Orange frosted apple loaf

Who said cake was bad for you? Angela Nilsen packs plenty of fruit into her butter-free loaf and also coats it with a dreamy low fat frosting
By Angela Nilsen
Orange frosted apple loaf
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 10-12
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Effort: easy


For the cake

  • 125 g plain wholemeal flour
  • 100 g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 tsp mixed spice
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 medium orange, finely grated zest only
  • 2 eggs
  • 125 g light muscovado sugar
  • 125 ml rapeseed oil
  • 1 large eating apple, such as Braeburn or Cox, quartered, cored then coarsely grated, including peel
  • 100 g mix of dried cranberries, and raisins or sultanas
  • 50 g pecans, chopped
  • 4 tbsp Greek yogurt

For the frosting

  • 50 g reduced fat soft cheese
  • 50 g quark
  • 1 1/2 tbsp icing sugar
  • 1/2 tsp finely grated orange zest
  • 1 tsp orange juice

Tips and Suggestions

This loaf keep keeps moist for several days, and because of the frosting is best kept in the fridge. Alternatively, omit the frosting and store, tightly wrapped, in a tin.

Use a serrated knife for easy slicing.


1. For the cake: preheat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Lightly oil a loaf tin, about 22x13x6cm, and line the base with baking parchment.

2. In a medium bowl, mix together both the flours, the baking powder and bicarbonate of soda, mixed spice, cinnamon and orange zest. Separate one of the eggs and put the white to one side in a small bowl. Put the yolk with the remaining whole egg in a large bowl, add the sugar and whisk together briefly until thicker and paler. Gradually whisk in the oil in a slow, steady stream. Fold in the flour mixture half at a time.

3. Whisk the egg white to soft peaks. Fold the grated apple, dried fruits, pecans and then the yogurt into the flour mixture, then gently fold in the whisked egg white. Pour this into the tin and gently level the surface. Bake for about 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cover loosely with a piece of foil for the last 5 minutes if it starts to get too brown on top. Let the cake cool in the tin for a few minutes - then remove, peel off the lining paper and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

4. For the frosting: stir all the ingredients together just until mixed. Swirl over the cold cake.

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