Save on Pinterest

Potluck German Apple Cake

My mother made this German apple cake for my brothers and me when we were kids. It's an excellent choice for a Christmas potluck or actually any time of year. —Edie DeSpain, Logan, Utah
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Bake: 55 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    16 servings


  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups chopped peeled tart apples
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 teaspoons butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar


  • In a large bowl, beat the eggs, sugar, oil and vanilla. Combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda and salt; add to egg mixture and mix well. Fold in apples and nuts. Pour into a greased 13x9-in. baking dish. Bake at 350° for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.
  • In a small bowl, beat cream cheese and butter. Add confectioners' sugar, beating until smooth. Spread over cake. Refrigerate leftovers.

Test Kitchen Tips
  • Unless otherwise specified, Taste of Home recipes are tested with lightly salted butter. Unsalted, or sweet, butter is sometimes used to achieve a buttery flavor, such as in shortbread cookies or buttercream frosting. In these recipes, added salt would detract from the buttery taste desired.
  • Cinnamon comes in two basic types: Ceylon and cassia. Ceylon cinnamon’s delicate, complex flavor is ideal for ice creams and simple sauces. The spicy, bolder cassia cinnamon (often labeled simply as cinnamon) is preferred for baking.
  • Try all of our best apple dessert recipes.
  • Nutrition Facts
    1 piece: 455 calories, 24g fat (6g saturated fat), 57mg cholesterol, 212mg sodium, 57g carbohydrate (42g sugars, 2g fiber), 4g protein.


    Click stars to rate
    Average Rating:
    • jdunlavy99
      Dec 21, 2020

      No comment left

    • jmkasprak
      Dec 2, 2020

      Everybody loved this cake!

    • Robert
      Sep 25, 2020

      I make this cake often, always moist & tart especially in the Fall... i also add shredded sweet potatoes into recipe @ 2 C... I call it sweet potato & apple cake... yummy

    • bentures
      Nov 21, 2019

      Have probably made this recipe 10 times. It's yummy. I do have to make some modifications as follows: - only need to bake for 45 minutes - use about a 1/4 cup less sugar in the cake and it was plenty sweet - for the icing, I can't seem to be able to get a thick enough and complete spread of icing on the cake with the recipe as is. Instead, I simply use 1.5 blocks of cream cheese with 2 cups of powdered sugar and a teaspoon of vanilla and it's perfect.

    • Esther
      Nov 3, 2019

      Great recipe- used applesauce instead of oil, roasted pecans, added nutmeg and cloves and used your brown sugar frosting. Smelled and tasted yummy!!

    • JeannieJay
      Nov 3, 2019

      Loved how easy this was to make and it is delicious. Followed the recipe as written, like many others, I didn't have tart apples on hand, so I used Gala, with excellent results. The whole family loved it and I will make this cake again. As for Anna, why in the world rate a dessert that calls for sugar, when you do not allow that in your diet? I wouldn't read or rate a food group that I do not consume and nor should you. Your review is not helpful in any way.

    • LARJO
      Oct 28, 2019

      Great recipe, but icing needed vanilla so I added 1 tsp and it was perfect. I will be making again!!

    • Heidi
      Oct 19, 2019

      Love this recipe. I used less sugar. The first time l made it as per recipe. I chopped the apple's in food processor. The next time l didn't bother peeling apple's, just washed, quartered , cored and processed. No difference found in structure or taste of this lovely, moist cake. Have just made third cake.

    • Suzette316
      Sep 25, 2019

      Way too much oil. I cut it back to 1/2 cup and it was plenty. The second time I made this, I used 1/4 cup oil and 1/2 cup apple sauce and it was perfection!

    • Cailin
      May 7, 2019

      No comment left