Apple Spice Cake with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting


Total Time: 1.5 hrs  

Prep Time: 1 hr

Difficulty: 1 out of 5



  • ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar 
  • ¼ cup (50g) light brown sugar 
  • ½ cup (90g) unsweetened applesauce 
  • 2 eggs (at room temperature) 
  • ½ cup neutral oil 
  • 1 teaspoon Hawaiian vanilla extract 
  • 1-¼ cups (150 g) all-purpose flour 
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda 
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt 
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg 
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • 1-½ cups (180g) apples, peeled and cut into ¼“ pieces (about 1 large apple)


  • ½ cup (1 stick, 113g) unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 8 oz cream cheese (at room temperature)
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt 
  • 2 cups (227g) powdered sugar 
  • 1 tsp Hawaiian vanilla bean paste


Step 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9” round cake pan with parchment and grease the sides of the pan with butter or baking spray. 

Step 2. By hand or with an electric mixer, beat the granulated sugar, brown sugar, and eggs until light and fluffy. Gradually add the oil and mix thoroughly. Stir in the applesauce and vanilla. 

Step 3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients until just combined (do not overmix). Fold in the apples. 

Step 4. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and spread the batter in an even layer. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack and let the cake cool completely in the pan. 

Step 5. Make the frosting. With an electric mixer, beat together the butter, cream cheese, and salt. Gradually add the powdered sugar until the frosting is smooth, thick, and creamy. Add in the vanilla bean paste. 

Step 6. When the cake is completely cooled, remove it from the pan and place it on a cake stand or serving platter. Spread the frosting over the top of the cake. 

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