a bundt pan [put all of the apples in the middles, and don’t let them touch the sides, so that the cake completely surrounds them… heaven!], and I’ve done it in a 9×13… actually the 9×13 is my usual mode of delivery for this cake… I have probably made it 9-10 times easily, in my kitchen, my Mom’s kitchen, my sister’s kitchen, the kitchen at my local community theater… and I have never had a problem… hats off to you Deb — you rock!
I made this cake after my boyfriend asked for it!!! It was a very simple question like ‘Do you know how to make an apple cake?’. Your recipie really gave me the answer. And guess what ….it was a HUGE success! Thank you so much!
Tried it yesterday and it is delicious!!! I put apple juice did not have orange juice on hand. Also i cut the sugar to 1 cup. I will surely make it again.
This was wonderful!
A friend brought this cake by last night to help welcome in our newborn son. The whole family loved it and my husband insisted I get the recipe, which in turn led me to your site. I’m anxious to try it out, as well as some of your Indian recipes (as my husband hails from Delhi). Thanks for cooking!
I tried this cake yesterday in a 9×13″ pan, and used two layers. It was absolutely delicious. It’s half gone, and I was the only one home!
For anyone looking for a lighter version of this cake – I suggest substituting about half of the oil with plain yogurt. It still turns out moist and delicious, but lighter. I’m sure applesauce would work as well, but yogurt is my personal preference. I’ve made this in both a regular large springform and a bundt pan and both have worked fine.
I just baked it!
It was delicious, specially on the edges, the apples are caramelized, taste awesome!
I have been making this recipe for about the last 10 years with a few variations. The apples must be sliced thinly, there are no nuts and I do two layers of apples with batter between. It is my son’s favorite breakfast food, and you are right — it does taste better the next day — and the day after that too. But I’ll go you one better on the recipe — I sift nothing and mix the batter in one bowl with a wire whisk. It would probably be the easiest cake in the world if you didn’t have to slice and peel the apples.
I am using Gala apples. I only have 1 cup of sugar. Can I use brown sugar and/or molasses for the other cup?
I had 2kgs of apples and a dozen eggs and didn’t know what to do with them all, so I went searching and searching in my cookbooks and on the internet for an apple cake that needed lots of apples and eggs – and this was it!
I sprinkled in the walnuts before I spread the apples on each layer. I didn’t need 1 cup of walnuts, 1/2 cup was enough. I used brown sugar (3 tbsp and 1 cup, not 5 tbsp and 2 cups) and olive oil instead of vegetable oil.
I wasn’t sure when the recipe said ‘degrees’ whether it meant F or C, but I soon realised it meant F as my oven only goes to 250 degrees C! I had to find a F to C converter to work out what I needed to set the oven to. haha!
This great cake has given me a good reason to pull out my new mixmaster too! Can’t wait to eat it! Thanks Deb for the family recipe! Cheers from downunder (Australia!)
I added a TBSP of honey into the apple mixture. (Compliments of my Aunt Carole!) Yummy!
Saying this cake is incredibly delicious is like stating the sky is blue. Nonetheless, . I am baking one right now (the whole apartment smells like cinnamon) and just had to say thanks to you and your mom for all the deliciousness I know awaits me!
I noticed that your picture shows the cake still on the tube. What is the secret for taking the cake completely out of the pan?
A tube pan with a removable bottom is the easiest method.
This cake came out wonderfully in a 9 x 13 (though wasn’t, of course, as pretty a shape as a tube). I also substituted buttermilk for the orange juice and everything was just fine!
Deb, I have so appreciated this site as I’m a college student learning to cook for myself on limited time and space (imagine carrying everything you need up 2 flights of stairs before you bake anything)! Your advice is so helpful and your lack of fear in taking on seemingly-too-fussy recipes gives me courage to do the same. I’m limited in the recipes I can test for now, but I’m sure I will come here even more once I have my own kitchen. Thank you again!
I tried this recipe last night to serve today with brunch, along with boozy baked french toast. It is delicious, but I don’t have a tube pan and made it in a bundt pan instead…it stuck. That’s okay, I’m just slicing it and serving it on a platter to make up for the horrendous outer appearance. Sliced it looks as delicious as it tastes with the layers of apples and spongy moist coffee cake. It is very yummy!
Of Course, you can use this in a bundt or a tube pan, makes no difference. The hole in the middle of either makes it so the cake batter will cook and not be a globby mess in the center of the cake.
Of course, you need to grease the pan well, with spray or shortening, not oil, as it will run , and I would recommend dusting it with flour as well. It sticks because of the apple, sugar mixture. That is especially important when using a bundt pan, which is why you never see one unless it has a no stick surface. Probably the cake would exit the pan better if its left to cool for quite a while.
I received this recipe 30 some years ago from my Aunt. It was her Grandmothers recipe. It is terrific to see that someone else uses the same. Best apple cake and I have never changed the ingredients. I have made in a tube pan or bundt pan. The only thing I have done differently at times is to mix the apples in the batter instead of layering.
I have the same apple cake recipe from my mother-in-law, who was Irish and German. It’s exact. I used Granny Smith apples with great results. If you use a bundt pan, you have to flip the cake after it comes out of the pan to have the apples on top. I also believe I have heard that it is called a Jewish apple cake because it contains no dairy products and thus can be eaten without committing a sin.
I should say when taking the cake out of a bundt pan, you need to flip it, then flip it again. Also, greasing and flouring the sides and center tube makes removal of the cake a snap.
It is fantastically delicious.
I made this last night using 7 smallish gala apples, half whole wheat flour, and a little less sugar than called for. Baked for about an hour and 10-15 mins, it was delicious and not overcooked or dry.
Sadly, I am out of all-purpose flour at the moment and I need to make a dessert for a family dinner tonight. Could I use cake flour in this recipe and it turn out okay?
Finally got around to making this cake Sunday. So easy and so very delicious. My entire family loved it. I’m thinking the next time I make it I might add a crumb top. Thank you so much for the recipe!
This cake is great. I have made it numerous times over the last year.
I have recently become vegan and want to veganize this. Was wondering what purpose the eggs have in the cake to bind or leaven?
Love love love
Just made this last night.
So easy and wonderfully tasty!
I used 2 large Pacific Rose apples and 2 small ‘I-don’t-know’what-kind’ and baked it for 1hr 15min and it is great!
Added a teaspoon of rhum and cinnamon to your recipe. Excellent results.
Hi, my name is Luiza and I’m eleven.
I am Brazilian and I loved this recipe.
Kisses for the Americans !!
Another great smitten kitchen recipe – thank you so much! I’ve been on the look out for the perfect-oil-based-apple-cake-recipe-ever and think that this one is very worthy of the title. It baked up really nicely in my silicon bundt pan. I admit to dialing down the 2 cups of sugar to 1 cup – with no adverse effects to the sweetness in my opinion – the apples/cinnamon/sugar combo keeps it just the right amount of sweet :)
Help! Yesterday I made Mom’s Apple Cake and it is terribly
dry!!!! Very disappointing. I followed the recipe to the
letter and baked it at 350 in oven for one hour and a half.
Too Long???? Used 6 Granny Smith Apples, should I have
used more? Please advise, anybody . . . Marianne
Wow…I made this…it’s perfect. Look no further. I did however, notice the cooking time is off. If you use a 10 inch tube, I’m assuming that the time is still a little long. I cooked it for 65 minutes and it was moist and perfect. I think any longer would have been a dried up mess. Marianne, try it again, less cooking time.
Hi ..I would like to know if I can make this cake without the eggs?
Can I substitute say the same qty of Buttermilk for the 4 eggs?
Do you know the name of your mom’s neighbor or the magazine? My mom has been making the same cake since I was a child and has lived in NY. I lost the copy she gave me and took a chance there was one similar on the web. And there it is, exactly. Her recipe card looks like your mom’s! Anyway, just curious! Blessings!
today’s the second time this week I’ve made this cake. I’ve been using Spitzenberg apples, cut the sugar by half, added orange zest, and reduced the baking time to 50 – 55 minutes. Maybe it’s because I’m using less sugar but any more time in the oven and the cake would definitely be dry. It’s an excellent apple cake, my new favorite.
I’m currently baking this, and my apartment smells like fall! Thanks so much for sharing. I can’t wait for it to be done!
i just made this cake a few days ago and it was amazing! My whole family loved it and begged me to make it more often. I made it in a bundt pan and greased it heavily with crisco and it came out perfectly! I used fuji apples too because the store was out of macintosh, and it still turned out so yummy! Thanks soooo much for this recipe!
Rosh Hashana is too early and i’m not ready to switch from peaches to apples.
…thinking that this cake might work great with peaches for a Labor Day BBQ this weekend and wondering whether the recipe needs adjusting for the juicier peaches?
The cake looks wonderful and I have one in the oven right now. Strange that a bunch of folks are talking about baking this for LESS time — at 1.5 hours mine is still very undercooked inside… but I’m a little worried that if I turn the oven up the apples on top will burn. Maybe it’s time for time tinfoil?
YUM!!! Just pulled this out of the oven and it looks and smells like the best apple cake that I have ever encountered. I don’t know how it will last two more days until Rosh Hashanah-it definitely won’t be served whole….I added some sugary crumb topping that was leftover from my round sweet Rosh Hashanh challah and the cake looks so pretty and tasty. Can’t wait!! thanks Deb.
OH-and I added the optional walnuts but are they supposed to be mixed into the batter of the cake or layered with the apples? I mixed them straight into the batter and I think it will taste great that way. But just wondering…
How many people does this serve? Thanks!
A ton. :) Seriously, this cake is enormous. I’ve seen 16 slices suggested for other tube cakes but you could probably stretch it because it is so tall.
I just multiplied this recipe by 20 and baked it in five full sized hotel pans for a Rosh Hashana Dinner for 250 people.
Looks like its going to be great. Thanks!
I am just about to bake this and am reading over the recipe. One quick question. Do the nuts go in the batter or are the mixed in with the apples? Thanks
This is essentially the same cake I bake every year for Rosh Hashana from the cookbook “California Kosher”. I thought maybe I would look around for a new recipe this year, found this on the web and decided I’d stick by the tried and true.
second year in a row I’ve made this for the Rosh. (Not counting the other times I make it during the year, haha) It’s fantastic!! Shana Tova Deb!
OOPS!!! Just remembered that we don’t eat nuts on Rosh Hashanah! So I just put my cake with walnuts in the freezer to be served on Sukkos and I’m going to quickly whip up another cake before Yom Tov. Not that we don’t have other desserts….but it wouldn’t be Rosh Hashanah without an apple cake.
This is really awesome cake! It came out superb!
This is the 1st time I’ve made a cake like this for the Rosh and it was AMAZING!! And yes, even better the 2nd day. I did use white whole wheat flower and didn’t even bother pealing the apples and it was incredible! Yum!
I just made this cake for Rosh Hashana and it was fabulous. I baked it in a 9”x13” pan and it worked very well. I layered the apples, with the apples as the last layer, so very good. It tastes so much like the cake my grandmother made. My family loved it.
I made it (without eggs) for Rosh Hashana and it was the hit of the dinner. I added an apple butter drizzle to the cake, poked holes and poured it on and it was really fab. Thanks for the recipes, the inspiration and the amazing photographs. Keep ’em coming.
I made this cake last year during apple season and sold it at the farmers market, It was loved by all. I will be making it again starting this Saturday
Amazing cake, best that I have eaten. I made it for 30 yeare (always to rave reviews). Lost the reciepe and have found it again. Thank you
We enjoyed this a great deal at our Erev Yom Kippur dinner tonight! I made it in a bundt pan and it was perfect and beautiful!
Fantastic! I do think that the bottom of the cake is a little more done than the rest, and next time might try it in a 9 X 13 pan, especially if I’m feeding a crowd. In a 9 X 13, alas, it will look much less gorgeous, and I’m thinking more apples might be needed to cover the longer surface. The tube pan makes it so beautifully high and dense for its diameter, that I think the challenge is for the interior of the cake to be done without overbaking the bottom or sides.
For the tube pan I used 6 good-sized Granny Smith apples, and threw in a tbsp of lemon juice into the cut apples, cinnamon and sugar.
This is my go-to apple cake for sure, no need for me to hold onto to the other recipes I have. It is seldom that I make something that ends up looking just like the picture. Thank you, deb!
update: Oh me of little faith! The cake was terrific, and scarfed up last night.
Making it a day or two in advance, as originally suggested, makes the aroma, flavor, and moistness even more pronounced. It was NOT overbaked on the bottom, just dark in color.
My own little addition of some melted apple jelly as a little glaze over the apples on top (after the cake came out of the oven), made the top shiny and even more enticing. Gilding the lily, so to speak.
I just took these beautiful cakes out of their pans…OMG. I baked them in 2 8″ loaf pans and they are gorgeous, domed and appled (no such word….but it fits!). The thing I love most is the chunky apple pieces that cover the top of the cake. That is definitely the thing that tempted me to make this apple cake over others I have looked at. Your photo and description drew me right in…..thanks for sharing a bit of your family history- can’t wait to dive in.
one out of 100 i’ve tried, and I must say my husband and the kids were very pleased! it has become a regular request and more of a necessity at all family events. It has a wonderful apple flavor, and a moist, rich texture. Thankyou so much for the recipie. I was about to give up on the whole apple cake idea.
OH MY – this cake is superb. Definitely one for the family recipe book. Thank you!
could you add bananas to this recipe? and can use brown sugar for the apples instead? the recipe looks good, but too sweat. will i still taste the apple tartness?
I have made this cake twice…wonderful both times!! My family prefers a more tart apple so I use Granny Smiths…I also have used pecans instead of walnuts…Just an amazing cake…
I just put this into the oven! I got a little scared after mixing the dry and wet ingredients before adding the eggs since it seemed a little dry, but then the 4 eggs did the trick! I added the Walnuts to the top of the cake. I’m so excited to try it! I went apple picking yesterday and have 10 lbs of apples to use up… :)
This was fantastic! I chopped some Kraft caramels and added them to the apple mixture and WOW was the cake amazing. The bf proclaimed it the best cake I’ve ever made (and I’ve made quite a few). Thanks for the wonderful recipe.
I have cut up apples in the freezer- can i use those for this cake?? let me konw ASAP!!!
p.s. you are great.
I baked this for my neighbor’s potluck. Everybody loved it.
This is my first OIL cake since my husband and I believe in BUTTER!
So I was a little worried about using oil and also adding eggs after mixing wet and dry ingredients (like Kait commented Sep 26). So, I added eggs to wet first then added day ingredients, sorry. But it turned out so tasty! Can I substitute oil for melted butter?
I really enjoy your recipes and pictures.
PS. I forgot to mention that I reduced sugar down to 1 1/4 Cups instead of 2 Cups.
That was perfect. Can’t wait to try another recipe.
This cake is delicious!! I could not find Macintosh Apples at my grocery store so I used three Honey Crisp apples and three Gala apples! Very good, sweet combination!! First cake to be completely eaten at my house in ages … This is my father’s new favorite cake!! Thanks!!
Love it love it Love it! Just made it the other day from my apples from apple picking.
oh my. this is too good! I made two yesterday and I’m afraid that they won’t last long – so delicious!!
I halved the recipe and made two small cakes in 6″ round pans. It came out perfectly and they do indeed rise quite a bit. similar to when i made your rhubarb crumb cake, i was worried when i filled the pans that there wasn’t enough batter but, thinking about the crumb cake, told my self not to worry – it will rise. sure enough! full, fluffy cakes! in the small pans they cooked for 45 mintues but i have a dinky little convection oven so that time may vary with a traditional oven. used rubinette apples (a common variety here in Paris, not sure what they are in english) and rapeseed oil (what i had one hand) – a perfect welcome to October!! thank you so much for all your amazing work on this blog!
I made this and it was absolutely delicious. My whole family enjoyed it so much. Thank you for sharing it.
Hi Deb! I made your mom’s apple cake earlier this week and it tasted amazing. I, too, was surprised and skeptical at the lack of butter, but it worked! The only thing is that it had a hard time sticking together so I ate it with a spoon.
this cake is amazing. i made it in a bundt pan and it came out perfectly after about 1hr 15mn. it rose beautifully, it was moist but airy, and not too sweet (i used lemon juice bc i had no OJ, and <1.5C of sugar)
i used 2/3 of a bag of small mushy apples (no crunch = deeply unappetizing uncooked) – that took forever to cut up, but it was SO worth it. i am sure i will make this again and again.
Hi! This is my first time commenting. I made this cake for my little gal’s actual birthday, the day she was born. We shared it with the midwives before they left, the big sister blew the candle out on behalf of her tiny newborn sister. I just made it again to celebrate that little one’s first year outside of the womb, she was born just weeks after your Jacob. I made it with butter instead of oil, made two 8 inch rounds, iced lightly with brown butter icing (!!!!!!) It was fantastic! I read your blog just about daily and it is my go-to for dependable, inspired and down- right delicious food. Thank you! I’m really looking forward to your cookbook, btw.
i love that fall is here and since every friday is bake good friday, which means yes, i bake every friday for work, apples have been the mai theme for the past couple weeks! i cannot wait to go home and make this!! thanks for another great recipe!
Thanks for this wonderful recipe! Made it for my family last night, and everyone loved it!
i live in Scotland but my husband is Norwegian – Norway has a long history of delicious apple cakes – but yours beats them all. Since I discovered your web site I have made lots of your recipes and all turned out perfectly – I cant tell you how many friends I have passed on this apple cake recipe to – my kids and grandkids adore it – I sometimes put flaked almonds on the top and they brown nicely when the cake is baking and I drizzle over a little icing sugar made up with water – looks pretty. One question – does this cake freeze well>. Thank you for all your wonderful recipes and a glimpse into your happy life.
Lindsay — It should freeze very well. Glad you’re enjoying the site!
Cake great!!! Having a little trouble. Apples all sink to centre. Yours looks great with them on top. Maybe size of tube pan. What diameter do you use?
Thanks You have made me the Jewish Prince of deserts in Europe.
Delicious cake. Not having a springform pan, I made the cake in two 9-inch cake pans with removable bottoms (essentially two cakes from one recipe). I included 2 layers of batter and apples in each pan. Instead of 1 cup of oil, I used 3/4 cup oil mixed with 1/4 cup melted butter, and pecans instead of walnuts. Otherwise, I stuck to the recipe, and the results were terrific. Kept one of the cakes and gave the other to very happy neighbors.
Juat made this recipe & only had apple cider instead of orange juice and made it in a bundt pan. Put apples in the bottom of the pan. This is a wonderful cake. My husband is raving. Taking it to friends after church tomorrow.
I reviewed the guidelines & don’t know what the problem is.
The perfect fall cake. We are devouring it as I type….no need for any ice cream or gelato with this dessert. It stands on its own. I will be making this cake over and over again….definitely a keeper!
Well we made it and it was great! Thanks for the recipe
Well finally made it …..thanks for the recipe….jusst wonderful!!!THANKS ONCE MORE!!!
I am in a harvest show coming up and saw this recipe. I wanted to make this for the show but will be making mini cupcakes instead of the cake. Can you tell me how I should make this using this recip? Should I cook the apples first so their tender and then add them to each mini cupcake?? Help, I bake tomorrow and just saw the time for the cake to cook in the oven and each mini cupcake won’t take long to cook. I was worried about the apples not being tender…..Thanks!!
Thank you so much for this great recipe. My friends & I enjoyed it!
This cake is really nice. I halved it and baked it in a loaf pan, which worked really well.
WOW This cake is so so so so moist!!!! and soooooooooo GOOD Ijust made it and
my Husband almost eat the whole thing lol Thanks Debbie:)
Just wanted to say that I have made this cake about 4 times now using this recipe. You would think that I would have printed it by now but every time I just look it up on google and park the laptop on the counter! I just wanted to post that everytime I make it it is a little bit different…a little more of this, a little less of that, a different pan (I don’t have a bundt pan yet so I have been using glass pyrex of many different sizes). Anyways, it always comes out awesome. I am going to make it again today using local apples from an orchard down the street, mostly cortland and empires but I am sure it will be yummy as usual. Thanks!
I was supposed to make an apple pie for a potluck for tomorrow, but I misread the recipe (definitely not a regular pie!) and was missing three significant ingredients. So I decided to make this cake instead – and halfway through realized I didn’t have eggs! (Which of course caused me to go on a mini-rant with language not appropriate for this website.) So I substituted plain yogurt for the eggs, and lemon juice and maple syrup for the orange juice. Let’s keep our fingers crossed!
I am trying this cake as we speak. The batter was really difficult to pour. I hope I didn’t screw it up. Anyway, awesome recipe. I am making it in place of a traditional birthday cake for my sister.
I made this cake a few weeks ago for my friend’s birthday. I made a few minor ingredient swap outs, converted it to be made in a bundt pan, and then I topped the cake with a buttered rum glaze. It turned out BEAUTIFULLY!
Blogged about it here (with pics): http://lindseysluscious.blogspot.com/2010/10/apples-apples-apples.html
I tried this cake this past weekend (perfect fall day in New England for apple cake!) and it didn’t bake all the way through! I used a tube pan like the recipe says and while the outside, bottom, and top were cooked perfectly (and deliciously) the inside ring was still raw after 1 hour and 45 minutes. Anyone have any idea what I did wrong? I took it out for fear of overcooking the rest of the cake but clearly I should have left it in longer?
I had a glut of apples from a recent trip to the orchard, and have been trying to think of things to use them up in. I just made this last night and it was terrific! I made it in a Bundt pan (layered with batter, apples, batter, apples, batter) – I was a little afraid it would overflow, but it rose just to the top of the pan. I added a few splashes of rum to the apples – perfect! My husband took some of it to work today and it was devoured, and he got lots of requests for the recipe. Thanks for another great recipe!
Great recipe.. i cooked it, and came out a terrific cake. thanks.
do you think i can swap the orange juice with some concentrated brewed coffee? we have an apple tree in our backyard and we need to use them all up now that it’s fall!
I worked assiduously at ruining this cake and it STILL turned out fabulously delicious. I pre-measured all of my dry ingredients so I could make it quickly in the afternoon and thought I’d also measure the dry ingredients for some equally autumnal Ginger Snaps. You know what happened here, right? I knew it as soon as the gingery/cinnamony/clovey-ness of the gingersnaps wafted up to my nose — FROM the mixing bowl containing my cake batter! I figured “meh, why not?” and dug out the g’snap dry ingred and plomped in the correct dry ingred and made myself the most delicious Apple Cake! It baked for about 90 min. in a tube pan that I’d buttered and floured, cooled over night and came out of the pan easily and beautifully. I’m a baked-fruit convert (and I’ve RE-learned my “be careful before you plunk something into something else, for crying out loud” lesson early in the holiday baking season, to boot! YAY!). Thanks, Deb! (Btw, the gingersnaps fared just as well. Sometimes it pays to forge on ahead boldly — or foolishly.)
Just made this and brought it into work. It got RAVE reviews including saying it was the best cake “everrrr.” Was going to flip it out onto a plate but it seemed stuck on the bottom so i just took the tube part out since it was a springform tube pan. Served it with the tube sticking up on a plate, but it looked ok, and tasted DELICIOUS! :)
I made this cake last night, and it was a huge success. I used Jonagolds (from a recent apple-picking adventure in upstate NY), and since I don’t own a tube pan, I used a bundt pan instead. The only tweak I made was that I mixed the apples in with the batter (instead of layering them) since other commenters had mentioned that layering apples in a bundt pan can cause the top or sides of the cake to burn. It was delicious, and it’s definitely a new fall recipe favorite!
This is a great recipe…. I cut down on the oil, replaced some with unsweetened applesauce and made this recipe as cupcakes (mini size) . To finish it off, I made a salted caramel sauce and drizzled it over the top… YUM!!!!
Love your website, btw. Made this cake tonight, it is cooling as I type. Don’t know what it will taste like, but based on the comments it should be great. Have friends dropping over soon (didn’t know about that until just 15 min ago!) so they will be my guinea pigs!! ha ha.
No seriously, love reading some of the other recipes, will def. have to try them.!!
What would you think about substituting the applesauce for the oil? I’m always looking for ways to increase the health factor in recipes and I have some delicious homemade applesauce I can use. I’d love to try out this cake, but don’t want to mess it up with substitutions.
do you think the recipe would still work if you mix in the apples vs. layering? i didn’t want to take the chance and try since it’s my first attempt at making this recipe?
thanks! my house smells heavenly as it bakes.
As a relative begginner to cooking and baking (been learning for about 3 years, but only cook for myself most of the time, so it’s slow going), I just have to reiterate how amazingly reliable your recipes are and how much I appreciate them! I’ve mastered your Raspberry Buttermilk Cake and Black bottomed cupcakes, and can now add this as a success to my list!! Even with a mix of a round cake pan, a loaf pan and a small casserole dish (only allowed to eat the small one myself, the other two are presents!), it still came out amazingly perfect!! Thank you again, and thank you for sharing pictures of your adorable little one, he makes my biological clock tick, it’s terrible!!
I baked mine on Sunday! Yumms! Thanks for the recipe and the story!
This recipe is super! I tried it after the recipe my aunt gave me failed. This one is better because it has orange juice and because the cinnamon is not mixed in with the batter (the other recipe made a brown cake–this made a nice yellow cake). And as reported, it gets much better after at least a day.
I am not a beginner but in this case I cannot figure out where I made a mistake.
The batter came out too thick, I had to add some apple sause to it. When I try a new recipie for the first time I follow the in ingredients exactly as given. The only change in this case was 1 cup of sugar instead of 2. I do not think this would make a big difference.
We still enjoyed the cake. I would like to make it again.
Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.
Deb you have turned me into a Sunday baker and all my co-workers thank you. I biked to the farmers market today for apples after seeing this recipe, unfortunatly no McIntosh apples to be found. So, I bought some Golden Delish instead after seeing your comment. Let me just say that close to one of those apples never made it into the cake, I kept nibbling those cinnamon cubes while making the batter, but there was still plenty left to complete the cake. The house smells so good and I could hardly wait for the cake to cool before tasting it. Tell your mom thanks. This is a wonderful recipe!
Baked it a second time round and it was well received!
Baked it today for the first time. I am not a huge fan of fruit cakes or pies but this is AWESOME! New family recipe for us. We always have so many apples this time of year becuase my mother in law brings us a bushel back on her anual trip to upstate New York. Thanks so much for sharing a family great.
perfectly delicious and feeds a lot of people!
I have stock of apple at home! i thought the kids like to eat apples but its not. And it’s not possible to eat all by me.I remember my mother in law that she baked apple cake. So i tried to bake apple cake. I’ts amazing my apple cake consume very fast. Thanks to Allrecipes.com atleast I have a guidelines for my baking.So the apple was not wasted.And my kids request more apple cakes! its great
I would love to make this cake for a Potluck I’ll be going to on Monday afternoon. Unfortunately, as a poor college student, I do not have access to my own kitchen. Is this recipe one that will keep, perhaps one day in advance? Or would you recommend something else? Thanks!
maya, this will def keep a day ahead.
Lovely! Much appreciated at brunch today after I made it last night. I always want more apple in apple cake and may finally found the right balance here. I did use 3 Tbsp. boiled cider and only 1 Tbsp. orange juice.
Maya — Like Jennifer said, this cake keeps great. Even more than a day, two, three. You can chill it after a day or so.
Oh. My. Goodness. This cake is AMAZING! I cut the recipe down by half and cooked it in a 6inch (wedding cake) tin. It came out of the oven an hour ago and it is half gone! I served it with Stonyfield cream top plain yogurt (hallelujah!) and I cannot thank you enough! It is lovely, lovely lovely:)
Well, I was looking for a new Thanksgiving desert, and happened upon this lovely Apple Cake recipe, I was so excited when I say the picture and how easy to make. So excited I printed out the recipe along with about almost 200 of the comments by accident. Ha Ha, No doubt it will be magnifiuqe. It sure is smelling good. Hope we have will power not to eat it before the big day.
love this cake!!! i halved the recipe and made it in a glass loaf pan and it was incredible. can’t wait to make it in the tube pan, probably this weekend.
This apple cake was a huge hit at our Thanksgiving table this year!! Thank you so much! I followed the directions and out came a delicious and beautiful cake. We had a few pieces with french vanilla ice cream and the rest with a warm runny custard. So yum!
I made this cake last summer to take on a rafting trip with a group of good friends. It was the hit of the trip and disappeared in no time. We ate the leftovers for breakfast. Everyone wanted the recipe! I would like to make a loaf version for giving as gifts to the same friends who enjoyed it on our summer trip, but have a couple of questions: Should I layer the apples and batter in the loaf pans or put a single layer of apples on top? Should I still set the oven at 350? How long should it bake in the loaf pans as opposed to the tube pan? (I baked the tube pan version 2 hours and it was PERFECT!) Thanks!!!!
I’m 48 and my mom’s been making this cake all my life. She, too, calls it “Jewish Apple Cake,” and it is a staple in our family. I have no idea where she got the recipe – she can’t remember, either – but I know there’s no romantic background for us; we’re not Jewish and my Pennsylvania Quaker family’s been here since before the Revolutionary War. Anyway, I make it with the Granny Smiths from my mom’s tree, and no nuts, and I slice the apples rather than chop them – otherwise the recipe is identical. It is soooo gooooood! Everyone – and I mean EVERYONE – loves this cake. I agree it improves overnight, but it’s still luscious right out of the oven. I always make one for our church Christmas bazaar and it sells right away. It looks gorgeous, tastes heavenly and is impossible to screw up, plus it keeps beautifully.
I HAD TO BAKE THE CAKE WELL OVER 2 HOURS BEFORE IT WAS READY. ANY COMMMENTS?? IT WAS FAB, BUT 2+ HOURS?????
Ron – Have you verified the temperature of your oven? That may have been an issue. Plus, it’s not *that* much extra time, since the recipe calls for 1.5 hours or until done. I made it last night, and I think it took an hour and 40 minutes, and I know i’ve had trouble with my oven running cold. You might just want to get an oven thermometer and test out a few different spots in the oven just to be sure you’re not running cold.
This recipe is INCREDIBLE!!! I have baked it at least 6 or 7 times… I want to make some for Christmas, but I want to know how it freezes?
My husband says this is the best thing I’ve ever baked. I disagree. I think your cheesecake-marbled brownies are the best thing I’ve ever baked. :-)
This is pretty fabulous. I made it for Thanksgiving with cranberries and will be making it again today for Christmas! My boyfriend absolutely loves this cake as well as myself. I might try adding blueberries this time. Thanks for sharing!
Fantastic cake! I made it a few weeks ago and now I’ve made two more by request. As mentioned, the batter is incredibly thick and doesn’t seem to make enough the first time you try it. But the cake rises quite a bit and completely fills the 10inch tube pan.
One question for the experts. How do you test for doneness? I tried a toothpick but with the gooey apples the toothpick never comes out clean. How can you distinguish between undone cake batter and apple goo when looking at the toothpick? It all looks the same to my aging eyes!
Sorry if this is a dumb question but it’s the one thing I have trouble with when making this. I’ve been bakking the cake at 350F for 1 hour 40 minutes and it seems to work fine. But I’d like to know how to tell doneness in case I make this in a different oven. Thanks!
Wonderful cake–have now made it four times in the past two months and about to make it today for Christmas dinner. Have cut the sugar down a bit and used brown for half and it still comes out amazing. Have used a combo of Macs and Ambrosias–thanks for sharing a great recipe. Hoping to make your apple cheddar scones this week!
Hubby and I just finished two ginormous pieces right out of the oven–delicious!!!! Only problem seemed to be getting it out of the pan. Hubby did it for me while I was on the phone and inverted it–to my horror–but we righted it immediately. I buttered the pan twice to make sure it was covered but it was still really sticky. Any suggestions? I thought to maybe butter and flour the pan next time. Yes, there will definitely be a next time and I’m sure many times to come. :-) Fabulous taste and rustically gorgeous. Thank you Deb for the fantastic recipe.
I use a non-stick two piece tube pan. I spray it with non-flour vegetable spray and have not had a problem with the three cakes I have made. The cake pulls away from the sides of the pan during baking and a quick swipe with an offset spatula removes any stuck areas. I then remove the center portion of the pan and set it to cool on a rack. After an hour I gently grasp the sides of the cake, lift and twist slightly to break it free from the bottom. The tricky part (for me) is lifting the cake up off of the center post and onto a plate. The cake is a bit fragile since it is still warm. And the big chunks of apples make perfect fault lines where it can break. I haven’t had one break yet but I always hold my breath as I lift it up and over to the serving plate! Hope this helps….
This was awesome! I used a bundt pan–not a good idea for me–it stuck–and a loaf pan for the extra–that worked better. It is delicious and made a good stand-in for King’s cake! Thank you!
Yum !! I baked this cake for years and loved it. I lost the recipe…. kept trying to remember it—googled apple cake and found your blog. Baked the cake and it is as good as I remembered it. I am a happy girl— found the recipe and a new blog.
Ok baking this now with home grown apples given to me this year by dear friend 12 quarts, using my bundt pan and omitting the walnuts can’t wait to taste it . it won’t be ready til 2:30 am . Carla
Hi, I just made this today for my daughter and her boyfriend. Everyone loved it but I must admit that I almost made a big mistake! I put 5 tablespoons of sugar in the dough. When I had everything in place and was ready to put the last apple mixture on top, I reread the ingredients list and realised I hadn’t noticed the “2 cups of sugar” part, so I took everything out and mixed with the two cups of sugar…. Guess I haven’t baked a cake in a while. Next time I’ll get it right!
thank you for this amazing recipe.i made this cake today.. and it turned out to be really good :-) i would reduce the sugar by a bit next time, was a bit sweet for my taste.. this cake vil definitely be a regular in my house :-)
Hi from a first time reader!
Thanks for the trip back to Grandma Sarah’s kitchen in Brownsville, Brooklyn, NY.
I could reminisce here, but me thinks you’ve heard it all.
Anyway, my wife would love to taste the apple cake. Why not, you say? Simple, she’s a Weight Watcher’s-aholic. She won’t taste NUTHING without having her “numbers.” So, could you give her some idea about calories, carbs, etc? It would be much appreciated.
Looking forward to trying more of your recipes!
Then from Brooklyn, now from Wisconsin
I just put this cake in the oven. I’m not very good at sticking to a recipe so hoepfully it turns out! My changes were that I only had 4 apples (1 granny smith, and 3 macintosh). I used 3 tablespoons of brown sugar in place of 3 of the required white sugar. I also added 1 cup unsweetened apple sauce, and a 1/4 cup plain yogurt and about 1/3 cup of ground flaxseed. Fingers crossed.
I just made this last night in a 9 x 13 pan. Turned out much better than when I made the chocolate chip sour cream cake! It is very moist and delicious. I diced my apples much smaller than in the above pictures and I left the skins on for the nutritional value…very good that way. I only used 4 apples as 6 would have overflowed out of my 9 x 13 pan.
Though for my personal tastes, I think it needs a little something more in the spice category. Next time I am going to add some cinnamon and cardamom or a bit of ground cloves into the batter to give it a bit of a boost. I also want to half the oil and sub in applesauce and perhaps decrease the sugar a tad to make it a bit healthier. Overall though, a good cake!
Was trying to re-create a cake we had in a winery region a few years ago.
I made this cake in a 26cm (11″) springform pan. Substituted Orange Juice and 1/2C of the oil for 1C of greek yougurt. Put some chopped walnuts and sultanas in with the top layer of apples.
Turned out delectable. I stored it in the fridge for 1.5 days before serving (as I live in a tropical climate, and leaving out of the fridge is not an option – ants and mould) and it was still really moist.
Served about 10 people, and still had a half of the cake left. Might add some cream cheese icing next time.
2/13/2011 – I just made this cake and oh what a disappointment. Looked nothing like the photos here, which look awesome and made my mouth water. It still looked fairly nice. It was so bland and very heavy. I Love my desserts and this one just didn’t cut it in my book. I’ve already thrown the recipe out and certainly will never make it again. This was actually more work than the apple cake recipe I already had. Shared some with my daughter and son-n-law, which they too thought wasn’t very good.
made this last week with a few changes. five super ripe gala apples, a cup and a half of sugar, in two loaf pans that took probably an hour and a half to bake.
my mom tried it and said it tasted just like her grandmother’s. thank you for a recipe that brings back such wonderful memories for her.
Does this recipe use granulated sugar or caster sugar?
Thanks. Made this with caster sugar as I was too impatient to wait for a reply or cake, and had apples on the turn, and it turned out great. Reduced the sugar a little, added a little ground ginger and an extra egg. This gigantic cake was demolished by hungry housemates in a matter of hours. Will try again with different sugars.
I’m trying this in a spring form pan! haha! Working so far…
Spring form – without a tube… worked but just a little soft in the middle… but very delicious!
I just made this in a bundt pan on Saturday. My family said it was the best apple cake they had ever had. And I agree !
It was perfectly moist, held up very well when cut into slices and was delicious the next day as well.
However I used different apples : 2 granny smith, 1 honey crisp and 5 red delicious apples.
And I did put finely chopped walnuts in it as well.
I recommend this recipe to everyone. It’s easy and will delight everyone’s palate !
Bon Appetit !
This recipe is absolutely amazing. It turned out perfect. Thanks for sharing!!
I really set on messing up this cake. I put the batter into the pan but it wasn’t enough for two layers as my pan was wider than it should be. I decided to put batter in one layer and spread all apples on it. Then I realised I put only 1 3/4 c flour instead of 2 3/4 c. So I took apples out and then the batter (which got mixed with some apples in the process), mixed in additional cup of flour and returned it to the pan. After putting in the oven I realised I hadn’t put any eggs!!! I thought ‘oh, well, at least I could eat the apples afterwards, if not the batter’. Anyway, despite everything cake turned out amazing, my mom who usually doesn’t eat sweets just ate two big pieces. Yet another lovely recipes from this blog!
Just want to say that since I made this cake for the first time, the recipe hasn`t ever failed me!! It`s always sooo delicious!!
I often substitute the orange for tangerines and it`s still amazing! I also add ground cardamom and cloves (a personal choice, I love it:)
Thank you very very much!!!!
I was a bit short of apple so used some pear and a quince as well, and it turned out well, but I agree with some of the other cooks who have commented – it has a large amount of sugar which could be reduced. I will try again using some substitution methods to reduce the sugar content.
As always, I followed your well written directions to the letter and this cake was DA BOMB!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you Deb, YOU ROCK!
I love this cake !! I have baked it about 5 times now and WoW !!! perfect every time !!! Thank you for this wonderful apple cake !!! oh and I use a tube pan instead of a bundt pan its better the middle tube acts like a core so it will bake evenly….
Yum !! perfectly delicious and feeds a lot of people!
For some reason, when I first saw this recipe, I assumed it included rum. And now I desperately crave baking this cake, but with rum mixed in somewhere. Do you have any ideas how I could go about that without screwing with the other components? If I used it instead of orange juice, would I have to up the other wet ingredients a bit?
I just want to say first, I LOVE your website and second, this is an awesome cake! I made some adjustments – less sugar, using olive oil, and in the existing containers that I have (loaf pan and pie pan). It’s quite interesting how different shapes give to such different results even with the same batter. The pie pan give results almost like a crumble. I’ve posted the differences here on my blog: http://fromtarotopotato.blogspot.com/2011/04/awesome-apple-cake.html
(yep the title summarize how I feel about this cake!) I am still working improving photo skills as I’m just starting to take food photos with the point-and-shoot that I have.
Also, someone suggest that pears or quince would work too. If I get my hands on quince I’ll definitely give it a try.
This is my favorite cake that my German stepmother makes. Her recipe is almost identical except she uses 3 cups flour and only 2 1/2 tsp baking powder. She is also allergic to citrus and leaves out the OJ and it still comes out perfect.
Thank you for sharing the recipe, now I will have to make one for my children.
Okay, so I just have to give my piece based solely on my first taste of this cake: IT IS AMAZING.
Cinnamon. Apple chunks. Moist cake. What more could you ask for, really.
I made this cake in a bundt pan because that is all that I had on hand, and it turned out great. I made sure that I covered the bottom of the pan with 1/3 of the cake, then layered it apples, cake, apples, and the final layer of cake. To be honest, I was worried when I put the last layer of cake batter on, because there didn’t seem to be enough batter to cover the apples evenly. However, the cake rose quite nicely in the oven and filled in any gaps that there may have been.
Oh, one more thing I did: I covered the cake with tin foil for the last 15-20 minutes (I only baked the cake for about 1hr 20 mins total) because I was scared that it was getting a little too browned on top.
All in all, a fantastic cake. I will definitely be making this again. And again. And again. Mmm.
Oh Deb ….. I love your mom (and this apple cake recipe)