Chunky Apple Walnut Cake

I’m not sure where I copied this recipe from, but it’s on a post-it note, so it can’t be older than the late 70s. I just know that this whole wheat cake is an old favorite; it’s dense and moist and full of all sorts of fall flavors. Better yet, it improves with age. I didn’t include the pan size or preparation on the note, but luckily I remember that it fits the 9″ x 13″ pan, and just for good measure I buttered and floured it first.

Today, I used golden delicious apples, but the recipe doesn’t specify a type, so you could try your favorite. I kept the apple chunks and walnuts cut in larger chunks to add to that homey, rustic feeling. Of course, you could gild it with whipped cream or ice cream or hard sauce, but it is great as is. Note that the batter will start out seeming too thick, but keep mixing after the apples are added and they will release moisture into the batter. Trust me. That’s why I use the stand mixer.

Someday, I might try a few changes, like substituting agave syrup for some of the sugar or adding oatmeal for part of the flour.

Chunky Apple Walnut Cake

  • Servings: makes 12 squares
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Preheat oven to 350°; grease and flour a 9″ x 13″ baking pan (I used whole wheat flour here, too)

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar (light or dark)

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 eggs

2 cups whole wheat flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

4 cups apples, peeled, cored, and chopped in large chunks (mine were Golden Delicious)

1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped

  1. Mix the sugars, eggs, vanilla, and oil until combined.
  2. Stir in the dry ingredients. The batter will be thick at this point, but keep stirring until combined.
  3. Stir in the nuts and apple chunks and keep mixing until the apples have moistened the batter.
  4. Spread the batter in the prepared pan.
  5. Bake for about 50 minutes, checking to make sure the edges don’t get too browned (I hate that).
  6. Let cool in the pan on a rack. You can eat it when cool enough to cut, but I find it even better the next day.


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