Apple crumble cupcakes are the perfect hybrid of the humble dessert and an easy cupcake.
If you’re looking for the perfect autumnal cupcake recipe, this is it. It’s lightly spiced and ever so comforting but it can be enjoyed at any time of year as the cupcakes are truly delicious. The moist sponge contains soft cooked apples and the cakes are topped with a custard icing.
- 3 Granny Smith apples peeled, cored and diced
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- Zest and juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 150g light brown sugar
- 150g unsalted butter, softened
- 140g self-raising flour
- 10g cornflour
- 1½ tsp cinnamon
- Pinch of ground cloves (optional)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 3 eggs
For the crumble:
- 10g unsalted butter
- 10g caster sugar
- 20g self-raising flour
- 20g porridge oats
For the custard topping:
- 140g icing sugar
- 80g unsalted butter
- 4 tsp custard powder
- Few drops of vanilla extract
- Put the apples into a pan with 3tbsp caster sugar, lemon zest and juice, and vanilla extract. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer until the apples are soft. Take 1/3 out and leave to one side for the apple sauce. Mash the rest with a fork and set it aside to cool.
- Heat your oven to 160C (140C fan, Gas 3). Line a baking tray with cases.
- Beat the sugar and butter until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). Sift the flour, cornflour, spices and baking powder together. Add 1 egg to the butter and sugar with 1 third of the flour mix and beat until just combined and repeat until all the ingredients are combined.
- Slowly fold the cooled apples until evenly mixed throughout the mixture.
- Divide the batter between the 12 cases and bake for 30-35 minutes. Remove and cool in the tins for 10 minutes before moving to a wire cooling rack
- To make the crumble, rub all the ingredients together with your fingers and toast in a heat-proof dish under a hot grill for 10 minutes. Shake the mix after 5 minutes to ensure it cooks evenly. Once toasted with a golden colour, leave to cool.
- To make the apple sauce, put the reserved third of the apple mix into a blender and whizz until smooth.
- To make the custard topping, put the icing sugar, butter, custard powder and vanilla into a large bowl and blend until smooth. Add a teaspoon or two of hot water if you need to loosen the mixture. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a nozzle. I use a Wilton 6B decorating tip.
- When the cakes are cool, pipe swirls around the edge of the cupcakes leaving the centre open, fill the centre with remaining apple sauce and sprinkle the crumble mix over the top.
Top tips for making apple crumble cupcakes
For tips and tricks including how to get ahead with the preparation of these apple crumble cupcakes, continue reading below.
Can you prepare the cupcakes ahead?
You can make the apple mixture and puree the apple sauce a couple of days ahead of baking these cupcakes. You can also make the crumble topping ahead.
This is also an excellent recipe to use up any leftover crumble topping you might have. The cakes can be baked ahead but we’d recommend making the custard icing and decorating on the day you’d like to serve the cakes.
Can you put eating apples in a crumble?
Yes you can use a mixture of cooking and eating apples in your crumble. You could use a combination of apples for these cupcakes too. Cooking apples can be quite sharp so you may need a little more sugar.
Is apple crumble supposed to be crunchy?
One of the best things about an apple crumble is the contrast of soft fruit and a rich, buttery crisp topping. Inevitably some of the topping will soften due to the moisture of the crumble filling but there should be some crunchy sections.
If you definitely want some crunch you could always bake some of the topping mixture separately on a baking tray until golden. Allow it to cool and then sprinkle over each portion of crumble when serving.
Victoria recommends using an ice cream scoop when putting the cake mixture into the cupcake cases as this will make the cupcakes all the same size when they rise.
OXO Good Grips Classic Swipe Ice Cream Scoop - View at Amazon
The lever on this ice cream scoop helps to push the ice cream, or in this case, the cake batter out. All you have to do is squeeze the lever and it swipes around the scoop to push the ingredients out. It is dishwasher safe and has a comfortable handle.