Winter Spiced Apple Cake

Winter Spiced Apple Cake

When it comes to cake it has to be the real thing. Made from scratch, genuine and earthy. The sort of cake that’s packed with flavors that take you to a place of pure contentment. I feel like this sort of cake is rare to come by these days, instead you get handed crumbly morsels of sponge layered with lashings of icing so sweet you no longer own a single taste bud.

Or maybe it’s just me and my constant search for perfection that feels this way. Or the fact that I was just craving a yummy slice of cake with a hot cup of tea on a very wintery afternoon, and I definitely wasn’t prepared to settle for the typical.

With that being said I decided to do a spontaneous little bake. The craving was asking for carrot, but was feeling a little experimental and baam! We got a cosy winter spiced apple cake with that good ol’ cream cheese buttercream.

This is a melt in your mouth kind of cake, it doesn’t dry out and the best part is it contains a fruit and veg.



Winter Spiced Apple Cake


2 cups of cake flour

1 teaspoon of salt

2 teaspoons of baking soda

1 teaspoon of dry ground ginger

½ teaspoon ground cardamom

2 teaspoons cinnamon

2 cups light brown sugar

1 cup vegetable/canola oil

¾ cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 large eggs

1 ½ cups apples, grated

1 ½ cups carrots, grated

5 cm fresh ginger, grated

1 cup pecan nuts, roughly chopped and toasted


  1. Preheat oven to 180’C. Grease and line to 9 inch round cake tins.
  2. In a bowl combine your flour, salt, baking soda and dry spices. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl whisk together the sugar and oil until well combined. Add the buttermilk and vanilla, give the mixture another stir.
  4. Now it’s time to add the eggs. Slowly add them one at a time and whisk thoroughly between each one.
  5. Gently add your dry mixture to the egg mixture and incorporate with a wooden spoon, until the mixture comes together.
  6. Last but not least add the apple, carrots, ginger and pecans. Give your mixture one more good stir until it’s nicely incorporated. Don’t over mix.
  7. Evenly divide the mixture between you baking tins, level out the surface and pop them in the oven.
  8. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes.
  9. Once the cake cooked through and has a beautiful springy texture, remove them from the open and allow them to cool in the tin for a good few minutes before removing them. Don’t rush this step, if your cake is still too hot the bottom with stick to the tin. Trust me I’ve had to learn this the hard way many a times.
  10. Allow your cakes to cool down completely on a cooling rack.
  11. In the meantime, prepare your buttercream.

Cream cheese Buttercream

125g Butter

2 cups Icing sugar

2 tubs of Cream cheese (2 x 230g – 250g)


  1. Start by creaming the butter until light and fluffy.
  2. Gradually beat in the icing sugar. Once it’s well incorporated turn the spread on your beater up and give the buttercream a good mix. Once it’s done, light, smooth and fluffy. It’s time to add your cream cheese.
  3. Make sure your cream cheese is at room temperature this makes it a lot easier to work with. Put the cream cheese in a separate bowl and give it a good mix, until smooth.
  4. Once smooth and easier to mix, at the cream cheese to your buttercream and gently fold it in until it comes together nicely. Be sure not to over mix as it will split.
  5. Chill for 15 to 20 minutes.
  6. Now that your buttercream is ready, it’s time to assemble your cake.
  7. Decorated it with some toasted pecans and dig in!



*Embrace the slow life and take your time baking this cake, grate the carrots and apples by hand. Toast up those pecans. And you could even lightly toast the spices to really bring out the flavour.

*Ideally make sure you ingredients are all room temperature, it aids in an even bake. It also stops the cream cheese from splitting while mixing the buttercream.

*P.S when you cut yourself a little slice, don’t be alarmed by the green speckles! This is just the bicarb having a bit of chemistry with the apple.




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