The inspiration for this gluten free applesauce spice cake comes from an old family recipe, first made by my great grandfather. For as long as I can remember, my grandma, mom and aunts would make an applesauce cake for holidays or special occasions. Being a food snob from a very young age, I requested one every year for my birthday, for about the first ten years of my life.
I have adapted that recipe, which was vegan, and higher in sugar than I currently like, and created this completely luscious, moist, gluten free applesauce spice cake. My rendition uses Greek yogurt, stewed apples, and tons of unsweetened applesauce, and it was so successful, my boyfriend and I ate it for breakfast! Because of all those wet ingredients, the cake does need about an hour in the oven, but it is totally worth the wait as your entire house will smell like fall for the rest of the day.
If you would like to eliminate the stewed apples and pecans in this gluten free applesauce spice cake, no worries! Just test the cake at about 50 minutes as the apples will change the baking time. Bob’s Red Mill 1-to-1 Baking Flour is my preference for gluten free flours, and I haven’t yet experimented with any others, so use caution if you’re substituting a different flour. However, if you do have success with another flour, please let me know in the comments!
Gluten Free Applesauce Spice Cake
Yields one cake
1 apple diced
1/2 cup water
1/2 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. ground ginger
2 cups unsweetened applesauce
2 t. baking soda
3 T. coconut oil
1/2 cup coconut sugar
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 t. baking powder
2 t. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 t. salt
3 1/2 cups 1-to-1 gluten free baking flour (I use Bob’s Red Mill)
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 cup powdered sugar
1 t. coconut milk
1 T. reserved water from stewed apples
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Begin by chopping the apple in small chunks, then add them to a small sauce pan along with the water, cinnamon and ground ginger. Turn the heat on high and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and allow the apples to simmer, stirring a few times along the way. Stew for about 10 minutes then remove from heat.
2. While the apples are cooking, stir together the applesauce and baking soda in a medium mixing bowl. Set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl, beat the coconut oil and coconut sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Then add the eggs, whisking vigorously.
4. Gently stir in the yogurt, pumpkin pie spice, salt, and baking powder.
5. Add the flour and applesauce in three batches, folding in completely each round.
6. Lastly fold in the chopped pecans and stewed apples, taking care to reserve as much of the liquid from the apples as possible. This will be used later for the glaze. You should have between a teaspoon and a tablespoon.
7. Grease a bundt pan VERY well then spoon in the batter, smoothing the top.
8. Bake for one hour. Test with a toothpick or cake tester and adjust your baking time as needed. Remove the cake from the oven and set on a cooling rack to rest for at least 15-20 minutes.
9. Gently run a butter knife around the edges and center of the bundt pan and carefully invert the cake onto a plate.
10. If you’re making a glaze (it’s totally optional, the cake tastes great without it) whisk together the reserved liquid from the stewed apples, coconut milk and powdered sugar. Start with less milk than you think you need to avoid having to add too much powdered sugar. Pour the glaze over the cake and enjoy warm, at room temperature, or cold. Too much leftover cake? No problem! Slice the cake and freeze between layers of parchment paper to be eaten at a later date.