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Caramel Apple Poke Cake is super simple to make. The caramel drizzle and toffee bits make it irresistible. So perfect for fall!

Slices of caramel apple poke cake on plates next to the full cake


Caramel apple poke cake topped with whipped topping and toffee bits, on a plate with several bites taken out of it


I love this Caramel Apple Poke Cake because it is super easy to make.

Yes, it’s easy because it uses cake mix, apple pie filling and whipped topping.

You know that I love baking from scratch, but I also believe there’s a place for quick recipes that use a few shortcuts from the store. Doctored cake mix is one of my favorite kitchen tricks, after all.

Slice of caramel apple poke cake on a plate, with several bites taken out of it

If you aren’t a fan of cake mix, pie filling or whipped topping, this might not be the recipe for you. Not to worry, though – my caramel apple cake with salted caramel frosting should be right up your alley!

As for me? I’ll continue making and enjoying this recipe as long as everyone keeps gobbling it up. Which happens every single time I make it.

Batter for caramel apple poke cake in a cake pan, ready to bake


Caramel Apple Poke Cake starts with a vanilla cake mix (spiced cake mix would also be amazing).

Then you doctor the mix up with apple pie spice and apple pie filling. We’re going for all the cinnamon-y apple flavor in this cake!

Once you bake it up to golden perfection, poke holes all over the warm cake and drizzle it with caramel sauce. Once the cake is cooled, you top it with whipped topping, toffee bits, and more caramel sauce.

Plated slices of caramel apple poke cake, with full cake in the background

Seriously, how amazing does that sound?

Make sure you don’t skip the toffee bits on top. They really take this cake to the next level!

Caramel apple poke cake, sliced in the pan, ready to be served


I know some folks are not a fan of whipped topping and wonder if it’s possible to top Caramel Apple Poke Cake with whipped cream instead.

Short answer: Sort of.

Overhead view of caramel apple poke cake, topped with whipped toping, toffee bits and extra caramel

Long answer: Whipped cream isn’t nearly as stable as whipped topping. If you want to use whipped cream instead, you have two options:

1. Use stabilized whipped cream. It will take a little more effort, but will hold up better in the long run.

2. Top the cake with your whipped cream right before serving, so the whipped cream doesn’t have time to break down.

Close up side view of a slice of caramel apple poke cake

Honestly, I find it easier to just use whipped topping, but to each their own!

I’ve made this Caramel Apple Poke Cake many, many times and every time it gets devoured so fast. Whip it up for a work potluck, a Halloween party, or just a random Tuesday night because it’s that easy!

Sliced caramel apple poke cake, with two slices on plates

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Caramel Apple Poke Cake

By: Jamie
4.45 from 198 ratings
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 33 minutes
Cool Time: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour 48 minutes
Servings: 16
Caramel Apple Poke Cake is super simple to make. The caramel drizzle and toffee bits make it irresistible. So perfect for fall!


  • 1 box vanilla cake mix 15.25 ounces
  • 1 tablespoon apple pie spice
  • ½ cup water
  • cup vegetable oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 20 ounce can apple pie filling coarsely chopped
  • 1 cup caramel sauce room temperature or slightly warmed
  • 8 ounces frozen whipped topping thawed
  • cup toffee bits


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cake mix, apple pie spice, water, oil, eggs and vanilla on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  • Use a rubber spatula to fold in the apple pie filing.
  • Pour batter into prepared pan.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 28-33 minutes.
  • Remove cake to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes.
  • Poke warm cake every inch or so with a straw, halfway into cake. Drizzle 3/4 cup caramel sauce over the cake, allowing it to fill in holes. Cool cake completely.
  • Top cake with whipped topping, toffee bits and remaining 1/4 cup caramel sauce.
  • Cover and refrigerate leftover Caramel Apple Poke cake for up to 3 days.



Serving: 1slice, Calories: 317kcal, Carbohydrates: 54g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 43mg, Sodium: 325mg, Potassium: 80mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 35g, Vitamin A: 205IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 105mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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  1. Meliiiissaa M says:

    I’ve made this a few times and have always used spice cake mix, really good! I use creamy whipped topping and the bit o brickle (instead of the toffee with chocolate). The smuckers caramel sauce in the jar has the best flavor IMO. Always takes a lot longer to bake than any recipe I’ve come across, so you just have to watch it. Attempting cupcake form again, last time it was a pain trying to portion.

  2. Lisa says:

    I’m going to use fresh granny Smith apples. I usually cook them down with brown sugar and butter. Do you think the cake will be too runny or take longer to cook?

    1. Jamie says:

      Hi Lisa – Since I haven’t tried this swap, I can’t say for sure how it would turn out. If you give it a try, I’d love to hear how it turns out for you. Happy baking!

  3. Brenda says:

    I’m making this for the first time! Just took it out of the oven and my goodness, it smells so heavenly in my home! Going to be hard to sample it before company comes in 3 days. Thanks for sharing ❤️

    1. Jamie says:

      So happy to hear you enjoyed the recipe, Brenda! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your feedback!

  4. Tara says:

    Could I use a sugar free cake mix, would it come out ok

    1. Jamie says:

      Hi Tara-
      I have not tried this, so I am not really sure how it will turn out, but I thinking it would be okay. If you give it a go, please stop back and let me know how it worked for you.

  5. Maren says:

    Could this be made with cream cheese or butter cream frosting instead of the whipped topping?

    1. Jamie says:

      Hello! Yes, you could definitely top it with a different topping or frosting if you prefer. Hope this helps! Happy baking.

  6. Betty says:

    Can you freeze a caramel apple poke cake

    1. Jamie says:

      I haven’t frozen this recipe before, but I think it would be totally fine.

  7. Carol says:

    I made this on Saturday and took it to Swedish School on Sunday. It was a big hit. Amazing how many people have never heard of a poke cake. More people are familiar with Hawaiian poke bowls containing raw fish. So they were quite confused, but delighted.

    Instead of caramel sauce, I used a can of caramel sweetened condensed milk that I had. It took a few minutes longer to bake here in Denver. The four leftover pieces will be gobbled up by my co-workers.

    1. Jamie says:

      So happy to hear you enjoyed the cake, Carol! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your feedback!