The moment I saw these cupcakes I knew I HAD to make them.  Unfortunately, I have this feeling about almost every cupcake recipe I see (not to mention all other desserts).  I am saving recipes at an alarming rate, but thankfully, I have a wonderful outlet for my baking – the teachers’ lounge at Ben’s school!  I can bake my little heart out, sample the results, and send the rest to school with Ben.  He always returns at the end of the day with an empty container.  Works for me!  Because of the astounding number of dessert recipes I have saved, I have made a resolution to bake at least one thing per week to send to school with him so I can start making some progress with this mountain of recipes.

These cupcakes may seem somewhat complicated or involved, but I was actually surprised how quickly they came together.  I have never made a cupcake using the cone method before, so I was glad to have the opportunity to try that technique.  For anyone who isn’t familiar, it is exactly what it sounds like – use a paring knife and cut a cone shape out of the top of your cupcake to leave room for filling.  In this case I wanted an open-faced cupcake so I discarded the tops (okay, so we ate a few – you would too!)  I loved these because it was a great compromise between Ben’s favorite dessert, apple pie, and my love for cupcakes.  You can’t beat the cuteness factor either!  Make these for a fall get-together, they are sure to be a hit!

  • Yield 24 cupcakes


  • 3 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2-3 tbsp. sugar
  • 3 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and diced
  • vanilla buttercream (I used 3/4 of a batch)


  • 01

    To make the cupcakes, preheat the oven to 350°. Line two cupcake pans with paper liners.

  • 02

    In a medium bowl, sift together the cake flour, baking powder and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well and scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Add the vanilla extract and mix well to combine. Add in the dry ingredients alternately with the milk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Stir until just combined.

  • 03

    Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake liners, filling them about 2/3-3/4 full. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18 to 22 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes in the pans. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

  • 04

    To make the apple filling, heat the butter a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the cinnamon and sugar and cook for a minute, until the mixture begins to bubble. Lower the heat to medium and stir in the apples. Mix well. Cook until the apples are somewhat tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

  • 05

    While the apple mixture is cooling, use the cone method to remove a chunk from the center of each cupcake, making sure to leave a rim around the top of the cupcake. Fill the holes with the cooled apple mixture. To decorate, top each cupcake with a swirl of vanilla buttercream.