Olive Oil Apple Cake

Apple cake is one of life’s great pleasures and now that it is essentially “apple” season, I have found myself developing yet another cake calling for one of my all time fave fruits (sorry, summer berries and peaches). Whenever I develop an apple cake, and yes, I do so often, I use oil rather than butter as my fat, because – as many of  you may know, I adore an oil-based cake (and you can read about just how much I love one here). (I’ve also written about how much I love snacking cases, and since this olive oil cutie is essentially a snacking cake (though I am not calling it that on this here post), you can read about my thing for snacking cakes here). But I digress . . . in short, though ALL my apple cakes are oil-based, this is the first that is OLIVE OIL based.

And I cannot believe I waited this long, if you must know. Olive oil adds so much flavor and depth to this apple cake – it may just be my fave version yet. I used Colavita Olive Oil when developing the cake, as that is my fave kind, and because I bake with Colavita every week over on IGTV – you can see me make this cake here.

I used one of Colavita’s bold, fruity olive oils, but you can use whichever olive oil you like – even a mild one. I like to sprinkle my apples on top of the cake rather than fold them in to the batter because I like the way it looks and looks are everything (JOKE). I also like to toss the apples with cinnamon and sugar before dotting the top of the cake with them – for both the flavor and the look (yes, the look thing again), as the cinnamon darkens them a bit. Finally, I generously sprinkle the whole cake in Turbinado sugar (before baking it) for sparkle (looks) and crunch (taste/texture). So, if you like a good lookin’, DELICIOUS cake that is perf for right now (ie: September) I sincerely hope you’ll bake this beauty up stat.

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5 from 1 vote

Olive Oil Apple Cake

Recipe Author Jessie Sheehan


  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 to 1 1/2 medium apples any variety of baking apples
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar plus 1 cup
  • 1/2 cup Colavita Olive Oil
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
  • Turbinado sugar for sprinkling


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease an 8x8x2-inch pan with non-stick cooking spray or softened butter. Line with parchment paper.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, salt and baking powder.
  • Peel, core, and cut the apples into 1/2-inch chunks. Place them in a small bowl and sprinkle with the cinnamon and 2 tablespoons of the sugar and toss with your hands to coat.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil and remaining 1 cup sugar. Add the vanilla and eggs and whisk again. Add the cream and whisk a final time.
  • Using a rubber spatula, fold the dry into the wet in three additions, until just incorporated. Do not over mix.
  • Transfer the batter to the prepared pan.
  • Top the cake batter with the apples in a single layer – you may not use all the apple pieces. Sprinkle the cake with the Turbinado sugar.
  • Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, rotating the pan after 20 minutes. The cake is done when a tester inserted into the cake comes out with a few moist crumbs.
  • Bring to room temperature before dusting with confectioners’ sugar and serving. The cake will keep wrapped in plastic wrap for three days on the counter.
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2 replies on “Olive Oil Apple Cake”

5 stars
I used spelt flour, and it turned out fantastic! Moist, eaten hot right out of the oven. Thank you for a paradigm shift in my thinking of oils for desserts, Jesse. I will continue to use olive oil.

I am so thrilled to hear this. The cake with spelt flour is genius and I’m over the moon you’re into baking with olive oil!

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