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Apple-Vanilla Coffee Cake

Today, I’m participating in a fun blogger event — the Secret Recipe Club. How does it work? Every blogger is secretly assigned another blog + chooses a recipe from that blog to make. On reveal day (today!), all of our posts go up at the same time, + everyone gets to see who was assigned to their blog, which recipe they chose, + how it turned out. Fun, huh?

This month I was assigned Chocolate & Chillies, a wonderful blog full of some seriously good-looking recipes. Initially, I was going to make one of her Indian meals (her family is from India, so she has a great variety of Indian recipes), but in the end, her Apple Coffee Cake looked too delicious to pass up. Coffee cake is one of my all-time favorite sweet treats, and I had a couple apples just begging to be made into something delicious. So, how did it turn out? Scrumptious. It’s a light, airy, buttery cake filled with tasty little bites of vanilla-sugar apples, topped with a simple, perfectly sweet oat streusel. While my husband and I loved this as breakfast, my two-year old thought it was perfect for dessert. It can be a sweet breakfast treat, or a simple dessert, depending on your mood. Breakfast, snack, or dessert, we all agreed that it was awesome!

Thank you to Asiya for introducing me to this perfect Apple-Vanilla Coffee Cake + to the Secret Recipe Club for connecting me, yet again, with fantastic bloggers + amazing recipes! For all my previous Secret Recipe Club recipes, click here – there are TONS of awesome ones!

Apple-Vanilla Coffee Cake

serves 8-12, adapted from Chocolate and Chillies and Smitten Kitchen


1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 apples, cored, peeled + quartered
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, divided
2 large eggs
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup rolled oats
optional: Confectioners sugar, for dusting or caramel sauce, for drizzling


Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle. Generously butter a 9- by 2-inch round cake pan or springform pan (Amy’s note: I prefer a springform pan for easier removing/serving). Line bottom with a round of parchment paper and butter the parchment.

Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into a food processor with tip of a paring knife (reserve pod for another use if desired). Add sugar and pulse to combine. Transfer the vanilla-sugar to a bowl.

Pulse apple slices with 1/2 cup vanilla sugar in processor until just chopped (this will take just a few pulses — do not purée). Set aside.

Whisk together 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt. Beat together 1 stick butter and 1 cup vanilla sugar in a bowl with an electric mixer at medium-high speed until pale and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Scrape down side and bottom of bowl. Reduce speed to low and mix in flour mixture and milk alternately in batches, beginning and ending with flour, until just combined. Add in the chopped apple mixture and mix until just combined.

Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan.

Blend remaining 1/4 cup vanilla sugar with the oats and the remaining 2 tablespoons each of butter and flour, using your fingertips. Crumble evenly over top of cake.

Bake at 350 degrees until a wooden pick inserted into cake comes out clean and side begins to pull away from pan, 45 to 50 minutes. Cool in pan 30 minutes, then remove from pan and cool completely, crumb side up.

When ready to eat, dust lightly with confectioner’s sugar, drizzle with caramel sauce, or eat exactly as is. Enjoy!