Apple Pie Cupcakes

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These Apple Pie Cupcakes are the perfect fall dessert! Made-from-scratch brown sugar cupcakes are filled with an ooey-gooey homemade apple pie filling, then topped with a light and creamy maple buttercream frosting!

Do you love apple recipes? Try my Mini Apple Pies or this easy Apple Crumble Pie.

frosted apple pie cupcakes

Apple Cupcakes from Scratch

I have been making apple pie cupcakes for the past couple of years. I’ve experimented with different cupcakes, fillings, and frostings in the search of the best combination. Well, I am so excited to say that I have finally landed on the perfect apple pie cupcakes recipe!

These cupcakes have all your favorite fall flavors including brown sugar, cinnamon, and maple syrup. Perfectly spiced moist and fluffy brown sugar cupcakes, homemade apple pie filling, and brown sugar buttercream frosting with a hint of maple syrup. Does fall baking get any better than that?

an apple pie cupcake with a bite taken out

Ingredients Needed

For the Cupcake

  • Granulated Sugar
  • Light Brown Sugar
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Unsalted Butter
  • Egg and Egg Yolk – you will use two whole eggs in addition to two egg yolks. The extra yolk helps make the cupcakes super rich and moist.
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Sour Cream– can be substituted with whole or Greek yogurt.
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Baking Powder
  • Ground Cinnamon
  • Ground Nutmeg
  • Salt
  • Milk

For the Filling

I use the recipe for my easy homemade apple pie filling for these cupcakes! Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Apples – I recommend using green apples such as Granny Smith for the best texture and flavor. Make sure to peel them!
  • Lemon Juice
  • Light Brown Sugar
  • All-Purpose Flour
  • Cinnamon
  • Maple Syrup
  • Water – if the apples are sticking to the pan as they cook, you can add 1-2 tablespoons of water. If they’re not sticking, you won’t need it.

For the Frosting

We’re making a light and fluffy maple buttercream frosting to top off the cupcakes!

  • Unsalted Butter– super imorptant to use unsalted butter. Salted butter really meses with the flavor in this type of buttercream
  • Egg Whites – be sure there’s not a trace of yolk in there.
  • Light Brown Sugar
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Maple Syrup

How to Make Apple Filling for Cupcakes

  • Prep the apples. Peel and dice the apples into small pieces, about the size of a dime. Squeeze a lemon over top and stir to combine.
  • Add remaining ingredients. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, then add in the apples and toss to combine. Add in the maple syrup and gently stir.
  • Cook the filling. Heat the apples on the stove over medium heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft. Set aside and allow to cool.

How to Make the Cupcakes

  • Combine wet ingredients. Combine all the wet ingredinets beside the sour cream and the milk. Beat on medium speed until well incorporated. Then mix in the sour cream and beat again until fully combined.
  • Combine the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
  • Mix milk with wet and dry ingredients. Alternate adding half the dry ingredients and half the milk to the wet ingredients, mixing just until the flour starts to incorporate. Then use your spatula to finish mixing until it’s well combined.
  • Bake. Use a large cookie scoop to portion the batter out into a cupcake pan with cupcake liners, filling each liner 2/3 full, then bake at 350ºF for 14-16 minutes. Cool completely.
three apple cupcakes stacked

How to Make Maple Buttercream Frosting

Save yourself the headache of a frosting mishap and check out my swiss meringue buttercream recipe for frosting-making tips, it is especially helpful if you’ve never made this type of frosting before. It is especially important that the butter is at room temperature but not too soft that it’s melting.

  • Heat sugar and egg whites. In a large mixing bowl, combine sugar and egg whites, stirring to combine, then attached a candy thermometer to the side of the bowl. Set the bowl over the top of a pot containing 1 1/4 cups water, then place over medium heat. Stir constantly with a metal whisk until the mixture reaches 140º-160ºF. Once the mixture is completely smooth, remove from heat. The sugar should be completly dissolved.
  • Beat the sugar and egg mixture. Use a mixer with a whire whisk attachment to beat the eggs/sugar on low speed for 2 minutes. After 2 minutes, increase the speed to medium-high and beat for another 5-8 minutes. Increase the mixing speed to high and continue beating for another 3-5 minutes until the bottom of the bowl is cool to the touch and the meringue has stiff peaks.
  • Add the butter: Turn the mixer to medium-low and slowly add the butter, a couple tablespoons at a time until incorporated.
  • Add the flavoring: Scrape down the sides of the bowl, switch to the paddle attachment, then add in the vanilla extract and maple syrup. Beat on medium-high speed until the frosting forms stiff peaks. During this time the meringue might appear to be currdled, but keep beating it until it comes together.

How to Assemble the Cupcakes

  • Remove the centers. Use a cupcake corer to remove the centers of the cupcakes. Set the tops of the cupcakes aside. You will be putting these back on top.
  • Fill: Use a spoon to fill the center of each cupcake with the prepped and cooled apple filling, then gently push the top of the cupcake back on the filling.
  • Frost: Use a large piping tip to frost the cupcakes with maple buttercream frosting

What Kind of Apples are Best for Baking?

I definitely recommend using green apples such as Granny Smith. Their tart flavor goes so well with the warmer, sweeter flavors from the other ingredients. They also have a crisper texture which holds up nicely in the gooey apple pie filling!

If green apples really aren’t your thing, you can use a crisp red apple such as Honeycrisp or Golden Delicious. I don’t recommend using a softer apple such as Red Delicious because they will get too mushy in the filling.

frosted apple pie cupcakes

My Best Tips For Awesome Cupcakes

  • Don’t overcook the apples. You want them to be soft but to still have some bite.
  • Cool fully. Cool the cupcakes and the filling fully before assembling the apple pie cupcakes for the best results.
  • Short on time? You can also use canned apple pie filling, but I recommend using some kitchen scissors to cut the apples into smaller pieces.
  • Clean your frosting bowl well. Any grease residue on the bowl, or utensials could cause the meringue to flop. I recommend wiping everything down with vinegar prior to starting the frosting.

How to Prep and Store

Assembled apple cupcakes will last in an airtight container on the counter for 2 days. You can keep these in the refrigerator in an airtight container, but the frosting will harden. Be sure to let them come to room temperature prior to serving.

You can also prepare the different components of the apple pie cupcakes ahead of time to save time later on!

  • The cupcakes can be made one day in advance and stored at room temperature.
  • The filling can be prepared 3-4 days ahead of time and stored in the fridge.
  • The frosting: I don’t recommend making the frosting ahead of time. It’s best used right away!
apple pie cupcakes being frosted
Print
closeup of apple cupcakes topped with maple buttercream frosting

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream Frosting

  • Prep Time: 60 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 24 cupcakes

Description

These Apple Pie Cupcakes are the perfect fall dessert! Made-from-scratch brown sugar cupcakes are filled with an ooey-gooey homemade apple pie filling, then topped with a light and creamy maple buttercream frosting!

Ingredients

For the cupcake

  • 1 cup (190g) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (110g) light brown sugar, packed
  • ½ cup (118ml) vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons (28g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 large egg
  • 2 large egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (96g) sour cream
  • 2 ½ cups (350g) all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons (11.25g) baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons (5g) ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/3 cups (315ml) milk

For the filling

  • 3 large green apples- peeled and diced
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons (30g) light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tablespoon (9g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) pure maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) water

For the frosting

  • 2 cups (454g) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 5 large egg whites
  • 1 cup (220g) light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) pure maple syrup

Instructions

FOR THE CUPCAKES

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugars, vegetable oil, butter, eggs and egg yolks and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed until the eggs and oil are well incorporated. Scrape down the bowl as needed. Next mix in the sour cream and beat until well combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the remaining dry ingredients. Alternate adding half the dry ingredients and half the milk at a time and mix just until the flour starts to incorporate. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl and stir the batter from the bottom to the top to ensure it’s well mixed.
  4. Using a large cookie scoop, divide the batter evenly, filling each liner 2/3 full. Bake at 350°F for 14-16 minutes. Test the cupcakes for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cupcake. If the toothpick comes out clean, the cupcakes are done. Cool completely.

For the filling

  1. Peel and dice apples into small pieces (about the size of a dime) and squeeze a lemon over top and stir to combine.
  2. Combine the dry ingredients and then mix together with the apples, tossing to combine. Pour the maple syrup over the apple and gently stir.
  3. Heat apples on the stove over medium heat for 15-20 minutes until soft. Stir occasionally. You want the apples to be soft. If the apples are sticking to the pan add 1-2 tablespoons of water to the saucepan as needed.  Set aside and allow to cool, refrigerating if necessary.

For the frosting

  1. Wipe down the inside of your stainless-steel bowl with vinegar to remove any grease. Combine sugar and egg whites in the bowl with a candy thermometer attached.
  2. Set the bowl over top of a pot with 1 ¼ cups water covering the bottom. Place over medium heat.
  3. Stir constantly with a whisk until the mixture reaches 140°-160°  The sugar should be dissolved in the egg whites. You can test this by placing a drop on your fingertips and rub together, the mixture should be completely smooth.
  4. Immediately place the mixing bowl on your stand. Using the wire whisk attachment, beat the eggs white on low speed for 2 minutes then increase to medium-high.
  5. Beat for another 5-8 minutes. At this point, your frosting should have turned light brown and the body of the meringue starts to form. Increase the mixing speed to high. It will start to look glossy as the peaks begin to form. Beat for another 3-5 minutes until the bottom of your bowl is cool to the touch and your meringue has stiff peaks.
  6. Turn the mixer down to medium-low. Slowly add the butter, a couple of tablespoons at a time. As you add more butter, the frosting might appear to have curdled and lost its body, that’s ok. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  7. Switch to the paddle attachment, add the vanilla extract and maple syrup and continue beating on medium-high speed until your frosting starts to have stiff peaks, about 3-5 minutes.

To Assemble the Cupcakes 

  1. Remove the centers using a cupcake corer and set the tops of the cupcakes to the side.
  2. Use a spoon to fill the center of each cupcake with the apple filling. Then gently push the top of the cupcake back on top of the filling.
  3. Use a large piping bag fitted with a large piping tip to frost the cupcakes. 
Nutrition Information:
1 cupcake
370
26.8g
83.8mg
22.5g
39.5g
1.3g
4g
76mg
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: maple buttercream, apple recipes, apple pie filling recipes

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