Apples are popping up in every market and grocery store at this time of year. As mentioned, I am featuring recipes that accentuate apples this fall, and these caramel apple cupcakes do just that. The ingredients are simple. It is recommended that you use Gala apples, as they are tart and crisp, but Granny Smith would work well as well. Take advantage of the ubiquity of apples these next few weeks and try this simple recipe!
Caramel Apple Cupcakes
-2 1/2 cups flour
-3 tsp. baking powder
-1 tsp. cinnamon
-1/2 tsp. salt
-1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
-2 cups sugar
-4 eggs, at room temperature
-1/3 cup hot water
-2 1/2 cups grated Gala apples
Cream Cheese Frosting:
-4 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
-6 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
-4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
-1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
-2 cups sugar
-1 tbsp. water
-12 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
-1 tsp. vanilla extract
-1 cup heavy cream, at room temperature
1. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line two cupcake tins with cupcake liners.
2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, approximately 3 to 5 minutes.
4. Add eggs one at a time with mixer on it’s lowest speed, mixing slowly after each addition.
5. Add one third of the flour mixture followed by one third of the water, alternating between the two until all ingredients are well incorporated. Fold in the apple.
6. Using an ice cream scoop, divide cupcake batter into liners. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool completely.
7. For the frosting, cream together butter and cream cheese for 3 minutes. Add confectioners’ sugar and vanilla extract, and set mixer on medium-high speed for an additional 5 minutes until frosting is light.
8. For the caramel, heat sugar and water in a saucepan on medium-high heat, stirring constantly until sugar liquifies. Once the sugar has dissolved, add in butter, mixing thoroughly. Once completely melted, remove pot from heat, and add vanilla extract and heavy cream, whisking until caramel turns a golden brown. Let cool until it reaches room temperature, then refrigerate caramel for 30 minutes to further thicken.
9. Once cupcakes have cooled, use an apple corer to remove the centres of each cupcake.
10. Fill a squeeze bottle with caramel and fill the centres of the cupcakes with caramel. Load frosting into a frosting bag and frost each cupcake. Drizzle caramel over each cupcake.