Although it’s been 90 degrees the last two days, we have had a taste of fall in Illinois. The leaves are starting to turn, the nights are cool, and pumpkins can be spotted on porches. Something about fall just makes me itch to cook. I don’t know if it’s the cooler weather or the seasonal produce, but it happens every year. I don’t do as much cooking as I’d like to these days, but I did whip up a batch of these Whole Wheat Apple Muffins with my kids and mother in law this weekend.
I had some Golden Delicious apples on hand that needed to be used up. With a two year-old and a four year-old, what a better way than to make muffins (cupcakes…wink, wink)? I found a recipe that fit the bill, made a couple of modifications, and was super happy with the results. These are fluffy and moist, and the delicate crunchy topping is a really nice addition of texture. Nuts would be phenomenal in these too. I’ll definitely add some next time! To me, these are sweet enough for a dessert but not over-the-top sweet, so they’d be perfect for breakfast or a healthy snack for the kids. If you like your sweets very sweet, you could add some additional brown sugar.
One of the modifications I made was to swap out the white flour for oat flour. I didn’t want to use white flour, and I really felt like these needed oats. I didn’t want to compromise the texture of the muffins as the recipe was originally written, so I decided to make oat flour by grinding oats until they were the consistency of flour. You can do this with a food processor or a coffee grinder.
It’s best when baking to make sure your milk and eggs are room temperature to allow them to disperse thoroughly into your mixture and trap air, producing light, airy, and evenly baked treats. You definitely don’t want to skip this step with this recipe. If they the milk and egg are cold, they will cause the coconut oil to turn back into its solid state and that will affect the texture of the muffins. If you forget to set these out ahead of time, you can microwave your milk in 10-15 second increments until it’s tepid. To gently take the chill off an egg, you can put it in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes. Warm up the water as necessary.
Grab yourself some apples and warm up your house with this fresh fall recipe!
Whole Wheat Apple Muffins
Adapted from Pinch of Yum
- 1 cup oat flour (see above for instructions to make)
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon allspice
- 1 cup milk, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons white vinegar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted and slightly cooled
- 1 1/2 cups of finely chopped apples
For the crunchy topping:
- 2 Tablespoons butter, melted
- 3 Tablespoons white sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
In a large bowl, add the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Whisk together until combined well.
Add the vinegar to the milk and allow it to sit for a minute or two to sour. (Alternately, you can use a cup of buttermilk.) Whisk together the milk, egg, vanilla, and coconut oil.
Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Gently stir in the apple.
Prepare a muffin pan with liners or spray (your preference), and fill muffin cups about 3/4 full.
For the topping, mix the melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon together in a small bowl. Spoon a small amount onto the top of each muffin.
Bake for 15-16 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.