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Spiced Apple Walnut Cake with Salted Caramel Frosting that’s sweet & salty. It’s perfect during these Fall months with a cup of coffee.

No matter how warm it is in Southern California, during the Fall I crave all things apple, cinnamon, and pumpkin. I miss those east-coast Fall days when the air is crisp and it feels so good enjoying a cup of hot apple cider. Since I love Fall so much, I decided to make myself this Apple Walnut Cake with Salted Caramel Frosting.

How to make Salted Caramel Frosting? Do I need to make it all from scratch?

Nope! For this recipe, I simply bought store-bought caramel sauce from Trader Joe’s, but you can find caramel sauce at any grocery store. Simply mix the caramel sauce with butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, milk, and sea salt, and voila, you have Salted Caramel Frosting! So simple!

Can I use any kind of apple for this Apple Spice Cake?

No. You need to use a tart apple, and I suggest going with Granny Smith Apples. You can easily find them at the grocery store or farmer’s market this time of year. If not, you can try Honeycrisp apples.

How come you’re using applesauce and apples in this Applesauce Cake?

I added apples for that lovely texture it lends. I added applesauce to cut down on the amount of oil used in this recipe. Applesauce is a great way to add moisture without fat. Make sure you use unsweetened applesauce.

Can I make Apple Walnut Cake gluten-free?

Absolutely! Simply replace all-purpose flour with gluten-free flour. I recommend Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Flour.

Apple Walnut Cake with Salted Caramel Frosting is:

Indulgent
Sweet & Salty
Perfect with Coffee
A Fall Cake
Loaded with Fall Flavors
Delicious

How to make Apple Walnut Cake with Salted Caramel Frosting recipe step by step?

Prep

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a medium-size mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Stir and set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the wet ingredients.
4. Using an electric mixer, mix until well combined. Set aside.

5. Chop the walnuts.
6. Finely chop a Granny Smith Apple.

Make the Apple Walnut Cake

1. Add the dry ingredients to the wet in 2 batches.
2. Mix well until well combined, however DO NOT OVERMIX.

3. Add the chopped walnuts and apple to the batter. Fold ingredients into the batter.
4. Pour batter into a well-greased 9″ round cake pan. You can also use a square cake pan.

5. Bake cake for 40 minutes at 350 degrees. Make sure you check the cake after 30 minutes every 5 minutes as oven temperatures vary. The cake is done. Let it cool for 45 minutes before flipping.

Make the Salted Caramel Frosting

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients except milk and salt. So combine butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, and store-bought caramel sauce. Blend with an electric mixer.
2. Add milk and salt. Mix well.
3. Now you should have perfectly smooth and creamy salted caramel frosting.
4. Once the cake cools, carefully flip it onto a cake stand. Frost with Salted Caramel Frosting once completely cooled. Drizzle caramel sauce on top and garnish with chopped walnuts.

Enjoy with Coffee!

More Fall Desserts!

4.75 from 4 votes

Apple Walnut Cake with Salted Caramel Frosting

By: Nisha
Spiced Apple Walnut Cake with Salted Caramel Frosting that's sweet & salty. It's perfect during these Fall months with a cup of coffee.
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 16 slices

Ingredients 

Dry Ingredients

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sunflower oil, any flavorless oil - vegetable, canola
  • 4 ounces unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs

Addins

  • 3/4 cup walnuts chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups Granny Smith Apple, finely chopped

Salted Caramel Frosting

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup caramel sauce, I like Trader Joe's
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp whole milk
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt

Garnish

  • drizzle caramel sauce
  • add chopped walnuts on top
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Instructions 

Prep

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a medium-size mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Stir and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the wet ingredients.
  • Using an electric mixer, mix until well combined. Set aside.
  • Chop the walnuts.
  • Finely chop a Granny Smith Apple.

Prepare the Apple Walnut Cake

  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet in 2 batches.
  • Mix well until well combined, however DO NOT OVERMIX.
  • Add the chopped walnuts and apple to the batter. Fold ingredients into the batter.
  • Pour batter into a well-greased 9" round cake pan. You can also use a square cake pan.
  • Bake cake for 40 minutes at 350 degrees. Make sure you check the cake after 30 minutes every 5 minutes as oven temperatures vary. The cake is done. Let it cool for 45 minutes before flipping.

Make the Salted Caramel Frosting

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients except milk and salt. So combine butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, and store-bought caramel sauce. Blend with an electric mixer.
  • Add milk and salt. Mix well.
  • Now you should have perfectly smooth and creamy salted caramel frosting.
  • Once the cake cools, carefully flip it onto a cake stand. Frost with Salted Caramel Frosting once completely cooled. Drizzle caramel sauce on top and garnish with chopped walnuts.

Nutrition

Calories: 321kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 37mg | Sodium: 166mg | Potassium: 85mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 26g | Vitamin A: 230IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 1mg

Additional Info

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @honeywhatscooking or tag #honeywhatscooking!

Hi, I'm Nisha!

I'm a foodie who is passionate about healthy-ish living and mindful eating. You'll find a bit of everything here. I use mostly organic real ingredients and incorporate seasonal produce in my cooking. I believe food is medicine. Join me on this soul-searching journey as I share my love for good food, and I hope I inspire you to eat better somewhere along the way.


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4.75 from 4 votes (3 ratings without comment)

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3 Comments

  1. Hi Nisha, I am wondering if for the frosting the Butter could be substituted with Cream Cheese – like Philadelphia? Did you ever try that?
    Thx!
    AngeK

    1. Hi AngeK.

      So essentially you are looking to make Salted Caramel Cream Cheese Frosting –
      I believe cream cheese will work and apple and cream cheese frosting work well together.

      I would use 1/2 cup or 4 ounces cream cheese at room temperature.
      You may need to add a little bit more milk to get the frosting to be smoother. Let me know how it goes. 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    A full recipe of this cake made 2 6inch cakes … The texture was perfect, and granny snith apples bits were great to bite into … This is definitely a keeper for me …