Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting are creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy! Homemade cupcakes don’t get much better than these!

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Frosting - creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy!

I’ve been in an apple pie mood lately. Apple pie biscuits and now these apple pie cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting. I have yet to bake an apple pie this season because I think that the perfect apple pie includes a few Mcintosh apples. I never knew that when I moved to Florida that it would be so difficult to find McIntosh apples. Every few days I head to a different grocery store searching for my favorite apple but have yet to find them this season. I love buying local and seasonal produce, but the New England girl in me is craving some McIntosh apples. I am hoping they make an appearance here in Florida soon.

These cupcakes originally came together on a whim. I needed to bake cupcakes for a party, but rather than just make chocolate and vanilla, I wanted something seasonal too. With apples in my kitchen and the remaining supplies in my pantry, I knew these cupcakes were exactly what I needed to make. Sometimes the best recipes come together last minute. After making a few batches and feeding them to my taste testers, these cupcakes were deemed a winner. They were a huge hit at the party and even Brad, my most critical cupcake tester rated these the best cupcakes that I have ever made.

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Frosting - creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy!

Surprisingly, these cupcakes are actually relatively easy to make. I started with one of my favorite snickerdoodle cake recipes, added some additional seasonal spices and created a sweet, creamy and irresistible cupcake. The frosting is a simple vanilla buttercream. Why complicate things when the flavor combination is so decadent? And the apple topping comes together in a few minutes.

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Frosting - creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy! Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Frosting - creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy! Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Frosting - creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy!

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting are creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy! Homemade cupcakes don't get much better than the

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Yield: 20 to 24 cupcakes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Cooling Time: 10 mins
Total Time: 40 mins
Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting are creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy! Homemade cupcakes don't get much better than these!
5 from 3 votes

Ingredients 

For the cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter,, at room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups milk

For the apple topping:

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 3 cups peeled and chopped apples
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¾ cup water plus 2 tablespoons water, divided
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch

For the frosting:

  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter,, at room temperature
  • 4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt

For the cinnamon-sugar topping:

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Instructions

To make the cupcakes:

  • Preheat oven to 350° F. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners and set aside.
  • Sift together flours, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ground cloves.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Add vanilla. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of milk, and beating until combined after each.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the prepared liners, filling each about ¾-full. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 20 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through baking. Let cool in the pan about 5 to 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the apple topping:

  • While the cupcakes are baking, prepare the apple topping. Heat the butter in a medium-large skillet. Stir in the apples, sugar and cinnamon. Heat until the fruit begins to release its juices. Add ¾ cup of water to the pan and bring the mixture to a low simmer. Cook until the apples are just fork tender but not mushy. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of water with the cornstarch, and whisk lightly until smooth. Add the cornstarch mixture to the apples and cook 1-2 minutes more, until the mixture has thickened. Let cool thoroughly before topping the cupcakes.

To make the frosting:

  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed for about 5 minutes. Turn the mixer down to low speed and gradually add in the confectioners’ sugar until incorporated. Add in the vanilla and salt and mix until incorporated. Turn the mixer back up to medium-high speed and beat for an additional 4 minutes, or until light and fluffy.

To assemble:

  • Whisk together the 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon and 3 tablespoons sugar in a small bowl. Set aside.
  • Pipe frosting around the edge of each cupcake, leaving a well for the topping. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar topping. Divide apple topping evenly among cupcakes. Enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 0g, Calories: 492kcal, Carbohydrates: 64g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 25g, Saturated Fat: 15g, Cholesterol: 96mg, Sodium: 82mg, Potassium: 141mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 48g, Vitamin A: 810IU, Vitamin C: 0.8mg, Calcium: 66mg, Iron: 0.8mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
If you try this recipe, don’t forget to leave a review below or share a photo and tag @spoonfulofflavor on Instagram.

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Frosting - creamy, sweet and surprisingly easy!

Try a few more apple recipes from my friends:

Caramel Apple Trifles from Life Love and Sugar
Cinnamon Waffles with Apple Topping from Recipe Runner
Apple Cinnamon Streusel Pull-Apart Bread from Girl Versus Dough

49 comments on “Apple Pie Cupcakes with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting”

  1. Making cupcakes for my sister’s wedding. She is gluten free. Made these swapping out the flour for gluten free one to one substitute. They were easy to make and delicious. My husband does not like gluten free food. He ate more than one and said with the frosting and apples could not tell they were gluten free. Thank you!

  2. Hi
    Can this recipe be done with only all purpose flour? Also any chance you have the ingredients by weight (grams) thanks!

    • Hi, Samantha! Yes, this recipe can be made with all purpose flour only. I don’t have ingredients by weight at this time but will be updating soon. Thanks!

  3. cupcakes looks so good
    can’t wait to have it now

  4. What kind of milk is used in the cupcake? Whole, 2% or would buttermilk be good? Thanks!

  5. Ashley, the cupcakes looked so beautiful I decided to make a batch for my patients where I volunteer. Unfortunately, the 20 minute baking time was too long in my oven so the cupcakes were not moist. Next time, I’ll try a shorter time. Also, my frosting had a little too much of a confectioners sugar taste for me. Do you advise adding more vanilla or decreasing the amount of confectioners sugar? The apple topping turned out beautifully! Not knowing how many apples would make 3 cups I asked my husband to buy 20 so he wouldn’t have to make a second trip! It only took 6 ! My husband asked me if I was intending to bake a lot of goodies requiring apples. Not wanting to have to peel apples we got out our apple peeler that had sat in a drawer for 14 years unused. We finally figured out how to use it but much to my dismay found out that it also slices as it peels. So I got out my hand peeler. My husband said, “I would just use the slices.” I replied, “Chopped apples required, not sliced.” Geesh! I am not a baker so it took me 5 1/2 hrs to make including set up time. This was my first time using a frosting bag. Oh my goodness! I filled the bag too high and as I’m piping my cupcakes a huge blob of icing came out of the wrong end and plopped right down onto my cupcake pan. My husband was standing near watching and I said in surprise, “what was that?!” My husband and I laughed and laughed as he told me what had happened. So, the first batch will be eaten by us and the second batch will be for my patients! Thank you for a great fall day spent with my husband in the kitchen, my Bichon, Teddy, at my feet waiting to inhale the dropped goodies, and me listening to Splendid Table podcast. Heavenly day!

    • Thanks for sharing your story, Sara! It’s possible your oven bakes at a little higher temperature (you can test with a thermometer) so it doesn’t need as long of a cook time. Either way, I hope you loved them and make them again!

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