I’ve never gotten really into soap operas, but I had a moment during my senior year of high school where I knew the many characters and running storylines of Days of Our Lives. I went to school part-time and worked at my family’s hardware store, first in the morning filing paperwork in the office, then at the cash register in the afternoon.
The mornings were spent with my older sister and her rotund chihuahua, a soundtrack of morning TV filling the small office. First the morning news, then The Price Is Right, then Days of Our Lives. As I slipped invoices into endless manila folders (I’m really showing my age here), I listened to tearful confessions and dramatic confrontations.
All of this came flooding back when I encountered a recipe for Days of Our Lives apple cake. I tracked it down to Linda Skeen, the blue ribbon queen herself. On her social media, she explains that she got the recipe from a friend, who got the recipe from another friend, who got it from Days of Our Lives. I wasn’t sure what this meant, but the recipe looked easy and tasty, so I had to try it.
The Mysterious Origins of the “Days of Our Lives” Apple Cake
I wasn’t sure what Linda meant by “got the recipe from Days of Our Lives,” since the show isn’t known for its food. I attempted to do a little digging, but I couldn’t find any mention of it on the big ‘ole internet. In one of Linda’s Facebook posts, she claims that it’s a recipe “they used to make on set.”
That’s as far as I got. Ideally, I would have checked in with the long-running production, but they’re currently not filming and the chances of me finding anyone who knows what I was talking about are slim. I decided to test the cake recipe anyway, and I’m so glad I did. One bite and I didn’t care where the recipe came from.
Why You Should Make This Cake Immediately
The incredibly easy cake uses some clever shortcuts, but that meant my expectations were fairly low. All it takes is a box of spiced cake mix, oil, eggs, apple juice, and a can of apple pie filling. It’s baked in a 9×13-inch pan and is topped with a little powdered sugar and apple juice icing while warm. That’s it!
This apple cake is greater than the sum of its parts. It’s so much better than it has any right to be. It’s super moist without being gummy or heavy. It has lots of apple flavor with just the right amount of spice and sweetness. Everyone I served it to flat-out loved it, all pleasantly surprised by its texture. Even the two-year-old next door devoured it.
How To Make the “Days of Our Lives” Apple Cake
To make one 9×13-inch cake, you’ll need:
- 1 box spice cake mix
- 3 large eggs
- 1 1/3 cups apple juice, plus 2 tablespoons for the glaze
- 1/3 cup canola or vegetable oil
- 1 (21-ounce) can apple pie filling
- 1 cup powdered sugar
Preheat the oven to 350°F and lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking pan.
Add the spice cake mix, eggs, 1 1/3 cups apple juice, and oil to a large mixing bowl and whisk until well combined, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the apple pie filling to a small bowl and break up the apples into smaller pieces. They’re soft, so this is easy to do with a spatula or wooden spoon. Add to the cake batter and mix just to combine.
Scrape the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 minutes.
Right after you take the cake out of the oven, whisk together the powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of apple juice until a glaze forms. Pour over the hot cake and spread it out evenly. Let it cool until warm or room temperature and serve.
Quick Tips for Making This Cake
Now that we’re in apple season, you might have some apple cider lying around. I encourage you to use that instead of the apple juice for even more apple flavor. The next time I make it, I’ll add a squeeze of lemon to the icing for a hint of tartness, too.
Serve with a steaming mug of apple cider and enjoy while you watch a rerun of Days of Our Lives. It’s an autumnal dream.