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apple cake

Gluten Free Long Lost Apple Cake

by tw

This recipe was originally published September 18, 2018 and updated September 15, 2021

This cake comes with a story. About 20 years ago, my ex’s father asked me to bake this apple cake for him. He said his mom used to make it when he was young and he always loved it. Of course, I said yes and he gave me the recipe. I made it a few times and everyone who tried it said it was the best apple cake they ever tasted.

Fast forward a few years to 2007. The year my ex became my ex.  After he moved out, the cake recipe was gone. I searched high and low for the recipe card and became convinced that he took it with him when he moved out. I mean who would have the forethought to go into the recipe box to take a recipe when they are packing?! But for the past 10 years, I’ve assumed that was the case and I’ve blamed him for not having the best apple cake recipe anymore. As you can imagine, I was heartbroken to think I’d never taste that delicious cake again.

Well, about 2 weeks ago, I was searching for an old cookie recipe of mine. I used to have this bad habit of writing recipes on any old scrap of paper I could find, so there are literally post it notes and old envelopes with really awesome recipes – some of which aren’t even labeled as to what they are. Obviously I was super organized with my baking records, which is what led me to start a blog. At least I can find something if it’s stored on a website.

So I’m flipping through this ancient cookbook looking for a scrap of paper with the cookie recipe on it and what do I find? The old apple cake recipe card! Missing for over 10 years right on my cookbook shelf.  Well, I guess I owe my ex an apology for thinking he stole the recipe. 😉 Anyways, now you can all share in his Grandma’s most delicious Apple Cake, which I adjusted a bit to make it gluten free and dairy free. It was just a wonderful as I remembered!

apple cake recipe

What are the best apples to use for apple cake?

Any time I make an apple dessert, I always try to use a variety of apples.  Some are better for cooking or baking and others have better flavor.  For this cake, I used a combination of Granny Smith and Golden Delicious apples. 

apple cake dessert recipe

Does homemade apple cake need to be refrigerated?

Apple cake is very dense and moist.  Because of the fresh apples baked into the cake, you will definitely want to store it in the refrigerator.  I have a 9×13 baking pan with a plastic lid, like this one.

If your pan doesn’t have a lid, cover with plastic wrap or transfer to an airtight container before storing.  Apple cake should keep for 3-4 days, if it lasts that long. 🙂

gluten free apple cake

If you love apples, check out these other great recipes!

Gluten Free Dutch Apple Pie

Gluten Free Apple Harvest Bars (Dairy Free Option)

Gluten Free Apple and Cherry Pie

To pin this recipe for later, click the save button on any image in this post or the recipe card.  Please tag me @wellfedbaker on Instagram if you make this recipe! 

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apple cake

Gluten Free Apple Cake

This amazing cake has been passed down for generations. It is the perfect way to enjoy apple season!
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 24
Calories: 215kcal


  • 2 C Gluten Free 1-to-1 Flour Blend
  • 3 tsp Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • 10 Tbsp Vegan Butter room temperature
  • 2 C Sugar
  • 2 Eggs room temperature
  • 1 C Pecans roughly chopped
  • 1 C Golden Raisins
  • 1 C Shredded Coconut
  • 2 C Apples chopped into 1/4” cubes
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 6 Tbsp Non-Dairy Milk
  • 1 Apple thinly sliced for topping


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper and spray with non-stick spray.
  • In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Stir well and set aside.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine butter and sugar. Beat on medium high speed for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, mixing for 60 seconds between each addition. Add the vanilla. Scrape down bowl.
  • Turn the mixer to the lowest setting and slowly add the flour mixture, alternating with the milk. When it is about half incorporated add in the pecans, raisins, coconut and apples. You may have to stir the remainder by hand.
  • The mixture will be very thick and chunky, not like normal cake batter. Turn it out into the prepared pan and spread it evenly covering the whole pan. I topped mine with coarse sugar and thinly sliced apples, which is totally optional, but makes it look pretty.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 50-60 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool completely before slicing.
  • Store leftovers in airtight container in refrigerator. It’s great served warm or cold!


Sodium: 157mgCalcium: 52mgVitamin C: 1mgVitamin A: 270IUSugar: 24gFiber: 2gPotassium: 107mgCholesterol: 14mgCalories: 215kcalTrans Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 3gFat: 9gProtein: 2gCarbohydrates: 34gIron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @wellfedbaker or tag #wellfedbaker!

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