This is the ultimate fall cake. Apple Pumpkin Crumble Cake has a soft and tender pumpkin cake base, and is topped off with brown sugar apples, buttery streusel, and crunchy walnuts. Though it has several steps, it’s still really easy to make!
Okay it’s time for the most epic fall cake of all time. This cake is everything and more you’d dream of for fall.
It starts off with a super simple one bowl pumpkin cake that is soft, moist, and full of fall spices. Then it is topped off with chopped up apples coated in cinnamon, a buttery crumble, and walnuts. YUM!
If you can’t decide whether to bake apple or pumpkin treats first this fall, try doing both with this recipe!
Why this recipe works
Apples – Tossed in brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. They are sweet bites of deliciousness!
Easy to make – Once you have all the components of the cake ready, you just layer and bake!
Pumpkin cake – The base of this recipe is a soft pumpkin cake. It is truly divine!
Streusel – Made up of butter, sugar, and flour. It really elevates this cake!
Scroll to view a few ingredients notes. Full recipe and measurements can be found in the recipe card below.
Eggs – Remove two hours before baking.
Flour – I used all-purpose flour for this recipe.
Pumpkin purée – Adds moisture and flavour into the pumpkin cake. This is one I recommend. Make sure it is not pumpkin pie filling!
Sugars – both dark brown sugar and white sugar are used. It’s important to use both!
Sour cream – Makes the cake extra soft. Remove two hours before baking.
Walnuts – Roasted walnuts are used in this recipe and are chopped up into smaller pieces. You can also use pecans!
Step by step instructions
Step 1 – Prep. Grease the pan. For easy removal of the brownies, place parchment paper on the bottom and 2 sides of the pan. Grease again and then set aside.
Step 2 – Make the streusel. In a large bowl, add the flour, brown sugar, white sugar, and butter. Mix well until crumbly and there are small chunks. I like to use my hands for this! Reserve 3/4 cups of the streusel for the topping.
Step 3 – Add rest of cake ingredients. Into the bowl with the remaining streusel mixture, add the pumpkin puree, sour cream, vanilla, and eggs, and mix.
Then add in the cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ginger, baking powder, baking soda, cornstarch, and salt. Mix until no dry streaks appear, don’t overmix!
Step 4 – Make cinnamon apple topping. In a small bowl, add chopped cubed apples, cinnamon, cornstarch, and sugar. Mix with a spoon until the apples are evenly coated in the mixture (see photo for reference.).
Step 5 – Layer. Add the pumpkin cake layer into the prepared 8×8 pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle the apples. Add the streusel, and finish of with sprinkling the chopped walnuts.
Step 6 – Bake. Bake the bars for 55 minutes to 1 hour. A toothpick inserted will come out with moist crumbs. Once ready, slightly open your oven door to allow the hot air to come out. If you remove your cake from the oven right away, it will drop.
After 10 minutes, remove from the oven completely and set on your counter to cool.
Allow the cake to cool completely before slicing into them. Enjoy!
Expert Baking Tips
Here are a few expert baking tips from my kitchen to yours
- Use a gram scale for most accurate measurements. Especially for the dry ingredients!
- Use pumpkin puree, and not pumpkin pie filling.
- Make the streusel first, then pumpkin cake, and then apples. That way the apples won’t brown on you.
- Blot the pumpkin dry before adding it into the bowl. Getting rid of the extra liquid will create denser chewier bars, as opposed to fluffy ones.
- Line the bottom and two sides with parchment paper. Grease the other two sides. This will allow for the easiest removal from the pan.
Do I have to add the apple topping?
No, you don’t have to. You can make a regular pumpkin cake with streusel and walnuts if you’d like. Or try this Maple Pumpkin Spice Coffee Cake.
How long is this pumpkin cake good for?
This cake is best eaten day of or within 3 days of being baked! I don’t recommend freezing them.
Check out these recipes
- Pumpkin Banana Muffins
- Maple Syrup Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Chocolate Caramel Cookies
- Butterscotch Chocolate Chip Cookies
Apple Pumpkin Crumble Cake
For the cake
- 1/2 cup butter room temperature
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 1 cup pumpkin puree room temperature
- 2 eggs room temperature
- 1/3 cup sour cream room temperature
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 1/2 tsp corn starch
- 3/4 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- 1/8 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 cup walnuts chopped
- 3 tbsp butter room temperature
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 3 tbsp dark brown sugar
- 2 large granny smith apples or 3 small ones, peeled, cored, and cut into cubes
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- Preheat the oven to 350℉/180℃. Grease an 8×8 inch square pan. For easy removal of the cake, place parchment paper on the bottom and 2 sides of the pan. Grease again and then set side.
- Before starting, spread the pumpkin puree onto a plate and blot it with paper towel sheets to remove any excess liquid. Do this twice and set aside.
For the pumpkin cake
- In a large bowl, mix the flour, light brown and white sugar, and butter in a large bowl. Using your hands or a fork, mix until a crumbly mixture forms. Measure out 3/4 cups of this mixture and set aside. This will be the streusel topping for later.1/2 cup butter, 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, 1/3 cup white sugar
- With the remaining crumble mixture, add in the pumpkin puree, sour cream, eggs, and vanilla. Using a whisk, mix until smooth.1 cup pumpkin puree, 2 eggs, 1/3 cup sour cream, 1/2 tsp vanilla
- Add in the corn starch, cinnamon, allspice, ginger, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Using a spatula, fold until a soft batter forms. Do not overmix!1 1/2 tsp corn starch, 3/4 tsp baking soda, 3/4 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp ground ginger, 1/4 tsp allspice, 1/8 tsp nutmeg, 1 tsp cinnamon
For the apples
- In a medium sized bowl, add in the cinnamon, cornstarch, brown sugar, cubed apples, and hot butter.3 tbsp butter, 1 tsp cinnamon, 3 tbsp dark brown sugar, 2 large granny smith apples, 1 tsp cornstarch
- Mix with a fork until the apples are completely covered.
- Time to layer the cake! Add the pumpkin cake layer into the prepared 8×8 pan and spread evenly. Sprinkle the apples. Add the streusel, and finish of with sprinkling the chopped walnuts.1/2 cup walnuts
- Bake the bars for 55 minutes to 1 hour. A toothpick inserted will come out with moist crumbs. Once ready, slightly open your oven door to allow the hot air to come out. If you remove your cake from the oven right away, it will drop.
- After 10 minutes, remove from the oven completely and set on your counter to cool. Allow the cake to cool completely before slicing into them. Enjoy!
- This cake is best eaten within 2 to 3 days of being baked!