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Apple Dapple Cake is an easy, vintage cake recipe loaded with apples and nuts, and a sweet buttery glaze on top.

Apple Dapple Cake

This Apple Dapple Cake is one of those old-fashioned, vintage recipes that everyone absolutely loves!

It’s a super moist, dense, vanilla-infused cake that is loaded up with chunks of apples and nuts throughout.

To make this easy apple cake even better – as soon as it comes out of the oven – you’ll pour a caramel-like butter and brown sugar glaze over the top. It seeps in while the Apple Dabble Cake is still warm – and it makes this heavenly cake just that much more delicious!


Apple Dapple Cake

What is Apple Dapple Cake?

Apple Dabble Cake is an old vintage apple-nut cake recipe that has been around for decades. It seems that everyone’s grandmother had this recipe in their collection!

Some people claim that this easy, glazed apple cake is an old Amish recipe. Others say it has Southern roots – especially if you use pecans as the nuts in your cake. We’ve also seen a similar recipe – without the glaze – on a Jewish recipe blog which notes that the oil-based batter (vs lard) made this cake suitable for kosher diets.

Regardless of the origin – this Apple Dapple Cake is fantastic!

Apple Dapple Cake


What kind of apples should I use?

This recipe calls for the Granny Smith variety of apples – in part, because their tartness helps balance the sweetness of cake. Granny Smiths are also ideal for baking because they stay relatively firm when baked, so you’ll see and taste the apples in your cake.

Alternately, you can use any other type of ‘baking’ apple that will stay firm when baked such as Brauburn, Honey Crisp, or Jonagold. Just note that these apples are sweeter than the Granny Smith variety so your cake will be extra sweet.

Best Apple Cake You’ll Ever Make? YUP!

I’m going to let you in on one more little secret…this IS the exact same cake batter we use to make our Best Apple Cake Ever recipe – that SO MANY of our readers love and rave about! 😊

That earlier apple cake recipe got the name “Best Apple Cake Ever” from my sister-in-law Pam. But since we posted it here, several readers wrote to us to tell us that it was originally called an Apple Dapple Cake – and they are correct!

Apple Dapple Cake


Today’s Apple Dapple Cake is baked in a 9×13-inch pan instead of a bundt pan – so it’s even easier to transport to your next party or potluck. And it’s just as delicious!

Apple Dapple Cake

You may enjoy these other Apple recipes:

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Apple Dapple Cake

Apple Dapple Cake

  • Author: A Family Feast
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 12 servings
  • Category: dessert, cake
  • Method: baking
  • Cuisine: American


Shortening and flour to prepare a 9X13 pan * see note

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

½ teaspoon salt

1 ½ cups vegetable oil

1 ½ cups granulated sugar

½ cup brown sugar

3 whole eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

4 large Granny Smith apples (about 1 ¾ pound)

1 cup walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped


3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons brown sugar

3 tablespoons granulated sugar

3 tablespoons heavy cream

¼ teaspoon vanilla extract


Grease and flour a 9×13-inch baking pan.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Place rack in upper third of the oven.

Sift flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a medium bowl then sift a second time.

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, mix vegetable oil with both sugars until well mixed.

With mixer running, add one egg at a time and once mixed, add vanilla and mix and scrape the bowl.

Slowly add the dry ingredients with mixer running on low. Scrape the bowl again and mix.

Peel, core and cut the apples into bite sized pieces and fold into the batter.

Fold the walnuts into the batter then spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.

Bake in top third of the oven for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, put all glaze ingredients into a small sauce pan and bring to a boil. Boil and stir with a wooden spoon continuously for one minute.

Remove from heat and pour over the top of the warm cake.

Cool the cake or serve warm by cutting into 12 pieces (3 rows X 4 rows).


*We have found that different colored pans cook differently as well as cooking in glass vs metal. So, the cooking time may vary slightly depending on what type of pan you use. We used a dark non-stick metal pan and ours took 50 minutes and was just starting to get dark on the sides.

Keywords: apple dapple cake



Apple Dapple Cake

Apple Dapple Cake

Apple Dapple Cake - A Family Feast

Apple Dapple Cake - A Family Feast




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  • Kim Trolia wrote:

    Thank you for the easy to follow recipes! I’m making this for my grown sons birthday this weekend.

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re welcome Kim – hope he has a wonderful birthday!

  • Audrea wrote:

    Thank you for having a 9 x 13 recipe, since I no longer have a bundt pan. I made this yesterday but had to bake it 1 hour. After pulling it out and cooling it sank and was soggy and does not stay together. I was surprised it calls for 1 1/2 cups of oil, could it have caused my issue. I used Red Delicious apples. I would love to try again if I could avoid the soggy issue. Any advice?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Audrea – If the cake was underdone in the center and sank, it sounds like the it just needed additional time in the oven. This is a dense batter and you used a different apple than called for in the recipe so it’s possible the Red Delicious apples gave up more liquid into the batter than the Granny Smiths which stay firm as they bake. Plus, every oven is different so baking time may vary. I’d suggest using the toothpick test to check for doneness in the center of the cake. Hope that helps.

  • Sandy Bernstein wrote:

    This recipe was absolutely delicious! I used the 9×13-in pan recipe with a Xylan non-stick steel pan. Took 42 minutes to bake perfectly! The glaze was too sweet for me but my mom absolutely flipped for it! So next time I think I will just glaze half the cake for her and the other half u glazed for me haha! There were so many apples but we are apple crazy here so I think I would add an additional apple next time but that’s just for my personal taste. I did not sift the flour mixture because I couldn’t find my sifter. But recipe still came out perfect! Thanks for such a fabulous recipe!

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re very welcome Sandy – so glad the cake was a hit!

  • Lin wrote:

    Hi, I use applesauce in all my cakes that call for oil. I make my own applesauce and all of my cakes turn out good and moist. Have you ever tried it. A lot less calories!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Lin – We’ve tried replacing some but not all oil with applesauce in some recipes. It works in many recipes.

  • Barb Wise wrote:

    Wonderful cake! My family loved it. Definitely will be making it again!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Barb – so glad your family enjoyed it!

  • Rhian Awni wrote:

    I made this last night (along with my daughter and husband) and it was absolutely delicious! I followed the recipe exactly except I forgot the baking soda :0 but still turned out fantastic and looked exactly like the picture posted. I will make again and again.
    Off to find more wonderful recipes on your site. And thank you!

    • Martha wrote:

      So glad you enjoyed the cake!

  • Ray deLing wrote:

    Made this recipe this morning 😊! It turned out fantastic and delicious! Will definitely make again. Thank you for posting!❤️😋

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re welcome Ray – glad you enjoyed the cake!

  • Margaret Tuckley wrote:

    can you make this in a bundt pan?

  • Jessica wrote:

    This was delicious! I made it for my husband’s birthday because he does not like store bought cakes and loves apple desserts. It came out moist and perfect! And this is coming from someone who very rarely bakes. When I do bake, it’s usually from a box mix. That you for the easy to follow recipe. Also, I mixed everything by hand because I don’t have a mixer and used whole milk in the glaze because I didn’t have heavy cream. I will definitely make this again for the holidays! THANK YOU!

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re welcome Jessica – so glad the recipe was a success!

  • Joanna wrote:

    Hi, This sounds delicious and perfect for the Fall! So I recently bought red gala apples before I discovered this amazing recipe. Can I use any apple or do you recommend Granny Smith?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Joanna – Granny Smith are tart apples that stay firm during baking so that variety is good for baking and the tartness balances the sweetness of the cake. Galas are also good baking apples, but are a little sweeter – but I think you’d still be fine using them for this recipe.

  • Kristy Howard wrote:

    This cake is AMAZING! Our family is gluten-free, so I simply substituted the flour for gfJules flour blend, and the results were fabulous. My entire family loved it! Super moist and tastes very autumnal.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Kristy – glad to know that gluten free flower works as well!

  • Lori wrote:

    Just baked it todsy. Scrumptious!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Lori!

  • Jaynee wrote:

    Can someone tell me if this can be made the day before and refrigerated until time to serve?

    • Martha wrote:

      Sure Jaynee – You can do that. I’d suggest bringing it back to closer to room temperature before serving.

  • Vicky wrote:

    Could the oil be replaced with butter? I’m out of oil but have plenty of butter in my freezer. Thank you

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Vicky – In general, butter isn’t a substitute for oil in recipes like this because the butter is a solid, not a liquid in a cooled state, among other differences (butter has a % of water and milk solids, whereas oil is 100% fat). I think the finished cake would be very dense and heavy if you used butter.

  • X wrote:

    When did this recipe originate??????

    • Martha wrote:

      We believe it dates back to the 1950’s based on some reader comments.

  • Modena workman wrote:

    Wonderful cake. Appledapple

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank you!

  • Amy wrote:

    Please subscribe me to your blog. Your recipes look so good! I’m sure my family will love them.

  • Tammy wrote:

    I think you are right that every grandma has some version of this cake in their recipe book. The one I have made for my family for years uses less ingredients & yet it always comes out & is quickly devoured.
    3 cps. AP flour
    1 tsp. salt
    1 tsp. baking soda
    1 cp. chopped pecans
    1 cp. vegetable oil (I use canola)
    2 cps. sugar
    2 tsp. vanilla
    3 cps. raw apples – chopped fine (I use Fuji apples that are very firm)
    3 eggs
    Mix oil, sugar, eggs & vanilla in lg. bowl
    In separate bowl
    Sift together flour, salt & baking soda
    Add to first mixture
    Fold in pecans & apples
    Bake in tube pan @ 350 for 1 hr.

    1 cp. brown sugar – packed
    1/4 cp. milk
    3/4 cp. butter
    Start sauce in the last mins. of baking time.
    Place sauce ingredients into a small pan over med. high heat. Stir constantly & bring to a boil.
    After it begins a gentle rolling boil, continue stirring & allow to cook 3 mins.
    Pour over hot cake while still in the tube pan.
    Allow cake to cool completely before removing from pan.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank you for sharing Tammy – looks delicious!

  • Tillie wrote:

    Suggestion to Jan Briggs question (and anyone else wondering) about leaving off the glaze due to dietary restrictions, etc. When I made this cake the first time, I discovered my cream had gone bad & someone had drunk all the milk without telling me …. no evaporated milk either. Didn’t want to use water so put on my thinking cap and did find unsweetened apple juice in the pantry. so used that as my liquid instead and glaze turned out great. Probabably a bit thinner glaze than I am used to if using milk, but it worked in a pinch and added a bit more apple flavor. Hope this helps.

    • Martha wrote:

      Great idea Tillie! Thank you for the suggestion!

  • Barb wrote:

    Can a 9 x 9 ” pan be used to make the cake thicker, it looks thin in the picture.

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Barb – We’ve never tried it – I suspect the full batter amount would overflow in a 9×9, but you could certainly put some of it in the smaller pan. You’ll also need to adjust the baking time.

  • Julie G wrote:

    Hi Martha,
    I’m going to make this cake tomorrow for my husband to take to work on Monday. I’m curious if the glaze hardens up a bit or stays wet? He just loves apple cake and this one looks so perfect!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Julie – It hardens a bit, but I’d still categorize it as a softer glaze, although if you refrigerate it overnight it will get even firmer. I’d suggest bringing it to work in the pan and serving it from there. Hope that helps!

  • Terri wrote:

    Fantastic!!!! Ate warm. Perfect dessert or breakfast cake.
    Reduced white suger in cake by 1/4 cp.
    Then reduced white sugar in glaze by 1 tbsp and doubled vanilla. Substituted 2 tbsp sour cream and 1tbsp mile for heavy cream. Excellent.

    Best apple cake we ever had.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Terri! So glad you enjoyed the cake as much as we do!

  • Mary wrote:

    I can’t wait to make this cake!! Thanks for the recipe!

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re welcome Mary – hope you love it!

  • Jan Briggs wrote:

    Won’t rate this because I haven’t made it (yet). A kind of dumb question, but: Am I safe in assuming that the cake is just as delicious without the glaze? I have a couple of family members with severe lactose intolerance issues and I, personally, don’t like really sweet sweets. I love your blog and use many of your recipes regularly. Thank you!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Jan – Yes – even without the glaze, it’s a delicious cake. Very moist and loaded with lots of apples and nuts. Hope you enjoy the cake – and we’re glad you’ve been enjoying our other recipes too!

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