Make this traditional Swedish dessert and indulge in the sweet flavors of Äppelkaka. With its simple ingredients and easy preparation, this apple cake is a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth.
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swedish apple cardamom cake
If you ask me, the Swedes make the best music and some of the best cakes in the world. And thank you Sweden for IKEA; it would be punishable to forget that!
This Swedish apple and cardamom cake brings back warm memories from my first visit to Sweden. My friend explained all about fika (basically what the Swedes call their coffee break) and let's just say I loved every bit of it. I have since been there a couple of times and this is just one of those cakes I always want to have.
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why this äppelkaka recipe is so good
This Swedish apple cake with cardamom ticks all the boxes. Here are a few reasons why you will like this recipe:-
- Easy to make: it is a simple dessert that can be prepared easily with basic ingredients found in most kitchens.
- Perfect for special holidays such as Mother's Day, Christmas, and other days when friends and family gather together.
- Flavorful: combining the warm aroma of cardamon, and with the sweet and nutty flavor of marzipan Äppelkaka is a fluffy and delicious dessert that will delight your taste buds!
- Vegetarian and can easily be made gluten-free!
what is äppelkaka
Äppelkaka is a traditional Swedish cake comprising fresh apples, sugar, flour or oats (havregryn), and butter or margarine. It is particularly popular in cafes and often served during special occasions such as holidays or family gatherings. It is normally flavored with aromatic spices such as cinnamon and cardamom. Traditionally, äppelkaka is served with some vanilla sauce (vaniljsås).
This is a summary of the ingredients you will need to make äppelkaka, as well as possible options for substitution. See the full measurements in the recipe card provided below.
- Apples - cored and cut into slices
- Marzipan - In Sweden, mandelmassa is used. But not to worry, it is very similar to regular baking marzipan, just with more almonds and less sugar.
- Medium-sized eggs
- Butter - at room temperature.
- Granulated sugar and icing (powdered) sugar (optional to garnish)
- All-purpose flour - feel free to substitute this with gluten-free all-purpose flour on a 1:1 basis.
- Cinnamon and cardamom as spices for the cake.
- Almond extract (optional - not pictured) - here, you can also use vanilla extract in place of the almond extract.
what are the best apples to use?
When it comes to the apples, any variety will do, as it all depends on your preference. I like to opt for crisp and tart varieties that can withstand baking, such as Granny Smith, Golden Delicious, or Honeycrisp. The tangy-sweet Jonagold variety is also a great option. If you have different varieties of apples, don't hesitate to mix them up.
how to make äppelkaka
This is a summary of how to make Swedish apple cake with cardamon (äppelkaka). You will find the full instructions in the detailed recipe card provided below.
- Preheat the oven and grease a baking tin. Separate the egg yolks from the whites and then whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
- Cream butter and sugar, add the egg yolks, and almond extract (optional). Fold in the egg whites and add the cinnamon.
- Mix in the all-purpose flour, a little at a time, add the marzipan or mandelmassa, and combine everything to a batter. Combine the apples with cinnamon and set aside. Transfer the batter to the greased baking tin, then arrange the sliced apples on top.
- Bake until done (a toothpick inserted in the middle should come out clean when done).
- Dust with icing (powdered) sugar and serve with vanilla sauce or as preferred!
swedish apple cardamom cake serving suggestions
The traditional way of enjoying äppelkaka is with some homemade vanilla sauce. But don't just stop there, ice cream, berry compote, and whipped cream also pair up well with it.
- Use gluten-free all-purpose flour on a 1:1 ratio to make this cake gluten-free.
- As a variation, try caramelising the apples in butter and brown sugar before baking.
- For some extra aroma, use freshly ground cardamon, add a teaspoon of vanilla, rum or almond essence into the butter.
- This cake can also be made by combining oats with butter, sugar, some all-purpose flour and a pinch of salt, all of which is topped on sliced, sugared apples, to form a crumbly topping.
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Äppelkaka Swedish Apple Cardamom Cake
- 3 apples - peeled, cored and sliced
- 350 g mandelmassa (or 200g baking marzipan) (see notes)
- 3 medium-sized eggs
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 150 g butter - at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
- 60 g all-purpose flour (or gluten-free all-purpose flour)
- ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon cardamom
- 3-4 tablespoon icing sugar (optional) to garnish
- Grease a 24cm baking tin and preheat the oven to 392°F, 200° C.
- Separate the egg yolks from the whites. In a bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
- In another bowl, cream the butter and sugar at low speed. Add the almond extract (optional) and egg yolks, then briefly whisk to combine. Carefully fold the egg whites into the mixture and stir in the cardamom.
- Add the flour, a little at a time, and use a spatula to combine. Roughly grate the marzipan or mandelmassa and mix this into the batter.
- Transfer the apples to a bowl, top with cinnamon, and combine.
- Pour the batter into the greased baking tin and carefully arrange the apple slices on top.
- Bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean. Dust the äppelkaka with icing (powdered) sugar, and serve with some vanilla sauce.