Apple cupcakes with cream cheese frosting have warm spices, grated apple and deliciously tangy cream cheese frosting. 

Apple Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Apple cupcakes with cream cheese frosting have warm spices, grated apple and deliciously tangy cream cheese frosting. 
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Apple Recipes, Cupcakes, Spice Cake
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 14 cupcakes
Author Fiona Dowling


Apple Cupcakes

  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter , softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 6 tablespoons milk*
  • 1 cup grated apple** , peel the apples first to remove the skin

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter , softened
  • 3 oz brick-style cream cheese***
  • 2 1/2 - 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream , as needed


Apple Cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 350F degrees and line a muffin pan with papers. You'll end up with 12-15 cupcakes - so you may need 2 pans.
  • Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg & cloves in a medium bowl.
  • In a separate bowl beat the butter and sugars until fluffy (about 2 minutes). Then mix in the vanilla & the eggs 1 at a time.
  • Turn the mixer to low speed. Beat in about 1/2 of the flour mixture followed by the milk. 
  • Bet in the rest of the flour followed by the grated apple.
  • Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin pan filling each about 2/3 to 3/4 full.
  • Bake for 17-20 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Beat the butter until no lumps remain and it starts to look paler in color.
  • Then mix in the cream cheese (be careful to only mix it until combined).
  • Beat in the 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar and salt, starting with the mixer on low speed.
  • If the frosting isn't quite sweet enough or is too thin - mix in a little more powdered sugar. If it's too thick, then mix in 1 tablespoon of cream.
  • Frost the cooled cupcakes using a piping bag and tip (I used a Wilton 1M) or a knife. Optionally sprinkle with cinnamon & an apple slice (right before serving)


*Skim, 1%, 2%, whole milk or buttermilk work well. Almond milk works too.
**I recommend using galas, honeycrisp, pink lady, or ambrosia apples. Green apples work for a more tart flavor. I don't recommend using McIntosh or red delicious apples for this recipe.
***Use full-fat brick style cream cheese.