Healthy Caramel Apple Muffins

Healthy Caramel Apple Muffins

Hello, Whimsers!! Here in Indy apples are on sale EVERYWHERE and I love it! Nothing screams fall baking better than something baked with apples! Apple pie, apple crisp, and apple dumplings are delicious, but packed with tons of calories.  I recently shed close to 30 pounds and as much as I love to bake with apples, there is NO way that I’m going to fall back into bad eating habits!!  So, I developed a recipe that would help me take advantage of the wonderful apple sales, satisfy me and my daughter’s sweet tooth, keep the pounds away, and give me a reason to use more of my amazing Nin’s Nectar honey made by Nin’s Sweets!!!  I substituted homemade apple sauce for butter/oil and they are super moist and very satisfying.


These muffins are sweet, but not too sweet, and the caramel crumble topping made with the Nin’s Nectar honey and coconut palm sugar creates a faux caramel topping that is soooo good!! I’ve read about coconut palm sugar, but never used it and this was my very first experience with it in this recipe! I must say it was very delicious and I hope you all will try and enjoy this recipe!

Remember, this is not an overly sweet muffin! If you desire serious sweetness, I will give an alternative recipe for a super sweet muffin.  Okay, let’s get started!!

First, make your applesauce!

Homemade Apple Sauce Recipe

Peel, core, and slice 3 tart apples.  Add 4-5 tablespoons of water and pulse until the apples look like applesauce.  That’s it! Boom!!! You need to have 2/3 cup of apple sauce and my 3 McIntosh apples made the exact amount.


DIY applesauce

Use a quality blender to make 2/3 cup of applesauce.


2/3 cup of homemade applesauce

2/3 cup of fresh applesauce


Dry Ingredients

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (Georgetown Market’s bulk item HERE)

1 cup All Purpose Flour (I love King Arthur unbleached brand)

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon allspice

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup brown sugar (I love Domino’s NON GMO brand)

1/2 cup pure cane sugar (I love Domino’s NON GMO brand)

In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a bowl using a handheld mixer, add both white and whole wheat flour and give it a quick whirl to mix.


Whole wheat and all purpose flour


Add the cinnamon, allspice, salt, and baking powder.


Flour mixed with spices

Now add the sugar and mix for 30 seconds. 


Wet Ingredients

2/3 cup applesauce

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup of buttermilk

I didn’t have buttermilk so I made some by adding 1 tablespoon of lemon juice to my milk.  I let it sit for 5 minutes and viola! Buttermilk.  Add all ingredients and mix well.


Caramel Apple Batter

It smells so good!


Add the apples

peel, core, and thinly slice 4 apples.  You will need 2 cups for this recipe.  Make sure to chop some very thin and fine so the apples will be evenly dispersed throughout every muffin.


sliced apples

Add lemon juice to stop your apples from getting brown after peeling. I didn’t lol.  Finely chop them!


Prepare a jumbo muffin tin by greasing with oil or baking spray.  I love Baker’s Joy.  Please spray the inside and top of your tin because the topping may run over a tad.  A well prepared muffin tin will allow you to remove your muffins with ease!! Trust me on this! Fill them almost full with batter, set aside, and prepare the topping.



1/4 cup Nin’s Nectar Honey (you can find it HERE)

1 cup Organic and NON GMO Coconut Palm Sugar(Georgetown Market HERE)

1/2 cup All purpose flour

1/4 cup very soft butter


Using a spatula, mash everything together until you get coarse crumbs.  It should look like this.


Healthy Caramel Apple Muffin Topping


Healthy Caramel Apple Muffin Topping

Add 2 Tablespoons of topping to each muffin cup and bake for 31-35 minutes at 350 degrees.  If you decide to use a standard muffin tin, use 1 1/4 teaspoons of topping per muffin cup.  Make sure to use cupcake liners if your muffin tin sticks!


Muffins cups filled with topping


Muffins in the oven


After baking, let them rest for at least 10 minutes and carefully remove from the pan.  My muffin tin does not stick, but if yours does, consider using jumbo muffin or cupcake liners.


Remove your muffins, place them on a plate, and drizzle a simple sugar glaze by mixing 1/4 cup powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon of milk, and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla.  Stir together and drizzle on your hot muffins.  This recipe made 9 jumbo muffins.


Healthy Caramel Apple Muffins

Sooooo delicious! Gooey and wonderful!


Healthy Caramel Apple Muffins


Healthy Caramel Apple Muffins

Nice and sturdy


Healthy Caramel Apple Muffins

Super moist with an apple in every bite!


That’s it!!! I hope you will try this recipe! If so, let me know!!! Now for the not so healthy sweet alternative lol.


Ingredients and Recipe for the Sweet Version

 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 cups brown sugar

1/4 cup cane sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon allspice

1 cup buttermilk

1 egg

1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

2/3 cup softened butter

2 cups peeled, cored, and thinly chopped tart apples

Mix or sift dry ingredients and set aside.  In a mixing bowl, add sugars and butter.  Beat until incorporated.  Next, add oil, egg, and vanilla extract.  mix for 30 seconds.  Alternate dry ingredients with buttermilk until completely mixed.  Start with dry ingredients first. Add 2 cups peeled, cored, and thinly chopped apples and fold them in with a spatula.  Prepare a jumbo muffin tin by greasing or spraying nonstick spray ( you can use standard size) and fill each cup almost full.  Please use cupcake liners if your muffin pan sticks.  Set aside and make the topping.



2 cups brown sugar

1/4 cup cane sugar

1/3  all purpose flour

1/4 cup very soft butter

1  teaspoons cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon allspice

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


Mix in a bowl until you achieve coarse crumbs.  Add two tablespoons of topping to each muffin cup for jumbo muffin tins and 1 1/4 teaspoon if you are using standard muffin tins.

Bake 31-35 minutes at 350 degrees for jumbo muffins.  You may need to bake less time for standard.


Let your muffins cool for at least 10 minutes. Carefully remove them and place them on a plate. Use the above glaze recipe (if desired because your muffins will already be super sweet) and drizzle on each hot muffin.  Store covered in a cake saver or wrap after completely cooled and freeze for up to one month.


Enjoy!! Don’t forget to check out my buddies at Nin’s Sweets HERE.  They have an amazing product that can be used on popcorn, mixed with peanut butter, baking, mixed as a salad dressing, and much more!!


Until next time!!



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