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Applesauce Cake with Brown Butter Glaze

Applesauce Cake

Course Cake, Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword applesauce-cake, applesauce-cake-recipe
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Cooling time 4 hours
Total Time 5 hours 50 minutes
Servings 16 pieces
Calories 565kcal


  • 1 ¼ cup roughly chopped pecans toasted and divided
  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 2 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp ground cloves or allspice
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • 2 ½ cups applesauce
  • Brown Butter Glaze:
  • ½ cup salted butter
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1-3 Tbsp half and half or cream plus additional as needed


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet. Toast for 6-8 minutes until fragrant then set aside to cool. Lower oven temperature to 325°F.
  • Using an electric mixer, cream together butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla. Beat for 2 minutes or until fully combined.
  • Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition.
  • In a separate medium size mixing bowl, use a whisk to sift together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cloves and nutmeg.
  • Lower the speed of the mixer and add dry ingredients alternately with applesauce beginning and ending with flour. Mix until fully combined. Add 1 cup pecans, mixing in by hand.
  • Butter and flour a 10 inch Tube pan (Angel food cake pan) with baking spray.
  • Spread batter evenly in pan. Bake in center of oven for 1hr 20 minutes - 1hr 30 minutes. Check at 45 minutes and lay foil on top to prevent over browning. Continue to bake until a toothpick inserted into the center shows moist crumbs.
  • Remove from oven and cool in pan for 20 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  • Brown Butter Glaze: Melt butter over medium-low heat in a heavy bottomed saucepan. simmer for 5-10 minutes until amber in color. Remove from heat, and pour into a mixing bowl leaving as much of browned sediment behind as possible. (You can also strain through a fine mesh sieve) Add powdered sugar and vanilla to the mixing bowl, whisking or beating with an electric mixer until combined. Add half and half 1 Tbsp at a time until drizzle consistency.
  • Drizzle glaze over cooled cake and garnish with reserved ¼ cup pecans. Store chilled in an airtight container.


  • Traditional applesauce cake often includes raisins. You can add 1 cup of  raisins to the batter along with the pecans with no other adjustments needed.
  • When browning the butter for the glaze, the milk solids left behind will turn dark. Be careful, or the butter will burn if not attended. When pouring it into the mixing bowl, leave as much dark sediment behind in the pot as possible. Please note, some darker flecks may slip through. I actually like this but, if it bothers you, strain the butter through a fine mesh sieve to remove.


Serving: 1piece | Calories: 565kcal | Carbohydrates: 83g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 352mg | Potassium: 154mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 57g | Vitamin A: 603IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 45mg | Iron: 2mg