Apple Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream


I love cooking seasonally and using whatever produce is fresh at the farmer’s market.  So, naturally, an apple recipe is next on the scene.  This recipe combines all the essentials of early fall: tart, crisp apples, warm spices, and gooey caramel.



The easiest way to prep the apples would be to use a large box grater.  However, I really enjoy working on my knife skills so I julienned them by hand.  It took about one large apple to make 1 cup of grated apples.

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There’s no need for fancy cake decorating equipment when making these lovely cakes.  I just used a gallon Ziploc bag with the tip snipped off, but you could just as easily smear on a dollop of buttercream with a spatula or knife!

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Apple Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 cupcakes
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ⅔ cup butter / melted and cooled
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp orange juice
  • ¼ tsp orange zest
  • 1 cup apple / grated
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • ⅓ cup butter / room temperature
  • 3 TB caramel sauce
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • 2+ TB milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a 12 cup muffin pan. Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine eggs and sugars and beat until smooth. Stir in orange juice and zest, butter, and vanilla.
  3. Add wet ingredients to the large bowl of dry ingredients and fold gently. Add in grated apples and fold in until just combined.
  4. Evenly distribute batter into 12 cupcake paper liners and bake for 20-25 minutes. Use the toothpick trick to ensure doneness. Let cupcakes cool on a wire rack.
  5. For the caramel buttercream, combine all ingredients in a mixer and beat until smooth. Add more milk as necessary. Frost cupcakes and garnish as desired!


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