This homemade Apple Cake is wonderfully soft, moist, and topped with scrumptious caramelized apples and a touch of flaky sea salt. You can even drizzle some caramel sauce on top if you wish! Truly, this is probably the best (and easiest) apple cake recipe you’ll ever bake.
Easy Apple Cake
Move over, pumpkin – apple is the main ingredient for this fall season! It seems that people are finally catching on that spiced apples are just as deliciously autumnal as pumpkin spice. Now that we’re all on the same page, make sure you treat yourself to mouthwatering apple recipes like this easy to make cake! It’s a staple in my kitchen during the months of September-November, and once you bake it, I’m sure it’ll become a staple in yours as well.
As gorgeous and tasty as it is, those you serve it to might not believe you if you tell them how easy this homemade apple cake is to bake. The cake itself comes together easily just by mixing the ingredients together and then baking it in a skillet. Then, while the cake is baking, you just have to prepare the apple topping. The best part is when you get to generously top off the baked cake with the caramelized apple topping!
This fall-inspired cake is perfect for potlucks, Halloween costume parties, and especially as your main dessert on Thanksgiving. So far, I’ve never served it to a group who didn’t love it on any occasion! As I previously mentioned, I make this cake every fall at least once and it never disappoints. The fresh Granny Smith apples paired with warm spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, and allspice are sure to help create that cozy fall mood, even if you live in the Sunshine State like me!
Ingredients for Apple Cake
For the cake, you’ll need:
- Apples – Granny Smith or Honeycrisp apples are the best! Make sure they’re peeled and diced.
- Butter – It should be softened and unsalted.
- Brown Sugar – It can be light or dark, whichever you prefer.
- Eggs – They need to be room temperature, not cold.
- Vanilla Extract – If you can, use pure vanilla extract, not imitation.
- Flour – All-purpose flour is what’s called for here.
- Baking Powder – This is the key to making the cake a bit fluffy and not too dense.
- Salt – Just a pinch.
- Seasonings – Cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice blend together to create the most delicious medley of autumnal flavors.
- Buttermilk – Low fat works best.
For the caramelized apple topping:
- Brown Sugar
What apples should I use?
You can go one of two ways! You can use tangy and slightly sour Granny Smith apples, as they perfectly balance all of the sweetness of the cake. However, you can also amplify the sweetness of the cake by using sweet and juicy Honeycrisp apples. I like to go the sweet and juicy way hands down, but it’s really a personal preference. This cake will be delicious either way!
How to Make Apple Cake
Start off by preheating your oven to 350°F and buttering a skillet.
To make the cake, start off by beating the butter and sugar together. Then, add the eggs to the mixture one at a time. Once all of the eggs have been mixed in, stop beating the ingredients and scrape the sides of the bowl.
On a low speed, stir in the dry ingredients.
Increase the speed and add the vanilla extract and buttermilk. Mix until just combined.
Scrape the sides of the bowl again and gently fold in the apples. Then, spread the mixture into the buttered skillet and bake the cake for approximately 35-40 minutes.
Time to make the topping! While your cake is baking, melt the butter in a pan before adding the apples and brown sugar. Mix everything well and simmer for 15-17 minutes. Stir frequently. Once the apples are nice and soft, remove the pot from the heat and set aside.
Once the cake is fully baked, remove it from the oven and top it with your caramelized apple topping. Sprinkle with just a touch of sea salt and even some caramel sauce if you’d like.
How to Store Apple Cake
You can easily store the leftover apple cake in the refrigerator, just make sure to take it out of the skillet first! When the cake is cooled, take it out of the cast iron skillet and store it in another container. Make sure to cover it airtight when storing so it stays as fresh as possible. If you’d like it to be nice and warm, you can quickly reheat a slice of cake in a microwave for just a few seconds.
Some More Apple Recipes To Make:
Apple Fritters – these super easy little fried donuts are packed with apple chunks and slathered with vanilla glaze.
Dutch Apple Pie – this pie, also known as apple crumb pie, is a combination of flaky pie crust filled with sweet apple filling and topped with buttery, sweet streusel.
Apple Bread – this easy bread uses lots of fresh, juicy, sweet apples and is flavored with a delicious cinnamon swirl for the perfect addition of fall flavor.
Apple Pie Mini Cheesecakes – every bite of these individual cheesecakes features creamy filling, sweet apple pie topping, and a drizzle of caramel.
Easy Apple Cake
For The Cake:
- 2 cups diced apples about 2 medium apples
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
- 3 eggs room temeprature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 2/3 cup all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- pinch salt
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground allspice
- 1 cup low fat buttermilk
Caramelized Apple Topping:
- 3 tbsp butter
- 3 apples medium/large
- 1 cup brown sugar
- sea salt
- caramel topping
- Preheat the oven to 350° and rub some butter all around an 8-inch skillet all around the bottom and up the sides.
To make the cake:
- Beat butter and sugar in a bowl of an electric mixer for a couple of minutes.
- Start adding the eggs one at a time, while sugar and butter are beating. Once eggs are incorporated, stop and scrape sides and bottom of the bowl.
- On low speed, stir in flour, baking powder, and spices.
- Once combined, raise the speed a little and pour in vanilla extract and buttermilk. Mix until just combined.
- Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl and give it a quick stir.
- Fold in the diced apples with a spatula.
- Spread the batter in the prepared skillet evenly and bake for 35-40 minutes.
- Peel, core, and slice apples thinly.
- Melt butter in a medium sauce pot and add apples and brown sugar. Mix well and let apples simmer over medium heat. Let them simmer for 15-17 minutes but make sure to stir every few minutes.
- One apples are soft and about half of the liquid has evaporated, set the sauce pot aside.
- When cake it done, take it out of the oven and spread apples and sauce all over the top and let it drip off to the sides. (It will be delicious soaked in!)
- Sprinkle a little sea salt on top if you wish and drizzle some caramel topping.