Apple-Pear Crumb Cake

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Before I tell you about this cake, I want to give a huge, heartfelt thank-you to all of you who commented on my last post…your kind thoughts and words of encouragement meant the world to me.  Thank you for your support and for reading my blog!  XOXO, Faith

And now for the cake…I have found my ultimate autumn cake.  (Which, oddly enough, does not contain pumpkin…I know, I’m a little surprised too!)  And if you’re a fan of New York-style crumb cake (you know, the coffee cake with the mile-high layer of streusel on top), this will likely be one of your favorites as well.

Shredded apple is stirred into a spiced batter; roasted pears form the middle layer, and the whole thing is topped with streusel.  A little bit of crème anglaise poured on top would be divine…but that really is gilding the lily.  ;)

Now, I’m not saying this is a low-fat cake or anything, since it does have its fair share of butter and sugar…but it does have whole wheat flour, a pound of apples, and four whole pears, which has to count for something, right?  Make it for a special occasion…or if the occasion you’re making it for is just a Wednesday night, save a slice for yourself and pack the rest up to send to work with your hubby.  ;)

Apple-Pear Crumb Cake

Serves 10 to 12

Crumble Topping:

1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, slightly softened

1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup whole wheat flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar, lightly packed

2 large eggs

1/4 cup milk

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 lb apples, peeled, cored, and shredded

4 roasted pears (with their syrupy juices), diced (from this recipe)


Butter, for greasing the pan

Flour, for flouring the pan

Powdered sugar, for dusting the top (optional)

For the crumble top:  Use a fork to cut together all ingredients for crumble topping in a large bowl (the mixture will look like large crumbs); set aside.

For the cake:  Preheat oven to 350F; butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt; set aside.

In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugars; then beat in the eggs until light and fluffy.  Beat in the milk and vanilla.  Gradually stir the dry ingredients into the wet, then fold in the shredded apple, being careful not to over-mix.

Spread 2/3 of the batter in an even layer in the bottom of the prepared pan.  Add the pears and spread in an even layer, leaving a rim along the outside of about 1/4 inch.  Spread the remaining 1/3 of the batter evenly on the top of the pears.  Sprinkle on the crumble topping.

Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 50 to 60 minutes.  Cool completely, then dust with powdered sugar (if using) and serve.

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  1. says

    Whole wheat flour and fruit qualifies this as breakfast food, no? Whatever meal you eat it for, it looks amazing!

    Also, YAY on the book! I honestly cannot wait for it, Faith!

  2. says

    I always like to bake with apples and pears in autumn but for some reason always keep them separate – this cake has shown me the error of my ways! I love the crumb topping and the involvement of fruit makes it perfect breakfast food right?!

  3. says

    Gorgeous cake Faith, I love how the apples are shredded with the chopped poached pears in the cake and the crumb topping finishes it wonderfully!

  4. says

    I have to make this! I love how much fruit is in there, it helps justify the butter and sugar and with whole wheat flour, it’s practically health food! :) (I like your header-has it changed?)

    • admin says

      Veronica, Lol, I changed my header a few months ago when I changed the look of my whole site (my site used to be black & white). I’m glad you like it though! :)

  5. says

    It does look like the perfect autumn cake…and I don’t think I would even miss the pumpkin! The texture looks wonderful and the photos are as gorgeous as ever!

  6. says

    The addition of the roasted pears must have made this cake quite special indeed. As I’ve mentioned before…since pears don’t figure much in our desserts, I may just have to do with apples. I’m sure it will also be a homerun ;o)
    Great recipe and of course as usual you make me want more dessert ;)

    Ciao for now,

  7. says

    Would love to sit down with this cake and you as well and talk about your book over coffee. I am so excited for you and would LOVE to hear the story of you got published. This cake is the perfect comfort food.

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