Germany’s Answer to Apple Pie: German Apple Cake

Today I am going to introduce Germany’s answer to apple pie: German apple cake. It consists of a double pie crust, lots of apple filling and is then glazed. Compared to American apple pie, it looks rather plain. It doesn’t have any decorations, but believe me, this doesn’t mean that it tastes any less! This year we went apple picking already and so I decided to make this good old German apple cake. Sometimes you just crave the classics, so today you get this very traditional German apple cake.

There are tons of recipes out there for this very German cake. Normally you will simmer the apples with some sugar and lemon juice before you bake it. It brings out the flavors more. However, I learned from the German blog Food & Co. that it does make a difference if you first create caramel and then simmer the apples in it or if you just simmer the apples with sugar. So I thought I would give it a go and I have to say, man, the taste is even better if you first take the time to make some caramel. Yes, it is one extra step, but it is so much worth it. Peeling and cutting the apples takes time anyway, so you can make the caramel in parallel to save some time. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do. If you have any questions, please let me know.

Credit: Inspired by Food & Co (in German)

German Apple Cake

Serves: One 18cm/6 inch ∅ cake
Prep Time: 1hr Cooking Time: 35-50min Total Time: 1 hr 50min

This is the German answer to apple pie, this apple cake has a double pie crust, lots of apple filling and a glaze.


  • Pie Dough
  • 200 grams of all-purpose flour
  • 50 grams of regular sugar
  • 100 grams of cold butter
  • 1 egg

  • Filling
  • 50 grams of regular sugar
  • 20 grams of butter
  • 1.2 kilos of tart apples (about 6-9 apples, mine were smaller, I needed 9)
  • Optional: Raisins to your liking
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, one teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • About 50-70 grams of icing sugar
  • A bit lemon juice



In this reel you can see how I make the cake. For the pie dough mix the flour and sugar into a large bowl. Then add the cold butter in chunks and work into crumbs, either by hand or with a machine. Add the egg and only work until you can form into a ball. Chill covered for at least half an hour or overnight.


For the filling wash, peel, and core the apples and then cut into chunks. Heat the sugar in a large pot on medium heat until it melts and becomes amber color. Add the butter and apples. Don't worry, the caramel will harden, but just stir and let the apples release their jucies so that the caramel melts away. Let simmer for about 10 minutes until the caramel has fully resolved and the apples are soft. If your apples were super juicy, carefully discard a bit of the liquid, you don't want your filling to be too liquidy. Stir in cinnamon and vanilla extract, set aside.


Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius, take out the dough of the fridge and cut off 2/3 from it, this is what we will need for the base. Roll out on a slightly floured surface into a circle. Line a pie form (mine was 18cm in diameter) with it. Then scoop the apple filling inside, it is OK if the filling is lukewarm. It shouldn't be piping hot though. Roll out the remaining third of dough into a circle. Place this on top of the apples and seal, no need to be fancy, German apple cake is very plain in decoration. Cut off any overhang. Bake for about 40-50min, the top should be golden. The length depends a little on your oven as well as how high you piled those apples, as my springform was on the smaller side, I had to bake for 50min. I would recommend checking after about 35min.


Once the cake has cooled off, mix together icing sugar with a splash of lemon juice. You want a rather thick glaze, so only add little juice at a time. Brush the top of the cake with this glaze. Servce plain, with ice cream or a helping of whipping cream.

P.S. If you would like to check out further recipes with with apples, check out this blog post.

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