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Apple Cupcakes with Cinnamon-Cream Cheese Frosting

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Spiced apple cupcakes topped with a cinnamon-cream cheese frosting... A perfect fall dessert!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Servings 12 cupcakes
Calories 523
Author Michelle


For the Cupcakes:

  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons buttermilk at room temperature
  • cups shredded Gala apples about 2 medium apples, peeled

For the Cinnamon-Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • teaspoons ground cinnamon

Special Equipment:


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a standard muffin pan with paper liners.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and ginger; set aside.
  • Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter until soft and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the granulated sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, stopping to scrape the bowl as needed. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat until completely combined, about 1 minute.
  • Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in half of the flour mixture until mostly combined, then pour in the buttermilk (the mixture may begin to look curdled - that's okay), then add the remaining flour mixture, mixing until just barely combined. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and fold in the shredded apple, as well as any accumulated juices.
  • Divide the batter between the 12 muffin cups and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the pan and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Make the Frosting: With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the cream cheese, vanilla and salt and continue to beat for an additional 2 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the powdered sugar gradually and mix until smooth and combined, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Add the ground cinnamon, mix until it is incorporated, then increase the mixer speed to medium-high and beat until light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Using a decorating bag and tip (I used the Ateco #827 tip) or an offset spatula, frost the tops of the cupcakes. The cupcakes can stay at room temperature for a few hours, but should be refrigerated in an airtight container for longer-term storage up to 4 days. Bring the cupcakes to room temperature before serving.


Nutritional values are based on one serving


Calories: 523kcal | Carbohydrates: 70g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 85mg | Sodium: 174mg | Potassium: 106mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 58g | Vitamin A: 880IU | Vitamin C: 0.7mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 0.9mg