Irish Apple Cake, known as Kerry Apple Cake in many parts of Ireland, is the perfect St. Patrick’s Day dessert. Lots of tart, crisp apples create a super moist cake that is baked to perfection. With its crunchy top, Irish Apple Cake is amazing when served warm or cold.
I adapted this awesome cake from the Ultimate Irish Apple Cake.
Ingredients: Here’s What You’ll Need
- The “wet” ingredients: For the wet ingredients, I used unsalted butter, granulated sugar, an egg, and vanilla extract.
- The dry ingredients: The dry ingredients consisted of all-purpose flour, ground cinnamon, Kosher salt, baking powder, and baking soda.
- The apples: Granny Smith apples were my choice in this recipe because of their firm flesh and somewhat tart taste.
- The nuts: Pecans are my favorite nut, so I included pecans in this delicious recipe.
- The crunchy top: I decided to sprinkle Turbinado sugar (not pictured) on the top of the cake for an added crunch.
Steps: Here’s How I Made This Delicious Cake
- I started by beating together the butter and sugar with my electric mixer. Then, I added the beaten egg and vanilla extract. I beat the mixture until it was light and fluffy.
- Next, I added the salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon and beat the mixture until everything was well incorporated.
I know that this is contrary to the view that you sift the salt, etc., with the flour. However, it seems to me that the main idea is to make sure that these ingredients are totally incorporated into the batter.
What better way than to beat them with the “wet” ingredients? Anyway, this consistently works for me!
- Once everything was well incorporated, I added the flour. I beat the mixture on low speed just until the flour was mixed in.
- Finally, I added the diced apples and pecans. I stirred the mixture with a wooden spoon until everything was mixed well.
- I transferred the thick batter to an 8-inch spring form pan that I had lined with parchment paper and sprayed with non-stick spray. Then, I evened out the batter with a wooden spoon.
Before baking the cake, I sprinkled a bit of turbinado sugar so that the top would have a nice crunch.
- I baked the Irish Apple Cake in a 350°F preheated oven for 45 minutes. After 45 minutes, a toothpick inserted in the center came out clean, indicating that the cake was done.
I removed the cake from the oven and let it rest for about 5 minutes. Then, I removed the cake from the springform pan and let it cool on a wire rack.
I served the Irish Apple Cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the top.
The cake was amazing. The apple taste shone through, as did the crunch of the top and the toasted pecans.
It would have been equally good with some whipped cream flavored with Bailey’s Irish Cream. Yum!
Recipe Frequently Asked Questions
Irish Apple Cake can be made ahead of time and stored, covered at room temperature for several days or in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Apples that are slightly tart and hold their shape when baked are best used in this recipe. Honeycrisp apples would be a good substitute for Granny Smith apples.
Recipe Tips and Tricks
- Traditional Irish Apple Cake is generally made with apples on top. However, my preference is to mix the apples in the cake batter to distribute them better throughout the cake.
- The reason for using room-temperature ingredients in this recipe is to ensure that they are well blended in the batter.
- You can warm this cake in the microwave if you prefer to serve it warm.
- I really like to add toasted pecans to this recipe. However, if you’re not a fan of nuts, you can substitute raisins in this recipe.
Other Irish-Themed Recipes
St. Patrick’s Day is a perfect time to showcase Irish-themed recipes such as Irish Apple Cake. For other ideas, you should consider the following:
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Irish Apple Cake
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter softened (room temperature)
- 1 cup (7-ounces) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg beaten (room temperature)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup (5-ounces) all-purpose flour
- 2 to 4 granny smith apples peeled, cored, and diced (2 cups) (See Tip 1)
- ½ cup chopped pecans toasted (See Tip 2)
- 1 Tablespoon Turbinado sugar, optional (See Tip 3)
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Generously grease an 8-inch springform pan.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
- Add the egg and vanilla; beat on high until creamy.
- Add the salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon; beat until fully incorporated.
- Add the flour; beat on low just until combined. Fold in the apples and pecans.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan. If desired, sprinkle with Turbinado sugar.
- Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes or until the cake is lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Remove from oven; let the cake set in the pan for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, remove from pan.
- Serve warm or at room temperature with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. Yield: 8 servings.
Chula’s Expert Tips
- The number of apples depends on their size. Cut apples into ¼ to ½ inch pieces.
- To toast pecans, place in a preheated 350°F oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Watch carefully.
- Turbinado sugar is available under the name Sugar in the Raw.
This will be our dessert for St Patrick’s Day. Haven’t made an apple cake this year but this one sounds excellent and I will be making the traditional Corned Beef and Cabbage with carrots and potatoes. This will make the perfect dessert.
Yum! Don’t be fooled by the dominance of the apples. They really shine through! Chula
This looks like it will be my St. Patrick’s Day dessert. I’ve been wanting to make an Apple Cake for a while and this sounds delicious.
I hope you like it. Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Chula
Made it today, OMG it is outstanding. Walter took one bite and said, “You can make this again and again.” He loved it. I admit the ratio of apples to flour had me not quite sure but it was out of this world. Dear Lord, that is going to be my breakfast in the morning. LOVED it!!!!! I knew we wouldn’t wait until tomorrow to cut into it. Just so you know, I had the turbinado sugar in my pantry and I think it is a MUST.
YAY! I’m so glad that you and Walter liked it. I agree that the turbinado sugar adds an incredible crunch! Enjoy your breakfast. Chula
Susan Barnes says
We served this Kerry Cake for St. Patrick’s Day dessert this year, and everyone loved it. My springform pan was 8.5 inches, and I might increase the recipe just a bit next time just to make a thicker cake. We served this with a scoop of vanilla ice cream beside it and topped it with some whipped cream and a drizzle of Bailey’s Irish Cream. Decadent!
Decadent is right Susan! It’s really good with a Bailey’s caramel sauce as well.
Leslie Wyatt says
EXCELLENT CAKE!!!!! Making another one…the first one was devoured by my family. definitely recommend this very easy and most delicious cake recipe. Thank you for sharing this……we enjoyed this and it will be making repeat performances as I share it with my friends and family. GIVE THIS A 5 STAR RATING!!!!
I don’t have a spring form pan. Can I use something else?
Chula King says
You could use an 8-inch round cake pan. Just be sure that you line the bottom with parchment paper and grease the pan well.
Chula King says
So glad you and your family liked the Apple Cake Leslie!
This was excellent! I will make this again!
Jan Biddeford says
Thank you for this recipe….. Looks delish……. If you ever update this recipe can you please identify the actual weight of diced/cubed apple pieces…… Just makes things easier and we’re able too make your exact recipe….
Chula King says
I’ll be sure to add the weights of the apples.
Is it salted or unsalted butter? Looks delicious and can’t wait to make it.
Chula King says
I used unsalted butter in the recipe.
I made this once before and it was amazing. Is like to make it again but I’m wondering if it would be okay to double the ingredients to make a bigger cake.
Chula King says
I’ve not tried doubling the ingredients in this recipe. However, I suspect that it would work fine if you used a larger springform pan and increased the time in the oven.
Sorry, I couldn’t be more helpful.
Made it today to take to a St Patrick’s Day theme dinner with church friends. I made no changes except to bake in my 350 degree oven for 40 min instead of 45 min. Came out perfect and looked exactly like the picture. I will make it again. Thank you.
Chula King says
I’m so pleased that the recipe for the apple cake was a success with you!