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Apple-Pie Cake


A cross between pie and a fruit crisp, this dramatic dessert is made with just six common ingredients.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 8
apple-pie cake

Photography: Con Poulos

Source: Everyday Food, January/February 2003


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces
  • 5 pounds (about 12) tart apples, such as Granny Smith
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


  1. In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, and 1 teaspoon cinnamon. Using an electric mixer or a pastry cutter, cut in butter until the mixture forms pea-size pieces. Press 2/3 of the mixture onto bottom and 1 inch up the side of a 9-inch springform pan.

  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel apples, cut into thin slices, and place in a bowl. Pour off any accumulated liquid. Toss apple slices with remaining teaspoon cinnamon and lemon juice, and put them in the prepared pan, pressing down gently as you pack them in (they will mound above the edge of the pan). Sprinkle remaining crumb mixture on top.

  3. Put the pan on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet, and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, and let the cake cool in the pan to set. Serve at room temperature.

Cook's Notes

To dust the cake with confectioners' sugar, put some sugar in a standard sieve, hold it over the cake, and tap the edge lightly.

Reviews Add a comment

  • kas783
    8 APR, 2017
    I followed the recipe exactly. I loved this cake and it was a huge hit with my family. I loved that it wasn't made with very much sugar and you really got to enjoy the taste of the apples. I followed the cooking time exactly as well and it turned out perfect.
  • keshleman1
    21 NOV, 2016
    To start, I added more cinnamon, some cloves and nutmeg as the cinnamon as called for would have made this very bland. I have baked it an extra 10 minutes. It doesn't specify what the texture of the apples should be, should they be cooking, or still hard? I used Haralson apples. I am waiting for it to cool and see what happens with the crust. I also used Bob's 1x1 gluten free flour.
  • MS12303707
    21 APR, 2016
    Reading all of these comments I am wondering if it might be possible to make this using canned prepared apple pie filling. Anyone have a comment or suggestion as to how much or how it might affect the recipe?
  • MS11474252
    7 JAN, 2016
    This recipe is a dud. Not only did it have one flavor note (cinnamon) the recipe calls for 5 lbs of apples. There is no added sugar or zest so the apples were bland and acidic - not apple pie-like. When I prepared it using 3.5 lbs of apples it was heaping over the pan. Luckily I put parchment around the sides. I don't know how you could contain that many apples. Also, because the apples were put in raw the bottom crust was a mushy mess. It was impossible to cut a clean piece.
  • mdabernathygm
    16 NOV, 2015
    SO AWESOME, easy and one of the BEST Apple _anything_ ever made (and I've made MANY pies, betty's, buckles, etc.) The best thing, there is no added sugar to the apples, hence making the apple you choose very important - Choose a dry, sweeter variety...I used Wolf River Apples still on the tree in November in Maine, organic. I also modified it by chopping up a nice dark chocolate bar mixed with apples, and added a handfull of oats to the topping portion of the crust mixture with more cinnamon.
  • LindaGerlach
    20 OCT, 2014
    The cake was really easy to make! A quick recipe for an every day use. Simple and good...but I have to admit, I did put some maple syrup, vanilla, lemon juice and teaspoon of corn starch to the already cut is also very easy to make this cake a vegan and healthy choice. I replaced the butter for a good margarine, used raw cane sugar and whole wheat flour! Delicious! And the recipe works as well as the son loves this apple cake!
    • mdabernathygm
      16 NOV, 2015
      Keep in mind that margerine is not a healthy alternative to butter.
  • Missmisad
    29 NOV, 2013
    Easy to make and pretty presentation, but I didn't like it. I used only 7 apples of various varieties and it was fine. If I made this again I'd put some sugar in the apples and more cinnamon. I'd also use less sugar and less butter in the crumble dough. Way too buttery, I think. Not sure though if I will be making this recipe again.
  • Patrick B
    2 NOV, 2013
    Not sure what I did wrong but this turned out very badly, the "cake" part of it just became a thick paste like mush. While the apples were flavorful the mushy cake substance made it less appetizing. I followed the instructions as given, perhaps it was baking it on a foil lined tray that didn't allow a crust to form? I opted to try turning it into a crumble..still in the oven..we'll see!
  • snlavagnino sylvia
    15 SEP, 2013
    Turns out perfect with a little changes. Adde sugar to the apples, had to make a bit extra crumbles for the top Use a 10 inch mold and 12 Smith apples. Very easy and delicious.
  • scooper212
    10 FEB, 2013
    Made this last night. Just ate some leftovers this morning. Really easy & delicious and looks good! A few edits: I used only 7 apples, I added a tad more lemon juice and tossed some sugar with the apple-cinnamon-lemon mix. Came out well. I would make it again with these modifications. Happy Cooking!