Food & Nutrition

Gluten-Free Applesauce Snack Cake

bundt cake photo collage with text

This gluten-free applesauce snack cake is one of those recipes I have made over and over again. It is made with brown rice flour (that means it’s whole grain!), sweetened with honey, and has a warm spice flavor. Plus, one of the best things about this healthy applesauce cake is that it’s made in a bundt pan, so it’s easy to cut into snackable slices!

snack cake with a cup of coffee in foreground and apples in background

I shared this recipe here back in 2011. I have updated some of the content to share it with you again today.

Table of contents

Why We Love This Gluten-Free Applesauce Snack Cake Recipe

There’s no better way to settle into the crisp and cozy fall season by enjoying a delicious treat! This healthy gluten-free applesauce snack cake always comes to mind at this time of year to kick off the baking season.

As soon as the first wooden “Pick Your Own Apples” signs start to appear on the side of the road, I become an apple-baking Pavlovian dog and make batch after batch of my homemade apple sauce. In turn, I end up making this applesauce snack cake too. 

This healthy applesauce cake is sweetened only with apple and honey, making it a wholesome treat that the entire family will love. Cut your bundt cake into slices and put the kettle on for a cup of tea – it’s time for fall!

Key Ingredients

Applesauce

It’s remarkably easy to make homemade applesauce, and I suggest doing so for this recipe. If you need to use storebought, just make sure it’s unsweetened since applesauce is sweet enough as is, and we’re keeping the sweetener in this recipe natural.

Honey

Use honey as your natural sweetener (in addition to the applesauce); I recommend Orange Blossom Honey if it’s readily available.

Brown Rice Flour

This is an excellent alternative for gluten-free recipes. It has a slightly toasty and nutty flavor. Feel free to sue white rice flour if you cannot find brown rice flour.

Additional Ingredients

This applesauce snack cake recipe also calls for eggs, orange or lemon zest, avocado oil (or canola), baking soda, pumpkin pie spice (or cinnamon), and salt.

sifting powdered sugar over the bundt

Step-By-Step Instructions For This Applesauce Bundt Cake

Step 1: Preheat and Prep

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and coat a large twelve-cup bundt pan with cooking spray.

Step 2: Puree Wet Ingredients

Puree the eggs, zest, applesauce, honey, and oil in a blender or a food processor. Do not skip this step. This helps to incorporate air into the batter to help make the cake more fluffy. We find that a blender is best, but if you only have a food processor they will work too.

Step 3: Whisk Dry Ingredients

Then in a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a large bowl.

Step 4: Combine Wet and Dry Ingredients

Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients to gradually stir the dry into the wet until they’re all combined.

Step 5: Bake The Bundt Cake

Immediately spread out the batter into the prepared bundt pan and transfer to the oven. Bake until the snack cake is golden brown and springs back when it’s lightly touched, which should take 50 to 55 minutes.

Step 6: Cool and Enjoy

Let the cake cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before turning it out onto a cooling rack. Let it cool completely, and then enjoy!

applesauce snack cake on a white platter with a knife and apples on the table

FAQs and Expert Tips

Can I use gluten-free baking mix instead of rice flour?

I have had mixed results with gluten-free all-purpose flours for this recipe, as have readers. Some homemade mixes work well as do some store brands. If you have a favorite brand that works well for you, try using it one to one in place of the rice flour.

Can I add nuts or raisins?

Yes! You can add up to 1/2 cup of each. I have also used dried zante currents which are less sweet than raisins.

Can I make this in a loaf pan?

You sure can, however a large bundt pan holds 12 cups and a loaf holds only 8 cups so you’ll want to make a 2/3 times batch instead of the full amount.

How does brown rice flour affect baking?

Brown rice sugar is a much harder and gritter grain so it doesn’t absorb liquid that well. In this recipe, the applesauce is a great complement to the brown rice flour as a binder.

What is the best apple for homemade applesauce?

Macintosh is the best apple for homemade applesauce because they practically when cooked in water. You can eventually layer other apple varieties with the Macintosh, but these are a great place to start.

More Gluten-Free Snacks and Sweets

a slice of the cake in the foreground and the bundt in the background

Additional Recipes To Try

Thanks so much for reading. If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my free weekly email newsletter where I share weeknight meal plans delivered right to your inbox. Or follow me on Instagram. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It is very appreciated. Happy Cooking! ~Katie

Print

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon

Description

This gluten-free applesauce bundt snack cake is one of those recipes I have made over and over again. It is made with brown rice flour (that means it’s whole grain) and it is sweetened with honey.


  • 2 eggs
  • Zest from 1 orange or lemon
  • 2 cups unsweetened applesauce, preferably home-made
  • ½ cup honey, orange blossom if available
  • 1/3 cup avocado oil or organic canola oil
  • 2 cups brown rice flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a large 12-cup bundt pan with cooking spray.
  2. Puree eggs, zest, applesauce, honey and oil in a blender or food processor.
  3. Whisk flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt in a large bowl.
  4. Create a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the wet ingredients. Gradually stir the dry into the wet and stir until combined.
  5. Immediately spread out into the prepared pan and transfer to the oven. Bake until golden brown and the cake springs back when lightly touched, 50 to 55 minutes.
  6. Let cool in pan 10 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack. Once warm to room temperature, slice and enjoy.

Notes

Variations To Try:

Feel free to use white rice flour or gluten-free baking mix instead of the brown rice flour.

Maple syrup can be used in place of honey. We recommend using dark robust grade A pure maple for baking. 

Other fruit sauces such as pear sauce or pumpkin puree may be used in place of the applesauce.

Fold in 1/2 cup chopped toasted nuts and/or raisins into the batter before adding it to the pan.

Add powdered sugar on top for decoration.

Frost with a simple icing. Try the icing from this maple almond apple cake.

Adjust seasonings by swapping in baking extract or liquor for the zest.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 min
  • Category: Snack
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/15th cake
  • Calories: 160
  • Sugar: 12.6 g
  • Sodium: 214 mg
  • Fat: 5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0.5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 29 g
  • Fiber: 1.4 g
  • Protein: 2.3 g

Keywords: gluten-free applesauce cake, Healthy Applesauce Cake, applesauce bread, Gluten Free applesauce bread, Gluten Free Applesauce Snack Cake, Applesauce Cake, Gluten Free Applesauce Bundt Cake

About the Author

Katie Webster

Katie Webster studied art and photography at Skidmore College and is a graduate of the New England Culinary Institute. She has been a professional recipe developer since 2001 when she first started working in the test kitchen at EatingWell magazine. Her recipes have been featured in numerous magazines including Shape, Fitness, Parents and several Edible Communities publications among others. Her cookbook, Maple {Quirk Books} was published in 2015. She launched Healthy Seasonal Recipes in 2009. She lives in Vermont with her husband, two teenage daughters and two yellow labs. In her free time, you can find her at the gym, cooking, stacking firewood, making maple syrup, and tending to her overgrown perennial garden.

Source: healthyseasonalrecipes.com