Caramel Apple Layer Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting


Caramel Apple Layer Cake

I’m madly in love with this caramel apple cake! Don’t judge. It could be worse.

You don’t stand a chance against its wily charms with fresh apples, caramel sauce baked right into the batter, cinnamon cream cheese frosting and yet more gooey caramel gracing the top.

You may find yourself gazing longingly at it with adoring eyes, lashes fluttering and heart beating faster. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Like a true caramel apple, the cake is moist and sticky sweet on the inside with a subtle apple flavor that is insanely delicious. I’m convinced apples and caramel, so magnificent a pair, were made for each other. The cinnamon-drenched cream cheese frosting cuts right through the cloying sweetness with its tangy flavor giving it the balance it needs.

Warmly spiced and comforting, each and every bite screams out loud of autumn! I’m already dreaming of next year when I can bake it all over again to celebrate apple harvest.

It begs to become a part of my yearly baking tradition. And yours.

Caramel Apple Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 35 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Yield: 12 servings

Caramel Apple Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

A layer cake with fresh apples, caramel sauce baked right into the batter, cinnamon cream cheese frosting and yet more gooey caramel gracing the top.


3 + 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1½ teaspoons baking soda
1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
1½ cups brown sugar
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 cup fresh shredded apples, use large holes box grater
¾ cup jarred caramel dessert sauce or dulce de leche, plus more to drizzle over top
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 eggs
1½ cups buttermilk
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
6 tablespoons butter, softened
1 + 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups (approximately) confectioners’ sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour three 8-inch round cake pans.
  2. In a large bowl whisk flour baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt together. In a separate large bowl, beat sugar and oil together until combined. Add caramel and vanilla, beat for 30 seconds, then add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in shredded apples, draining off any juice that may have accumulated first. Add flour mixture in three parts, alternating with the buttermilk, beat until well combined.
  3. Divide batter evenly among the prepared cake pans and bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the middle of each cake comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Cool on wire racks 10-15 minutes, turn out onto wire racks and cool completely before frosting with cinnamon cream cheese frosting.
  4. Frosting:
  5. In a large bowl beat cream cheese and butter together on low speed until fluffy. Beat in cinnamon and vanilla extract. Beat in confectioners’ sugar a cup at a time, on low speed, continue beating about 5 minutes until light and fluffy, adding more sugar if needed to reach a good spreading consistency.


-The original recipe calls for 2 (9-inch) cake pans but after filling two 8-inch cake pans I had a lot of batter left over, enough to make 2 additional 6-inch layers. You can easily make a three layer 8-inch cake or do what I did and make a big cake and a baby cake.

-Be aware the batter is thinner than most cakes, kind of like soup.

-When beating in the caramel it may seem as if it is seizing up but just forge ahead and all will be fine in the end.

Copyright ©2013 Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice by Reeni Pisano All Rights Reserved.


  1. Chaya says

    This is tempting me but you warned me.  What good is a warning when one faces caramel and apples?  This has to be made soon.

  2. Ruth says

    I wanted a new recipe for my freshly picked apples and my son loves cream cheese icing so I chose this recipe because your description had me sold…and I had all the ingredients! It is so delicious, moist and has a great melt in your mouth texture. My son particularly loved the cinnamon flavoured cream cheese icing and my husband insisted this recipe was a keeper.

  3. Elaine says

    This was AWESOME. I made it as a 9×13 and added five minutes to the cooking time. Thanks for sharing it.

  4. lucy says

    just come across this recipe , looks amazing, i would like to know would it be possible to make cupcakes from it ?

    • Reeni says

      Hi Lucy! You can make this into cupcakes! Cook until a toothpick comes out clean from the center probably about 18 – 22 minutes.

    • Reeni says

      Hi Jackie! I’m sorry I don’t remember – it was 2 years ago. Probably fuji or golden delicious since those are my 2 favorites. You can use your favorite or whatever you have on hand – it will turn out fine.

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