AYE #1: Caramel+Apple=Autumn

October 6, 2008 at 3:56 PM | Posted in Art You Eat, cupcakes, giveaway | 60 Comments

I am a slacker no more!

And there was much rejoicing…

When I woke up this morning I decided that I wanted to bake cupcakes to say thanks for all the comments in my cupcake slacker post. It’s too bad you really can’t reach into your screen and eat them but just know they were baked for you.

Many comments suggested finding inspiration in the season and it reminded me of a cupcake idea I’ve had on the back burner for awhile. Actually you might remember it was part of my teaser 2 weeks ago. (Has it really been 2 weeks since I posted that? Yikes!) So I am giving the people (me? yeah you!) what they want!

Remember when I asked everyone “What is Autumn?” about 3 weeks ago? (Wow. Time really does fly…) After reading all the comments, the 2 words that immediately jumped out at me were apples and caramel. I LOVE CARAMEL APPLES. Love, love love them. Its quite possibly the perfect food. Who’s with me?

♪ Raise your hand in the air like youz a true playa! ♪♫

I’ve made caramel apple cupcakes before but those were more of the crunk persuasion. This time I wanted to participate in fellow TWD baker extraordinaire, Holly‘s foodie event, Art You Eat, by tweaking a familiar favorite with some green sprinkles. Nothing brings back your cupcake mojo like sprinkles. Am I right? You know I am. LOL

What better way to celebrate my cupcake mojo return than with a… GIVEAWAY! I am SUPER excited about it but no more hints. You’ll have to check out my blog tomorrow for the details! ::evil laugh::
xoxo, CB

Caramel Apple Cupcakes

(Recipe adapted from Cupcake Bakeshop & Dorie Greenspan | photos from me!)
*Note: Cupcake Bakeshop has recently updated her blog so above link may not work while she’s fixing her links.

Makes 12 cupcakes (I got 16)


For apple cupcake
2-3 apples, granny smith (I substituted 1 cup unsweetened applesauce)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1/2 cup oil
1/4 cup apple juice
1 teaspoon vanilla

For caramel
2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
1-1/2 tablespoon light corn syrup
2/3 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature

[NOTES: Caramel recipe makes a good amount. You might want to 1/2 it or you can refrigerate any leftovers for ice cream topping or other dessert topping. Just microwave it in intervals until you get the right consistency.]

For cream cheese frosting
8oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
1 vanilla bean, cut lengthwise and scraped
1 lb (~4 cups) powdered sugar, sifted

green sprinkles
mint leaves
black sesame seeds

[NOTES: I prefer green (granny) apples when I think of caramel but you could easily use red sprinkles for a shiny red apple too!]


To make cupcakes—

Preheat oven 350F.

Rinse and core the apples. Place them on an ovenproof pan or baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes until soft. Remove the apples from the oven, let cool slightly, then remove peel and mush the apple with the back of a fork. Measure out 1 cup of apple mush and set aside to cool.

Combine flour, sugar, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt in a medium sized bowl and whisk to combine. Crack the eggs into a separate, medium sized bowl and beat with a form to break up. Add the oil, apple juice, vanilla, and cooled apple mush and mix to combine. Combine the wet and dry ingredients until all ingredients come together.

Scoop into cupcake papers about 2/3 full. Bake in 350F oven for 20-22 minutes, rotating the pan after 15 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.

To make caramel—
Put sugar, water and corn syrup in saucepan, stir just to combine ingredients. Turn to medium-high heat, without stirring, for 5-10 minutes until caramel turns an amber color. Wipe down any spatters with a pastry brush dipped in cold water. Lower the heat a little and add the cream and butter. (Caramel will bubble!) After the bubbling decreases, stir caramel to break down lumps. Pour into a pyrex measuring cup to cool.

You can see caramel pictures on my food blog.

To make frosting—
Whip the butter and cream cheese together in a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until creamed. Add vanilla beans. Gradually add powdered sugar. Scrape down the bowl as needed.

To assemble cupcakes—
Fill cupcakes with caramel using the cone method.

Dollop a fairly good amount of frosting and shape into a spherical shape.

Roll cupcake in green sprinkles to cover the frosting. Break off pretzel and stick into the top to resemble a stem. Insert a mint “leaf” in the frosting near the stem. Notch out a “bite” shape and arrange 3 sesame seeds to resemble apple seeds.


Husband rating: A
He really like the apple cupcake but not a huge fan of the caramel center. He loves that cream cheese frosting but not with the sprinkles. I think its a texture thing for him.

Wifey rating: A/A+
I loved the flavors of the apple cupcake with the caramel and cream cheese frosting. And who knew that pretzels with cream cheese frosting was so good?? HAHA. I realize that the apple may not be anatomically correct but I think the seeds are pretty darn cute anyways.

Which picture do you like best?

Kitchen counter (L), Balcony in the sun (M), Balcony in the shade (R)



  1. OMG I think these are the cutest cupcakes I have ever seen! Love them and can’t wait to try them!

  2. Freaking CUTE!!!!!

  3. OMG!!! How cute!!! I like the kitchen pic, brings out the colors better. I wish I could taste one ;)

  4. this has got to be the cutest cupcake ive ever seen! btw, i like the kitchen counter pic the most.

  5. A-dorable!

  6. Oh sweet goodness- I can’t take it they are so cute!
    I like pic #1 or #3
    But honestly I’d like it best on a plate, in my hand!!

  7. Too cute! I love caramel apples too. These would definitely be a hit at our house. I would have to go with pic #1 as well.

  8. What did I say? I knew when you’d come back with a cupcake it’d be fabulous! Those are just so cute! I vote for #2, but I also like #3.

  9. adorableness!

  10. Thanks everyone! I have to admit these are pretty darn stinkin’ cute if I do say so myself! toot toot <– tooting my own horn

  11. Super cute and I bet they’re delicious!

    I vote for balcony in the shade. :)

  12. I LOVE IT! :D

    You’re always so creative, CB.

  13. Oh my gosh! These look amazing!!! I am definitely going to have to try these! Thanks so much for sharing.

    Oh, and I like the third picture the best. :)

  14. That is such a SWEET cupcake! Looks fabulous!!!
    I love the pic on the kitchen counter.

  15. I think these may be the cutest cupcakes ever!! (and, I think the first picture is best)

  16. J’aime beaucoup les cuppycakes!

    Your apple cupcakes are a thing of beauty! The are so cute, and I bet they taste awesome! Is apple and caramel, how can it not taste good.

    Good to see you are back on a roll!

  17. OMG- Could these be any cuter????? You are now my domestic goddess!

  18. wow ! wow! wow ! j’adore ! magnifiques cupcakes !

  19. These are adorable! And you say you aren’t artistic. PUH-lease. You are too! :)

  20. So cute!! These would be so cute to take to a fall school party or somethine.

  21. Those are SO CUTE! You’re awesome. I like the first one best.

  22. OK, so I think that the word ‘cute’ is probably being much used, but how can it not be. They are just the cutest cupcakes ever (and who cares about anatomically correct cupcakes – not me!!). Thanks so much for entering them, they are so adorable! I really do wish I could reach in and grab one because they look ah-maz-ing!!!

  23. The most adorable cupcakes EVER! :)

    I like the counter picture best.

  24. I love these! They are so super cute! Great idea! I’m excited about the book too. They are sending me a copy. Can’t wait to see it!

  25. Ok those cupcakes are ridiculously cute and I’m making them to take to school this week! :)

  26. Hahaha, like Amanda said, I think this might be the cutest cupcake I’ve ever seen!

  27. MARY, You must take pictures for me after you make them! Let me know what your classmates think, k? :)

  28. Dude!! These are SOOOO cool!! I *wish* I could eat apples w/out migraning. I want to make these! I wonder what I could use instead of apple…?

    Kudos CB!

    Hey let me know when I can come to cali and visit your cupe-cakery! ;) I think a cuppycakes shoppe would be perfect for you!!

  29. IAMBELLA, You get migraines when you eat apples? aawwww not cool. Even applesauce? Let me think. You wouldnt have to make apple cupcake. Maybe a chocolate cupcake, caramel center, cream cheese frosting. You can still decorate like an apple right? ;) You can come visit me anytime with or without the cuppycake shop. Rather I wanna come visit you and your new spa. HAHA

  30. Hi, I just stumbled onto your page the other day and you now have a fan for life! I was wondering where you purchased the cupcake liners… they give it such a cleaner more “sophisticated” look. LOL not sure if thats the right word.. but you get what I’m saying.

  31. DALIN, aawww you’re so sweet! Always glad to have a fan for life ;) They are called party nut cups or souffle cups depending on where you buy them. I buy mine at Smart&Final, $5/250. HTH!

  32. Dude. You have seriously a LOT more talent at cupcakes then I do. My lack of combined cupcake frosting talent (the tops kept coming off into the colored sugar) and my inability to locate black sesame seeds (this county and the one I usually grocery shop in) made me decide these babies were not going to be “bitten”.
    But after taking a step back, they are pretty cute! Great idea! (I haven’t tasted a cupcake yet. I’ll keep you posted about the classmates!)

    Geez I’m wordy today! :)

  33. MARY, aawww the tops fell off? ::stifling giggle:: and no sesame seeds? I found mine in the specialty spice aisle at my grocery store. I can’t wait to see pics. Definitely let me know what your peeps think!

  34. oh, that is too cute! I love it!!!

  35. Super cute creation!

  36. Cute cupcake. It looks cute anywhere you take a pic of it. But I think, it is yummmier on the kitchen counter. :)

  37. […] won September’s Cupcake Hero . She is a cupcake genius. In a recent post she did an amazing caramel apple cuppycake . My problem (which my hubby ALWAYS mentions) is that I am a very poor cupcake decorator. Well when […]

  38. I saw these cupcakes on Flickr and had to come here and check them out. I’ll definitely be bookmarking your blog!

    I was wondering how your caramel centers turned out because I tried a recipe from another blog with a caramel center and all of the caramel got absorbed into the cupcake, leaving a whole in the middle. It tasted good but everyone was asking why they had a hole in their cupcake lol.

  39. DAWN, Thanks for your compliments on my cupcake. The caramel recipe is a thick consistency so it doesn’t get absorbed. No holes in these cupcakes ;) I should have taken cross section picture. Darn. I forgot! btw Nice to “meet” you!

  40. This is my kind of apple!

  41. MARILYN, I wouldn’t mind if my doctor said I had to eat one of these a day! LOL

  42. while i don’t think i’d love an apple cupcake… i do love caramel and hel-friggin-lo those things are CUTE with a capital K. love ’em!!!

  43. MARA, I wasn’t sure I’d like it either but caramel makes everything better IMO. haha.

  44. This is the CUTEST cupcake EVER! Great idea for my fall teacher’s luncheon! Thanks for sharing!

  45. RINDY, Thank you! I’d love to see pictures if you make it for your teacher’s luncheon!

  46. My niece strictly eats cupcakes, no birthday cakes allowed, so I made her these…even without the caramel, they turned out awesome, so cute and fun to decorate. PS balcony in shade is my fav pic

  47. MELANIE, No birthday cake? haha. That so cute. Glad everyone enjoyed the cupcakes! Do you have pics? I’d love to see!

  48. so cute!

  49. aww these are sooooo cute!!! quick question though- do you think i could substitute caramel ice cream topping instead of making my own? i’m not so good w/ the whole boiling sugar thing haha. i’m not sure if the consistency would be right….

  50. JEN, Thanks!

    T, You could probably sub but it might not be as thick as making your own. Give it a try and let me know how it works!

  51. These are just the cutest cupcakes ever!! Your site is so great. I think the step by step pictures really helped me step up my cupcake game :)
    My sister won 1st place in a apple cook off with these bad boys this week and the consensus at my work was to quit my job and just start making these cupcakes. Love em!!!!

  52. JESSICA, Thank you! That’s so awesome about your sister winning 1st place! Do you think it be alright for me to say that I kinda-sorta-maybe won 1st place too? :P Glad you and your coworkers enjoyed the cupcakes :)

  53. […] I dipped them in red sugar, then added a pretzel and a mint leaf! I used the recipe found here http://iheartcuppycakes.com/2008/10/06/aye-1-caramelappleautumn/ My boyfriend even took a picture of me holding one of the cupcakes in my hand and edited it like […]

  54. I had a quick question. Where do you find your paper cupcake cups? Thanks!

  55. […] craving the scents of Fall so I knew an apple cupcake would be in order! I found a great recipe by I Heart Cuppycakes and thought I’d give it a whirl! I made a few slight changes and got a super delicious […]

  56. […] Caramel Cupcakes Original found here I got 12 good sized cupcakes, she got 16 (from using apple sauce […]

  57. Okay, I stumbled across your blog and I think I found the cupcakes I will make for a fundraiser bake sale. I have to make them and deliver by FRIDAY!!! Thanks for the recipe and I will let you know how they turn out :-) thanks again,

  58. I am going to try this cute recipe thanks for sharing… I do have a concern about the green sugar sprinkle over powering the butter cream frosting so I’m thinking about spraying them green and using a green or clear shiny fondant dust for sparkle.

  59. What a great idea! Making these for my daughter’s class party tomorrow, thanks!

  60. Hi, my daughter made this but the caramel sauce crystalized after it cooled. Can we just use regular caramel candy and put that in the middle?

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Blog at WordPress.com.
Entries and comments feeds.

%d bloggers like this: