Get my ebookwhen you subscribe to my free newsletter, Lynn's Kitchen Adventures.
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

Mom’s Apple Cake Recipe

This recipe for my mom’s apple cake is a moist delicious apple cake that is inspired by a cake my mom has been making for years.

Mom's Apple Cake Recipe

One of the things that I love to encourage people to do when it comes to cooking is to experiment in the kitchen.

It is so much fun to take a basic recipe and tweak it to use what you have on hand or what your family enjoys. Cooking like this is the way many of our grandmothers and great grandmothers used to cook.

Do you know why they cooked that way? Because it is a great way to save money in the kitchen.

Mom's Apple Cake Recipe with gluten free option

Today’s recipe is a good example of where I used my mom’s basic cake recipe, but instead of following her recipe exactly, I used what I hand on hand.

The original recipe that my mom made was for a rhubarb cake. She has been making the cake for years and it is a family favorite.

I love that cake, but I didn’t have any rhubarb. Rhubarb is a spring food and it doesn’t grow well in Oklahoma anyway.

So what do you do when you want a piece of your mom’s cake, but it is fall in Oklahoma. You use apples instead of rhubarb, because that is what you have on hand.

Mom's Apple Cake with gluten free option

Now I will admit experimenting with recipes and changing out ingredients doesn’t always go as planned, but often it does and when it does it, I am always glad I gave it a try.

The original rhubarb cake is a pretty simple cake with a basic coffee cake like topping. Rhubarb and apples have a similar texture and both are very moist in baked good, so I was pretty sure apples would work fine in this recipe.

Before I tried it though I gave my mom a quick call to see what she thought. She told me that she had never tried it, but she thought it would work fine.

So I gave it a try and it worked! I think this cake might be my new favorite apple dessert.

Can I make apple cake gluten free? 

Yes, you can. I have made this cake gluten free two different ways. If you want to use a blend it works well with Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Blend and with King Arthur Measure for Measure blend. 

I have also made it with individual gluten free flours. I shared my gluten free version of this apple cake recipe that uses individual gluten free flours a few years ago. 

Mom's Apple Cake

Yield: 20 pieces

Mom's Apple Cake Recipe

Mom's Apple Cake Recipe

My mom's apple cake recipe is a delicious old fashioned dessert. I am sharing the regular and gluten free version.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes



  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2/3 cup oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or sour milk by using 1 cup milk and add 1 teaspoon of vinegar and let sit for a few minutes to sour)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups finely diced apples
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon


  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoon cinnamon


  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. In a large bowl combine flour, baking soda, salt, brown sugar, egg, oil, sour milk, and vanilla. Mix by hand until well combined.
  3. Stir in diced apples and cinnamon.
  4. Spread into a greased 9×13 pan.
  5. In a small bowl combine topping ingredients and sprinkle over cake batter.
  6. Bake for 35 minutes.
  7. Serve warm or room temperature.


For a gluten free version I have used Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten Free Flour blend and King Arthur's Measure for Measure Flour blend.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 243Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 209mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 1gSugar: 26gProtein: 2g
  Originally posted September 2014. Updated October 2020. 


Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. Debbie the NY Baker says

    Hi, Lynn – thanks for this tasty recipe! I’m wondering if it would work to “morph” it into muffins… do you think it might work? Hope so, because I’ve not found another recipe which sounds so tasty. Most apple muffins are “blah,” but this has real possibilities! Thanks for taking the time to answer – really appreciate it!

    Debbie the NY Baker who is delighted to follow your blog!

  2. Don’t want to use any milk or milk substitute. Can I use half water and half orange juice?


  1. […] it is: Apple Cake. Click on it. Make it. Eat […]

Share Your Thoughts


We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.