Made with crisp apples, warm spices and drizzled with caramel this sweet Apple Streusel Cake is the perfect Fall dessert! Serve a slice with vanilla ice cream, and everyone will be in love!
*This recipe is sponsored by Dixie Crystals!*
Easy Apple Streusel Cake
As the cool weather seeps in and the leaves start changing colors, I find myself in the kitchen baking even more! Fall is definitely my favorite season for baking delicious desserts my family will love. The sweet Fall aromas fill my home making me feel warm, comforted, and in absolute bliss.
Don’t get me wrong, I love baking delicious desserts any time of the year, but Fall is the perfect time to whip up a cozy apple dessert. With apples ready to be harvested, there are a number of apple desserts you can try like my Cinnamon Baked Apples with Brown sugar, but this easy Apple Streusel Cake is one of my favorites!
Packed with a combination of delicious apples and cinnamon, this tender apple streusel cake is packed with warm, sweet flavors. Topped with a buttery crumbly crust, it’s the perfect dessert to enjoy with a steaming cup of coffee or as an after dinner dessert.
Apple Streusel Ingredients
For this recipe, you’ll need ingredients for the sweet cinnamon apple filling, and the cake. Get out your shopping list and jot down these ingredients.
- Apples: Be sure to wash your apples thoroughly. You will only need about 3 medium sized apples chopped and peeled.
- Apple pie spice: You will need this for both the apple filling as well as the cake.
- Cinnamon: Again, you will need cinnamon for both the filling and the cake.
- Vanilla: Vanilla extract is used for flavoring in the filling as well as the cake.
- Sugar: For this recipe, you will need Dixie Crystals Light Brown Sugar for the filling and regular Dixie Crystals Granulated Sugar for the cake.
- Corn starch: Corn starch is used to thicken the filling so it isn’t watery. Don’t use more than the recipe calls for.
- Flour: When measuring, don’t pack your flour. Instead, scoop it into the measuring cup with a spoon and use a knife to scrape off the excess.
- Baking soda and powder: You will need both to ensure your cake rises.
- Butter: The butter needs to be frozen and then grated before using in this recipe.
- Egg: Place your eggs in a bowl of water. If they float, throw them out, but if they sink, they are good to use.
- Yogurt: You will need Greek yogurt for this recipe. You can use vanilla or plain. I prefer vanilla.
- Caramel sauce: This is optional if you want to drizzle it over the top of your apple streusel.
What are the Best Apples to Use?
I like to use Granny Smith Apples for the tart flavor they add. However, you can use any kind of apple that you prefer. If you want a sweeter cake, consider Gala Apples.
How to Make Apple Streusel Cake
Alright now that you know what you need, it’s time to get baking! This apple streusel takes about 35 minutes to prep, but it is totally worth it in the end.
Preheat and prep: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Then, spray a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray. Set to the side.
Make the filling: Next, add your chopped and peeled apples, apple pie spice, cinnamon, light brown sugar, corn starch, vanilla, and water to a medium saucepan. Simmer it for about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Whisk dry cake ingredients: Whisk together the flour, sugar, apple pie spice, cinnamon, baking powder, and baking soda in a large mixing bowl.
Add the butter: Add your grated butter to the dry ingredients. Press the mixture with a fork until it becomes crumbly. Scoop out ½ cup of the mixture and set it to the side.
Add wet ingredients: Next, add your beaten egg, yogurt, vanilla, and water to the dry ingredient and butter mixture. Fold and press ingredients together until just combined.
Place batter in cake pan: Put a little more than half of the batter into the bottom of the cake pan. Spread the mixture out to the sides of the pan.
Top with apple mixture: Top the cake batter with your apple filling. Spread it to the sides of the pan. Then, dollop scoops of the remaining cake batter over the apple mixture.
Add crumb topping: Evenly sprinkle the reserved dry ingredients and butter over the top of the cake.
Bake the cake: Place the cake on a cookie sheet and bake for 55-60 minutes. When it’s done, remove it from the oven and let it cool.
Serve: Drizzle your apple streusel cake with caramel sauce before serving. Enjoy!
Tips for Success
I promise this recipe will be a new family favorite! Here are a few tips that will help you get the best results every single time:
- Freeze the butter. Pop your butter into the freezer about 30-minutes before making this recipe. It just won’t work well without frozen butter.
- Make sure the apples are soft. When simmering your filling, simmer until the apples are softened and the liquid thickens and becomes like a syrup.
- Don’t overmix the cake batter. Use a firm spatula or wooden spoon to fold the ingredients together, but do not overmix the batter.
- Grease the spoon. Before spreading the batter in your pan, grease the back of the spoon. It helps the batter to spread around easier and not stick to your spoon. You can spray it with non-stick cooking spray.
- Use a cookie sheet. Put your 9 inch round cake pan on a cookie sheet just in case anything bubbles over during baking.
Although this apple streusel cake recipe is absolutely delicious on it’s own, add-ons are welcome. I’ve got some great ideas if you need any suggestions:
- Ice cream: Serve this cake warm topped with vanilla or cinnamon ice cream. It makes a delicious topping!
- Whipped cream: Another option is to skip the ice cream and add whipped cream to the top.
- Coffee: You can combine one of the options above, or none, and serve a slice with a steaming cup of coffee.
How to Store Leftovers
I find that eating apple streusel cake fresh is the best way to eat it. But, if you just can’t get it gone in a day, you can store the leftovers for a couple days in the refrigerator. Be sure to wrap it tightly in plastic wrap before placing it in the fridge. Additionally, you can cover it and leave it on the counter if you plan to eat it within 24 hours.
Can I Freeze It
Absolutely! In fact, if you want it to last longer, freezing is the best option. This cake can last 3-4 months if stored properly in the freezer. To store it, make sure it is placed in a freezer-safe baking dish and then wrapped tightly in plastic wrap so that it is airtight. Bring to room temperature to eat.
Apple Streusel Cake
- 2 ¼ cups peeled & chopped apples, about 3 medium apples
- 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅓ cup packed Dixie Crystals Light Brown Sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoon corn starch
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup water
- 2 ¼ cups all purpose flour
- ¾ cup Dixie Crystals Granulated Sugar
- ½ apple pie spice
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda 3/4 cup, 1 1/2 sticks frozen** and grated butter
- 1 large egg beaten
- ¾ cup greek yogurt, plain or vanilla flavored
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup water
- Caramel, optional drizzle on top
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan with non-stick baking spray (or butter and flour) and set aside.
- In a medium sauce pan, add peeled and chopped apples, apple pie spice, cinnamon, light brown sugar, corn starch, vanilla extract and water. Bring to a simmer and allow to cook for roughly 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Cook until the apples soften and the liquid thickens and becomes syrupy. Set apple mixture aside and allow to cool while you prepare cake.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together dry ingredients: flour, sugar, apple pie spice, cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda. Add grated butter. Use a fork to press mixture together until it becomes crumbly. Scoop out 1/2 cup of mixture and set it aside.
- Then, add beaten egg, yogurt, vanilla extract and water. Using a firm spatula or wooden spoon, fold and press ingredients together until just combined – careful not to over mix.
- Add a little more than half of the batter to the bottom of the cake pan. Using a spoon, spread the mixture out to the sides of the pan. Top with the apple mixture, again spreading to the sides of the pan. (NOTE: Greasing the back of a spoon will help spread the batter around easier.)
- Dollop scoops of the remaining batter over the apple mixture. Then, evenly sprinkle the reserved crumb topping over the pan. Place the cake pan onto a cookie sheet, in case any of the filling bubbles over during baking.
- Bake for 55 to 60 minutes. Once baked, remove from oven and allow to cool before serving.
- Drizzle some caramel sauce on top before serving. Can also be served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Or enjoyed for breakfast with a cup of coffee!
Other Sweet Apple Recipes:
If you love apple desserts, I have a ton of apple recipes you will love. Here are some reader favorites:
- Fried Apples
- Mountain Dew Apple Dumplings
- Apple Blondies
- Apple Pie French Toast Casserole
- Caramel Apple Dream Cake
- Cinnamon Baked Apples
- Apple Upside Down Cake
- Caramel Apple Dump Cake
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