Apple Walnut Bundt Cake is not only the perfect fall dessert, it’s downright apple-licious! Studded with tart Granny Smith apples, crunchy walnuts, and cinnamon spice, this Apple Bundt Cake is easy to prepare and stays fresh and super moist for days.
Although apple desserts are more popular during the fall months, this Apple Walnut Bundt Cake is a tasty dessert, snack, or breakfast cake you can enjoy any time of year.
A sweet buttermilk sauce poured on the cake in the pan (while it’s still warm from the oven) soaks deep inside making this Apple Walnut Bundt Cake sweet enough without any added frosting or glaze.
Apple Walnut Bundt Cake
There’s nothing more simplistic or delicious than an old-fashioned Bundt cake. Today’s made-from-scratch spice cake is a tried-and-true recipe that came from an old church community cookbook.
Even if you don’t consider your self a baker, don’t shy away from this recipe. Bundt cakes are much less trouble to make than a frosted layer cake and are pretty much fool-proof.
Baking this easy apple walnut cake in a Bundt pan ensures that the cake bakes evenly and releases easily despite it’s dense texture and moist crumb. This apple cake is also a poke cake, meaning several deep holes are poked into the cake using the end of a wooden spoon or the prongs of a meat fork after it has finished baking.
A warm sauce is poured all over the cake and penetrates through the holes to further sweeten and flavor the cake. It may all sound complicated, but really it’s not at all. I’ll happily step you through every step!
What kind of apples should I use?
For this cake, I recommend going with a tart apple, like Granny Smith, to balance the sweetness of this recipe. If Granny Smith apples aren’t available, you could substitute Fuji apples.
Should you toast walnuts before baking?
Often, I like to toast nuts before adding them to baked goods so that they hold their crunch. With this cake, however, toasting the walnuts is totally optional so save yourself a step and use them raw.
What’s the difference between a Bundt pan and a tube pan?
Both Bundt pans and tube pans bake round cakes into a doughnut shape with a hole in the middle. Both are useful for baking cakes that are particularly dense, so that the cake bakes evenly, without getting overdone on the outside edges. A Bundt pan has fluted edges while the edges of a tube pan are smooth and usually taller.
Can you use a tube pan instead of a Bundt pan?
For this apple walnut cake, you most certainly could use either pan. The main reason you wouldn’t want to substitute one pan for the other would be in the case of baking a tall-rising angel food cake. For that, you should always use a tube pan.
How do you grease a Bundt pan?
It’s important that all the grooves inside a Bundt pan are well greased and floured so the cake will release easily. Use a pastry brush to coat the inside of the pan with melted butter, being sure to get into all the grooves. You may also use a piece of wax paper to spread butter all over the inside. After the pan is coated with butter, sprinkle a quarter cup of flour into the bottom of the pan, then shake it around until the pan is lightly dusted all over.
How do you get a cake out of a Bundt pan without it sticking?
Carefully slide the tip of a thin knife around the inside edges and around the hole of the pan to gently loosen the cake. Invert the cake onto a wire rack and give it a light tap or shake to remove the cake. Be sure to follow the recipe instructions to know how long to leave the cake in the pan after baking before removing the cake.
- Peel and dice or grate 3 cups of tart apples. If you grate the apples, pour off any liquid that collects.
- Generously grease a Bundt pan with butter and dust lightly with 1/4 cup flour, shaking out any excess.
- Whisk together flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together sugar, eggs, canola oil, orange juice, and vanilla extract until combined. Gradually add the flour mixture, and mix until just incorporated.
- Use a rubber spatula to gently fold the apples and walnuts into the batter, then pour evenly into the prepared Bundt pan.
- Bake at 325 degrees for 1 1/2 hours, until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- When the cake is almost done, melt butter with sugar, buttermilk, and baking soda in a saucepan and bring to a boil for 1 minute.
- Remove the cake from the oven and use the end of a narrow wooden spoon or the prongs of a meat fork to poke holes into the cake.
- Pour the hot buttermilk sauce all over the cake and let sit in the pan for an hour before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
Let’s bake a cake!
If they are available, using black walnuts instead of English walnuts will add an earthy depth of flavor to this Apple Walnut Bundt Cake.
- 1 - 2 tablespoons butter (for greasing the pan)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour (plus 1/4 cup for the pan)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 2 cups sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/2 cups canola oil
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups peeled and finely chopped Granny Smith apples
- 1 1/2 cups chopped walnuts
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Generously grease a Bundt pan with butter and dust with 1/4 cup of flour, shaking out any excess.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
- To the bowl of a stand mixer, add the sugar, eggs, canola oil, orange juice, and vanilla extract and mix until well combined. Gradually add the flour mixture, beating until thoroughly incorporated.
- Gently fold the apples and walnuts into the batter with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan and bake for 1 1/2 hours, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- About 10 minutes before the cake is done, melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Stir in the sugar, buttermilk, and baking soda. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
- Remove the cake from the oven and set the pan on a wire rack. Poke holes in the cake with the end of a narrow wooden spoon or the prongs of a meat fork.
- Pour the hot sauce all over the cake in the pan. Let the cake sit in the pan for 1 hour before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
Store the cake covered at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 582Total Fat: 36gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 28gCholesterol: 54mgSodium: 193mgCarbohydrates: 61gFiber: 2gSugar: 41gProtein: 6g
Sheila Thigpen, author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook, is a recipe developer, food photographer, and food writer. She spent 20+ years as a business manager in the publishing industry before she retired in 2018 to focus on her passions — cooking, photography, and writing. Living near the beautiful Smoky Mountains, Sheila and her husband have two adult daughters and two fine sons-in-law, are active in their church, love to travel, and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. Follow Sheila on YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter!