This Apple Cider Donut Loaf Cake is loaded with warm winter flavors you'll love and finished with cinnamon sugar coating!
Apple cider and cinnamon are a perfect combination at this time of year. This simple Apple Cider Donut Loaf Cake is great for fall and winter weather and will make you skip the donuts in no time!
This cake is loaded with warm flavors of apple cider, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The base for this apple cider donut cake is made using a few basic pantry ingredients and requires no special cooking techniques! The loaf cake is brushed with melted butter and topped with amazing cinnamon sugar.
And the great thing about this cake? It tastes like an actual apple cider donut in cake form! If you're obsessed with apple cider and apple cider-baked goods, then this cake will have your fall and winter season festivities covered.
Ingredients and Variations
Apple Cider - You can use store-bought or homemade apple cider (not apple juice!) for this cake. You will need around ½ a cup of apple cider.
Flour - You will need cake flour for this loaf cake. If cake flour is not available, it can be substituted with AP flour. Always measure your ingredients accurately using digital kitchen scales and use room temperature flour when possible.
Eggs - For this cake, you will need 2 medium-sized eggs. Make sure to use room temperature eggs. Using refrigerated eggs will cause your cake batter to curdle.
Baking Powder and Baking Soda - Leavening agents.
Ground Cinnamon and Nutmeg - Warm winter spices for flavoring.
Sugar - I used a mixture of granulated (or caster) sugar and brown sugar for this cake. The brown sugar provides a hint of molasses flavor.
Salt - To balance the sweetness.
Oil - Use neutral-flavoured vegetable oil, such as canola oil.
Vanilla Extract - For flavoring.
For the cinnamon sugar topping, you will need unsalted melted butter, granulated sugar, and ground cinnamon.
How to Make Apple Cider Donut Loaf Cake
- Preheat the oven and prepare a loaf pan
Preheat oven to 165°C (330F). Line an 8x5" (or similar) loaf pan with parchment paper. You can also use a silicone loaf pan or a small round bundt cake tin.
- Mix dry ingredients
Sift and mix the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon and nutmeg) in a medium size bowl and set aside.
- Make the batter
Place the sugars in a large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (you can also use a handheld mixer). Add the oil and mix on medium-speed until combined.
Then, add eggs, one by one, and vanilla extract and mix well after each addition (1-2 minutes)
Finally, add the dry ingredients, alternating with apple cider. You can add these in two additions and mix only until just combined. Do not overmix the batter once you add the dry ingredients.
Pour the batter into the loaf pan and bake in the center of the oven for 50-70 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. The top of the cake should be a deep golden brown.
- Add cinnamon sugar coating
Allow the cake to cool in the loaf tin for a few minutes (5-10 minutes), then transfer to a wire rack. While the cake is still warm, use a pastry brush to brush the surface with melted butter.
Mix granulated sugar with a pinch of cinnamon in a small bowl, then sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the melted butter top to coat the cake.
- Cool and serve!
Allow the cake to cool, then slice and serve!
Tips for the Best Loaf Cake
- Weigh your ingredients properly! This is really important for an accurate ratio and perfect cake consistency. I recommend using digital kitchen scales to weigh your ingredients.
- Use room temperature ingredients. This will prevent the cake batter from curdling. Make sure to use room temperature flour, eggs, apple cider, and oil.
- Avoid using old, stale, or improperly stored baking powder. Try to bake the cake as soon you mix the dry ingredients into the batter, and do not let it stand for too long before baking. This will make sure your loaf cake rises well.
- Make sure to check for cake doneness by inserting a wooden skewer into the center. If the cake batter sticks to the skewer, it needs more baking time. Baking time depends on temperature, oven type/model, and cake pan/mold used and may vary slightly from the instructions.
- Do not overmix the batter once you add the dry ingredients. Overmixing the batter will result in a dense sponge.
How to Store Apple Cider Donut Loaf
Store leftover coated sliced or whole cake in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-4 days.
You can also freeze this cake in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight at room temperature before serving.
Other Cake Recipes
Apple Cider Donut Loaf Cake
- 225 g cake flour (approx. 2 cups minus 1 tbsp.)
- 1½ tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. baking soda
- ¼ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. nutmeg
- 100 g granulated sugar (½ cup)
- 100 g brown sugar (½ cup)
- 120 mL vegetable oil (e.g., canola oil, ½ cup)
- ½ tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 medium-sized eggs
- 120 mL apple cider (½ cup)
Cinnamon Sugar Topping
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter melted
- 3 tbsp. granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 165°C (330F) and line an 8x4" loaf pan with parchment paper.
- Sift and mix dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg) and set aside.
- Place granulated and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add vegetable oil and mix until well combined.
- Add vanilla extract and eggs, one by one, and mix for 1-2 minutes after each addition.
- Add dry ingredients, alternating with apple cider, in two additions and mix until just combined. Do not overmix.
- Pour batter into lined loaf tin and bake in a preheated oven for 50-70 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Allow cake to cool in loaf tin for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack. Whilst cake is still warm, use a pastry brush to brush the top of the cake with melted butter.
- Mix granulated sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Sprinkle over top of cake brushed with melted butter.
- Allow cake to cool, slice, and serve.