Frosted Applesauce Cake is Fall in cake form! Tender cake with cinnamon & spice, raisins and nuts baked then topped with creamy frosting. Spiced applesauce cake recipe that everyone adores!
This applesauce cake recipe is simple and easy, not to mention incredibly versatile! Applesauce spice cake is a great treat to serve this fall or whenever you happen to find too much applesauce going uneaten in the house. Enjoy an easy applesauce cake any time of the year, whenever the mood strikes.
What is Applesauce Cake?
Applesauce cake is a cake that uses applesauce in the batter instead of oil. This allows similar results without as much fat ad calories. Another benefit is that it adds moisture, nutrients and fiber so you could make a valid argument to eat a second piece. With spices and applesauce in the batter, this applesauce spice cake tastes like fall and is very comforting and delicious.
-Flour: You can use 2 ½ cups of all purpose flour or to make this applesauce cake gluten free, use a one to one ratio gluten free flour like Bob’s Red Mill.
-Sugar: Just 1 ½ cups of granulated white sugar is enough to sweeten this cake and make it taste great.
-Baking Soda: This leavening agent will help the cake to rise and puff up, you don’t need much, just 1 ½ teaspoons is enough.
-Salt: Acting as a flavor enhancer and making this cake taste even better is 1 ½ teaspoons of salt.
-Spices: A mixture of cinnamon, allspice, and cloves will season this spice cake. You only need a teaspoon of cinnamon and 1/2 a teaspoon of allspice and cloves.
-Butter: One half cup sized stick of butter will act as the fat this cake needs and adds a nice richness to the flavor.
-Applesauce: The star of the show! We use unsweetened plain applesauce, but any kind will work.
-Egg: Believe it or not, we only need 1 egg to act as the binder for this cake. This is partly because the applesauce helps to bind as well.
-Raisins: We love raisins in this cake, but you can use 1/2 cup chopped apple if you prefer.
-Nuts: ½ a cup of chopped pecans or walnuts taste great in the batter and sprinkled on top of the frosting but you can make the applesauce cake without nuts and be just fine too.
Buttercream Frosting Ingredients
-Butter: Acting as the base for this frosting is a ½ cup stick of softened butter (salted or unsalted).
-Evaporated Milk: You’ll need about 2 tablespoons of milk to thin down the frosting so it’s not too thick, but you can use any type of milk if you don’t want to open a can.
-Vanilla Extract: Just a teaspoon of vanilla is enough to flavor this frosting nicely. I recommend using a higher-quality vanilla extract but feel free to use what you have on hand.
-Powdered Sugar: 3 cups of powdered sugar will make the frosting sweet, thick, creamy, and delicious.
Preheat your oven to 350F degrees and grease a 9×13 baking dish. Set it aside.
Mix the dry ingredients together in a large bowl and then stir to combine.
Add in the softened butter and water, beating for 1 minute until well mixed.
Add in the applesauce and the egg. Beat again, for about 3 minutes.
Gently fold in the raisins and nuts if you choose to use them.
Pour the cake batter into the prepared baking dish.
Bake in your preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick can be inserted and come out clean.
Completely cool the cake on a wire rack before frosting.
In a big mixing bowl, add all of your ingredients.
Stir to combine.
Using an electric mixer, beat the mix together for 3-4 minutes until it’s nice and creamy.
Spread over the cooled cake.
Frosted Applesauce Cake
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour can use Bob’s Red Mill One-to-One gluten free flour instead
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 1/2 tsp cloves
- 1/2 cup butter 1 stick, softened
- 1/2 cup water
- 16 oz unsweetened applesauce
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup raisins or chopped apples
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts optional
- chopped pecans or walnuts for topping optional
- 1/2 cup butter 1 stick, softened
- 2 TBSP evaporated milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.Grease a 13x9 baking dish.
- In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients together and stir to combine. Add in softened butter and water. Beat for 1 minute.
- Add applesauce and egg. Beat for 3 minutes.
- Gently stir in raisins and chopped nuts, if using.
- Pour into greased baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool on wire rack completely before spreading with frosting and topping with additional nuts, if preferred.
- Place all ingredients in a big mixing bowl. Use a hand mixer or electric mixer & beat at medium speed for 3-4 minutes until creamy.
- Batter can be used to make 24 cupcakes – bake for 20-25 minutes
- Batter can be used for Bundt cake – Bake for 45-50 minutes.
- Yields: frost sheet cake or layer cake or 24 cupcakes
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What to frost an applesauce cake with?
Most commonly you’ll see cream cheese frosting, caramel glazes, or even a honey flavored frosting on top and while these all taste great, the buttercream frosting recipe attached to this cake tastes incredible. Not only that, but it’s so simple and easy to toss together that it hardly takes any time at all to make. So use the recipe provided order to find your own, this cake goes great with so many options that you’ll always find a winner!
Does applesauce cake need to be refrigerated?
Unfrosted cakes do not need to be stored in the fridge as they are just fine being covered and held at room temperature for a day. That said, once a dairy-based frosting such as cream cheese or buttercream is applied to the cake, it’s best to keep it stored in the fridge for food safety reasons unless you plan on eating within a few hours.
Of course! This cake recipe can make a rather large amount of sweet servings, but if you don’t see yourself eating them being they go bad, then feel free to stick them in the freezer for maximum shelf-life. Frosted or unfrosted, I recommend cutting the cake into servings, laying them on a baking sheet to flash freeze for an hour or two, then wrapping in plastic wrap and storing in an airtight container. Now when you want a slice it’s ready to go and you can pack them in a lunch bag too
Can I make applesauce bundt cake or cupcakes?
Absolutely! This applesauce cake recipe can be used in a (greased) bundt cake or in cupcake molds. Simply adjust the baking time. The bundt cake will take about 45-50 minutes to finish baking whereas the cupcakes will take 20-25 minutes to finish cooking.
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