I have a black thumb.
For three years, I’ve tried to cultivate a healthy garden of herbs and veggies and I’m starting to realize that I’m the problem. I’m the weakest link.
Pepper and parsley plants tremble at the thought of being planted in my backyard. Squash and zucchini don’t stand a chance. Even basil, supposedly the easiest and most forgiving of plants to attempt in a home garden, can’t survive a summer at my place. I fry those suckers every time.
If we were in hunter/gatherer times now, I would not be a surviver. You would find me somewhere in the woods, gagging on grass and brown, spotty tomatoes that undoubtedly had already been predigested by a worm (or something worse). I seriously lack gardening skills.
I blame my own laziness (who wants to water a garden?!) and basic agricultural know-how. It’s really much easier to just buy my produce from the store and farmer’s market, but I’m convinced that growing my own food would be so much more healthy and rewarding.
My husband says we will someday plant a real, legit garden and so long as he’s okay with sewing the man hours, I’m fine with reaping all of the rewards. When that day comes, I’ll request an apple orchard and if the tree survives long enough to produce fruit, you better believe I’ll be making this apple crumb cake.
This apple crumb cake might be the most fool-proof recipe on my blog to date. It’s extra fancy because it works with a variety of different types of fruit, so if you happen to be one of those weirdos who doesn’t like apples, you could totally use pears, berries, plums, etc.
This time of year, apple desserts and crumb cakes kinda feel like a dime a dozen, but I really stand behind this fluffy friend. It’s moist and fragrant thanks to the applesauce and spices, and the crumb topping is delicious. In fact, if you decide to pick all the little crumbles right off the top of this apple crumb cake and nibble away like a little church mouse, I would not blame you.
Apple crumb cake is the perfect ode to October, the changing seasons, and those gorgeous little apples my green-thumbed friends are picking this time of year. Give it a try and let me know what you think in the comments below!
Cheers to you and happy Monday!
Apple Crumb Cake
This apple crumb cake is moist and fragrant, simple cake specked with bits of apples and topped with a sweet and rich crumb topping.
- Prep Time: 30
- Cook Time: 45
- Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
- Category: Cake
For the streusel
- 1/4 cup (50 gm) granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup (60 gm) light brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (110 gm) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 1/3 (160 gm) cups all-purpose flour
For the cake
- 1/2 cup (110 gm) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 (150 gm) cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons of boiled cider (optional)
- 1 cup (240 gm) of no sugar added applesauce
- 1 1/4 (155 gm) cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup (240 gm) of small diced apples (about 1 granny smith)
To prepare the streusel
- Combine the dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl. Stir in the butter to combine. Add the flour and stir just until combined.
- Set aside while you prepare the cake.
To prepare the cake
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat a 9″ springform pan with baking spray and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, stirring briefly to combine. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add the vanilla, cider, and applesauce. Beat to combine. In a separate bowl, toss together the dry ingredients and then add to the bowl of the stand mixer. Stir just until combined and then gently fold in the chopped apple.
- Spread the batter on the bottom of the pan and smooth. Then, crumble the streusel evenly over the top of the cake.
- Bake in the preheated oven for about 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool on a cooling rack for at least 10 minutes before removing the sides of the springform pan. The cake can be eaten warm or at room temperature, but is best enjoyed within 3 days.
Recipe adapted from: Ina Garten