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Caramel Apple Cake on White Cake Stand with Apples in Background
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Caramel Apple Cake Recipe

This moist Caramel Apple Cake Recipe is warmly spiced, rich with caramel, and has a full pound of apples baked into the cake. And it's finished off with an easy-to-make vanilla cinnamon buttercream!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 50 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 20 servings
Calories 374kcal

Ingredients

Spiced Apple Cake:

Caramel:

Vanilla Cinnamon Frosting:

Instructions

For the Cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350F; butter and flour 2 (9-inch) round baking pans.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg; set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar and eggs until light and fluffy, then whisk in the oil, milk, and vanilla. Gradually stir the dry ingredients into the wet, then fold in the shredded apple, being careful not to over-mix.
  • Divide the batter between the 2 prepared pans, and bake until golden on top and a toothpick inserted inside comes out clean or with just a couple crumbs, about 20 to 24 minutes. Cool completely before assembling.

For the Carmel:

  • In a small bowl, combine the cream and vanilla; set aside.
  • Add the sugar and water to a medium-sized thick-bottomed pot; turn the heat on medium-high and cook until sugar is caramelized and amber in color. You can give the pot a swirl to help the water and sugar dissolve, but do not stir until about 2/3 of the sugar is melted. From that point on, gently stir constantly with a wooden spoon.
  • Once the sugar turns amber-colored, carefully add the butter and salt, and stir to combine. Once the butter is melted, turn off the heat and carefully pour in the cream mixture, stirring until smooth.
  • Cool completely before using or storing.

For the Frosting:

  • Use a handheld electric beater to cream together the butter, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.
  • Alternate between beating in the powdered sugar and milk until all the powdered sugar is added and the buttercream is smooth and creamy.

To Assemble the Cake:

  • Measure out 3 tablespoons from the 1/2 cup of caramel sauce; transfer to a small bowl and reserve for drizzling on top of the cake once it’s frosted.
  • To assemble the cake, turn 1 cake out onto a cake stand. Spread on the remaining caramel sauce (other than the reserved 3 tablespoons), leaving a border of about 1/2-inch all around.
  • Refrigerate 1 hour or until fully chilled, then carefully place the other cake on top.
  • Frost the top and sides with Vanilla Cinnamon Frosting.
  • Chill 1 hour before cutting and serving; wrap any leftovers in plastic wrap and store in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Notes

  • This recipe makes 1 cake with 2 9-inch layers.
  • This cake recipe was adapted from my recipe for Apple Crumb Cake.
  • This caramel recipe was adapted from Simply Recipes’ recipe for Caramel Sauce.
  • This caramel recipe makes about 1 1/2 cups of caramel sauce, but you’ll only need 1/2 cup for this recipe.
  • This caramel keeps well in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Like any caramel sauce, it will harden after being refrigerated; to soften, you can gently warm it up in the microwave or on the stovetop.

Nutrition

Calories: 374kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 149mg | Potassium: 114mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 404IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 48mg | Iron: 1mg