Apple Hill Apple Cake

November 7, 2012

in Cook What You Like, Tarts, Pies, Cakes

Okay, I admit, this cake is not much of a looker.  Where it lacks in appearance, it more than makes up for in the “OMG! This tastes wonderful!” category.

And that’s not all.  

This easy-to-make apple cake will have your house smelling like autumn as it’s baking and even the dog will be loitering in the kitchen in anticipation. This cake is well received at tailgate parties, the office, and when it’s your turn to bring dessert.  You can even make it the night before and bake it the next morning. Best of all, it’ll make you popular, at least in the moment.  So, how’s that for a diamond in the rough?

Adapted from an Apple Hill recipe, use baking apples that stay firm and don’t get mushy.  In this cake, Fuji apples hold up flavor and texture and if they’re at the height of sweet ripeness, squeeze more lemon juice on them.  As you mix the apples into the batter, it’ll seem like there’s more apples than batter (and maybe there is); the apples will soften as they bake.  You can throw in about 2/3 cup of dried cranberries to kick up the looks but in the long run, it’s the delicious aroma and taste that’ll have you longing.

Crunchy edges.  Moist crumb.  Supple apples. At the end of the night, accompany this Apple Cake with a sweet Ruby port or dessert Muscat Canelli.

Recipe: Apple Hill Apple Cake

Summary: Moist rustic apple cake


  • 3 large apples
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, large
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups unbleached flour
  • 2/3 cups dried cranberries (optional)
  • 2/3 cups chopped nuts (optional)


  1. Spray a 9″x13″ baking pan with non-stick spray and lightly flour; remove excess flour.
  2. Pare and core apples. Slice 1/8 inch thick and measure 4 cups; eat the apples in excess of 4 cups. Squeeze lemon juice on the apples and toss together. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine vegetable oil and sugar, and mix with a wooden spoon. Mix in eggs.
  4. Add into the wet mixture, ground cinnamon, salt, baking soda and vanilla extract. Mix well. Add flour to the batter and mix. Fold in apples. Add dried cranberries and nuts if using.
  5. Spoon batter into prepared pan and even out as much as possible. If baking the next morning, cover pan tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
  6. Bake at 350° F until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 40-50 minutes  (bake 5-10 minutes longer if cake has been refrigerated). When done, remove from oven and cool on rack. Dust with powdered sugar before serving, if desired.

Best enjoyed the day the cake is baked.  Store leftovers covered in refrigerator.

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