A few weeks ago on a lovely Sunday afternoon, Ben and I took a trip to Anderson Orchard with some friends from church. We had a great time picking apples [Ben climbed the trees to get the best ones!], eating yummy apple cobbler from the concession stand, and just spending time with friends, of course.
Our apples were a mixture of Jonathan, Jonagold, Red Delicious [totally different off the tree than the boring, overly waxed hotel lobby variety], and possibly some others. We just wandered the row We just love apples… you can never have too many!
Except honeycrisp. I’m the weirdo who doesn’t like honeycrisp.
But back to the apple orchard… Aside from the peck of apples we picked [about 10 pounds], we also bought a half peck in the farm store that was pre-picked. So we came home with close to 15 pounds of apples… only some are shown below… this was when our bag wasn’t full yet.
Soon after getting home from the orchard, we made a big batch of crock pot chunky applesauce. I had big plans to bake and bake and bake lots of apple deliciousness. Then I got busy with my thesis, then I got a cold. Excuses, excuses. So I just ate tons of sliced apples with gobs of creamy natural peanut butter. Yum, yum. Then comes Friday night.
Being the exciting couple that we are, Ben and I went running after he came home from work then made some stellar black bean quesadillas for dinner. We cleaned the apartment, did laundry, carted a bunch of Goodwill donations to the car, and watched some Parenthood, Netflix style [I'm a season behind--no spoilers please!]. Then at 10:30 pm, I decided I needed to bake. NEEDED TO BAKE. It was like, a necessity. I wasn’t sure what to make, but it was too late to wait for butter to soften so muffins it was!
Ben retreated into his video game room [aka the guest bedroom] while I made a mess in the kitchen, eventually emerging with these amazing treats of joy. Yes, that’s their actual name. Well, it should be.
Apple Peanut Butter Muffins are a great spiced muffin–the perfect combination of warm fall spices [cinnamon! apple cider!] as well as a nod to the quintessential healthy snack combination [apples and peanut butter]. I cannot even begin to express my feelings about these muffins. I just cannot stop eating them and savoring each chunk of apple that dots the light and fluffy muffin.
Wait–light and fluffy, you say? To keep something peanut butter flavored light and fluffy, I had to reach deep into the pantry for a solution. In the past, I have found that adding straight-up peanut butter to muffin batter usually renders them a bit dense. So, I decided to use peanut butter chips instead. And let me just be so bold as to say that this was a fabulous decision! To mimic the peanut butter burst enjoyed when dipping an apple slice in peanut butter, I clustered the peanut butter chips in the center of the muffin. However, if you want to share the love, feel free to mix the chips into the batter. I’m sure that would be great too!
I thought the best way to enjoy these muffins was with a fresh dab of natural peanut butter on top, but Ben would completely disagree. He’s just weird though. :) I say more is better. Enjoy!
Apple Peanut Butter Muffins [heavily adapted from an Apple Muffin recipe I wrote down from a friend/roommate/someone a long time ago and didn't credit...sorry!]
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 cups apples [cored, peeled, diced into 1/2 inch cubes]
- 3/4 cup apple cider
- 1/3 cup canola oil
- 1 egg
- ~1/4 cup peanut butter chips
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line muffin tins with paper liners or grease well with cooking spray.
In a large bowl stir together flours, sugars, baking powder, and cinnamon. Reserve 1/4 cup of the dry ingredients, then toss with diced apples.
Next, whisk together cider, oil, and egg. Pour into dry ingredients and stir until just moistened. Fold in apples.
Scoop about 2 tablespoons batter into muffin liners, then top with 5 or 6 peanut butter chips. Fill the rest of the way with batter.
Bake for 17-20 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean [be careful not to land an apple instead!].
Time: 30 minutes [10 minutes active]