Whether you pick your own apples at an orchard or the grocery store, you can make this cake with a minimal amount of effort and end up with a fall dessert that’s pretty enough to serve company!
I made this cake over Labor Day weekend and was looking for a dessert that would require less labor~ enter the cake mix and soda can method of baking for a quick and easy cake!
This quick and easy cake formula is ideal when you’re in a hurry and requires only two ingredients~ a 12 ounce can of soda and a boxed cake mix! I used a Duncan Hines Spice Cake Mix and a can of ginger ale. . . no oil, eggs or water. Follow the directions on the box for mixing (minus the other ingredients).
Bake your cake in a preheated 350 degree oven in a prepared 9 x 2 inch round pan. Bake until your cake tests done, when a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, approximately 35 minutes. Cool in pan on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove cake from pan and allow cake to cool completely.
While the cake is baking, slice about 2 lbs. of apples (5 – 6 medium) of your choice, I used Honeycrisp. And because this is an easy caramel apple cake, leave the peel on your apples, cutting them into 1/2-inch thick wedges.
Toss your sliced apples with a mixture of 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cornstarch, 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon and a pinch of salt. Add apple mixture to a pan with 2 tablespoons melted butter and saute over medium heat until apples are crisp-tender, about 3 – 5 minutes. Remove apples from pan and cool completely, about 30 minutes.
No need to waste all the buttery cinnamon/sugar mixture left from sauteing your apples! Poke some holes in the top of your cake and drizzle or spoon all that sugary goodness in your pan over the top of your cake.
Now your cake is ready for the apples slices and the caramel!
You can make this caramel sauce in advance, refrigerate and then microwave briefly to serve or drizzle onto cake.
Yield: Makes about 2/3 cup
Total time: 25 Minutes
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup heavy cream
Pinch of table salt
1 tablespoon apple brandy (substitute regular brandy or 1 – 2 teaspoons vanilla if you prefer)
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
Bring brown sugar, butter, cream, and salt to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Boil, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Remove from heat, and stir in apple brandy. Whisk in powdered sugar; allow to cool before serving. Caramel will thicken as it cools.
Arrange your sautéed apples on your cooled cake.
I sprinkled some honey roasted pecans on top of the drizzled caramel on the cake. You can buy honey roasted or candied pecans or make your own, here.
I used a single 9-inch round pan but you could use two pans for a layered cake with extra caramel between the layers if you prefer.
You can satisfy your sweet tooth with endless combinations of cake mix and soda or flavored carbonated water when you’re too busy or lazy to bake.
Use a chocolate cake mix + cola, root beer, or cherry cola
White or yellow cake mix + lemon-lime soda, ginger ale, or flavored carbonated water