With its perfectly moist texture, soft crumb and depth of apple flavor, this apple-cider bundt cake is perfect for any occasion. I like to use a variety of apples in this cake such as Honey Gold, MacIntosh, Haralson and Prairie Spy. Drizzle with a simple honey-cider glaze and serve.
I grew up in New England and the apples from my childhood were MacIntosh. They are deliciously tart and have a soft flesh that practically turns to applesauce on a hot day. It wasn’t until I moved to Minneapolis that my apple horizons were broadened and now I am spoiled by the riches of so many local varieties of apples.
As a result, I always use at least a couple different kinds in a recipe. I pick sweet (honey gold), tart (Haralson), saucy (MacIntosh still makes the cut) and firm (Prairie Spy). You’ll have your local favorites, but keep the flavor and texture profiles in mind when choosing. Infusing apples with a golden honey-cider caramel is like matchmaking two friends. Honey as a basis for caramel is a bold and absolutely spectacular flavor shift.
Grating the apples into this apple cake also retains the moisture, packs in the flavor, but also adds a measured consistency of apple throughout the cake that I just love.
Apple season falls right around Rosh Hashanah, a time to celebrate the Jewish new year with family and friends. This cake will quickly become an old family tradition for the holiday.
You can watch me make this on Zoë Bakes on Magnolia Network! On the Apple Classics episode I visit an apple orchard to pick new apple varieties and use them in a few desserts, including pink applesauce.
Looking for some other delicious apple desserts? Check out these mini apple tarte tatins and awesome almond apple crisp!
- 1 1/4 cups (300ml) mild-flavored oil
- 1 1/2 cups (300g) granulated sugar
- 2/3 cup (130g) lightly packed brown sugar
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract make your own
- 3 tbsp hard apple cider
- 3 eggs at room temperature
- 2 cups (300g) packed grated apples, plus 2 cups (300g) apple chunks about 4 medium apples
- 2 cups (240g) all-purpose flour, plus 1 tbsp. for tossing with apple chunks
- 1 cup (130g) whole wheat flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 3 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp hard apple cider
- 1/4 cup (60ml) heavy whipping cream
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- pinch kosher salt
- Preheat oven to 325°F / 165°C. Generously grease and flour a 12-cup / 2.8L Bundt pan. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the oil, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, hard cider, and eggs with a spoon. Stir in the grated apples.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the 2 cups / 240g all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add dry ingredients to the apple mixture and mix only until it all comes together in a smooth batter.
- Toss apple chunks and 1 tablespoon flour, then fold the apples into the batter.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Gently tap the pan on the counter several times to make sure the batter has fully settled into the nooks of the Bundt.
- Bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes or until a tester comes out clean. Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a serving plate.
- Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to simmer for 2 minutes.
- Drizzle with half of the glaze over the still warm cake. Save the remaining glaze to drizzle over the cake when it is fully cooled and ready to serve.
56 thoughts to “Apple-Cider Bundt Cake with Honey Glaze”
This sounds so delicious and perfect for the upcoming Jewish Holidays!!
Do I need to make any adjustments for high altitude baking… I am at 7,000 feet in Santa Fe!
Thank you so so much!
It may take a bit of experimenting, but here is a post that might help: https://zoebakes.com/2021/08/31/baking-at-high-altitudes/
Zoe, this looks amazing and perfect with Fall coming up! Question: do you have a brand of hard cider you recommend? I’ve never purchased any before. I found “angry orchard” brand. Will that do?
Hi Wendy! Zoë used Sweetland Orchard cider, which is more like a distilled liquor than a bubbly hard cider. She suggests anything with a strong flavor. Happy baking!
Thank you Stephani! I was unable to source distilled apple liquor here in Texas, so ended up just using the Angry Orchard brand (I set it out for a night so the carbonation would leave). I used Fuji and Honey Crisp apples and I doubled the recipe for the glaze. I added a few TBS of the glaze into some whipping cream and it was absolutely to die for! One of the best recipes I’ve made in ages. I HIGHLY recommend!! Just EXCEPTIONAL!
Also, I did not have any whole wheat flour on hand, so just used all purpose for the whole recipe. It was perfect!
Wonderful!! I am so glad to hear it!
Thank you for letting us know, someone just asked how the cake would be with all all-purpose flour and now I can let them know you still enjoyed it!
Can you use all purpose flour instead of wheat for the additional 1 cup? My husband is on dialysis and the wheat flour is higher in potassium and phosphate so we have to use all purpose.
Hi Lisa! Zoë has not tested it, but another commenter said she tried it with all all-purpose flour and it worked for her. Happy baking!
Yes, I believe this cake will turn out just fine with the switch of flours. It may alter the texture and taste just slightly, but I think you will be pleased.
thank you, lovely cake! Yes will have to keep the specific kind of apple I decide to use in mind for baking, love the bourbon glaze suggestion (or your preference) too to cut the sweetness!
Thank you Sabrina,
Enjoy the cake!
Can I use regular spiced apple cider for this cake?
Hi Brenda! You can certainly use regular apple cider, but you may want to cut it with some lemon juice so it’s not overly sweet. Happy baking!
Do you leave the apple skins on or remove? Thanks!!
I tend to leave them for this cake, but if you are using an apple with a particularly thick skin, then you can remove it, that’s up to you.
I plan on making this cake today. Does the liquor dissipate in the glaze? I have a 3 year old granddaughter that will be eating this and I don’t want to use liquor in the glaze if the alcohol does not cook out.
The alcohol is not cooked off, so you can go with a cider that is not alcoholic instead.
I appreciate your reply. Thank you. I ended up making the glaze without the bourbon in the glaze. I added a little brown sugar and vanilla. I did also make the bourbon glaze on the side for those that wanted it.
The cake is fabulous. Everyone took some home! I will be making this again!
I just found a recipe online called Best Jewish Apple Cake that i planned to make for my book club. We are discussing Last Summer at the Golden Hotel, about the Borscht
Belt in the Catskills! I wanted to do some Jewish inspired food and this sounds amazing. I am thinking this is something I could use calvados in rather than hard cider. Thoughts?
I adore calvados so much and it will be brilliant with this cake.
Thank you! Zoë
Hi, I’m in the UK – what is hard apple cider please?
What would be a good alternative? Calvados?
Yes, Calvados is PERFECT!
Many thanks Zöe!
I’m in the middle of baking your recipe and it says kosher salt. Help!! I can’t find anywhere on you website or in the cake book section about ingredients explaining what this is. Do you mean coarse grain kosher salt or fine grain? Can other salts be substituted? Surely not measure for measure?
You can use table salt and just use about 3/4 the amount.
Thanks! Just in time!!
Hi Zoe and team,
Can I use non-alcoholic apple cider?
Hi Maham, you absolutely can. However, it may be a bit on the sweet side as the hard cider balances the flavor better. Zoë suggests you cut the regular cider with a little lemon juice. Happy baking!
How far ahead can I make this cake? How long will it be tasty?
Hi. This is a cake that actually holds up really well even a couple of days after baking, because the grated apples keep it so moist. I would save half the glaze to heat up and pour over the top before serving.
Can this recipe be adapted into cupcakes? Love your recipes btw!
Yes, it will have almost a muffin texture, which will be wonderful. I would say to bake them about 25 minutes, but will depend on the size of your muffins tins.
So delicious! So much about cooking and baking is about sense memory. When I made this it took me back 50 years to the kitchen of my mom’s best friend who made a beautiful and fragrant apple cake for Rosh Hashanah. Thanks so much for this glorious cake and for the memories ❤️
Love, love, love this recipe! It is the perfect fall cake…it is the perfect anytime cake. It is moist & appley and just the right amount of sweet. I made the sauce with bourbon, oh my! I have made 3 of them in 2 weeks, all to rave reviews. I love your show and watching you bake! ❤️
Absolutely delicious! Made this cake for my husband for his November birthday. The flavors are rich & cinnamon❤️Now I have requests from friends & family to make it again! Thank you, Zoe! Have a blessed Thanksgiving & Christmas
This cake was divine! I used 4 small to medium sized Jonathan apples & 1 Golden Delicious apple that I picked at a local orchard. I substituted chopped pecans for the walnuts and I used Calvados instead of Bourbon in both the cake and glaze. I used the entire amount of glaze to top the warmed cake. My question is if I make another batch of glaze to serve along side the cake, do I just warm the glaze in the microwave or on the stove before serving or do you serve it cold?
Hi Deborah! We are thrilled to hear you enjoyed this recipe. You can store additional glaze in the fridge for up to five days, just make sure to cover it tightly. Yes, warm gently in the microwave or on the stovetop before serving. Enjoy!
Thank you very much for responding so quickly!
I rarely make desserts, therefore my dessert making is inconsistent & is usually made with what I already have. I didn’t have the size of Bundt pan (had a smaller one & also used a smaller loaf pan)., & used my prior frozen-defrosted apples. The cake turned out DELICIOUS with a nice consistency & texture. Initially slicing it thin, we all had second helpings.
I have made this cake twice now! The first time with Calvados and the second time with Fireball Cinnamon Whisky. Most delicious apple cake ever with either one!
Oh My Goodness! Fabulous!! I made the recipe as it was. The only change is I have mini bundt pans and wanted to share this so I used those instead of the large bundt. I just watched the timing and they turned out perfect! You could just eat the glaze straight with a spoon too. So good! Cannot wait to make this one again and again!
Another little story… shared with our neighbors and his mom sent me a message that her 18 month old was running in place in the kitchen saying More! More! More! If that isn’t a true compliment. Also, used apples from my small apple orchard which just adds to how much fun it was to make this cake!
Thank you Zoe!
I want to make this cake but can’t use the glaze since it contains dairy (for Kosher dietary reasons), can you suggest an alternative that would work? Thanks!
Incredibly moist and flavorful! My favorite apple cale recipe by far. Thanks, Zoe!!
I made a gluten free/lactose free version of this cake using 2 cups of superfine brown rice flour and 1 cup of almond flour in the cake and subbing almond milk and ghee in the glaze. It was SO delicious, with great texture and flavor. My favorite new way to use up a bunch of our backyard Honeycrisp and McIntosh apples!
Thank you so much for sharing how you altered the recipe! It sounds delicious and we’re thrilled you were able to enjoy it.
SO delicious! Moist with delicious depth or flavor and perfect texture. I’ll be making it every fall!
Zoe’s Apple Bundt Cake is delicious perfection! It has fast become a family favorite with a moist, dense consistency and lots of flavor. Grating the apples along with the chunks make all the difference. Yes, this will be a four season bake!
Delicious! I have a picky daughter, she loves it. She’s been asking me to make it again.
Hi! I don’t have heavy cream or hard cider, I’ve tried making the glaze just now with half and half and regular non-alcoholic cider and it curdles. Is this normal? Am I doing something wrong? Otherwise the cake looks absolutely gorgeous I can’t wait to dig in.
This is a terrific recipe! It’s the first time I’ve encountered WW flour in a cake, so wasn’t sure what to expect, but it turned out very well :-). My only modifications were to use pumpkin pie spice instead of cinnamon (which is its primary component, anyway) in the cake, and to thicken the glaze (which I tripled) to more of a sauce (after drizzling the original glaze on the warm cake). I added more unsalted butter, cider (which I mixed with about two tsp. of cornstarch), and brown sugar, as well as the finely grated rind of a lemon, and juice of that lemon. Brought it to a slow boil for a minute or two, stirring constantly, and then took it off the element and added a few tbsp. of honey-spiced Canadian whiskey. I think the lemon and whiskey takes it to a whole new level of deliciousness. Served the cake warm, with Tahitian vanilla ice cream and a generous amount of warm sauce — rave reviews! Thank so much for sharing the recipe!
Excellent cake — the grated apples really keep it moist. I shared it with family and friends and one guy grabbed the extra pieces I brought and put them in his lunch box, saying this is Awesome! I didn’t even get my piece! But excellent testimony to its goodness. Thanks
I made the bourbon version of this cake from Zoë Bakes Cakes and, like all of the other recipes I’ve tried, it is perfection. I made it dairy-free by using vegan butter and full-fat canned coconut milk for the glaze and it did not disappoint! I highly recommend any version of this cake! Delicious and absolutely packed with apple flavor.
The cake on its own is delicious! I love a good cake glaze and find it usually adds good flavor and moisture, but I found this cake became cloyingly sweet with the glaze. I think I’d make it again, but without the glaze.