This Caramel Apple Poke Cake is a brown sugar cake with a cinnamon streusel swirl. It is soaked in caramel and topped with apple pie filling and whipped cream.
Well I am on my way back to California after a whirlwind weekend on the east coast. I watched one of my best friends marry the love of her life, visited with friends and family I haven’t seen in years and stuffed my face with all things maple and pumpkin flavored. Although I didn’t get the cider donuts I was hoping for.
I wish I had a chance to make this Caramel Apple Poke Cake for my family while I was home, but there was just no time. I was bouncing around from New Jersey to Vermont to New York and back. I imagine this would have gone over very well!
It’s a brown sugar cake with a cinnamon streusel swirl, soaked in caramel and topped with apple pie filling and whipped cream. There is so much goodness going on here, I am quite certain you won’t be able to pick your favorite part.
I felt like if I was going to be making an apple poke cake, I might as well go all out. I added a streusel to the cake, since any good apple dessert should be accompanied by some streusel. I swirled it into the layers of the cake and sprinkled some on top.
After the cake was baked, I poured a whole jar of caramel sauce over the top and let it soak into the cake. This is what makes it a “poke cake”. After it’s done baking, you poke holes all over it and soak it with a liquid. Sometime people use sweetened condensed milk instead, but the caramel sauce goes with the theme of the dessert.
Now I also added my favorite stove-top apple pie filling to this dessert. Once fall hits, I feel like I am making a batch of this every single weekend! It’s a quick way to enjoy an apple pie without having to worry about the crust. I allowed the filling to cool before adding the final layer of whipped cream so that the whipped cream doesn’t melt.
For the whipped cream, you can do a plain version, or you can try it with a cinnamon-maple whipped cream. I happened to have some leftover toffee bites in my freezer so I sprinkled that on top with a drizzle of caramel.
This cake is definitely rich. One thing I am known for is that my desserts tend to be a bit over the top, and I am okay with that! So if you are ready to indulge a little bit this week, I highly suggest you start with this cake. It packs a punch.
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- For the cake:
- 1 box White cake mix
- ½ C Brown sugar
- ¾ C Milk
- ½ C Vegetable oil
- 3 Large eggs
- ½ C Sour cream
- 2 tbsp Caramel
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- For the streusel:
- 1/4 C Brown sugar
- 3 tbsp Flour
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- 2 tbsp Unsalted butter
- For the toppings:
- 1 jar Caramel Sauce 14 oz.
- 1 ½ C Heavy whipping cream
- ¾ C Powdered sugar
- 1 recipe Apple pie filling (see below)
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Prepare cake by combining cake mix with brown sugar, milk, vegetable oil, eggs, sour cream, caramel and cinnamon. Stir just until combine. Pour half the cake mix in bottom of a 9-inch by 13-inch pan and spread evenly.
- Prepare the streusel by combing all dry ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl: brown sugar, cinnamon and flour. Add butter and microwave for 30-60 seconds until butter is melted. Stir melted butter into dry ingredients. Sprinkle half the streusel mixture over the bottom of the pan and gently swirl with a knife. Pour remaining cake batter on top and sprinkle with remaining streusel.
- Bake cake for 24-28 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the middle of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cake is done. Remove from oven and allow cooling for 10 minutes.
- Prepare apple pie filling (recipe below)
- While the cake is still warm, take the end of a wooden spoon or another round object and poke holes all over the top of your cake. Allow to cool for another 20 minutes.
- Pour remaining jar of caramel sauce over the cake and top with apple pie filling (recipe listed below).
- Put your mixing bowl and wire whisk in the freezer to help it get very cold. This is optional, but something I usually do.
- Beat heavy whipping cream on medium-high speed. Slowly added powdered sugar, increasing speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form. Spread over cooled cake.
- Sprinkle with toffee bits and drizzle with caramel if desired.
- 3 Medium apples, sliced
- 1/2 Lemon, juiced
- 2 tbsp Maple syrup
- 2 tbsp Light brown sugar
- 1 tbsp All-purpose flour
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- Slice apples into small pieces and squeeze a lemon over top and stir to combine.
- Add brown sugar, flour, maple syrup and cinnamon over top of apples. Stir to mix ingredients.
- Heat apples on the stove over medium heat for 15-20 minutes until soft. Stir occasionally. You want the apples to be soft. Set aside and allow to cool, refrigerating if necessary.
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