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Spicy Applesauce Cake

This picnic-perfect cake travels and slices very well. With chocolate chips, walnuts and raisins, it's a real crowd pleaser. —Marian Platt, Sequim, Washington
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Bake: 35 min.
  • Makes
    20-24 servings


  • 2 cups applesauce
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking cocoa
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon each ground cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar


  • In a large bowl, beat the applesauce, sugar, shortening and eggs. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves; gradually beat into applesauce mixture until blended. Stir in the raisins, chocolate chips and walnuts.
  • Pour into a greased 13x9-in. baking pan. Combine topping ingredients and sprinkle over batter. Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.
Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 227 calories, 10g fat (3g saturated fat), 18mg cholesterol, 185mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate (23g sugars, 2g fiber), 3g protein.
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Average Rating:
  • jsk68
    Mar 16, 2020

    Sweetened or unsweetened applesauce?

  • chocolateformyfour
    Mar 7, 2019

    I used butter instead of shortening. It was perfectly softened but it would not incorporate the way the recipe had it added. Next time I need to whip the butter up separately like with most cake recipes. There was too much nutmeg for our personal taste and I had even went a little scant on it.

  • robbrd
    Nov 10, 2017

    Very pleasing. We ate it warm. Some had ice cream with it and others used whipped cream. I was delighted that those that don't particularly care for nuts and/or raisins enjoyed it as well. Some commented about it needing a longer baking time. I had planned to bake it for 45 minutes but I was busy sewing and it ended up in for 47 minutes and it was perfect.

  • Foxycook
    Jul 3, 2017

    I made this for our annual family picnic a few days ago. I' still getting rave reviews about it. My son-in-law told my daughter that it beat his favorite cake that his mother makes!I will make it again for the holidays adding cream cheese icing.The only change I made was using mini semisweet chocolate chips and golden raisins.The texture and flavors were perfect.I think the cake is better eaten chilled.Awesome!

  • Zenasis
    Oct 19, 2016

    I used homemade unsweetened applesauce and 1 cup whole wheat flour. It was moist and full of yummy flavor. Whole wheat gives it that extra grit. Yum Yum!

  • misscoffeepot
    Jan 21, 2015

    a nice old fashioned cake- moist, dense. I used home canned applesauce- and it took about 15-20 min longer to bake. Perhaps it had too much moisture? DH was not a fan of the cake, so to each their own. I learned that I do not like chocolate combined with the spices...but that is just me-others may love it.

  • Pet_1
    Jan 20, 2015

    I just had this cake today, what a treat

  • jdh0731
    Mar 8, 2014

    THANK YOU to the person that posted this recipe!!

  • delowenstein
    Jun 1, 2013

    This recipe is also a keeper and I have used this recipe with some adjustments to it! I added 1/8 cup flour when mixing in the raisins and chocolate chips. Also, I found that vegetable or canola works just as well as shortening-I'll use either. I DID find that when I first made this cake, I needed to allot MORE baking time! Since then, I have baked this cake 45 minutes to really make sure that the cake is fully baked! Other than that, I'll use this recipe when I want to make an applesauce cake! I also use natural unsweetened applesauce in place of the regular applesauce and it has worked just as well for me! Thank you,Marian Platt, for this recipe! Dawn E. Lowenstein

  • jtingle
    Feb 18, 2011

    This cake quickly became a favorite for family and company get-togethers! I've made it for years. I use unsweetened applesauce, which does not affect the finished product. Cutting back the amount of ground cloves a bit might appeal to some folks.