If there was ever a time to play out a theme though, it’s now and it’s with these muffins which harness the autumnal power of both pumpkin AND apple to create a moist, perfectly sweet bite that’s laced with pumpkin pie spice and studded with hunks of fresh apple.
Oh yeah, it’s also slathered with Cinnamon Cream Cheese icing – muwahaha!
Ahem! That is to say, I love me a good muffin, but sometimes miss the extra pop of flavor and creaminess that icing adds to cupcakes, so I made a cinnamon cream cheese icing to slather ontothese muffins while they’re still warm out of the oven. It’s just ridiculous, really.
Start the Apple Pumpkin Muffins by combining zee dry ingredients in a large bowl including 1-2/3 cup flour and 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder. BTW, my sister-in-law uses Bob’s Red Mill Organic White Whole Wheat Flour instead of all-purpose in everything, which I’m really curious/excited to try. It’s whole wheat, but not as gritty/heavy in texture as regular WW flour (which I don’t love.)
The reason why I’m telling you this is because I think it’d be especially excellent in these muffins. Just need to use up my bag of all-purpose first!
Anywho, also add in 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, and 1/2 teaspoon salt, then whisk everything together and create a little well in the center to add the wet ingredients into later.
Which is what we’re off to next! Spoon 3/4 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) into a medium-sized bowl.
Add 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce (aka 2 of the snack packs,) 2 eggs, 1/3 cup brown sugar, 1/4 milk – whatever kind you’ve got on hand – and 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil (unpictured.)
Whisk the ingredients until they’re nice and smooth.
Next, pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and mix until everything is incorporated.
K! Now we’ve got the pumpkin portion of the muffins covered with the puree and pumpkin pie spice, and the apple portion partway covered by the applesauce. Next we’re going to up the apple ante by adding 1/2 cup chopped apple into the batter. You can chop the apple willy nilly style, or into small and uniform cubes like me (because I’m insane like that.)
First peel the apple, then cut all four sides off the core with a sharp knife.
Slice each piece in 1/4″ slices, then flip onto its side and slice again into 1/4″ slices. (Please excuse my heinous cutting board by the way. It’s clean, I swear, it’s just battled one too many butternut squash.)
Next, zip through the piece to create cute, uniform squares.
Finally, fold the apples into the muffin batter.
Spoon the batter into a muffin tin about 3/4 of the way full, smooth the tops, then bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
While the muffins are cooling, make that ridiculous cinnamon cream cheese slather.
Whisk together 2 Tablespoons softened butter, 2 Tablespoons softened cream cheese, and a dash of vanilla and cinnamon, then stir in 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar until smooth and creamy…and decadent and life changing. I LOVE THIS STUFF.
Serve the muffins warm, if possible, dah-ripping with cinnamon cream cheese slather!
Ingredients: 1-2/3 cup flour 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice 1/2 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce 2 eggs 1/3 cup brown sugar 1/4 cup milk 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil 1/2 cup finely chopped Granny Smith apple (or other baking apple)
For the Cinnamon Cream Cheese Slather: 2 Tablespoon butter, at room temperature 2oz cream cheese, at room temperature 1/4 teaspoon vanilla dash of cinnamon 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 375 degrees then line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Make a well in the center of the mixture then set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, applesauce, eggs, brown sugar, milk, and vegetable oil. Pour into the dry ingredients, whisk everything together then fold in apples.
Fill cupcake liners 3/4 of the way full with batter, smoothing the tops, then bake for 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let sit in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then remove to cooling rack.
While cupcakes are cooling prepare Cinnamon Cream Cheese frosting: Whisk together butter, cream cheese, vanilla, and cinnamon. Add powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until mixture is thick and creamy. Serve with warm muffins.
I know my Grandma is going to just love these muffins! They aren’t too sweet on their own, which makes a swipe of that Cinnamon Cream Cheese Slather a total treat.
Enjoy these yummy, seasonal muffins as a snack, treat, or part of a healthy breakfast (may want to omit the slather in the a.m. … or not.)
Ok, off to hang with my Grandma and Aunt, who is also here visiting – whee!