Gluten Free Irish Apple Cake

Gluten Free Irish Apple Cake with Custard Sauce

With Saint Patrick’s Day coming up, I thought I would take this opportunity to rant about clear up some common misconceptions surrounding the day.

First of all, let’s look at what most Americans view as the traditional Irish meal to serve on Saint Patrick’s Day – Corned Beef and Cabbage.

I am Irish-American and yes, we ate corned beef and cabbage on Saint Patrick’s Day. But notice I said I am Irish-American – an American of Irish descent – not Irish. You would be hard pressed to find corned beef and cabbage on Saint Patrick’s Day in Ireland. Sure, some restaurants will serve it, but that’s for the tourists, not the locals.

Generations ago, beef was not readily available in Ireland; it was expensive and considered a luxury item. Irish immigrants arriving in America found that beef was abundant and inexpensive, and corned beef had a similar texture to joint bacon, an Irish staple, which was not common in America. Thus, the commonly eaten dish from home of boiled bacon and cabbage became corned beef and cabbage in America.

Saint Patrick’s Day is a holiday in Ireland, so the banks and many businesses are closed. It is a special day, so serving something as common and lowly as boiled bacon and cabbage would be unlikely. Something like roasted lamb or Gluten Free Irish Apple Cake with Custard Sauce would be more appropriate.

Now let’s talk about green beer. Again, an American notion. In the early 1900s, a social club in New York served green beer in celebration of Saint Patrick’s Day and, for some reason, we Americans thought this was a really great idea. I am having a hard time imagining any self-respecting Irishman trying to get his Guinness green.

Finally, if one feels the need to shorten, make more familiar, or nickname Saint Patrick’s Day, it is St. Paddy’s Day or Paddy’s Day. Not St. Patty’s Day. Not Patty’s Day. Not St. Pattie’s Day. And definitely not Patties.

Paddy is a fine, masculine diminutive of Padraig; a variant of Patrick. Patty or Pattie is a woman’s name; it comes from Patricia. Patties is plural for patty, as in hamburger patties. Before he was a saint, Patrick was a man, and not a couple of burgers!

Class dismissed. Let’s eat some cake.

Gluten Free Apple Cake with Custard Sauce

3.85 from 40 votes
Gluten Free Irish Apple Cake
Print Recipe

Gluten Free Irish Apple Cake with Custard Sauce

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Cooling Time20 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American, Irish
Servings: 8 Servings
Calories: 352kcal
Author: Gluten Free & More


For the cake:

  • Gluten-free nonstick cooking spray
  • ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons Wholesome! organic sugar divided use
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • cups gluten free all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 3 large Granny Smith apples peeled, cored, and diced

For the sauce:


Make the cake:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Spray a 9-inch springform pan generously with cooking spray.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and ½ cup sugar together until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Add to the wet ingredients along with the milk and beat until combined. (The batter will be thick.) Stir in the apples. Pour the batter into the prepared pan, smooth the top, and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons sugar.
  • Bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool for 20 minutes before removing the cake from the pan. The cake can be served warm, at room temperature, or cold. Place on a serving platter and serve with the custard sauce.

Make the custard sauce:

  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine the egg yolks and sugar. Beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  • Heat the milk in a small saucepan until it just begins to bubble. With the mixer on, slowly pour the hot milk into the egg yolk mixture, beating continuously. Once combined, pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring, until the mixture thickens, about 4 minutes. It should coat the back of a spoon but not be too thick. It should be pourable. Stir in the vanilla. Pour the sauce into a small pitcher and serve with the cake. (The sauce can be stored in the refrigerator until serving time.)


Nutrition Facts
Gluten Free Irish Apple Cake with Custard Sauce
Amount Per Serving
Calories 352 Calories from Fat 144
% Daily Value*
Fat 16g25%
Saturated Fat 9g45%
Cholesterol 172mg57%
Sodium 183mg8%
Potassium 196mg6%
Carbohydrates 46g15%
Fiber 3g12%
Sugar 30g33%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 640IU13%
Vitamin C 3.1mg4%
Calcium 103mg10%
Iron 1.2mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owner’s. This blog accepts free manufacturers’ samples and forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. Affiliate links may be included in this post.

Disclaimer: All nutrition facts on Gluten Free & More are meant only as a guide and may differ depending on product brands used or ingredient substitutions. Some errors may occur, so you are encouraged to confirm the recipe’s ingredient and nutrition suitability for your own diet.
Have you tried this recipe? Give it a star rating and let us know your thoughts in the Ratings & Reviews section below.
Tags: Apples Cake Custard Gluten-Free Gluten-Free Recipes Holiday Irish St. Patrick's Day Wholesome Sweeteners
  1. Pingback: Gluten Free Irish Apple Cake with Custard Sauce | Healthy Foods

  2. Lauren
    March 14, 2016

    Do you think it would be possible to make these into cupcakes? Using the same recipe, but simply cooking in a cupcake/muffin pan?

  3. Pingback: Corned Beef and Cabbage Bean Soup Recipe | Simply Gluten Free

  4. Pingback: St. Patrick's Day Food for Celiacs - Roundup - Three Bakers

  5. Darlene Bassett
    March 9, 2020

    This is a wonderful recipe, I made it with a few changes. Used coconut milk, added 1 extra apple and used monk fruit for the sugar. Made the changes for my friend and she absolutely loved it and definitely wanted the recipe.

  6. Grace
    March 11, 2020

    This recipe looks amazing! Thank you for the changes, Darlene! That’s just what I was thinking… as we are dairy free and prefer low-sugar options. I’m going to try it for St Patrick’s Day party this weekend!

  7. Patricia Wilson
    November 27, 2021

    I don’t have a mixer with the paddle or the whisk attachments. Can I just use a normal mixer to make the recipe?

    1. Gluten Free & More
      November 29, 2021

      You can use an electric hand mixer, you just want to make sure it gets to the consistency called for in the recipe instructions.

      1. Patricia Wilson
        December 21, 2021

        Thank u. So using a hand mixer how long do I have to beat the mixtures in the first part of the recipe (no paddle) then the next part (no whisk) how long?

        1. Gluten Free & More
          December 21, 2021

          You’ll want to follow the directions for the amount of time to beat, regardless of whether you use a stand mixer or hand mixer, so long as everything looks well mixed.

  8. Patricia Wilson
    December 21, 2021

    When using a springform pan doesn’t the batter leak out?

    1. Gluten Free & More
      December 21, 2021

      No, springform pans create a seal.

  9. Patricia Wilson
    December 21, 2021

    Also I am dairy free so can I use dairy free butter in the recipe?

    1. Gluten Free & More
      December 21, 2021

      I haven’t tried making this dairy free, but yes I believe it should work.

  10. Patricia Wilson
    December 25, 2021

    This cake came out perfect and no leakage. After all the worry. Shame on me. Thank you for all your responses.

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