Paleo Apple Coffee Cake (Gluten Free)

This Apple Coffee Cake is a moist paleo cake with a sweet crumb topping. The super easy batter is full of fresh apples and cinnamon. It’s a healthy treat without any refined sugar that’s simple to make. Enjoy it this fall with your morning coffee, afternoon snack or evening dessert.

Paleo Apple Coffee Cake close up

Apple season is in full swing here in New York. This time of year you’ll find many varieties of apples at your local farmers’ market. It’s fun to try them all. My favorite eating apple only available in the fall is Macoun, a tart-sweet, juicy, heritage apple variety. Braeburns, Winesaps and Honeycrisps are also good for eating out of hand.

For this Apple Coffee Cake I recommend a drier apple like Granny Smith. It has a tasty, tart flavor and holds it’s shape when baked. You’ll see little shreds of apple in each piece.

Ingredients You Need To Make This Fall Treat

For the cake:

  • Almond Flour – blanched, finely ground for the best texture
  • Cinnamon – use a full flavored cinnamon from Ceylon
  • Granny Smith Apples – shredded and squeezed in a kitchen towel to remove moisture
  • Maple Syrup – organic, if possible
  • Coconut Oil – refined for no coconut taste, melted
  • Pastured Eggs – room temperature eggs are best (see tips below)
  • Vanilla
  • Sea Salt
  • Baking Soda

For the Crumb Topping

  • Almond Flour
  • Grass Fed Butter or Coconut Oil – Softened to room temperature. Butter has richer taste but if you’re dairy free coconut oil is good too!
  • Cinnamon

Let’s Make Paleo Apple Coffee Cake

It’s very simple, here’s how we do it!

  1. Prepare the crumb topping: In a small bowl, using a fork, mix together the almond flour, coconut sugar, butter or coconut oil and cinnamon until the texture looks like pebbles. Sometimes I use my hands. Set aside.
  2. Prepare the dry ingredients: In a large bowl mix together the almond flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Prepare the wet ingredients: In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, maple syrup, oil, and vanilla.
  4. Shred the apple: Peel the apple and shred on a box grater. Place into a kitchen towel and squeeze out the liquid.
  5. Mix it together: Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Fold in the apples.
  6. Sprinkle with crumb topping: Grease your pan or put some parchment paper in there. Pour in the batter and sprinkle with the crumb topping to cover the top.
  7. Bake: You can test the cakes’ doneness by sticking a toothpick in the center. If the toothpick comes out clean, it’s good to go!

Tips For Making Paleo Apple Cake

  1. Be sure your eggs are at room temperature because they blend more evenly in batters and help the dough rise more easily than cold eggs. Eggs right out of the refrigerator can make the batter lumpy and require longer baking times.
  2. If possible weigh your flour and oil, the amounts are more accurate. 
  3. It’s best to store almond flour in the refrigerator as nuts tend to go rancid. Bring the almond flour to room temperature before baking. If you use it cold, it’ll absorb more of the liquid and your batter will be thicker than it should be.
  4. Squeeze all the liquid out of the apples in a kitchen towel. If there’s too much liquid the cake will get soggy. 

Paleo Apple Coffee Cake:
Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use a chia or flax egg in place of the regular eggs to make it vegan?

I haven’t tried using these egg replacers in this paleo apple cake recipe because there are a lot of eggs. It will probably work but may not rise as much and be a bit wetter.

Can I use another type of oil instead of coconut oil ?

The cake can be made with avocado oil or olive oil. The olive oil will have a slightly stronger taste but will be quite good, I tried it! Melted butter would also be good.

What kind of pan can I use?

I recommend using an 8″ x 8″ square pan. But you could also make it in an 8 or 9-inch round pan.

Can I make the apple coffee cake without the crumb topping?

Yes, the cake is good plain without the topping. You could also drizzle a glaze on it instead of the crumb topping. Click here to get a recipe for vanilla glaze.

Storing Paleo Apple Coffee Cake

Store the cake covered for up to 3 days at room temperature.

You can freeze the cake for up to 3 months, in an air tight container. Bring to room temperature before eating.

The crumbly topping is super yummy, barely crunchy with a sweet taste. Enjoy with a cup of coffee or tea for breakfast or afternoon snack. A delicious fall treat!

If you like this recipe, try these other delicious apple treats:

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This healthy Apple Coffee Cake is a moist paleo cake with a sweet crumb topping. The super easy batter is full of fresh apples and cinnamon.

Paleo Apple Coffee Cake

  • ¼ cup coconut oil (refined), melted (56 grams)
  • 2 cups blanched almond flour (224 grams)
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ¼ cup organic maple syrup
  • 3 large pastured eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup shredded granny smith apple, put into a kitchen towel and squeeze out the juice (about 60 grams after squeezing out juice)

Crumb topping:

  1. Gently melt coconut oil in a small saute pan on low. Set aside to cool. 
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line an 8 X 8 baking pan with parchment; set aside*
  3. In a small bowl mix together the ingredients for the crumb topping and set aside.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, mix together almond flour, salt, baking soda, and cinnamon until evenly combined and there are no lumps.
  5. In a medium bowl whisk together the coconut oilmaple syrup, eggs, and vanilla extract.
  6. Peel and shred the apple. Place into a kitchen towel and squeeze out the juice.
  7. Mix the liquid ingredients into the flour and mix until well combined.
  8. Sprinkle with the shredded apples and mix to combine evenly. Don’t over mix.
  9. Spoon batter into in your prepared pan. Use your rubber spatula to spread it out evenly.
  10. Sprinkle crumb topping mixture on top of cake.
  11. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes or until the center is just set and a tester inserted in center comes out clean.
  12. Remove from the oven and let cool for 5-10 minutes before removing from the pan.
  13. Lift the sides of the parchment to remove from the pan and serve.
  14. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
  15. Freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Return to room temperature before serving.


To line with parchment paper, use one sheet of paper to line 2 sides and the bottom. Oil the other 2 sides with coconut oil.  There is no sticking and it’s easy to remove the cake from the pan by grabbing the sides of the parchment paper and lifting it out.

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Category: Dessert, Breakfast, Snack
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: Paleo, Gluten Free, Dairy Free Option

Keywords: apple coffee cake, coffee cake, apple cake, paleo apple cake

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