The epitome of cozy, these Apple Crumble Muffins are packed with warm spices, and apples and get sprinkled with a buttery cinnamon brown sugar crumb topping. Best eaten warm, these fluffy bakery style muffins are perfect for a quick breakfast or an anytime snack!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
Flavor- tart apples, buttery crumble, and lots of cinnamon. The best part? Getting bits of fresh apple in every bite! Baking with fresh apples during apple season is quite the little indulgence in my kitchen.
Texture - these apple cinnamon muffins are incredibly light and fluffy with toothsome chunks of apples. I also have the deepest love for the delicate brown sugar crumble on top, which really is the icing on top!
Easy muffin recipe - This recipe is made in a bowl by hand, so no stand mixer or electric mixer is required! We love how quickly you can whip this up. The batter can also be made ahead of time and baked off right before you want to eat them so you have fresh, hot muffins!
If you love the idea behind these apple crumble muffins, be sure to try my apple crisp bars, which are always a favorite among my friends! Or, if you're looking for another fall-inspired muffin, my pumpkin muffins are so delicious.
These apple crumble muffins use simple pantry ingredients, some paper liners, and a muffin pan.
- Rolled Oats. For the streusel topping.
- Sugars. Both brown sugar and white sugar are used for this recipe.
- Baking powder. This will get activated by the liquid and heat and give that nice muffin top.
- Spices. Ground cinnamon, ginger & nutmeg. To give the batter a lovely coziness!
- Dairy. Egg, greek yogurt (full-fat), and whole milk. It's important these are at room temperature for best results. Unsalted melted butter is also used in a state for both the batter and crumb topping.
- Vegetable oil. Canola oil (or any non-flavored oil) can also be used.
- Apples. I love to use Honey Crisp or Granny Smith apples as they make for the most flavorful muffins and are firmer apples so they hold their structure best.
See recipe card for full list of ingredients and quantities.
- Dairy - full-fat sour cream or buttermilk can be used in place of the greek yogurt.
- Oil - any neutral oil can be used in this recipe.
- Sugar - feel free to use either light brown sugar or dark brown sugar.
- Fruit - pear can also be used as an equal substitution in this recipe! I recommend choosing a slightly firm pear.
Here's a few ways you can mix up the apple crumble muffin recipe:
- Apples - if you aren't a fan of diced apple chunks, grate the apples and fold them into the batter so the pieces are much smaller.
- Icing drizzle - make either a cinnamon drizzle or a maple drizzle to go on top of the streusel topping! Use 1 cup (120g) of powdered sugar and add a bit of maple syrup until it becomes a drizzling consistency. For the cinnamon glaze, use heavy cream or milk instead of syrup, and add about ½ teaspoon of cinnamon.
- Jumbo - make these apple crumb muffins jumbo by using a jumbo muffin tin and adding five to seven minutes to the bake time.
How to Get Tall Muffin Tops
What's a muffin without an epic muffin top? This recipe is developed using the best techniques for extra high muffin tops.
- A nice, thick batter
- Fill the muffin cups up to the top
- Star the muffins at an ultra-high temperature for five minutes to really activate that baking powder, then reduce the temperature for the rest of the bake time.
How to Make This Recipe
Start by preheating the oven so it gets ripping hot and prepare the muffin tin with liners (if using). Then, peel, core, and chop the apples, make the crumb topping, followed by the apple muffin batter.
One: Combine the crumb topping ingredients and mix them together with a fork until crumbly.
Two: Whisk together the wet ingredients and dry ingredients in separate bowls, then add the wet into the flour mixture.
Three: Mix the batter together with a rubber spatula until the flour is just incorporated.
Four: Add the diced apples and gently fold them into the batter.
Five: Use a large cookie scoop or ice cream scoop to fill the muffin cups completely.
Six: Add the crumble topping to the top of the muffins, then bake!
Hot tip! Pick off any pieces of streusel topping that are laying on the pan or else the sugar will burn onto the pan and makes for a more difficult clean-up.
- Don't chop the apples too large. We want small 1cm sized pieces.
- Use room temperature dairy ingredients for best results.
- Take care not to over-mix the batter. This will lead to tough, dense muffins.
- Use up all the batter and fill the muffins cups to the brim!
- Be sure the oven is fully at temperature before adding the muffins. This can take about 20 minutes for a full pre-heat.
The best apples for baking are Honey Crisp, Braeburn, Pink Lady, Granny Smith as they hold up to the baking process best. My favorites are Honey Crisp!
The best way to keep a muffin light and fluffy is to not over-mix the batter, which is what makes the muffins tough due to over-developing the gluten in the flour. Using the correct amount of leavening agents is also very important.
The secret to any moist baked good? Correct ratios of sugar and fat. Sugar is hygroscopic, so it absorbs moisture and holds onto it. Fat (butter, oil, greek yogurt) weakens gluten development which leads to moist, fluffy muffins.
This can happen with cheap liners. Either spray the liners before using (if you know they're cheap) or invest in better quality liners. Or, simply omit the liners and spray the muffin tin openings, instead.
Store the apple crumble muffins in their muffin tin and lightly tented with aluminum foil at room temperature for three days. You can also put them into an airtight container, but this will turn the streusel topping soft.
To freeze the muffins, add them in a single layer to a zip-top bag and remove as much air as possible. Freeze the muffins for up to two months. Remove the muffins from the bag and thaw at room temperature.
If desired, re-crisp up the tops of the muffins by adding them to a preheated 350℉ oven for 3-5 minutes.
More Muffin Recipes You'll Love
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Cinnamon Apple Crumble Muffins with Oats
- Standard muffin tin
- Cupcake or muffin liners (optional)
- 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour 210g
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar 133g
- 1 large egg room temperature
- ¼ cup vegetable oil 60ml
- ¼ cup unsalted butter melted (57g)
- ½ cup full-fat greek yogurt room temperature (65g)
- ¼ cup whole milk room temperature (60ml)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
- 2 medium apples peeled, cored and diced (1½ cups or 150g)
- ¼ cup unsalted butter melted (57g)
- ½ cup all-purpose flour 60g
- ½ cup light brown sugar 100g
- ½ cup rolled oats 50g
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon
- Begin by making the streusel topping. In a bowl, combine the melted butter, flour, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon and salt with a fork until all dry pieces are incorporated and pea sized crumbles form. Set aside.
- Whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder and spices into a bowl and set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together the wet ingredients (sugar, egg, oil, butter, greek yogurt, whole milk and vanilla) with a whisk until combined.
- Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until just combined. Fold in the diced apple until incorporated, but do not overmix.
- Preheat the oven to 425℉ and line a standard muffin tin with 12 liners. You can also omit the liners and simply grease your tin.
- Fill each muffin well evenly with batter, then evenly distribute the streusel topping over each muffin.
- Bake for 5 minutes, then lower the oven temperature to 350℉ and bake for another 13-16 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffin comes out clean.
- Cool for 5 minutes in the pan, then remove the muffins to a wire rack to finish cooling.