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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

INTRO

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

THE EASIEST APPLE CAKE EVER

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

HOW TO MAKE CARAMEL APPLE POKE CAKE

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

CAN I USE WHIPPED CREAM INSTEAD OF WHIPPED TOPPING?

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!

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions 

  • 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.

Video

Nutrition

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.

4.45 from 198 votes (198 ratings without comment)

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54 Comments

  1. Janie Caine says:

    How do u get the carmal sauce buy it in a can ???please txt real soon i have to go to gro. Store

    1. Jamie says:

      Hello! You can find caramel sauce in a jar at the store that works great in this recipe. Hope this helps. Happy baking!
      Jamie

  2. Trish says:

    Brought to pptluck, was smash hit thank you

    1. Jamie says:

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

  3. April Smith says:

    Totally making this for thanksgiving day this year. I am baking 3 cakes and 3 pies. This is a perfectly festive tasty EASY cake. That we are already drooling over. My 10 yr old choose this cake. Can’t wait to tell y’all how glad am i she did! Will update

    1. Jamie says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by, April! I appreciate you taking the time to comment. Happy Baking!
      -Jamie

  4. Dee says:

    Hi Jamie, I stumbled on your recipe while searching for a quick fall dessert that I could make to serve with dinner at a local homeless shelter. I’m getting ready to start baking 6 cakes which I’m sure will be a huge hit. Thanks and happy baking!

    1. Jamie says:

      I love this so much, Dee! Thank you so much for sharing and I truly hope they’re a huge hit. Your giving spirit is inspiring. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!
      -Jamie

    2. Barb says:

      @Jamie, what do you think about putting pecans on top… instead of the toffee bits…

    3. Jamie says:

      I definitely think that could work! Let me know if you try it!
      -Jamie

  5. Sheri says:

    If I use a spice cake mix do I still need the apple spice too?

    1. Jamie says:

      Hello! I haven’t attempted this recipe with this substitution, so I am not sure of the result. If you happen to give it a try, I’d love to know how it turns out. Thanks so much for stopping by.
      -Jamie

    2. Samantha says:

      I make it with spice cake all the time — between the spice in the cake, and the spice in the apples, I leave out the extra spice in the recipe and it turns out wonderful every time!

  6. Lisa says:

    I followed this recipe exactly, and it was DELICIOUS! So flavorful, moist, and yummy. It was the perfect dessert for a fall gathering, and I received many compliments! Thanks for the delicious recipe!

    1. Jamie says:

      So happy you enjoyed the recipe, Lisa! Thanks so much for stopping by! Happy Baking!
      -Jamie

  7. Debbie says:

    I recently made this cake and it was wonderful.  I received many compliments.

  8. sonya wharton says:

    hi i want to make this cake i live in the uk what is vanilla cake mix

    1. Jamie says:

      Hi, Sonya! I believe you can get vanilla cake mix from Amazon. I hope this helps!

  9. Judy says:

    Making this cake for my bunco group tomorrow! Hope it tastes as good as it looks!

    1. Jamie says:

      Let me know how it goes, Judy! I hope everyone enjoys it!

  10. Kathy says:

    What caramel sauce do you use? Is it the same as you use with ice cream?

    1. Jamie says:

      Hi, Kathy! Caramel syrup for ice cream would be perfect. I hope you enjoy the cake!