My apple muffin recipe is like enjoying a cake donut without a hole. Chopped apples adds moisture and flavor along with apple cider for an exceptional breakfast treat!
Mini muffins are the best!
Why you’ll love this apple muffin recipe
- Fresh, chopped apples + apple cider really makes these tasty!
- These muffins aren’t crumbling from being dry because of the secret ingredient
I stumbled across what has become one of my favorite cookbooks, Foster’s Market Favorites by the owner of Foster’s Market in Durham and got the idea for apple cider muffins. I’ve heard about this place but hadn’t had a chance to check it out even though it’s only an hour away. The photographs were beautiful which made it hard for me to pass up. Cookbooks are my weakness. I’ve since been many times and understand why the recipes in this cookbook are so good!
It seems like someone who serves muffins at their restaurant should be an expert in this field so I decided to play around with her recipe and added chopped apples.
What you’ll need
- Apples – use your favorite apples or what you have on hand. I like to use a firm, slightly tart apple so it keeps its shape and adds flavor vs becoming mushy. Braeburn and fuji are two of my go-to choices
- Apple cider – this raw, unpasteurized drink brings a lot of flavor to this recipe, so don’t skip it!
- Buttermilk – buttermilk is this recipe’s secret ingredient for making moist muffins! See below to learn how to make buttermilk if you don’t have it on hand.
- Spice mixture – cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg can all individually be measured out. If you love spice and have apple pie spice on hand, use that instead. It contains a measure of cinnamon and nutmeg plus ginger, allspice and cardamom and would be delicious in this recipe.
- Pantry staples – flour, butter, baking powder, vanilla, eggs, sugar, salt
How do you make apple muffins
These are super easy to make and you’ll be surprised at how much flavor the apple cider adds to the muffins. There’s not only apple cider in the muffin itself, but also on the outside.
Step 1: Combine the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet in another and gently combine. Then fold in the chopped apples and scoop into a muffin tin and bake. How easy is that!
Step 2: While they are baking combine melted butter and apple cider in one bowl and cinnamon and sugar in another. Remove the muffins from the oven and let cool just enough that you can pick them up.
Step 3: While the muffins are still hot, dip the top into the butter apple cider mixture and then in the cinnamon sugar mixture.
How to enjoy apple muffins
- These are best eaten just slightly warm or same day. You can put a pat of butter on them or drizzle honey butter over them if you want, but they’re great without any additional topping.
- If you enjoy nuts, add a half cup of chopped walnuts to the recipe for a chewy texture.
- Make up a batch of Pip and Ebby’s apple butter to slather over them!
- Freeze them and bring then out for school lunches – they’ll be thawed by lunch time.
How to make buttermilk at home
To make a half cup buttermilk, for this recipe, you will add two teaspoons of lemon juice to a measuring cup then add milk up to the half cup mark. Let it sit for at least 5 minutes to allow the milk to curdle.
What’s the difference between apple cider and apple juice
Apple cider is raw apple juice that has not been filtered or pasteurized so it may look cloudy and will not last as long as apple juice which has been filtered and pasteurized. Apple cider has a more robust apple flavor than apple juice so it’s better in these muffins but you can use apple juice if cider’s not available.
FAQ’s and tips
A muffin is typically dense and less sweet than a cupcake. You will often find fruit or veggies added to the muffin dough that has a texture more like bread. Muffins may have savory ingredients too. Alternatively, cupcakes are light and fluffy and sweet, often with a frosting or glaze on top.
Using a slightly acidic buttermilk or Greek yogurt in place of milk helps to keep muffins moist. It improves the texture and helps to hold moisture.
You can make a batch of muffins to enjoy later. Simply allow your muffins to cool to room temperature and then wrap them in plastic wrap and place them in a ziploc bag. Date the bag so you note they should be eaten within 3 months. They’ll loose their flavor after that.
You can enjoy a healthier muffin by adding some whole wheat flour along with the all purpose flour. The cup of sugar can be reduced or replaced with, honey or maple syrup.
More muffin recipes you’ll love
Not in the mood for a muffin, try one of these sweet breakfast treats
- Buttery coffee cake
- Crispy French toast
- Peach coffee cake
- Blueberry peach bundt cake
- Orange monkey bread
- Pioneer Woman’s cinnamon rolls
- Blueberry scones
- Banana bread
Apple Muffin Recipe
- 3 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cloves
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 12 tablespoons butter melted
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup apple cider
- ½ cup buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 ½ cups apples peeled and chopped.
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup apple cider
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 375º. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray. (Paper liners don’t work well)
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and salt.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together melted butter, sugar and eggs. In a measuring cup, add the cider, buttermilk and vanilla and stir to combine then add to the egg mixture. Add this to your flour mixture, stirring just until combined, don’t over mix. Fold in chopped apples.
- Using an ice cream scoop, add to muffin tins until about ¾ full.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove and let cool until you can handle them, they should still be warm.
- While the muffins are baking, make the topping. Combine melted butter and apple cider in a small bowl. In a separate bowl, combine sugar and cinnamon. Once muffins are cool enough to handle, dip the top in the cider mixture and then dip into the cinnamon sugar mixture.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- These are best eaten just slightly warm or same day. To store for longer than a day, freeze them.
- If you enjoy nuts, add a half cup of chopped walnuts.
- To freeze, let them come to room temperature and store in a freezer bag. They will stay fresh for about 3 months.