These moist tender muffins are packed with apples and cinnamon. The perfect treat after a day of raking leaves!
Fall flavour at this house is all about apples. I love walking into our local apple stand (Stirlings), smelling the sweet aroma and seeing the bushels and bushels of apples. I always haul home a big basket and find all sorts of ways to use them up. Apple pie, apple crisp, applesauce, apple cider, apple donuts…and apple muffins!
I’m pretty sure I make muffins more frequently than any other baked good. I almost always have a batch on hand for quick breakfasts, snacks, or lunch alongside a salad. Since muffins freeze so well, I’ll whip up a batch when I have time, or when I have ingredients that need to be used up (brown bananas, monster zucchinis…etc.!) At one point a few weeks ago I had 5 different kinds of muffins in my freezer. These apple ones were the first batch to disappear!
It’s a recipe from the Joy of Cooking that I’ve been making for years. These muffins use a simple trick to keep them moist and flavourful, without using a ton of butter or oil.
You’ll need flour, baking powder and soda, salt, cinnamon, eggs, sugar, apples and butter.
Start with the apples. Peel them, then grate on the large holes of a box grater. You can also chop them finely. Grating the apple means that you get little tastes throughout the muffin, rather than big chunks.
Whisk the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Feel free to toss in some nutmeg or cloves if you like those flavours in your muffins.
Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a large bowl.
Now here’s the trick: toss the grated apples into the egg/sugar mixture. If there’s any juice in the bottom of the measuring cup, add that too. Mix it all up, then let the mixture sit for about 10 minutes.
Why? Because the sugar helps the apples to render their juices, which keeps the muffins moist and infuses them with apple flavour. It’s 10 minutes well worth it. Use the time to preheat your oven, prep your pan, check Instagram, etc. You can prep your dry ingredients while you wait if you don’t mind washing a whisk.
Add the butter to the sugar/egg/apple mixture and mix. Then add the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.
We’re not big fans of nuts in muffins (and I like to keep them lunchbox safe) but you can add walnuts at this point if you’d like.
Scoop the batter into the muffin cups.
One of my favourite ways to fancy up muffins a bit is with a sprinkle of turbinado sugar. It adds a sweet bit of crunch and sparkle. You only need a few teaspoons.
Bake the muffins for 14 -16 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. They’ll get quite brown, you can cover the pan with a sheet of foil if they’re getting too brown before the insides are done.
Eat them warm, or cool on a wire rack.
The muffins will keep for a few days in an airtight container, and also freeze well.
Apple muffins are a perfect fall snack, but we enjoy them year-round!
Adapted from the Joy of Cooking
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 eggs
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 1 ½ cups packed coarsely grated apples (about 2 medium)
- 5 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled slightly
- Coarse sugar, optional
Preheat oven to 400°. Spray a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray or line with paper or silicone liners.
Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together in a medium bowl.
Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a large bowl. Add the apples, along with any juice they’ve let off, and mix.
Let the egg/sugar/apple mixture stand for 10 minutes to let the apples render their juices.
After 10 minutes, add the melted butter to the apple mixture and stir to combine.
Add the dry ingredients to the apple mixture and stir until just combined.
Divide the batter among the muffin cups. Sprinkle the tops with coarse sugar if desired.
Bake for 14-16 minutes, or until the tops are brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
Variation: Add ½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans to the muffin batter