Moist Applesauce Spice Cake Recipe

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The Applesauce Spice Cake is one of the moistest cakes – due to the applesauce. It’s an American tradition since Colonial days, and is still a mainstay of comfort food today.

Applesauce Spice Cake

Moist and full of flavor. A true comfort food.

applesauce spice cake

How to make apple cake with pecans and applesauce?

The applesauce makes a moist, rich cake. The applesauce spice cake recipe is flexible – you can add whatever you have on hand, such as pecans, raisins, walnuts, or serve it plain. It’s also fast & easy – all made in one bowl.

How to make this your signature recipe.

There are so many ways to make the spice cake, you can make it your own signature cake that everyone recognizes as yours by the mix-ins and decorations.

  • plain cake dusted with powdered icing sugar – or use a stencil
  • plain cake served warm with vanilla ice cream – want to add caramel sauce?
  • plain cake with dollop of real whipped cream
  • cake with crumble topping
  • cake with browned butter icing
  • serve plain or add walnuts, pecans, and/or raisins

This recipe includes instructions for both the crumble topping and the browned butter icing. Choose ONE.

Applesauce Spice Cake


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups chunky applesauce
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2 lg eggs
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans)

Crumble Topping

  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp butter

Browned Butter Icing

  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 3 cups powdered icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
  • 2-3 tbsp milk
  • 1/4 cup chopped nuts for topping


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Grease and flour 9″ pan: bundt, square, or spring form
  3. Combine cake ingredients (except nuts) in bowl.
  4. Beat at low speed until all ingredients are moistened. Then beat at high speed until smooth.
  5. Stir in nuts.
  6. Pour into pan. Bake 35 minutes, until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan. Test center with toothpick for doneness.
  7. Cool completely, about 10 minutes.

Crumble Topping

  1. Whisk brown sugar, flour and cinnamon. Cut in cold butter to make coarse crumbs.
  2. Sprinkle crumble topping on cake batter before baking.
  3. Frost cooled cake. Sprinkle with nuts.
  4. Bake for 40 minutes.

Browned Butter Icing

  1. Melt 1/3 cup butter over medium heat. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, for 4 minutes or until butter starts to turn golden. It will appear foamy and be bubbling. Remove from heat and cool completely.
  2. Combine browned butter, powdered sugar and vanilla in bowl. Beat at medium speed while gradually adding milk until frosting is smooth.

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Want more? See all of our cake recipes.


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