Applesauce Spice Cupcakes

Published April 19, 2012. Updated February 22, 2024

This post may contain affiliate links. Read our disclosure policy.

Applesauce Spice Cupcakes are deliciously spiced, lightly apple-flavored cupcakes that are perfect for fall! These soft, tender, moist cupcakes are made using ingredients you likely already have on hand and they’re a breeze to make.

Applesauce Spice Cupcakes

When it comes to fall, I love the traditional pumpkin-spiced treats. But before pumpkin spice became the major trend, apples were the flavor of fall. These cupcakes showcase the rich flavors of autumn apples by using applesauce in place of butter, shortening, or other fatty oils—making them moist and slightly healthier than your average cupcake.

Applesauce Spice Cupcakes

They don’t contain a whole lot of fat, because they get most of their moisture from the applesauce rather than needing loads of butter. I’d say these cupcakes belong to the carrot cake family. They taste very similar but no extra time is needed to grate carrots, bonus! These may seem like fall cupcakes but to me, they are perfect year-round (I’ll take one any day!), they don’t require fresh fruit that’s in season.

The cupcake recipe I found in the amazing Martha Stewart Cupcakes book but I added my frosting. The other changes I made were omitting cloves (they listed using 1/8 tsp), I omitted the 1 cup pecans they added to the batter (I prefer the nuts along with the frosting rather than in the cupcakes) and I used salted butter rather than unsalted.

Egg Temperature Hack

I forgot to mention my cheat to get eggs to room temperature quickly when I posted the coconut cupcakes a few days ago. All you do is gently place the eggs in a bowl, cover them with warm tap water, and let them rest for about 10 minutes while you gather up the remaining ingredients for the cupcakes. It’s a great kitchen cheat I use every time a recipe calls for eggs at room temperature.

Apple Spice Cupcakes

Fall Apple Cupcakes

16 Quick & Easy 30 Minute Recipes! (plus weekly recipe updates)

5 from 1 vote

Applesauce Spice Cupcakes

Deliciously spiced, lightly apple flavored cupcakes that are perfect for fall! These soft and tender, moist cupcakes are made using ingredients you likely already have on hand and they're a breeze to make.
Servings: 20
Prep30 minutes
Cook20 minutes
Ready in: 50 minutes


Cream Cheese Frosting


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg, set aside. In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, whip together butter, granulated sugar and light-brown sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 - 4 minutes. Add in eggs, mixing after each addition. With mixer on low speed, add in applesauce. Stir in flour mixture and mix just until combined. Divide batter evenly among 20 paper lined muffin cups, filling each cup about 2/3 full. Bake in preheated oven, rotating pan once halfway through baking, for about 19 - 20 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool several minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool. Cool completely then frost with Cream Cheese Frosting and sprinkle with optional pecans. Store cupcakes in an airtight container.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer whip ingredients together until smooth and fluffy about 1 - 2 minutes. Note: if you want a lot of frosting you may want to double this frosting recipe, personally I thought the amounts listed were plenty.