Buttery Apple Torte

Italian apple torte, a single layer buttery cake filled with apple slices.

Photography Credit: Elise Bauer

This Italian apple torte is easy to make, and delicious. Cooking the apples first helps concentrate the flavor and remove moisture, so the cake doesn’t get soggy.

The lemon zest, although only a half teaspoon is used, is an essential ingredient – you can really taste it in the apples.

Buttery Apple Torte Recipe

  • Yield: Serves 8.


  • 1/2 cup (4 oz or 125 g) plus 1 Tbsp of unsalted butter
  • 3 Renette or Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and cut into slices 1/4 inch (6 mm) thick
  • 2/3 cup (3 1/2 oz or 105 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 whole eggs, plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (8 oz or 250 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • Confectioners' sugar (optional)


1 Preheat an oven to 375°F (190°C). Generously butter a 9-inch (23 cm) round cake pan with 2 inch (5 cm) sides.

2 In a microwave, melt the butter. Pour 6 Tbsp (3 fl oz or 90 ml) of it into a small bowl or cup and set aside. Add the apple slices and the remaining butter to a large frying pan and cook on low heat, stirring occasionally, until the apples are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat.

3 In a small bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a large bowl, beat the whole eggs and egg yolk until blended. Add the 6 Tbsp of melted butter, the vanilla, the granulated sugar, and the lemon zest. Stir in the flour mixture and the apples. Spoon into the prepared pan, smoothing the top.

4 Bake until browned, 30-35 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool in the pan for 5 minutes. Invert the cake onto a plate and lift off the pan, then invert the cake again onto the rack and let cool completely.

5 (Optional) Just before serving, place confectioners' sugar in a small sieve and dust the top of the cake.

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Adapted from Savoring Italy by Michele Scicolone.

Showing 4 of 36 Comments

  • Melissa

    Is the two thirds of a cup of flour a typo or is that for real?

  • Nasir M

    I had a question about the texture of the cake. I have made it twice using an electric oven and both times, while fully browned, the cake was a little mushy and when sliced did not cut clean. Is it supposed to be like that or am I doing something wrong? Thanks!

  • Annette @ annettesfoodpassion

    This is a great apple cake! I am on a constant search for a simple apple cake for Sundays, with ingredients I already have in the house and not much time needed for preparation. No matter what, the cake has to be delicious and that is exactly what your recipe is about! My family loved the cake and I will bake it a second time today. Thank you for this lovely recipe!

  • shimra

    this is really nice..i enjoyed baking as it’s quite simple and everyone loved it. Baked it for the second time for visitors too :)

  • patrice

    Forgot to say. I added bran and ginger to the mix… excellent. thanks

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