I know, I know, take it all in.
Apple Cider Cupcakes with Bourbon Cream Cheese Frosting are the new ultimate fall dessert. Can you handle it? You can handle it. I have complete faith in you.
Really, besides having an endless supply of pumpkin muffins (between the pumpkin spice ones and mini pumpkin coconut muffins), and pumpkin bars, I’m obsessed with apples in the fall. Give me all the warm apple crisp, and all the Apple Cider Cupcakes. WITH BOURBON CREAM CHEESE FROSTING!
Which team are you on? Team apple? Team pumpkin? Team give me all the desserts?! That’s the team I’m on when it comes down to it. All. The. Desserts.
I’m also becoming SO ok with bourbon in my desserts.
Let’s start talking about the cupcake part of this equation. When I say OBSESSED, I mean OBSESSED. Can’t stop thinking about the cupcakes day or night obsessed.
Salted Caramel Apple Cake inspired these beauties, and in fact, there’s another recipe coming out that I developed because I couldn’t NOT have more than one recipe based off of this perfect equation.
And yes, I definitely needed to use that double negative there.
What’s so great, you ask?
They’re absolutely moist, and the crumb is tender. I’d dare to say it just about melts in your mouth. The flavor is sweet and warm from the cinnamon. Balanced out with the subtle tang from the apple cider. Hellllloooo, perfect fall cupcakes.
Then the FROSTING!
You’re going to want to sit down for this. Obviously, cream cheese frosting is the frostings of frostings, but wait for it…
- CREAM CHEESE.
- APPLE CIDER.
Yes, you read that right. A trifecta. Now, now, I hear you with your questions: what if I don’t drink? What if I don’t like bourbon? What if I want my kids to eat them?
The answer, my friends, is so very simple: leave the bourbon out and sub more apple cider in its place. You’ll have a just as lovely apple cider frosting.
I will add the disclaimer that there is not a lot of bourbon in the frosting. The bourbon flavor is very subtle, so if you absolutely love the flavor of bourbon, you may want to add more to get a deeper bourbon flavor.
Apple Cider or Apple Juice?
I recently learned the difference between the two (officially). Cider is raw and as no filtration – and it’s often a little more tart because of this. Juice has been pasteurized and is shelf-stable – generally sweeter.
If you’re looking to swap out apple juice instead, I’d recommend substituting in a little lemon juice to add the tart flavor.
Back to the cupcakes!
The combination of everything though? The apple cider, the cinnamon, the cream cheese, and the bourbon…Halloween treats have never looked so good!
Speaking of Halloween! You have to make them tomorrow. You won’t regret it. Best. Halloween. Ever.
I really can’t believe it’s already time for all the holidays to begin… next thing you know, you’ll be making Apple Cider Cupcakes with Bourbon Cream Cheese Frosting for Thanksgiving.
Speaking of Halloween – are you dressing up? Trick-or-treating? Staying cozy inside and watching something scary? Not scary? Tell me in the comments below!Print
A tender apple cider cupcake with warm cinnamon, topped with a generous amount of apple cider cream cheese frosting – and bourbon for an added adult treat!
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons apple cider
- 8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
- 1/4 cup butter, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 Tablespoon Bourbon
- 1 Tablespoon apple cider
- 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 12 muffin tins with liners.
- Stir together dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
- In a separate bowl, use a hand mixer to cream together sugars and butter. Once creamed, add vanilla. Add eggs one at a time, mixing between each addition.
- Alternate adding dry ingredients and cider into wet ingredients, beginning and ending with the dry (3 dry additions, 2 cider). Mixing until just combined between each addition.
- Fill muffin tins 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 16-18 minutes until the internal temperature reaches 205-209°F. Be careful to not overbake! Let cupcakes cool completely before frosting.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, add softened cream cheese and butter. Beat until mixed. Add vanilla, Bourbon, and apple cider. Add powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, mixing to combine between each addition. Continue mixing until smooth. Spread on top of cupcakes and sprinkle with additional cinnamon as desired.
If you don’t want bourbon in the frosting, simply replace it with apple cider.
Keywords: fall, halloween, sweets, baking, autumn
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