Sweet, spiced, and tart Apple Cinnamon Cupcakes are topped with a rich, caramel flavored brown sugar glaze for a tasty fall treat! This recipe originally published in October 2010.
This was one of the first recipes on my blog. I've made it several times since I first made it and it just keeps getting better. Each time I make it I change it just a little bit and it gets that much better.
Last week I bought six pounds of apples at the farmer's market because they were super cheap. I used some to make applesauce, some to make apple crisp, and some to make apple muffins. These were perfect for breakfast and a quick snack but now that it’s the weekend I’m looking for something sweeter.
Whenever I think sweet I immediately think of cake or cupcakes. I wanted to make an apple cinnamon cupcake with a sweet frosting on top of it and started looking around for inspiration.
One recipe had a brown sugar glaze on top that sounded really good and I knew it would be healthier then a pile of buttercream on top of a cupcake. Plus I figured without all the frosting the apples could really shine through on the cupcakes.
- baking soda
- baking powder
- apple pie spice
- brown sugar
- granulated sugar
- sour cream
- apple sauce
- tart apples (like Granny Smith)
- powdered sugar
To make the cupcakes preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners and set aside.
In a large bowl combine the flour, apple pie spice, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
In a medium bowl cream the butter, sugar, and brown sugar.
Add in the applesauce, sour cream and egg and beat well. Stir in the vanilla.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients an mix until well combined. The batter will be thick.
Fold in the apples. This should make the batter a little bit thinner and easier to stir.
Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tins so that they are about ¾ full.
Bake for 20-23 minutes or until tops are golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes then glaze.
To make the glaze put the butter, brown sugar, and milk into a small saucepan. Stir until melted. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat and boil for one minute.
Remove from heat and stir in powdered sugar.
Allow to cool for 20 minutes to thicken. Dip the cupcakes into the glaze then place on a wire rack to allow any excess to drip off.
Now that my son is into baking we do a lot more baking together. He comes up with whatever he feels like making, I find a recipe, and we bake it!
It's nice having a helper even though it's a little messy sometimes. He enjoys dumping ingredients, cracking eggs, and mixing. There's so many ways that kids can help in the kitchen. He's only 4 and loves being a part of making something even when it's something he won't eat.
Ways Kids Can Help in the Kitchen:
- Older kids can help measure out ingredients. It's even better if you have to double or half a recipe because kids get practice using fractional skills. As a teacher this is great for kids in fourth grade or above.
- Let the kids dump ingredients into the bowl. My son has been doing this since he was 2. It doesn't always all go into the bowl but he has fun doing it and enough of it gets into the bowl that it doesn't matter.
- Use a deeper bowl than needed and let the kids stir. Stir ingredients is easy to do for even the youngest chef in the house.
- If you are making cupcakes or muffins let your child choose the paper liners and put them into the muffin tins. I like to tell my son how many we need and let him count out the amount of liners. He then counts them again as he puts them into the muffin tin. It's a great way to practice counting skills with younger children!
- Have the kids set the oven timer. They can also practice counting backwards with the timer. My son loves to count down from ten and this is a fun way to do it.
- If you are decorating cakes, cupcakes, or cookies let the child choose the color of frosting or sprinkles then give them a few cupcakes or cookies to decorate on their own! Place sprinkles in paper cupcake liners to give them a small amount if you are worried about them spilling.
The recipe for these cupcakes is similar to a muffin recipe but there are several differences. For starters there is more sugar in the cupcakes and more flour. As they baked in the oven they smelled divine.
While the cupcakes were in the oven I mixed up the brown sugar glaze. I didn't initially add in the powdered sugar but I found it too runny even after sitting. Once I added some powdered sugar to it the glaze thickened up and was the perfect consistency.
More Apple Recipes:
- Cranberry Apple Muffins
- Slow Cooker Caramel Apple Cider
- Caramel Apple Sheet Cake
- Apple Oatmeal Breakfast Bars
- Apple Pie Granola
Let me tell you about this glaze. I could have eaten the entire pan of glaze. I’m not kidding. It was like a warm, sweet caramel. The sweetness of this glaze was perfect with the tartness of the granny smith apples in the cupcakes.
I ate one as soon as I glazed them and I’m not sure I’ll be able to stop myself from eating them all by the end of the weekend. Of course, I think I could dump this glaze on just about anything and I’d eat it.
My son on the other hand kept asking for a cupcake then whenever I put it on his plate he would say no thank you. I knew he wouldn't eat them because he doesn't like cupcakes but he had a good time making them!
If you’ve tried my Brown Sugar Glazed Apple Spice Cupcakes or any other recipe on Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks please take a minute to rate the recipe and leave a comment letting me know how you liked it. I love hearing from you! You can FOLLOW ME on:
For the cupcakes:
- 2 c. all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons apple pie spice
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ c. (1 stick) butter
- ½ c. brown sugar
- ½ c. white sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ c. low fat sour cream
- ½ c. applesauce
- 2 large Granny Smith (or other tart) apples, chopped
For the brown sugar glaze:
- 4 Tablespoons butter
- ½ c. packed light brown sugar
- 2 Tablespoons milk
- 3 Tablespoons powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 18 muffin cups (you'll need to use 2 muffin tins) with paper cupcakes liners.
- In a large bowl combine the flour, apple pie spice, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix well and set aside.
- In a medium bowl cream together the butter, sugar, and brown sugar.
- Add in the egg and vanilla and mix well.
- Stir in the applesauce and sour cream until well combined.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients an mix until well combined. The batter will be thick at this point.
- Fold in the apples. This should make the batter a little bit thinner and easier to stir.
- Scoop the batter into the prepared muffin tins so that they are about ¾ full. I use a cookie scoop to do this so there is the same amount in each muffin cup.
- Make for 20-23 minutes or until tops are golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, to make the glaze put the butter, brown sugar, and milk into a small saucepan. Stir until melted.
- Bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat. Boil for one minute.
- Remove from heat and stir in powdered sugar and vanilla.
- Allow the glaze to cool for 20 minutes to thicken. Dip the cupcakes into the glaze then place on a wire rack to allow any excess to drip off.
A Hezzi-D original recipe
Cooking with the Kids
- Apple Cinnamon Cupcakes with Brown Sugar Glaze from Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
- Brown Sugar Boba Cream Pie from Magical Ingredients
- Cheese Crackers from That Recipe
- Waffle Biscuit Monte Cristo from A Kitchen Hoor's Adventures