I’ve been waiting quite a while for just the right apple muffin recipe to come along.  Every time I found one that looked promising, the reviews were mediocre at best.  Why was it so hard to find a good apple muffin?  As soon as I saw this recipe, I knew it would be the end of my searching…all because of that one magic word – butterscotch.  These were as simple as any other muffin to throw together, but the combination of oats, chopped apples, toasted pecans and of course the butterscotch chips mixed into the batter made for a delicious and complex flavor.  If you’re less of a sweet tooth than I, you might want to skip the butterscotch chips but I have yet to meet something that was “too sweet”, so I loved them.  Also, the dried apple slice on top is obviously optional but I thought it added an extra layer of flavor and texture that was just right.  Yum, yum!


2½ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
½ tsp. salt
1¼ tsp. ground cinnamon
¾ cup old-fashioned oats
8 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup applesauce
2 large eggs
1½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup milk
¾ cup butterscotch chips
¾ cup chopped apples
1/3 cup toasted pecans, chopped

For topping (optional):
Dried apple slices
Maple syrup
Granulated sugar


  • 01

    Preheat the oven to 350˚ F.  Line the wells of two muffin pans with paper liners (about 18 liners total).  Set aside.

  • 02

    In a medium mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.  Mix lightly with a fork to blend.  Stir in the oats.  In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until light and smooth, 1-2 minutes.  Beat in the applesauce, eggs and vanilla extract until incorporated.  With the mixer on low speed, mix in the dry ingredients in three additions alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients and beating just until incorporated.  Fold in the butterscotch chips, apples, and toasted pecans with a rubber spatula.

  • 03

    Divide the batter evenly between the prepared muffin cups.  If desired, press a dried apple slice into the top of the batter in each cup.  Drizzle lightly with maple syrup and sprinkle with sugar.  Bake about 18-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.


  • C.B.

    Hi! This recipe looks awesome. I, too, have been looking for an apple muffin recipe that I liked, and yours might be the answer! The only thing is that there’s no way I can find butterscotch chips, butterscotch just doesn’t exist in the country where I live! So can you suggest a way to make it at home, or to incorporate the flavor into the recipe in another way? Thank you!

    P.S: I have to say, I absolutely LOVE your blog. I’ve tried a couple of recipes and everybody loved them. I completely trust your taste and you’re definitely my go-to recipe source! Thank you so much for your time and effort!!

  • The dried apple slice looks so good on top. I could just eat that and be happy. But somehow, I think I would end up eating the whole thing.

  • Amanda

    Hi Annie!
    These look absolutely incredible, if there is one thing I love more than anything, its a fabulous new muffin recipe. These will be great for an upcoming weekend trip I have. I just have one question though, my sister is allergic to nuts of any kind so if I omitted the pecans, do you think it would still have the same taste? Thanks!

  • I love butterscotch in just about anything. I’ve been wanting to make muffins lately! These even seem pretty healthy with the oats and applesauce :)

  • Annie

    C.B., unfortunately I don’t know of any good substitute for butterscotch chips. An internet search didn’t give any good suggestions either. I would probably just omit them, or you could order them and have them shipped to you.

  • Annie

    Hi Amanda,
    Omitting the pecans would be fine. I omit nuts from most recipes and it never seems to make a big difference. Enjoy!

  • YUM. I love apple muffins and butterscotch so I hope I get a chance to make these. I have the HARDEST time finding dried apples, though!

  • Annie

    Elly, if you have a Super Target in your area, they probably have dried apples. I can find almost any dried fruit there (random, I know!)

  • C.B.

    Aw, what a pity, I really like butterscotch…Thank you very much, though!

  • I love apple dessert anything. These sound delicious!

  • Erin

    These look delicious! I love anything butterscotch. I’ll have to make these soon :)

  • I like the extra apple on top! YUM! These muffins look great.

  • They look awesome! :)

  • These muffins look awesome. Butterscotch sounds like a great addition, and they can’t be too horrible with the addition of the applesauce for oil. Thanks for the recipe!

  • Mmmm, butterscotch anything and I’m sold! :)

  • JudyP

    Annie they look yummy!
    Q: What is the difference beween muffins and cupcakes?

  • Annie

    Judy, it’s a fine line, but to me, a cupcake almost always requires frosting (one exception would be black bottom cupcakes).

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  • You had me at the word “butterscotch” – man I wish butterscotch chips weren’t so hard to find around here. I’m sure they’d still be delicious with a couple of spoonfuls of butterscotch sauce swirled in! These look fantastic – and surely one of your five-a-day? ;)

  • Everyone needs a good apple muffins recipe :o)

  • Andrea

    Made these tonight and they were amazing. I did notice that mine were really moist on the bottom and stuck to the paper cups a bit. That being said, it didn’t prevent me from enjoying 2 of them in one sitting. Thanks for a great recipe. Your work is awesome.

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  • I love apple and cinnamon. Surely this is yummy. Thanks for the recipe! :-)

  • Hi Annie – Silly question, but did you peel the apples you included in the batter? The original recipe didn’t specify either and I want to make these for a brunch on Sunday.


  • Annie

    Hmm, I think I pretty much always peel apples when baking. Sorry it wasn’t clear!

  • Wow, you’re quick – thanks! :)

  • Rosie

    Hi, Annie — I tried out this recipe on the weekend, and they were delicious! I halved the recipe and used a combo of all-purpose and white whole wheat flour. I omitted the dried apple slices (non on hand) and sprinkled the tops with sparkling sugar. Although I found the muffins to be extremely sticky, I really enjoyed the texture and taste! I’ll probably drizzle less maple syrup on next time (too sweet). This recipe is a keeper!

  • tallpoppy

    Excited to test these! One question though — does it matter if the “Old Fashioned Oats” are slow cooking or can they be instant?

  • annieseats

    Old fashioned oats are synonymous with slow cooking, in my book anyway.

  • Katrina Ann Magbitang

    Hi Annie! I love your blog and your recipes, I always search yours first before anywhere else. Anyway, sometimes the recipe does not specify if ingredients should be room temperature, such as milk and eggs (like in the recipe above). I was wondering if that is a given or does it not matter. Thank you for everything and please keep cooking!!!

  • annieseats

    Hi Katrina. Sorry for the late reply. In earlier recipes such as this, I was less practiced at writing instructions and such details may not always be included. For baking cakes/muffins in general, I would say to have the butter at room temp (honestly, I usually just warm it in the microwave, and I almost never bother to have the eggs at room temp), unless a recipe indicates otherwise. I hope that helps!