This apple sponge pudding is a comforting apple filling topped with a delicious vanilla sponge cake, great served warm with custard or ice cream. I love the leftovers cold as apple sponge cake too!
My recipe is like a fusion of apple crumble base spiced with a little cinnamon but with a sponge cake topping instead of the crumble.
While some apple pudding recipes make you stew the apples first, I find that sliced apples work really well in the dish without the need for precooking (just as they do in a crumble).
This makes this recipe really easy and quick to prepare.
The sponge topping is made in exactly the same way as a Victoria sponge, with butter, caster sugar, eggs, flour and a little baking powder.
A teaspoon of vanilla extract adds great vanilla sweetness to the soft sponge.
Also known as Eve’s Pudding, named after Eve (in the Bible) who tempted Adam with an apple, apple sponge is a traditional British dessert originating in Victorian times.
It reminds me of a classic school pudding especially when served with plenty of custard! Brilliant as a warm dessert when the weather is chilly or just as a homely pudding anytime of year.
Bramley apples – also known as cooking apples – are a sour variety of apple used in cooking that is widely available in the United Kingdom.
But if you are elsewhere where cooking apples are not available then Granny Smith apples are a good alternative. They will not go to mushy when baked in a dish like this.
Any other variety of eating apple can also be used if the others are not available. If using eating apples then you can skip the sugar sprinkled over the apples too.
Here are the ingredients I use. Check the recipe card at the end of the post for the quantities!
- Bramley apples – I use 3 cooking apples, approx. 800-900 g before peeling and coring. You can also using normal eating/dessert apples, Granny Smiths work well.
- caster sugar – if you only have granulated, this can be used instead. Part of the sugar is used to sweeten the cooking apples, the rest in the sponge mix.
- cinnamon – a little cinnamon sprinkled over the apples really brings out their flavour.
- butter – I prefer to use unsalted in sweet dishes like this. Can be replaced with margarine if needed.
- eggs – medium free-range are my choice.
- self-raising flour – to ensure the sponge layer rises well. If you have none, you can use plain adding 1 additional teaspoon of baking powder.
- vanilla extract – gives the sponge layer a delicious vanilla flavour. Extract or vanilla bean paste should be used for the best results and flavour.
- baking powder – I add just a little baking powder to this even when using self-raising flour, to ensure a good rise.
Step by step
Here’s how to prepare the dish:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (fan).
Peel, core and slice the apples and arrange them in an oven dish.
Sprinkle over 60 g caster sugar and the cinnamon.
Cream together the softened butter and 110 g caster sugar, then add the eggs and flour and mix well.
Spoon the sponge mix over the prepared apples, smoothing it down with the back of a wooden spoon. Don’t worry too much about covering all the apples, the sponge will spread as it bakes.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown and risen.
Dust with icing sugar. Serve warm with custard, cream or ice cream.
The cooked sponge pudding keeps well in the fridge for 2-3 days.
Freezing, reheating tips for this dish.
Yes, prepare the dish as per the recipe including baking, allow to cool fully then wrap the entire dish in foil and/pr clingfilm. Freeze for up to a month. Thaw the dish fully in the fridge and then heat through in a low oven and serve.
Yes, serve individual portions into bowls and then reheat them in the microwave for 30 seconds on high. Add custard or ice cream and serve.
This sponge pudding can be made with a base of other fruits too – rhubarb, peaches (tinned or fresh), pear are some that work well.
More desserts to try
If you love comforting sponge desserts and apple, why not try one of these other puds:
Apple Sponge Pudding
- Peel, core and slice the apples and arrange in a baking dish.800-900 g Bramley (cooking) apples
- Sprinkle over the caster sugar and cinnamon.60 g caster sugar, ½ tsp cinnamon
- In a mixing bowl, cream together the butter and caster sugar.110 g butter, 110 g caster sugar
- Add the eggs and flour and beat well until combined.2 medium free-range eggs, 110 g self-raising flour
- Add the baking powder and vanilla extract and mix in.1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp vanilla extract