Holiday Sweets 101: Brown Sugar Apple Butternut Squash Bundt Cake W/Brown Sugar Glaze

I figured there was no better time to kick off my sweets segment than the day after declaring 8 weeks of healthy holiday habits! And what better than a fall inspired Bundt cake. I love Bundt cakes…they shout holiday to me more than your average sheet cake.

I bought a beautiful…like almost perfect…butternut squash at the Nashville Farmers’ Market a few weeks back with the intention of crafting a moose out of it for my Thanksgiving tablescape…well you’ll soon find out my bright ideas dim fairly quickly if I don’t act on them immediately. I’m no longer in need of a moose.

Actually I was inspired by the pumpkins that I did use for my tablescape.  Butternut squash is very similar in taste as pumpkin. It’s mild and sweet and when cooked it is so versatile…just like pumpkin. Each year I make a fabulous pumpkin bread to pass along to my family and friends.  It’s made with a perfect blend of fall holiday spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger…oh doesn’t the thought warm your heart?

Using my pumpkin bread recipe as inspiration I created a Brown Sugar Apple Butternut Squash Bundt Cake.  And I think it is a true FALL HOLIDAY MASTERPIECE! Butternut squash, warm spices, and apples…apples the essence of the season.

First things first we need to soften the butternut squash…I roasted it. Peeled and diced the squash…I had to put my whole body into it y’all because it took all the upper body strength I’ve got.  Then I poured some melted butter over the squash and tossed it around. You can use olive oil instead of butter but I prefer the richness of the butter as well as the caramelized flavor it imparts.  Finally I laid it out in a single layer onto a foiled-lined cookie sheet.  Oh and by the way…SAVE THE SEEDS! You can roast them like pumpkin seeds! And another thing…see that gorgeous bright orange color…THAT is why you do your best to get your food straight from the farmers!


Once roasted tender I let the squash cool then I smashed it…you can use a food processer, mixer, or potato masher…whatever works for you…I used my food processor.


About halfway through the roasting process I peeled, cored, and chopped my apples. Tossed them in a little melted butter and baked them in the oven with the squash.  I didn’t want to take a chance of having under-cooked apples in my lovely cake!


Once the batter was mixed up I gently folded in the apples.  I tell you what…it was a challenge to keep my fingers out of the batter. Seriously so good. The creamy, spicy, buttery goodness was all that I could handle.  But look at my poor Bundt pan! It definitely gets a whole lotta love!


Oh my it came out so golden from the bright orange squash and dark spices! I couldn’t wait to have a slice!


I topped the cake with a silky pour-able brown sugar glaze and sprinkled it with grated nutmeg.



2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened

¾ cup granulated sugar

½ cup brown sugar, packed

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups all-purpose flour

¼ tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

2 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground nutmeg

¼ tsp ground cloves

1 ½ cup butternut squash, pureed

1 cup apples, diced (about 2)

  • Preheat oven to 350.
  • Cream the butter and sugars.
  • Add the eggs one at a time and the vanilla. Mix on medium until smooth and creamy.
  • Sift the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and spices into a medium bowl.
  • Add 1/3 of the dry mixture to the mixing bowl. Continue mixing.
  • Add ½ of the pureed butternut squash to the mixing bowl. Continue mixing until flour and squash are incorporated.
  • Add ½ of remaining dry mixture to the mixing bowl. Continue mixing.
  • Add the remaining pureed butternut squash to the mixing bowl. Continue mixing until flour and squash are incorporated.
  • Add remaining dry mixture and mix until incorporated. There may be some lumps depending on the consistency of the pureed butternut squash.
  • Fold the apples into the batter carefully by hand.
  • Bake 50-55 minutes until cake springs to touch or toothpick comes out clean.

For the Glaze:

1 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar, sifted

3-4 tbsp milk

2 tsp vanilla

Whole nutmeg

  • Whisk together sugar, milk, and vanilla until smooth.
  • Drizzle the glaze over the cake.
  • Grate whole nutmeg over the glaze.

ENJOY!       IMG_7397


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