French Apple Cake Recipe

5 from 1 vote

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This French apple cake is the perfect recipe for fall. A fluffy and light cake batter that is full of fresh apple slices in every bite.

This French cake is one that offers a gorgeous presentation and is so simple to throw together.

Even if you aren’t a pro in the kitchen, you can pull off this easy classic French apple cake.

French Apple Cake slice

Pair it with some vanilla ice cream or whipped cream and you have one amazing dessert.

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Learn how to make apple syrup for another easy apple season recipe that is bursting with crisp sweet apples flavor. Or for a more traditional dessert try these apple bars or my popular apple cider bundt cake.

This French Apple Cake Recipe Is

  • Made with simple ingredients
  • One of the easiest cakes
  • Moist
  • Made with crisp apples
  • Delicious afternoon snack or for special occasions

Ingredients Needed

  • Granny Smith Apples – Granny smith offers that tart that balances out the sweet of this yummy cake. Tart apples work best but you can use another variety of apples if you want.
  • Unsalted Butter – If you use a salted butter just leave the salt out in the recipe.
  • Baking Powder
  • Salt
  • Large Eggs
  • Sugar
  • Pure Vanilla Extract – Don’t forget this ingredient. It really helps elevate the cake and flavor of the fresh apples.
  • Cinnamon – Offers a warm spice to the cake that really enhances the flavor.
  • Flour

How to Make it

Full directions on how to make this traditional French apple cake is featured at the bottom of the post. This is a quick walk through on how this dessert is made.

Start by coring the apples and slice into 1/2 inch slices. If you want to peel the apples, do that before coring, but you can leave the skin on if you like.

Add the lemon juice to a cup of water to soak apples. This helps prevent the apples from turning brown while you prepare the cake batter.

Next, preheat the oven and grease your 9 inch pan with nonstick cooking spray.

Add butter to a microwave-safe bowl and heat to melt. Set it aside to cool.

In a small bowl add your dry ingredients and whisk to combine. Set it aside.

Then, in a large bowl mix your eggs and sugar with a hand mixer or electric stand mixer for around a minute.

eggs and sugar

You want the mixture to become frothy.

frothy eggs

Add in the vanilla extract and stir to combine. Then slowly add in the flour mixture a little at a time.

After you add a bit of the flour mixture, slowly add in half of the melted butter and then finish off with the remaining dry ingredients.

wet and dry ingredients in a bowl

Pour the apple cake batter into the prepared pan, and spread it out. Remove apples from water and pat dry with paper towels.

Place the apples on top of the cake, and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake as directed.

add apples to cake pan

When the cake is cooked through, remove from oven and top with cinnamon or caramel sauce. Cool, serve and enjoy!

Tips and Variations to Recipe

  • You can use a dark rum to make a glaze with powdered sugar if you want to drizzle over the top of the cooled cake.
  • Feel free to use other kinds of apples like pink lady, honey crisp, or your favorite variety.
  • When the cake is completely cool you can dust with powdered sugar to give it a rustic cake appearance.
  • Run a knife around the sides of the springform pan to ensure the cake will release easily.
French Apple Cake with cinnamon

Storing

Store your cake in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days. Refrigerating the apples extends the life of your cake. You can serve at room temperature if you would like.

Feel free to freeze any of the cake you do not eat right away. Just place in a freezer friendly container and freeze for 3-4 months.

Then thaw in the fridge overnight or on the counter for about an hour or heat when ready to eat.

Print the Recipe Card

French Apple Cake

5 from 1 vote
Even if you aren't a pro in the kitchen, you can pull off this simple classic French apple cake recipe.
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 40 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Yield: 8 slices

Equipment

  • 1 9" spring form pan

Ingredients 

  • 2 Granny Smith apples
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 Cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 eggs, large
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1-2 Tbsp cinnamon, to taste

Instructions 

  • Core, peel, and slice the apples into 1⁄2 inch slices.
  • Add one tablespoon of lemon juice to one cup of water in a bowl.
  • Put apple slices in a bowl while prepping other steps.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Prep the 9 inch springform pan with nonstick baking spray.
  • Add the unsalted butter to a bowl and melt in the microwave. Set aside.
  • Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl.
  • Then, in a large mixing bowl add eggs and sugar whisking with an electric mixer for about 1 minute (or until it becomes frothy).
  • Add in the pure vanilla extract.
  • Gently pour in half of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and blend with the electric mixer.
  • While blending the wet and dry ingredients together, pour in half of the melted butter.
  • Add the rest of the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl. Mix to blend the ingredients.
  • Add in the rest of the melted butter.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared round springform pan and use a offset spatula even out the batter.
  • Remove the apple slices from the lemon/water and pat dry with paper towels.
  • Arrange apple slices on top of the cake batter and sprinkle cinnamon on top.
  • Bake at 350°F for 40 minutes.
  • Allow to cool on the counter before enjoying!

Notes

Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice, Calories: 217kcal, Carbohydrates: 26g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 13g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0.5g, Cholesterol: 71mg, Sodium: 216mg, Potassium: 73mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 24g, Vitamin A: 441IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 52mg, Iron: 0.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Desserts
Cuisine: American, French

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About Andrea Updyke

Andrea Updyke is a married mom of two boys living in Raleigh, NC. She is a published author and blogger of more than 18 years and loves to celebrate the little things that make life awesome.

Whether she's sharing tasty recipes, traveling or hanging with the family, Andrea's goal is to help make your days a little easier and a lot more fun! Email inquiries to andreaupdyke@gmail.com.

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2 Comments

  1. In the French apple cake recipe it says to add flour mixture to wet ingredients.. but it doesn’t list flour or amount of flour in the recipe.. would love to make…

    1. Hi Judy! It’s one cup of flour. I used all-purpose flour and it’s just the right amount for this cake.