Surreptitiously Vegan Apple Muffins

I didn’t think nature would co-operate/listen to the general consensus, but lo and behold, I awoke on Sept. 6, the day after Labor Day, to find that there was a distinctly fall flavor in the air. Good thing, too, because I am ready to absolutely demolish some apples.

Apples are one of those fruits that I have to be particularly careful with when eating them plain. Pies, muffins, fancy breads, etc. are all very forgiving when it comes to a mealy-textured apple. But in my mouth? Alone? Raw? Mealy when it should be crisp? Ugh, it is beyond the worst. It is my least favorite fruit-eating experience. The worst part is that you can’t just put the apple aside to cook later or something; one the seal/skin is broken, time is starting to run out.

Fortunately, I have a few apple varieties (honeycrisp, fuji, gala) that tend to be pretty consistently delicious, provided I grab them in season. For all the others, and here I’m especially eyeing you, you dubious golden and red delicious, there are many delicious recipes that can handle their less-than-crisp flesh. Apple muffins are one of my favorite ways to deal with this problem.

What you need:

  • 2 cups of flour (all purpose)
  • ¼ cup white sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ cup soy/rice/almond/cow’s milk OR apple juice if you want, but I’ll be honest, I usually go the milk route
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • ¼-1/3 cup applesauce (this replaces the egg and I swear it works great)
  • 2 cups chopped apples (not too fine, but you know, don’t have like a whole apple in there or anything – and get the seeds out since they contain cyanide and that is such a downer/poison)
  • Cinnamon and nutmeg to taste

What to do:

Get that oven to 400 degrees and grease or line a muffin tin. I like to line them because then you have pretty paper on the muffins, but sometimes the muffins stick to the paper and it’s sort of a buzz-kill to peel back and see that half of your delicious breakfast/snack ended up stuck to the liner. I guess it’s not a downer if you’re really into muffin tops. Anyway, back to business.

In one bowl, mix the dry ingredients together. In another bowl, mix the wet ingredients together. Leave the apples out of this for the time being. Get them mixed real good in their respective bowls. Then! Mix the two bowls (dry and wet) together and add the apples.

Pour the batter into the muffin tin cups/liners until they’re about 2/3 full. Pop them in the oven and bake 18-22 minutes, or until the tops are nice and golden brown. Do the toothpick test if you’re not sure (poke a toothpick in the middle of the muffin, and if it comes out clean, you’re good – if it comes out covered in batter, WAIT!). Let the muffins cool for a minute or two in the pan and then take them out. Let them cool a bit more before eating (I learned this the hard way).

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