Passover Apple Cake

Passover apple cake. A classic recipe from the astoundingly great cookbook author, Arthur Schwartz. Kosher for Passover yet still tastes like any traditional apple cake. Talk about a godsend.

Passover Apple Cake Recipe

This Passover apple cake from renowned cookbook author Arthur Schwartz has magical properties. You see, whatever leftovers you can’t polish off the first day and carefully stash for tomorrow will have morphed from a sugary topping into an indulgently gooey, caramel-like topping. This may be the first time that we’re actively excited not to eat a whole, freshly-baked cake in one sitting. Cake that not only improves but evolves? That’s the kind of magic we like. So enticing we find ourselves making it all year long and not just at Passover. Talk about a godsend. This recipe has been updated. Originally published March 29, 2010.Renee Schettler Rossi

Passover Apple Cake Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 25 M
  • 1 H, 40 M
  • Serves 9 to 12


  • For the topping
  • 1/2 cup (57 grams) coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup (100 to 150 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (6 grams) ground cinnamon, or a combination of ground cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, and ginger
  • For the cake
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup (100 to 150 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) vegetable oil or mild olive oil
  • 3/4 cup (about 100 grams) matzo cake meal (or substitute matzos or matzo meal that you finely grind in a blender and then put through a fine sieve)
  • 3 to 5 medium apples, preferably Golden Delicious, Crispin (Mutzu), or other apples that keep their shape when cooked (24 to 34 ounces or 680 to 950 grams), peeled, cored, halved, and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (about 5 cups)
  • 1/3 cup (60 grams) raisins (optional)


  • 1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and position an oven rack in the center of the oven. Lightly oil an 8-inch square glass baking dish.
  • 2. Mix together the walnuts, sugar, and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  • 3. In a bowl with a hand-held electric mixer, beat the eggs on medium speed until well mixed. Beat in the sugar, about 2 tablespoons at a time, beating until the mixture is thick and foamy. Beat in the oil, adding it in a steady stream. Scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula. With the spatula, stir in the matzo cake meal, blending well.
  • 4. Pour half the batter mixture into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle about half the topping mixture evenly over the batter. Top with half the apples and all the raisins. Scrape the remaining batter over the apples, spreading it out to cover the apples. Arrange the remaining apples on top of the batter. Sprinkle evenly with the remaining topping mixture.
  • 5. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the sides of the cake pull away very slightly from the baking dish and the topping has begun to caramelize. (A cake tester is not reliable. It will not come out clean due to the moist richness of this cake.) Let the cake cool in the baking dish for several hours, until completely cool, before cutting it into serving portions. This cake is yet another Yiddish food that improves with age. Keep the cake in its dish, covered tightly with plastic, and the next day the topping will have become a moist, candy-like coating.
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