You’re going to love this Apple Fritter Cake — the perfect moist cake filled with tender, cinnamon-spiced apples and topped with a sweet glaze. It’s the perfect treat for the fall season!  

If you love Cinnamon Baked Apples then you are going to love this apple fritter cake recipe! It’s the perfect blend of spiced cake and tender apples. Then stick around and try my Apple Cinnamon Scones and my Apple Cider Bundt Cake

An Apple Fritter Cake sliced into squares on parchment paper.

Why This Recipe Works

  • Best fall cake. This cake really is like an apple fritter! With tender, sweetened apples fold into the batter, and a crispy top from brown sugar sprinkled on top of the bake, and a sweet glaze on top — just like the favorite old fashioned doughnut we all love.
  • Apple fritter cake with cinnamon-spiced apples. The cake batter has cinnamon-spiced apples folded into it; it’s then topped with more of the sweet apples for the perfect apple cake. 
  • Moist apple cake. The combination of butter, oil and milk in the cake batter ensures a moist and tender crumb, making each bite delicious! 

Ingredient Notes

Apple Fritter Cake ingredients portioned into glass bowls on a silver baking sheet: apples, brown sugar, flour, eggs, oil, vanilla, and spices.
  • Butter: The apples are cooked in butter and the apple fritter cake has some melted butter in the batter for a delicious buttery flavor. 
  • Apples: I used honey crisp apples, about 2-3 large apples. This apple fritter cake recipe has a delicious apple filling mixed into the batter! 
  • Brown Sugar: The brown sugar will provide a sweet and tender texture to the apple cake. 
  • Cinnamon: The cinnamon apples mixture is the perfect addition to the spiced apple fritter cake. 
  • Vegetable Oil: The vegetable oil provides a moist cake texture. 
  • Milk: The milk in the batter helps to add flavor and moistness.
  • Flour: When measuring your flour, be sure to to fluff the flour with a spoon then measure. Do not pack in. 
  • Spices: The combination of ground cinnamon and allspice provides the perfect blend of fall spices. 
  • Powdered Sugar: The glazed apple fritter cake is incomplete with out the delicious glaze on top! 

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Preheat oven and spray pan. Preheat your oven to 350ºF and spray an 8×8-inch square pan with nonstick cooking spray, line with parchment paper, then spray the parchment paper with nonstick spray. Set aside. 
  2. Cook the apples. Place a skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons butter and melt. Add 3 1/2 cups peeled and diced apples (about 2-3 large apples), 1/2 cup light brown sugar and 1 tsp cinnamon. Cook until slightly tender and apples have released juices (about 8 minutes). Stir constantly. Remove from heat. 
  3. Combine wet ingredients for the apple fritter cake. To a large bowl, add 3/4 cup light brown sugar, 1/2 cup melted butter and whisk to combine. Add 1/2 cup vegetable oil, 1/2 cup milk, 2 tsp vanilla extract, and 2 large eggs. Whisk until smooth. 
Four images showing how to make Apple Fritter Cake, top left image is skillet with diced apples, top right photo is diced apples cooked in a brown syrup mixture, bottom left image is glass bowl filled with brown sugar and oil, bottom right is glass bowl with eggs and light yellow mixture.
  1. Add dry ingredients. To the bowl add 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon, and 1/4 tsp allspice. Whisk until partially combined. 
  2. Add some of the apples. Add all but 1/2 cup of the cooked apple mixture to the bowl. Use a rubber spatula and fold the apples into the batter. 
  3. Pour into the prepared pan. Pour apple fritter cake batter into the square baking pan. Spread in an even layer. Take the 1/2 cup reserved apples and juices and spread on top of the batter so there is an even layer of apples. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of brown sugar on top of the batter. 
Four photos showing process of making Apple Fritter Cake, top left is glass bowl with flour in it, top right tis Apple Fritter Cake batter in glass bowl, bottom left is cooked diced apples in glass bowl, bottom right is square pan filled with Apple Fritter Cake batter.
  1. Bake the apple fritter cake. Bake the apple fritter cake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean but with a few moist crumbs. Remove and let cool for 15 minutes.
  2. Make the glaze. While the glaze is baking, whisk 1 cup powdered sugar, 2-3 tablespoons milk, and 1/4 tsp vanilla extract together in a small bowl until smooth. 
  3. Glaze the apple fritter cake. Let the cake cool for 15 minutes, then drizzle the glaze over the cooled cake. Slice and serve. Enjoy! 
Four photos showing Apple Fritter Cake in square pan, showing the process of it being made, raw batter in pan, baked, then the Apple Fritter Cake topped with icing.

Recipe Tips

Be sure the oven temperature is correct. I use an internal oven thermometer to make sure. This is so important in baking! The temperature on the outside of the oven isn’t always correct. 

Opt for sweet and crisp apple varieties like honey crisp for the best flavor and texture in your Apple Fritter Cake.

Ensure the 8×8-inch pan is well-greased and lined with parchment paper to prevent the cake from sticking.

When adding the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mix until just combined. Over mixing can lead to a denser cake.

To determine if the cake is done, insert a toothpick into the center. It should come out clean with a few moist crumbs, indicating that the cake is perfectly baked.

Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing

You can prepare the Apple Fritter Cake a day in advance and store it at room temperature, tightly covered. Glaze it just before serving for the freshest taste.

Store the apple fritter cake covered at room temperature for 4-5 days. 

To freeze, wrap individual slices or the whole cake tightly in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 2-3 months. Thaw slices at room temperature or reheat in the microwave.

A square slice of iced Apple Fritter Cake on a white plate.

Recipe FAQs

What apples to use in baking?

While honey crisp apples work beautifully, you can use different types of apples that are sweet like Fuji or Gala apples. Tart type of apples may alter the sweetness balance (such as Granny Smith apples or pink lady). 

Is it okay to skip the glaze?

Certainly! The glaze adds extra sweetness and makes it look just like an apple fritter, but the cake is delicious even without it. You can dust the cake with powdered sugar for a simpler touch.

Can I use whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour?

You can substitute some or all of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour, but keep in mind that it may affect the texture and make the cake denser.

How do I prevent my cake from sinking in the middle?

Ensure your leavening agents (baking powder and baking soda) are fresh and not expired. Over mixing the batter can also cause sinking, so mix only until combined.

Can I make this recipe gluten-free?

You can experiment with gluten-free flour blends, but be aware that the texture and taste may differ slightly from the original recipe. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the gluten-free flour you choose.

Close up photo of the best Apple Fritter Cake on parchment paper.

Delicious Apple Recipes

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Close up photo of the best Apple Fritter Cake on parchment paper.
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5 from 7 votes

Apple Fritter Cake

This apple fritter cake is a so moist, fluffy, and tender. It features the perfect blend of sweetness, warmth, and spice!
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 9 servings

Ingredients
 

Apples

  • 2 tablespoons butter - salted or unsalted is fine
  • 3 1/2 cups peeled and diced apples - 396 grams (I used honey crisp apples, about 2-3 large ones)
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar - packed
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Cake

  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar - packed
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter - melted
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup milk - whole or 2% preferred
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar - packed, for topping

Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar - sifted
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk - use more milk to make thin transparent glaze which is more characteristic of fritters, or less glaze if you want a thicker more drizzled type glaze
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray an 8×8 pan nonstick cooking spray then line with parchment paper, spray the paper with nonstick spray and set aside. 
  • Place a skillet over medium heat. Add the butter, and melt. Stir in the apples, brown sugar and cinnamon. Cook, stirring occasionally until the apples become slightly tender and they release their juices into a syrup like consistency, about 8 minutes. Remove from the heat. 
  • In a large bowl whisk the brown sugar, melted butter to combine. Add the vegetable oil, milk, vanilla, and eggs and whisk until smooth. 
  • Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and allspice. Whisk until partially combined.
  • Spoon all but ½ cup of the cooked apples into the large bowl. Using a rubber spatula fold the apples into the batter until combined. 
  • Pour the cake batter into the prepared 8×8” pan. Distribute the reserved ½ cup of reserved apples and juices overtop of the cake batter. Sprinkle the 2 tablespoons of brown sugar over the cake. 
  • Bake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean with a few moist crumbs. 
  • While the cake is baking make the glaze by whisking the powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla together in a small bowl. 
  • After removing the cake from the oven, let the cake cool for 15 minutes. Drizzle the glaze over the cake then slice and serve! It’s so delicious when eaten slightly warm. Cover leftovers and store at room temperature for 4-5 days. 

Notes

Nutritional information is an estimate and is based on 1 serving (this cake makes roughly 9 decent sized servings). 

Nutrition

Calories: 580kcal (29%)Carbohydrates: 81g (27%)Protein: 6g (12%)Fat: 27g (42%)Saturated Fat: 11g (55%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 8gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 77mg (26%)Sodium: 306mg (13%)Potassium: 226mg (6%)Fiber: 2g (8%)Sugar: 51g (57%)Vitamin A: 508IU (10%)Vitamin C: 2mg (2%)Calcium: 90mg (9%)Iron: 2mg (11%)
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
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