Every year when fall arrives, my mood is instantly lifted. It is, by far, my favorite time of year, and I feel happiest and most energized when the leaves start to turn and the air feels crisp. One of my favorite things about autumn is waking up to cool mornings. You know the kind – when you need to pull on a thick pair of socks and a cozy sweater after you get up, and warm your hands around that first glorious mug of hot coffee to enjoy at breakfast.
Breakfast at our house usually revolves around hearty bowls of oatmeal in the fall, but sometimes I like to mix it up, especially when I have a large bounty of freshly picked apples on my countertop. I decided to play around with an apple cake recipe to serve in the mornings – something that would entice my 4 year old’s taste buds, but was virtuous enough to serve to her as her first meal of the day. Anything kid-friendly and nutritious is a huge winner in my book. It’s very lightly sweetened, which is sort of the point, but feel free to top with your favorite jam or apple butter if you like. Melted coconut butter is also fantastic on top, if you’re looking to make this slightly more decadent! The best part about this recipe is that it comes together really quickly in one bowl, and only takes about 30 minutes to bake. It’s also equally delicious served right out of the oven, at room temperature, or even slightly chilled (my favorite).
As far as the best type of apple to use, don’t stress too much about it, but I’m partial to Honeycrisp and Braeburn for baking. Granny Smith is also a favorite, and fairly widely available. If you can get apples in season where you live, even better!
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 cup spelt flour
- 2 medium apples, peeled and diced (into approximately ½” chunks)
- ½ cup coconut sugar
- 1 Tbsp ground flaxseed
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
- 2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly oil an 8×8″ baking dish.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the whole wheat pastry flour, spelt flour, chopped apples, coconut sugar, ground flaxseed, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
- Gently fold in the almond milk, coconut oil, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Stir until all ingredients are combined.
- Pour batter into prepared baking dish and place in preheated oven. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool slightly, then cut into 9 squares. Serve warm, at room temperature, or even cold!
Recipe adapted from “The 30 Day Vegan Challenge” by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau