These Mini Apple Date Cakes are a delicious treat that you can whip up in a muffin or brownie pan! They're irresistibly soft and tender, generously filled with chunks of apples and dates.
And the crowning glory - a sweet crumb topping that adds the perfect touch of sweetness and texture.
Whether you enjoy them as a snack, dessert, or even for breakfast, these mini cakes are the perfect treat.
Here are step by step pictures so you can see what the batter at each stage should look like.
The full printable recipe with amounts and instructions are at the end of this post.
- Make the crumb topping: Combine, 1 Tablespoon (15g) butter, 3 Tablespoons (25g) all purpose flour, 1 Tablespoon (15g) brown sugar, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon and 2 Tablespoons chopped pecans (optional).
- Mix with a fork or your fingertips to form a crumb like texture. Set aside.
- Dry ingredients: In a separate large bowl, whisk together, 1 ¼ cups (160g) all purpose flour, ½ cup (100g) brown sugar, 2 teaspoons baking powder, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon and ¼ teaspoon salt.
- Toss in 1½ cups (220g) diced apple (about 2 apples peeled and cored) and ¾ cup (100g) chopped pitted dates.
- Mix until the apples and dates are well coated.
- Wet ingredients: To a measuring jug, add 1 large egg, ½ cup (120ml) milk, ⅓ cup (80ml) vegetable oil and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Whisk until combined
- Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients.
- Mix all the ingredients until just combined
- Divide the mixture evenly into 12 greased muffin cups until ¾ full. (You can use muffin liners or parchment paper to line the pan. Or if you have a good non-stick pan, simply spray it with non-stick cooking spray.)
- Place thinly sliced apple on the cake's surface in decorative patterns (optional, but adds a lovely touch 😊). Generously dust each cake with approximately one tablespoon of the crumb topping mixture.
- Position the oven rack in the middle of the oven , and preheat it to 356° F / 180° C (160° C fan). Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
- Remove from the oven but leave the cakes in the pan for 5 minutes. Loosen the edges of each cake with a spatula or knife. Enjoy the cakes warm or at room temperature.
The cakes can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 days, in the fridge for 3 days or in the freezer up to 1 month.
Pro tips for making this recipe
Butter: The butter for the crumb topping should be at room temperature. This will make it easier to combine and blend with the other crumb topping ingredients.
Apples: Use either roughly chopped or finely chopped. I used sweet apple varieties (Royal Gala or Fuji) which added some natural sweetness. However, if you prefer more firm, tangy apples, you can still use Granny Smith apples or other varieties.
Dates: I use a pair of kitchen scissors to snip the dates. It works so much better and quicker than a knife to chop them. To prevent sticking, dip the blades into warm water, lightly coat the blades with non-stick cooking spray, or regularly flour the blades.
Sugar: Brown sugar provides moisture and delicious caramel flavor to these cakes. You can use white granulated sugar, but the cakes will not have the same depth of flavor.
Baking pan: I went with my favorite 12 cavity brownie pan for this recipe, giving the cakes a distinct, unique appearance. Each square / cavity measures 2.6 inches (6.6 cm). Its perfect for individual servings with a pre-cut look.
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