Caramel Apple Cupcakes

Jenn and I planned to make caramel apple cupcakes without even chatting about it first!  I guess those Fall flavors are just in the air and we’re ready to get baking!! Apples, cinnamon, nutmeg… OH MY!

You may remember the Tree Hugger Apple cupcakes I made before!  I brought them to my first Cupcake Camp and they were a HUGE success!  My very first recipe I came up with on my own from scratch!  I knew I didn’t want to make these caramel apple cupcakes exactly the same, but some elements of it I knew were too good to pass up.

I started these Caramel Apple Cupcakes with the same pan cooked chopped apples that I used with my Tree Hugger Apple cupcakes.  Sugar, apples, lemon, and spices cooked on low heat to create a ooey gooey apple filling.  Seriously, I could eat it by the spoonful.

Apple Mixture
Makes about 2 cups apple mixture

3 Granny Smith apples, diced
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 tbsp hot water + 1 tbsp corn starch

  1. Over medium high heat,  mix together all the ingredients in a frying pan on the stove.
  2. Bring to a boil then reduce to low and cook for about 10 minutes.  Stirring frequently.
  3. Set aside to cool completely.

Apple Cream Cheese Filling

8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup apple mixture
1 tbsp heavy cream (optional)

  1. Cream together the cream cheese and butter using an electric mixer with a paddle attachment.
  2. Slowly add the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
  3. Mix in the vanilla.
  4. Add the apple mixture and mix on low until just combined.
  5. If mixture is too thick, add a tbsp of heavy cream to smooth out.
Caramel Buttercream
1 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1lb powdered sugar
2-3 tbsp heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
3-4 tbsp caramel syrup
  1. Cream the butter and brown sugar together.
  2. Mix in the vanilla.
  3. Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth.
  4. Add the cream to loosen.
  5. Mix in the caramel syrup and mix until smooth.
  6. Beat on high for 30 seconds, scrape the sides of the bowl and beat again.
  7. EAT!

Apple Cupcakes
Makes 18 full size cupcakes and 24 mini cupcakes

2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1 cup canola oil
1/2 cup applesauce
1/4 cup apple juice
1 tbsp vanilla extract

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg

1 cup apple mixture

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees.  Line cupcake pans with liners.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, eggs, oil, applesauce, juice and vanilla.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk/sift together the flour, soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  4. Add the flour to the wet mixture and mix together just until combined.
  5. Fold in the apple mixture.
  6. Fill regular size liners about 2/3 full.  Fill mini liners 1/2 full.
  7. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until tops are golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.  Rotate pan after 12 minutes of baking.
  8. Cool in pans for about 7 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
Assembly
  1. After cool, cut a cone out of the center of each regular size cupcake.  Trim off the bottom of the cone.
  2. Core out the center of each mini cupcake using an apple corer.
  3. Fill each cupcake with the cream cheese apple mixture.  Replace to tops of the regular size cupcakes only. (I used a small ice cream scoop to fill the regular size cupcakes and a piping bag to fill the mini’s)
  4. Top with caramel buttercream and then rim with your favorite topping. (Nuts, candy, sprinkles, caramel sauce)
  5. Insert popsicle stick or lollipop stick into center of cupcake.

Comments

  1. 1

    says

    These are perfect fall cupcakes! I see an award somewhere for these.. I think a show like Good Morning America should invite you to come on live and make them for everyone to see!!

  2. 6

    kortni says

    hey there! i love your website! my daughter is turning 5 in december so i decided to do a cupcake theme party for her so i am going to make a few batchs of mini cupcakes and i stumbled on this recipe and figured i would give it a try. well this was the first time that i have ever cooked anything from scratch so i made a few runs to the store before it was over with but the end product was preeetttttyyyy good if i must say myself! i did a uh oh and used margirine instead of real butter and had to remake my icing because it was too runny and i ended up having to use self rising flour instead of all purpose i omitted the baking soda and salt and the cupcakes turned out a little crumbly…they just had a weird texture…sorta dry i guess…im not sure but im banking on the fact that i didnt follow your recipe to the T! but even after that they were really good! my daughter loved them!!! oh and the apple mixture that you cook up smells like heaven! great recipe!

    • 7

      says

      Yes!!! Must follow the recipe! Baking is like science… can’t substitute things unless you know the chemistry! AP flour and Self Rising totally different! Also, never substitute margarine for butter. It just isn’t worth it… flavor and texture are ruined with margarine. Good luck with the next attempt!! :) Let me know how it turns out!

  3. 8

    cindy says

    I made these with a fav caramel icing recipe for a charity bake off and won. These are outstanding! These will be on the Thanksgiving dessert table this year!

  4. 10

    ElleB says

    Hi,
    I just made these and the only thing different I did was use apple cider instead of apple juice and didnt use applesauce because I dont have any. The cupcakes taste great….but they sunk in the middle.
    Could it be because I live in a higher altititude? (I’m in AZ) or is it because I didnt use applesauce?
    Thanks so much!

    • 11

      says

      Hi there!

      Sinking in the middle usually means you didn’t bake them long enough or at a high enough temperature. To be honest, I don’t know the different elevation differences for baking… but, I’d start with either baking them longer or raising the temperature. Every oven is different… for example, I have to set mine 25 degrees higher than what a recipe calls for just to get it to the correct temperature. Try putting a oven thermometer in the back/center of your oven to check the temperature before baking! :)

      Good thing about these cupcakes is that you are going to core out the center anyways! Fill it up and cover it with frosting!

      Let me know if you try them again!!

  5. 12

    says

    Hey! I made these and the apple mixture only made 1 cup…but everything else made a double batch (24 regular sized and like a million minis). They’re tasty but I have ssssooooooooooooo many!

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