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Overhead view of a slice of Dorset Apple Cake covered in custard.

Dorset Apple Cake

Course: Cake, Dessert
Cuisine: British
Keyword: Apple and Sultana Cake, Apple Cake, Apple Crunch Cake, Dorset Apple Cake
Skill level: Easy
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 8 slices
Calories: 407kcal
Author: Amy Treasure
Delicious and fresh Dorset Apple Cake with sultanas and a crunchy sugar topping. Served warm with a big dollop of custard, this cake is the ultimate comfort food.
Print Recipe


  • 300 g apples (about 4 apples) peeled and cored
  • ½ lemon juiced
  • 225 g self-raising flour
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 150 g unsalted butter cold
  • 150 g light brown soft sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 tbsp whole milk
  • 100 g sultanas
  • 3 tbsp demerera sugar


  • Peel and core the apples and chop them into small chunks of 1-2cm. Squeeze over the juice of half a lemon to stop them from going brown.
  • Combine the flour and cinnamon in a large bowl. Add the butter and use your fingertips to rub it into the flour until it looks like fine breadcrumbs.
  • Stir in the brown sugar then in a separate bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Tip the eggs into the bowl and stir everything together. The ingredients will look more like a paste than cake batter.
  • Pour in the milk and beat well until you have a smooth and thick batter. Add a splash more milk if your batter is very thick.
  • Tip in the chopped apples and sultanas and fold through the mixture.
  • Transfer the batter to a 20cm baking tin. Use a spatula to even out the top then scatter over the demerara sugar.
  • Bake in the centre of a preheated oven for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.
  • Leave to completely cool before releasing from the tin. Serve hot or cold with cream, custard or ice cream.



  • Don’t make the chunks of apple too big as they won’t bake properly and will be hard. 1-2cm chunks are best.
  • Use cold butter straight from the fridge.
  • Rub the flour and butter together until it resembles fine bread crumbs and doesn’t have any lumps of butter.
  • Add an extra 1-2 tablespoons of milk if your batter is very thick. The perfect batter should be dropping consistency – the batter should drop from the spoon with some reluctance.
  • Use cake release (like this one) or line your tin with baking paper and grease it with butter so the cake doesn’t stick to the sides.
  • For a crunchy topping use demerara sugar, the large crystals ensure a good crunch!
  • Leave the cake to completely cool in the tin before turning out otherwise the crunchy topping will crack.
  • Storage: Wrap in clingfilm or tin foil and store in an airtight container. Dorset Apple Cake will keep for 2 days. 
  • Freezing: Wrap tightly and freeze for up to 6 months. 


Calories: 407kcal | Carbohydrates: 56g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 88mg | Sodium: 17mg | Potassium: 220mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 568IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 58mg | Iron: 1mg