Vanilla Bean Apple Crumb Cake

Do you ever feel like baking something but can’t make up your mind as to what? I felt like making some sort of cake last week, so I went to my husband for some ideas. He asked for an apple crumb cake. After searching Google images, I came across one from Jehan Can Cook that looked delicious. Since I didn’t have the apple juice her recipe called for, I substituted whole milk. She topped her cake with powdered sugar, but I decided to go a bit richer and pour a decadent vanilla bean frosting over the warm cake. The results? A delectable autumn treat with just the right amount of apple and spice. The frosting takes this luscious cake over the top, but you can always stick to the powdered sugar if you are in the mood for a lighter dessert.


Vanilla Bean Apple Crumb Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 8
  • Crumb topping:
  • ½ cup butter, slightly softened
  • ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1&1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
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  • Apple Layer:
  • 1 large apple, peeled, cored, and sliced thinly
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar, packed
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  • Cake:
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste
  • 1&1/2 cups flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • -------
  • Vanilla Bean Frosting:
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • ¼ teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 3 to 5 Tablespoons whole milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9" round cake pan.
  2. First make crumb topping: In a small bowl, stir together the butter, brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Scrunch up with hands to incorporate and then separate with fingers to make crumbs of different sizes. Set aside.
  3. Next prepare apples: Stir thinly sliced apples and brown sugar together in a small bowl. Set aside.
  4. Next make the cake batter: In a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, beating one at a time. Mix in the cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla bean paste. Slowly add in the flour, baking powder, and milk, alternating between the flour and the milk. Beat just until well combined. Pour into prepared cake pan.
  5. Lay the sugared apples on top of the cake batter evenly across the top.
  6. Sprinkle the crumb topping on top of the apple layer. Bake the cake for 45-50 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool on wire rack.
  7. Prepare frosting glaze: In a medium bowl, whisk together powdered sugar, butter, vanilla bean paste, almond extract, and milk until smooth. Add enough milk to make your desired consistency, and pour over lukewarm cake. Let set before serving.

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