A warming spiced and moist apple cake that is hearty and wholesome and full of wholefoods. It is naturally sweetened with dates and is vegan, dairy-free, nut-free and delicious for the whole family. It is perfect warm from the oven or served cold later on either as a dessert with custard or ice cream or as an afternoon treat with a cup of tea. It is simple to make with a few key ingredients and comes together in less than an hour.
This Spiced Apple Cake is my new seasonal favourite – for all the reasons mentioned above. Plus, did I mention it is delicious. I have played around with quite a few fruit-based cakes in the past – typically banana (like my Ultimate Banana Bread and Chocolate and Cherry Banana Cake) or also lemon (Lemon Drizzle Cake, anyone?) and cherries get a good feature too (try my Cherry Bakewell Almond Cake) but none have yet shown off apples.
I love a good apple and usually have one in my bag for emergency snacks, there is something so satisfying about the crunch. And when I am not biting into them, I am putting them into bircher muesli pots, porridge bowls or smothered in peanut butter. But, as autumn is truly here in the UK, I wanted to make something a little special with apples.
They are easy to find and cheap to buy plus this recipe doesn’t even require you to peel or mash them into a purée. This was quite a revelation for me as I didn’t want to create a recipe that required a pureeing step or buying apple sauce. Simply grate two apples to create the apple texture and flavours inside the cake and decorate the top with two more apples – the pattern really does add the wow factor. I layered my apple slices in two concentric rings, but you can play around.
This Spiced Apple Cake comes together in one bowl and is full of seasonal warming flavours from cinnamon, ginger and cardamom spices – blended with sweet and jammy dates. The dates along with the milk and lemon juice (or cider vinegar) hold the cake together while adding sweetness to the mixture. For the flour, I love the wholesome flavour of spelt flour but I’m sure buckwheat, plain or wholemeal flour would also work a treat.
Serve this warm with lashings of custard or ice cream or enjoy cold with a cup of tea in the afternoon. This cake is a real crowd pleaser and is perfect for this autumnal chill.
I hope you will love this vegan and refined sugar-free cake that is easy to bake and is so comforting. It is dense and hearty while being light and fruity. It is moist, warmingly spiced and packed with goodness.
Spiced Apple Cake
A warming spiced and moist apple cake that is hearty and wholesome and full of wholefoods. It is naturally sweetened with dates and is vegan, dairy-free, nut-free and delicious for the whole family.
- 190g (1 cup) pitted dates
- 180ml (3/4 cup) plant-based milk
- 50g (1/3 cup) melted coconut oil
- 1 tbsp lemon juice or apple cider vinegar
- 4 apples
- 300g (2 cups) spelt flour
- 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ½ tsp ground cardamom
- 1 tsp baking powder
- Pinch salt
- 2 tbsp syrup, to decorate
1. Preheat the oven to 160Fan/180*C and line a cake tin with parchment paper.
2. Soak the pitted dates in boiling water for 10 minutes. Drain the dates and save the water. Meanwhile, grate two of the apples (skin on) and thinly slice the other two apples.
3. Add the dates and 60ml (1/4 cup) of the soaking water to a food processor and blend until smooth. Add in the plant-based milk, melted coconut oil, lemon juice (or vinegar) and grated apple and process until a sticky smooth mixture forms.
4. Stir together the flour, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, baking powder and salt. Pour over the wet sticky mixture and gently fold together.
5. Pour into the cake tin and decorate with the apple slices, either in two rings or however you like. Bake for 40-45 minutes until firm to touch and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
6. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes before removing from the tin and cooling fully on a wire rack. Drizzle with the remaining syrup for a glazed top. If you would like to serve the cake warm, slice it after the initial 10 minutes cooling time. Store the cooled cake in an airtight container for 3-5 days.
I hope you will enjoy this Spiced Apple Cake and I cannot wait to hear your thoughts. Leave them below and please do tag me in your creations – I’m @nourishing.amy on Instagram and use the hashtag #nourishingamy. You can also find me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest – do say hi!
With spiced apple love x
I first made this recipe for Laura Ashley blog using their gorgeous cake stand and autumn range of crockery. You can find the original blog post on their website.