These muffins are not your average apple muffins! They use apple cider, chunks of apple, plus a cinnamon & sugar topping. These are the best apple muffins and my favorite part about baking these is that your house will smell amazing.
My favorite Fall candle is the Leaves candle from a popular bath & body store. But the smell of these muffins is even better than that.
If you're looking for more apple recipes that use apple cider than be sure and make my apple cider beef stew and apple cider pudding cake. Top it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and it's basically the best thing ever.
HOW TO MAKE APPLE MUFFINS
This recipe mixes up a bit different than a traditional muffin recipe so pay close attention to the directions in the recipe card below. You can use a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or a large mixing bowl with a handheld mixer.
Butter - I use salted butter
Plain Yogurt OR Sour Cream - Either one will work. Make sure the yogurt is plain flavored!
Granulated Sugar & Brown Sugar
Ground Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Baking Soda, Salt
Applesauce - It can be sweetened or unsweetened. I always use sweetened because I think it tastes better.
Apple Cider - Yes you could use apple juice but the muffins taste so much better and more "apple-y" with the apple cider.
Chopped Apples - Peel the apple and chop it really small. About the size of frozen peas or black beans is what you want.
MY TIPS & HELPFUL HINTS FOR MAKING THIS APPLE RECIPE
Can I freeze apple muffins?
- Yes you can! The cinnamon & sugar topping does not stay on the muffin once it's frozen and then thawed but that does not change the taste of the muffin. If you are freezing, you can either make them as is and just deal with the cinnamon & sugar topping being different or just leave off the cinnamon & sugar topping.
Can I substitute the applesauce and/or yogurt?
- I would not substitute the applesauce because it adds so much apple goodness to these apple muffins. If you must, you can use an equal amount of oil. But I have never personally made them that way so I can't for sure say the results of the muffins. I would suggest sticking with applesauce.
- You can use either plain yogurt or sour cream. I have used both and they work just fine in this recipe. I prefer sour cream so that's what I normally use when I make these. I honestly do not know of a substitute for the applesauce and yogurt. You have two choices so hopefully one of them works for you!
What kind of apples do I use for apple muffins?
- I prefer to use a sweet & tangy apple for these muffins. Granny Smith is a bit too sour for muffins. I use a Gala apple, Golden Delicious, or Fuji Apple. Golden Delicious apples are our favorite so I normally use them when I make these muffins.
Chop the apples really small!
- This is the #1 tip for this recipe. Cut them really, really small please! The cook time is not long enough to "bake" apples so you don't want huge chunks or else you will end up with really crunchy apple muffins. If they are cut small they will soften up slightly during the bake time. Aim to cut the apples the size of frozen peas or the size of black beans.
YOU WILL LOVE THESE OTHER APPLE RECIPES
Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars - These are glorious cheesecake bars with 4 layers! A brown sugar oat streusel makes the crust and the topping. Then it's filled with a sweet apple cheesecake center. Drizzle with caramel syrup and serve!
One Bowl Applesauce Muffins - These have almost perfect reviews! They bake up perfectly soft, fluffy, with rounded tops. They are very plain looking but trust me, they're amazing.
Snickerdoodle Apple Cobbler - Cinnamon & sugar apples topped with an easy snickerdoodle cookie mix. It's like an apple cobbler with soft-baked snickerdoodle cookies on top. Serve with vanilla ice cream for a delicious version of classic apple cobbler.
Slow Cooker Apple Butter - This recipe is only 2 ingredients! It's a great way to use up apples and it's delicious on many things like toast, pancakes, waffles, or crepes.
Cinnamon Apple Cider Muffins
- 4 tablespoons butter softened
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup light brown sugar
- ⅓ cup plain yogurt OR sour cream
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ cup applesauce sweetened or unsweetened
- ⅓ cup apple cider
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup peeled & chopped apple about 1 large apple
Cinnamon & Sugar Topping
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Heat oven to 375°. Prepare a 12-cup muffin pan by lining with cupcake liners OR spraying well with cooking spray.
- In a large mixing bowl, or stand mixer, beat together the butter, sugar, brown sugar, and yogurt until the mixture is light and fluffy. About 1-2 minutes. Add the eggs and beat until combined.
- Add the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg into the mixing bowl. Beat on low speed just until combined. *Mixture will be really thick and that is normal. It's ok if there are dry patches because you will add the liquid in the next step.
- Add the applesauce, apple cider, and vanilla extract. Beat until combined and the batter is moistened.
- Stir in the chopped apples with a wooden spoon or spatula.
- Fill the muffins cups nearly full. They will be a little bit more than ¾ full. *If your muffin pan is smaller than you will get more than 12 muffins. Just use another pan if needed. Don't overfill the muffin cups.
- In a small bowl stir together the sugar and cinnamon for the topping. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon over each muffin.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes. Muffins should be round, puffy, and golden brown looking. When you gently press your finger on the top of a muffin, it should spring back and feel dry. That's when you know it's done. Or you can do the toothpick test as well.
- Cool the muffins in the pan for 5 minutes or until you can handle them to move them to a cooling rack to cool completely. As the muffins cool the cinnamon & sugar topping gets crackly and gives a sweet crunch to the muffins. SO good!