Kitchen Adventures: Chunky Apple Cake

This weekend, I decided to make a feast for my sister and her visiting high school friends. Not only did I want to welcome them with hospitality, but I really wanted an excuse to test out some of the Fall recipes I’ve been collecting in anticipation of a special occasion. My homey meal was easy to prepare in advance and turned out to be a big success. My menu consisted of an array of cold-weather recipes: pesto hummus and warm sourdough breadsinister apple cider cocktails, spicy turkey sausage lasagna (my favorite lasagna in the world) and salad. But the greatest hit was the finale: my chunky apple cake with cinnamon whipped cream. 

Chunky Apple Cake (pictured with cream cheese frosting)

When I was brainstorming the menu, I knew at the start that I wanted to serve a moist, apple fall cake. Most of the recipes I found online, though, required a spring-form pan (which I don’t have), cake flour (which I didn’t want to buy), or excessive spices (which can be nauseating). After days of perusing through blogs and websites, I came across this simple one sheet apple cake that required nothing more than a bit of mixing and spreading in a rectangular pan – my kind of no fuss process. The recipe calls for cream cheese frosting, which happens to be one of my favorite things on earth, but considering the heavy meal I was serving I decided to go with a lighter topping and concocted my own cinnamon whipped cream. After tasting the deliciously light combination, I couldn’t imagine the cake with any other accompaniment.

with melted whipped cream

The best part about this recipe is that it’s about 1/3 batter to 2/3 apple chunks, which leads me to believe it’s healthier than the average cake. The batter is thicker than a regular cake batter, but when mixed with the apple chunks, it tends to thin out, making it easy to spread in the pan. I suggest preserving the cake in the refrigerator and either warming in the oven (350 degrees for about 5 minutes) or the microwave when ready to serve. Or, if you prefer like me, you can eat it cold! Considering the ease of this recipe and the rave reviews it received, I will definitely replicate it for my family over Thanksgiving – it’s a simple, lighter alternative to apple pie.

thick batter loosens up with addition of apples

batter in pan

finished product!

Apple Cake (adapted from Southern Living Magazine): 

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 4 Granny Smith apples, peeled and chopped in chunks
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

Stir together first 4 ingredients in a large bowl until blended. Combine flour and next 3 ingredients; add to butter mixture, stirring until blended. Stir in apple slices and 1 cup walnuts. Spread into a greased 13- x 9-inch pan. Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Dollop with cinnamon whipped cream (below); sprinkle with walnuts, if desired.

Cinnamon Whipped Cream

  • 8 oz heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 1/4 cup of powdered sugar
Pour all ingredients into a cold stainless steel mixing bowl; blend on high until stiff peaks form.
Recipe Grade: A+


Filed under Kitchen Adventures

3 responses to “Kitchen Adventures: Chunky Apple Cake

  1. Lisa B

    Sounds yummy, this recipe will be going with me to Yorkshire for Christmas…thanks! xx

  2. Justyn

    I ate the whole freaking thing.

  3. Cynthia Bellsey

    I hope you do make it for Thanksgiving because it looks so delicious with or without the whipped cream. I am fasting until then. You are a culinary genius…

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