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Teddie’s Apple Cake – An Enduring Tradition

We’ve been eating Teddie’s Apple Cake in my family for years. How many years? 46 to be exact. That’s the number of years ago since Teddie’s Apple Cake was first published in the New York Times. And it’s not just a classic in our family. This cake has stood the test of time for many apple cake fans.

Teddie’s Apple Cake History

As Amanda Hess wrote in The New York Times Magazine, Teddie’s Apple Cake harkens back to simpler times when people baked cakes every few days. Recipes were simple, and called for ingredients that you most likely already had in your pantry.

“Based on oil rather than butter, the cake has a light, airy crumb that’s delicious while it lasts, with walnuts, raisins, and slivers of apple threaded through the cinnamon-scented cake,” wrote Hess. “When I asked readers for their favorite recipes from the Times, this one was near the top, with thirty-seven votes. Like many of the most recommended recipes, it shares three qualities: ease, good flavor, and someone’s name in its title. Unfortunately, I still have no idea who Teddie is.”

(True story: As a child, I assumed that this recipe was from my great grandfather Ted (Teddy). )

Teddie's Apple Cake

A classic apple cake, originally published in the New York Times in 1973.

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword apple, apple cake, apples, dessert
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 12
Author Jean Hewitt/New York Times


  • 1 1/2 cups oil
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups apples, peeled, cored, and thickly sliced
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1 cup raisins (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9" tube pan (bundt pan) by greasing it and dusting it with a light coating of flour. Set aside.

  2. Beat oil and sugar together in an electric mixer. Add eggs and mix until creamy.

  3. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, salt, cinnamon, and baking soda. Stir flour mixture into the batter.

  4. Add all of the remaining ingredients and stir to blend. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Allow to cool for at least five minutes before loosening the cake with a knife inserted around the edges. Invert the cake pan to release the cake onto a large plate or platter.

Apple Cake for Today

We made this cake again recently for a Rosh Hashanah celebration. It reminded us once again why it’s a classic. It has an irresistible crunchy-sweet top and a perfectly moist cake crumb, with tasty bites of apple. (We didn’t use walnuts or raisins in this version.)

For our gathering, we flipped the cake out of the pan frosted the top (the part that was previously the bottom) with vegan frosting left over from our fig cake. It was perfect for a large family celebration… And it remains perfect for an everyday snack. Again, it’s a cake that stands the test of time.

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    […] to chop? Great! You might want to try Teddie’s Apple Cake, a Freekeh Fruit Salad, or a Peach Salsa. There’s plenty of chopping involved for all of your […]

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