Apple Cider Donut Cake with Brown Butter.
Apple cider donut cake was made for this weekend!
I love this month so much. This time of year, this first October weekend. Eeeeep. I am here for it and it is finally feeling like fall so it’s time to celebrate. Give me all the donuts or cake or doughnut cake.
I’m rounding out (my unintentional) comfort food week here on the blog with an apple cider doughnut cake that is heavenly. It’s soft and fluffy and covered in cinnamon sugar.
And plus, since it’s called a doughnut cake, it’s totally acceptable to eat it for breakfast.
Also! I (almost) promise that this will be my last apple dessert of the season. I mean, I think we’re good with salted apple fritters, an apple cheddar galette and an apple cider doughnut cake. There is something for everyone!
You’re set for all the autumn festivities as well as Thanksgiving. YEP.
Freaking pumped for the season!
I get so excited because my kids are both just as obsessed with apple cider and cider treats as I am. While I don’t feel like I can perfect the best apple cider doughnut itself (my favorite is from soergel orchards! Best ever!), a cake is another thing.
Making a big donut cake means that we can all enjoy it and I don’t have to fry each donut piece by piece. Love it. Oh and that we can have leftovers for a few days too. At least… maybe we can.
This cake has a little extra step that can make it slightly high maintenance. I used this recipe as the base and it calls for simmering a whole apple in apple cider! That sounded riiiiight up my alley. The first time I made this, we did just that, then pureed the mixture as the recipe called for. But by the second time, I simmed and mashed the apples with a fork and it was all good. No need to dirty another kitchen appliance!
This step is basically like making your own (heavily cider flavored!) applesauce, so you can just use a cup of applesauce in a pinch.
I will say that making it like this, with the apples AND apple cider? Super flavorful. I’ll take the extra step for flavor. And if you’re really pressed for time, you could always do that part of the recipe the night before. Measure out your ingredients, then bake it the next day. YUM.
The scent, taste and appearance of this is absolutely perfect for a fall morning.
It’s so soft. And fluffy. It’s light, but satisfying. Like one big donut. And crunchy on the outside from the cinnamon sugar.
OH and p.s. you’re going to brush the whole cake with brown butter before the cinnamon sugar sprinkle.
I think I’ve thoroughly convinced you that this has to happen today! Friday treat, hello.
Apple Cider Donut Cake
Apple Cider Donut Cake
- 1 large honeycrisp apple, peeled and chopped
- 1 1/2 cups apple cider
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup loosely packed light brown sugar
- ½ cup white sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- Pinch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 10-cup bundt pan with nonstick baking spray.
- Place the chopped apple and apple cider in a saucepan and heat over medium-high heat. Brind the mixture to a boil, then reduce it to a simmer and cook until the apple is soft and the cider is absorbed. Use a fork to mash the apple as much as possible. You don’t want any large chunks! Measure out 1 cup of the apple mixture. Stir in the oil, milk and vanilla.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Beat in the sugars until the mixture is fluffy, about 5 minutes, scraping down the bowl as needed. Beat in each egg one at a time until fully combined.
- Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the apple cider/milk mixture, beginning and ending with the flour. I like to do this in three increments, so add a fourth of the dry ingredients, then a third of the liquid, and so on until you finish with the dry ingredients, beating until just combined.
- Spread the batter into the greased bundt pan, smoothing out the top with a spatula. Bake the cake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until a tested inserted in the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then gently removed the cake from the pan. Let the cake cool completely.
- To brown the butter, place butter in a small saucepan over medium heat and immediately begin whisking. Stir as it bubbles, and after 2 to 3 minutes or so you should see brown bits appear on the bottom of the pan. Remove from heat immediately and continue to whisk for another 30 seconds.
- In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.
- Brush the cake all over with the brown butter. Sprinkle and press the cinnamon sugar into the cake right after brushing with the brown butter. You can rub the sugar onto the sides and the center so it sticks. Serve as desired!
Did you make this recipe?
Be sure to follow @howsweeteats on instagram and tag #howsweeteats. You can also post a photo of your recipe to our facebook page.
I appreciate you so much!
Yep. Total breakfast food.
89 Comments on “Apple Cider Donut Cake with Brown Butter.”
Hi I am wondering if its just me or did I miss it. After you measure out one cup of the apple mix you never mention using the rest? If we dont use it why measure out 1 1/2 cup to begin with? Thanks!
I made this this morning, and once I added the diced apple to the cider and cooked it down, I *barely* had one cup of the mixture. It was perfect!!
And what do I do with the rest of the stewed apple mixture?
Can you use two loaf pans instead of the Bundt pan ?
Totally as described! Delicious light crumb and not to sweet. I used a cup of homemade apple butter. It was a perfect blend of apple and spice not to much of either. Served this with cinnamon whipped cream. Beautiful breakfast treat!!
When you used the apple butter did you still use the nutmeg and allspice?
Pingback: Cider Gugelhupf - Kochbuch Leser und mehr
Really delicious! I used 1 1/2 apples to make sure I had enough after cooking down and ended up with just a bit over 1 cup (and ate the rest with a spoon! Yum!).
The cake is light and delicious and the cinnamon sugar and brown butter coating is the perfect finishing touch. Even with the sugar coating, the cake isn’t overly sweet. Adding this to my recipe collection.
It’s a ton of steps but very good! Moist. I used 2 apples to get just one cup. The salt in the end sprinkle keeps it from being overly sweet. Would be great for Thanksgiving breakfast or dessert.
This cake turned out beautifully! It was light and moist and tasted just like the apple cider donuts we get from a nearby apple farm in the fall.
Cake turned out delicious! The nutmeg touch is great!
Instead of a cake, I made them into donuts. The recipe makes about 18. They turned out amazing! My kids and husband thought they were better than the ones you get at the farm! I already have requests to make them again. Thanks for the recipe!
This is what I was thinking of doing? Did you bake them and if so, how long and what temp?
Same temp, and it was between 10-15 minutes in the oven. I also had to make more of the cinnamon sugar mixture. Good luck!
I have cinnamon apple cider. Do I need to add other spices or cut down on anything
i personally wouldn’t! i think the extra added cinnamon flavor would be great.
Made this today…agree with all other comments. The apple sauce mixture takes quite awhile and I had to do it twice because one apple wasn’t enough and 2 gave me just barely a cup. The cake is very moist and fluffy but it was lacking the apple flavor I was looking for which surprised me with all the apple, apple cider and spices added. Would definitely make again but maybe make some tweaks
I go to the same orchard to pick apples! I was shocked when I saw that! Can’t wait to try this cake!
This cake has a moist texture and a heavenly smell from the spices. Adding the brown butter with the cinnamon sugar give the crust a sweet buttery crunch.
It is well worth the effort to make. I had no problems with the recipe directions.
I want to make this but have a question! I have apple pie spice or pumpkin pie spice. Could I use either of those to replace the individual spices in the recipe? If so, how much do I use?
How far ahead can this be made and how best to store it?
Ehhh. I was really excited about this recipe. Too many steps and I didn’t find that it taste like an apple cider donut. I really wanted it to but it didn’t happen.
Play it safe and make the apple sauce with 2 apples and 1.5cups of cider! I’ve made this twice now and have had success both times!
The instructions weren’t clear for me. I take the 1 cup of apple mixture.. do you add the mix, oil and vanilla to that or to the pot as I had lots of apple mixture left over. I added it to the pot so will see what the heck happens.
I know how to cook and bake very well but this was v. Confusing. Probably wouldn’t make this one again
I made this for dinner yesterday for Fathers Day and it was a HIT! I did make a small change to the apples and used a medium honeycrisp and a medium cosmic crisp that gave it a little less tart/little more sweet and the apple flavor was just wonderful.
On the side, I also made some salted caramel to put on top and served that warm, and then everyone could add as much or as little as they wanted.
So good! This one is entering “the rotation”.
This cake is amazing. I made it without the brown-butter and cinnamon-sugar topping so it would be healthyish, and it was quite the hit. Its moistness reigns supreme. I have been requested the recipe by some of my French-Canadian family members, so it’s off to translation land for me. Thanks for such a delicious recipe.
This looks delicious! Can I make it a few days before I need it (Thanksgiving) – and if I do, should I wait to do the butter and sugar on top?
yes! wait to do the butter and sugar.