A delicious muffin recipe that kids can make, these Apple Cinnamon Muffins are made with real vanilla, coconut oil and coconut sugar for a healthier muffin recipe you can feel good about serving to the whole family.
Apple Cinnamon Muffins Recipe
Muffins are one of our favorite on-the-go snacks.
They are delicious, mess-free and easy to grab-and-go, whether you’re grabbing them to accompany your morning smoothie or enjoying them as a light snack in between errands or extra-curricular activities.
These apple vanilla muffins have been a fall staple for us for years. The kids love getting to help grate the apples, measure and stir up the ingredients – and my daughter especially loves when we use real vanilla beans for this recipe because she loves scraping the “caviar” out of the vanilla bean.
You can use vanilla extract, vanilla bean pods or vanilla bean paste to make these muffins. Vanilla bean pods or paste will impart the most robust vanilla flavor, but vanilla extract will still result in a yummy muffin.
When we use vanilla pods to make these muffins, I like to get the most use of the pods – either by boiling them into a coffee syrup, adding them a jar of sugar for some easy homemade vanilla sugar, or you can even add them to a bottle of vodka to make your own vanilla extract.
We use a few smart swaps to make these muffins not just healthier, but also result in a flavor-packed, tender muffin with that perfect chew. Apple, cinnamon and vanilla combine perfectly in this muffin recipe to create a warm flavor profile that is incredibly satisfying and comforting.
The biggest secret to getting that gorgeous, fluffy muffin texture is to avoid overmixing the batter. A few spots of flour are okay! I tend to skip the electric mixer and just stick to a whisk or spatula. Bonus: this makes it easier to let the kids help make these muffins.
We use a little bit of brown sugar in these muffins to impart both flavor and a chewy texture, however the majority of the sweetness is from coconut sugar and the grated apple. Coconut sugar is a healthier choice than white sugar because it contains nutrients and has a lower glycemic index than white sugar, so it won’t raise your blood sugar the same way that a muffin with white sugar would.
A combination of whole wheat and all-purpose flour allows us to incorporate more whole grains and fibre into these muffins than just all-purpose flour alone. Using a combination of the two gives these muffins a fluffy texture that isn’t too hard or too crumbly.
We also swapped out butter for coconut oil, but melted butter can be used in this recipe, if desired.
If you want to make these muffins jumbo-sized, grab a jumbo muffin pan and be sure to grease the top of the pan to prevent the muffin tops from sticking. You can also make this apple muffin batter into a healthy apple cake, mini apple muffins, or an apple bread.
Can these muffins be frozen? Yes! Place the baked muffins in a large ziptop freezer bag or your favorite freezer containers. (This set of freezer containers is a crazy bargain.) Just take out as many muffins as you want at a time and let them come to room temperature on the counter before enjoying. (They will thaw completely in about an hour – so you can also just add a frozen muffin to a lunch box and it will be ready to enjoy by first snack break.)
Check out our video for how to make your own apple muffins and then don’t forget to scroll down to grab your free printable recipe card:
Apple Muffin Ingredients
- All-purpose flour
- Whole Wheat Flour
- Coconut Sugar
- Brown Sugar
- Baking Powder
- Baking Soda
- Cinnamon <– you can alternatively use our homemade apple pie spice for more depth of flavor
- Apple, grated <– use a sweet apple variety like honeycrisp for a sweeter muffin
- Coconut oil <– can use melted butter, ensure either is fully melted and cooled before making the muffins
- Buttermilk <– I always have this powdered buttermilk in my fridge to make instant buttermilk whenever I need it.
- Vanilla bean pod <– can use vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
Scroll down to the printable recipe card for full measurements.
Tip: avoid over-mixing the batter or your muffins will be hard and dense, more like a biscuit than a fluffy muffin.
Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Mixing bowl
- Wooden Spoon or Spatula <– I like these spatulas because they are one solid piece and don’t have removable heads for bacteria to get trapped underneath. Plus they are heat-resistant and have a lifetime warranty.
- Muffin Pan
- Silicone Muffin Liners
How to Make Apple Muffins
Preheat oven to 375F
Grate your apple using a cheese grater or food processor. Set aside.
If using a vanilla bean pod, cut in half and scrap out the seeds with a sharp knife.
Line a muffin tray with 12 muffin liners. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, coconut sugar and brown sugar. Stir well to combine.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add in the melted and cooled coconut oil, eggs, buttermilk and vanilla extract or vanilla bean pod scrapings.
Stir well to combine.
Mix in the grated apple, being careful not to overmix the batter.
Portion the apple muffin batter into the prepared muffin tray, about ¼ cup of batter per liner.
Bake for 18-22 minutes until muffins are firm and golden brown, or an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Grab your free printable for our easy apple muffin recipe:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 apple, grated
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup coconut oil or melted butter
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 1 whole vanilla bean pod or 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 375F
- Grate your apple using a cheese grater or food processor. Set aside.
- If using a vanilla bean pod, cut in half and scrap out the seeds with a sharp knife.
- Line a muffin tray with 12 muffin liners. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, coconut sugar and brown sugar. Stir well to combine.
- Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add in the melted and cooled coconut oil, eggs, buttermilk and vanilla extract or vanilla bean pod scrapings.
- Stir well to combine.
- Mix in the grated apple, being careful not to overmix the batter.
- Portion the apple muffin batter into the prepared muffin tray, about ¼ cup of batter per liner.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes until muffins are firm and golden brown, or an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Can use white or cane sugar in place of the coconut sugar.
Save your vanilla bean pod to make coffee syrups, vanilla sugar or homemade vanilla extract after scraping out the beans.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 208Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 252mgCarbohydrates: 30gFiber: 2gSugar: 14gProtein: 4g
Sugar, Spice and Glitter uses an auto-generate nutrition calculator. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate unless analyzed in a scientific lab, so these should be considered more of a guideline than medical information.
I hope your family loves these easy apple muffins as much as my family and daycare kids do! It’s a fun recipe to make as a family and a delicious treat any time of day.
Original image from 2015: