It is October and with it comes Fall and my favorite flavors – Apple and Pumpkin. Today we are going to salute the Apple with my delicious Apple Cranberry Muffins. I make a lot of muffins because they provide portion control and versatility of flavors. Apple Cranberry muffins are equally good as breakfast, brunch, or a late afternoon snack. They also make an excellent addition to an elementary school lunchbox.
Prep the Apples and Cranberries
The first step in the process is to prepare the apples and cranberries for entrance into the batter. Cranberry prep is simple. Place dried cranberries into a measuring cup or bowl of warm water and put to the side. The warm water re-hydrates the cranberries making them soft and delicious instead of hard and chewy after baking.
The apple prep has few more steps. First peel the skin from the apples. I like to use a knife, but I know many people prefer a vegetable peeler. Use what works for you. Next, using a boxed grater, shred the apples. Shredding the apple allows them to become one with the muffin. As an alternative to the boxed grater, I suggest a food processor with the shredding blade. When using the food processor, it is necessary to core and cut the apples first. Either method works.
Let’s Make Batter
Time to make the batter! Start by adding the butter, brown sugar, baking soda, spices, and vanilla to the stand mixer. If using a hand mixer, choose your favorite large bowl. Mix together well. Add eggs and honey, and shredded apple and continuing mixing at medium speed until well incorporated. Finally, add whole wheat flour and mix on low speed until fully incorporated.
The final step is adding the cranberries. Drain the water out of the cranberries. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and add the cranberries to the bowl. Gently fold the cranberries into the batter. The batter is complete and it is time to move from batter to delicious Apple Cranberry muffins.
Time to Bake the Muffins
The recipe makes a total of 12 delicious apple cranberry muffins. To help in the transfer from bowl to muffin pan, I use an ice cream scoop. One full scoop per muffin works out to be a perfect portion for my crew. I use Copper Chef muffin pans and choose not to use paper muffin cups. The Copper Chef pan greased with a little canola oil provides the non-stick surface I need for muffins that slide right out of the pan. Slide the pan into a 350°F oven and 25 minutes later out comes warm, delicious apple cranberry muffins.
As the temperatures begin to cool, turn up the heat on your oven and bake some delicious Apple Cranberry muffins. The house will fill with the smell of apples and spices reminiscent of all the joy Fall brings. It is also Cider Mill and Apple Orchard season, so this recipe comes at a perfect time to use the freshly picked apples coming home with the family. Happy Cooking!