Heirloom Apple Cake Recipe for Autumn Entertaining

Last Updated on March 30, 2022 by Ellen Christian

Looking for an heirloom apple cake recipe? You’ve come to the right place! We have several wild apple trees in the area. And, most are heirloom apples like Gravenstein and other varieties that have been around for years. Keep reading for one of my favorite autumn apple recipes.

Posts may be sponsored. This post contains affiliate links, which means I will make a commission at no extra cost to you should you click through and make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Heirloom Apple Cake Recipe for Autumn Entertaining

Harvest Heirloom Apple Cake Recipe

One of my favorite things about autumn is the apples.  We have so many apple orchards here in rural Vermont that I generally go apple picking for our apple recipes. Sometimes there are abandoned heirloom apple trees in the area that I can glean from as well.  

So, what is an heirloom apple? An heirloom apple is an apple that can be traced back at least 50 to 100 years. It’s a variety that’s been around for a long time that’s been used for generations. You’ll often find them growing wild in the woods or forgotten areas rather than in an orchard somewhere. Gravenstein is a common heirloom apple. Other varieties include Norfolk Pippin and Ben Davis.

Gravenstein apple recipes and other heirlooms

Since heirloom apples have been around for many years, they are often more pure strains than the apples you find in orchards. Apples in orchards are often grown specifically for sweetness to appeal to consumers. This heirloom apple cake recipe uses heirloom apples that are more tart. If you’re looking for Gravenstein apple recipes, this recipe will work perfectly.

Whether you have apple trees to pick your own apples or you purchase them from the store, now is the time to fill your home with the scent of apples. This recipe was originally shared in 2012. But, I wanted to update it and share it again for those that missed it the first time. The weather is cooling down now so it’s the perfect time to start baking again. And, this Harvest Heirloom Apple Cake recipe is the perfect place to start.


We have a wild apple tree about a mile from my house. So, when I want to bake with wild apples that are most likely heirloom, that’s where I get them. I’m not entirely sure what variety they are. But, this heirloom apple cake recipe should work with any variety of apples you have.

You’ll definitely want to learn how to make real whipped cream to top this heirloom apple cake recipe. The taste of real homemade whipped cream compared to store-bought whipped topping in a tub is huge. I just can’t use the froze whipped topping or whip cream in a can any longer. Homemade tastes so much better.

Looking for an heirloom apple cake recipe? You’ve come to the right place! It's perfect for heirloom apples like Gravenstein or Pippin.

Tips for this easy apple cake recipe

  • It will be easier to cream the butter and sugar together if you let the butter get soft first. Don’t melt it. But, leave it on the counter to get soft for a few hours. It takes much less time to cream it together that way.
  • Make sure that you grease the 13″ x 9″ pan before adding the batter. It will be easier to remove each slice of this heirloom apple cake if you grease it first.
  • Leave the skin on the apples when you chop them. It gives the apples more substance when you bake with them. And, the skin is where all of the fiber is. 
  • An apple corer slicer makes chopping the apples so much easier. You can find one here.

Making Real Whipped Cream for Desserts and Drinks

Alternative toppings for any apple cinnamon cake recipe

I love eating this heirloom apple cake recipe as is without any topping at all. But, it’s also delicious with homemade whipped cream or French vanilla ice cream. Or, you can make a thin icing and drizzle it over the top. Try this recipe for powdered sugar glaze from Tastes of Lizzie T. Just be sure to let the cake cool completely or the icing will melt when it lands on the cake.

Quick Apple Cake Recipe for Unexpected Company

Or, if you enjoy apple cake recipes, you might want to try one of these:

Apple Rhubarb Pie Recipe with Apple Pie Filling

Other apple dessert recipes:

Check out the steps for this Harvest Heirloom Apple Cake Recipe. The printable recipe is at the end of the post. Or you can pin it to save it for the future using my share buttons.

steps to make an heirloom apple cake

final steps to make an heirloom apple cake

Yield: 12

Harvest Heirloom Apple Cake Recipe

Looking for an heirloom apple cake recipe? You’ve come to the right place! It's perfect for heirloom apples like Gravenstein or Pippin.

Looking for an heirloom apple cake recipe? You’ve come to the right place! It's perfect for heirloom apples like Gravenstein or Pippin.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Additional Time 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes


  • 2 c. sugar
  • ½ c. butter softened
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 4 c. unpeeled raw apples, chopped
  • ¼ c. nuts, chopped
  • 2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. Salt
  • Whipped cream to top if desired


  1. Cream butter and sugar; add eggs and beat well.
  2. Stir in apples and nuts.
  3. Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in a separate bowl; add flour mixture to butter mixture and stir until combined.
  4. Spoon batter into greased 13”x9” baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  5. Let cool. Top with whipped topping. Enjoy!


Using an apple corer will make cutting the apples for this Harvest Heirloom Apple Cake so much quicker.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 325Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 52mgSodium: 388mgCarbohydrates: 56gFiber: 2gSugar: 38gProtein: 4g

Did you make this recipe?

If you make this, tag me on Instagram so I can see @ellenblogs

2 thoughts on “Heirloom Apple Cake Recipe for Autumn Entertaining”

  1. ******************************************************** Thank you for sharing at #OverTheMoon. Pinned and shared. Have a lovely week. I hope to see you at next week’s party too! Please stay safe and healthy. Come party with us at Over The Moon! Catapult your content Over The Moon! @marilyn_lesniak @EclecticRedBarn ********************************************************

Leave a Comment

Rate this recipe:
Skip to Recipe