Apple Fritters

Apple fritters at home. Easy, no fuss, and absolutely amazing! 

Apple Fritters | thepajamachef.com

I LOVE apple fritters. Absolutely love them. When they’re among my doughnut choices, I’ll almost always take one. Cake doughnuts with chocolate glaze and sprinkles are a close second, as are those fake-blueberry doughnuts. [Doughnuts are so yum, doncha think?] I’m not sure what it is about apple fritters that I adore the most–probably those soft pieces of sweet fall apples stuffed inside. Or the combination of soft, pillowy doughnut with a crunchy, spiced glaze. Mmmm!

Apple Fritters | thepajamachef.com

Since I love apple fritters so much, I decided to put them on my 30 before 30 list. I shy away from making doughnuts at home because using my baked doughnut pan is such a pain and frying scares me. But growing older means getting over fears, so I decided that I had to fry these babies at home. Because apple fritters equal yum. I made them the night I got home from a fall trip to Hilton Head Island with my family last month. Weird, I know. I mean, who doesn’t make doughnuts after an eight hour drive?!? :) Well, I had to, because they were my payment to my sister and brother-in-law for driving me back to Nashville after Ben had to leave early to get back to school.

Apple Fritters | thepajamachef.com

Well, I’m really glad I faced my fears because guess what! Frying isn’t as hard as it seems. It’s kinda messy and not that great for you, so I don’t think I’ll be doing it alllll the time, but once in awhile it’s fun. You just have to go slowly and carefully to avoid scalding yourself with the hot oil. Other than that, no problem. These fritters are so darn good and so easy that you’ll want to make them every weekend.

Apple Fritters | thepajamachef.com

The fritters are extra apple-y since they’re made with apple cider AND fresh apples. And extra spicy [not spicy-hot but warm spicy with cinnamon/nutmeg/cloves alongside the aforementioned apple cider]. But that’s just in the fritter! The spiced apple glaze is simple [powdered sugar + apple cider + spices] and absolutely wonderful! I think I’ll be using this glaze on muffins and cakes and everything else imaginable from now on. It is just the perfect compliment to the fluffy doughnut. Each bite of these fritters is better than the last. You know you can just get over some sweets after the first few bites? Like it’s just too much after a bit? Well, these fritters are not that. Each bite is better than the last. I hope you love these fritters as much as we did. They’re relatively quick to make and don’t require the oven, so wouldn’t they be perfect for Thanksgiving breakfast? Enjoy!

one year ago: Chipotle-Cilantro Mashed Potatoes
two years ago: Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies
three years ago: Dilled Carrots
four years ago: Apple City BBQ Sauce

Apple Fritters

  • Servings: 12
  • Time: 75 minutes
  • Print

from Cook’s Country via We Are Not Martha

Ingredients:

  • 2 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, + chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoons baking powder
  • pinch salt
  • 1 teaspoon  ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • pinch ground cloves
  • 3/4 cup apple cider
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 cups oil [I used canola, vegetable or peanut are also recommended]

for glaze

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup apple cider
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Directions:

Place chopped apples in a single layer on a clean tea towel. Top with another clean tea towel and pat dry, gently rolling to dry all sides of the apples. Remove top towel and pat dry with a paper towel to make sure you got it all. Alternatively, you can use paper towels on a baking sheet.

Next, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. In large measuring cup, whisk together cider, eggs, butter, and vanilla. Add apples to the flour mixture and toss together. Then gradually pour cider mixture over apples, stirring to form a thick batter.

In a dutch oven, heat oil over medium-high heat until it reaches a temperature of 350 degrees F. I think you could also use a deep skillet but you’d need additional oil to fill it up. A deep skillet would allow you to cook more at once, but the dutch oven approach works well too.

When oil is hot, scoop batter by the 1/3 cup-fulls into the hot oil. Immediately use a wooden spoon to press and flatten the batter. I fried 3 fritters at once; if I had used a skillet I think I could have done 4-5 at once. Fry for 2-3 minutes per side, being careful not to let the oil temperature go above 350 or your fritters will burn. Ask me how I know. :-/ Adjust heat as necessary to keep temperature between 325-350.

When fritters are golden brown, remove with a slotted spoon or tongs and allow to cool on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet to catch dripping grease. Repeat until batter is finished. Recipe should yield 12 fritters.

When fritters have cooled slightly, make the icing. I did this after all fritters were done frying and the timing worked well. Whisk powdered sugar together with cider, then add cinnamon and nutmeg. Whisk until smooth, then drizzle 1 tablespoon over each fritter. I had extra glaze so I waited for the glaze to set for 10 minutes and then glazed them again to use it up.

Fritters are best enjoyed within 3 days. After the first day, they should be refrigerated.

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SRC: Baked Caramel Apple Mini Doughnuts

These mini apple doughnuts are dipped in an easy sweet caramel sauce for the ultimate easy fall treat!

Baked Caramel Apple Mini Doughnuts | thepajamachef.com #secretrecipeclub #src

For this month’s Secret Recipe Club, I was assigned to Cookaholic Wife, a blog written by Nichole. Nichole has SO many delicious recipes on her site. I had such a hard time deciding what to make! In the end, I chose these cute lil mini caramel apple doughnuts because they seemed so seasonally appropriate. I do love pumpkin but wanted to show apple some love. :) Recipe runner ups included this Apple-Stuffed Bacon Wrapped Pork that Nichole just posted last week, Hawaiian Burgers, Caramel Grapes, and Coconut Lime Cookie Bars. If it was summer, those cookie bars would’ve definitely won! Aside from being into pretty much every one of Nichole’s recipes, I think the two of us could be BFFs. We’re the same age, both have two cats, and ideally would either be baking or reading on the beach. Yup, sounds about right. :) While I have a 30 before 30 challenge, Nichole had a 28 before 28 challenge. How fun! [And speaking of fun, read this post about Nichole’s mom and her burning water habit. Hilarious!]

Baked Caramel Apple Mini Doughnuts | thepajamachef.com #secretrecipeclub #src

Anyways, I was psyched to see this recipe because I a) love caramel apples but hate biting into one, b) have a mini doughnut pan that I never use, and c) they just sounded AMAZING! And that they were. These mini doughnuts were a little bite of fall, perfect for dessert or breakfast. One word of caution though–the caramel sauce is super hot, so don’t take a bite until it’s cooled down a bit. The roof of your mouth will thank you! :) [I learned that from Nichole’s first hand experience.]

Baked Caramel Apple Mini Doughnuts | thepajamachef.com #secretrecipeclub #src

Since I only have one doughnut pan, and wasn’t about to mess with letting the pan cool down in between batches, I used half the batter in my mini muffin pan for some adorable doughnut holes. So if you don’t have a doughnut pan, try that out! You may just need some additional caramel sauce for dipping since they’re a tiny bit bigger. Hope you enjoy! Thanks, Nichole for the great recipe! :)

Baked Caramel Apple Mini Doughnuts | thepajamachef.com #secretrecipeclub #src

one year ago: Baked Strawberry French Toast with Strawberry Maple Syrup
three years ago: Pumpkin Spread
four years ago: Pumpkin Pie Baked Oatmeal

Baked Caramel Apple Mini Doughnuts

  • Servings: 24 doughnuts
  • Time: 60 minutes
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from Cookaholic Wife
Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup apple, minced
  • 1 cup chewy caramel candies – I used Kraft caramels, the ones they advertise for making caramel apples
  • 1 tablespoon milk

Directions:

Grease mini doughnut pan(s) or mini muffin pan(s) with cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and cinnamon. In a measuring cup, whisk together egg, sugars, oil, applesauce, and vanilla. Pour wet ingredients into the dry and stir until combined. Fold in apples.

Spoon batter into prepared pans, filling about halfway.

Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Remove to a wire rack to cool for 5-10 minutes.

Meanwhile, place caramels and milk in a microwave safe small bowl. Microwave for 30 second increments on 50% power, stirring after each burst. Repeat until a caramel sauce comes together.

Dip doughnuts into caramel sauce then return to wire rack to set. Serve warm! Enjoy within a couple days, but they are definitely best the first day.

Be sure to check out other recipes from the Secret Recipe Club today!

Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Icing

So, I don’t use my breadmaker nearly enough. Maybe because it’s a bit clunky, maybe because I’m a little too lazy to pull everything out of the cabinet to get it out. But I really should use it more. Especially when it makes delicious treats like these, at a fraction of the effort as regular from-scratch cinnamon rolls take!

Well, I suppose to be perfectly honest, these babies don’t come out of the breadmaker perfectly formed or anything, so there is still some work to be done… but really not much at all. These cinnamon rolls are perfectly sweet, perfectly gooey, and have just the right ratio of filling to icing to satisfy even the toughest critic. An unexpected burst of Maple syrup in the icing takes these cinnamon rolls one step further from amazing to incredible. Or is it incredible to extraordinary? Or wonderful to fantastic? No matter how you put it… these are worth pulling out the ‘ole breadmaker for. If you don’t think two people can polish these off… think again. You can do it! :)

Can ‘o cinnamon rolls, you don’t got nothing on these!

Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls [from Faithful Provisions, icing from Taste of Home]
click to print

Ingredients:

for the dough

  • 1 1/8 cup warm milk [microwave for 30 seconds]
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 egg, plus 2 egg whites, beaten
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 cups bread flour
  • 2 1/2 cups white flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons bread machine yeast

for the filling

  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup brown sugar, not packed
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon

for the icing

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1-2 teaspoons milk

Directions:

Put dough ingredients in breadmaker according to the manufacturer’s directions [for mine this is liquids and salt, dry, yeast], and run on dough cycle.

Remove dough from breadmaker when cycle is complete, then preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease two round cake pans or pie dishes and set aside.

Roll dough out into a large rectangle, approximately 12×24 inches.

Brush with melted butter, then cover evenly with brown sugar and cinnamon. Be sure to leave about a 1-inch gap around the edges; otherwise filling will spill out when you roll.

Roll up dough lengthwise, then cut in half. Continue cutting each piece in half until you have 16 pieces total. Place in prepared pans.

At this point, you have three options:

  1. Refrigerate overnight and bake in the morning, following steps below [bring to room temperature 30 minutes or so before baking].
  2. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes [I find this is necessary in colder temperatures].
  3. Bake and enjoy now!

Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

While baking, mix together icing. Whisk together powdered sugar with maple syrup and butter, then add enough milk to reach spreading consistency. Ice cinnamon rolls immediately after coming out of the oven, serve, and enjoy!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

Welcome to Day Two of Pumpkin Week on The Pajama Chef! It’s a good week, huh?

fall scene

Beautiful trees and water... I wish this was the view from my balcony!

Are you enjoying your fall? I am. I love how the leaves are changing. I love the chill in the air. I love the need for a warm breakfast. Yesterday we saw the savory side of pumpkin. The opposite of savory is sweet. And that is just what is being served today… in breakfast format!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Roll

The goods, folks.

To me, cinnamon rolls are one of the most indulgent treats available to man. Warm, rich, gooey, utterly delightful pastry dough coupled with a filling of sweet and spicy cinnamon and topped with out of this world frosting. Altogether, cinnamon rolls are almost too sweet to be enjoyable. Almost, but not quite. I still enjoy them, don’t you fret.

I developed my love of cinnamon rolls by going to Cinnabon with my Grandpa as a child. We’d go to the mall for a treat when he babysat me after preschool or as a break during back to school shopping along with Grandma. Nowadays, I live in a town devoid of Cinnabon, so  I must remedy my cravings by making my own cinnamon rolls. And let me tell you.. they are almost as good as my childhood memories. But no recipe can top good memories, right?

This time, instead of using my traditional cinnamon roll recipe, I used a recipe found at Good Life Eats for a Pumpkin Cinnamon Roll. Best. Decision. Ever.

Good Life Eats placed pumpkin in the dough. I like my pumpkin intense, so I wasn’t about to stop there. I added it to the filling as well, switching out the butter for the pumpkin. Yum. Great choice. I took the easy way out with the kneading and rising parts of dough-making this time by using my breadmaker, but these rolls can be prepared by hand instead. Initially, I considered using my own frosting recipe, but in the end, went with the suggested cream cheese frosting. Another great choice, as it is practically a Cinnabon knock-off. Bliss!

If you haven’t figured it out by now, these are not your average cinnamon rolls. They are better than average. They are delicious and mouthwatering and will satisfy any sweet tooth. They are pumpkin-y and cinnamon-y and sweet to an extreme. I can’t wait to make them again.

pumpkin cinnamon rolls in pan

Waterfalls of frosting... oh how I love thee!

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting [from Good Life Eats]

Ingredients:

Dough

  • 1/4 cup warm water [not hot, about 110 degrees]
  • 1 package active dry yeast [about 2 1/4 teaspoons]
  • 1/3 cup warm milk
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

Filling:

  • 1/4 cup pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 4 ounces butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 cups powdered sugar

Directions:

To make the dough, add all ingredients to the pan of your breadmaker according to the manufacturer’s directions. My breadmaker calls for liquids and salt, then dry ingredients, then yeast, but yours may be different. [Liquids=water, milk, egg, pumpkin, butter.] Turn on the breadmaker using the “dough” setting. When dough is prepared, remove from the pan and turn out the dough on a floured work surface or countertop. **if you do not have a breadmaker, you can make the dough by hand using these instructions.

Meanwhile, while dough is rising in the breadmaker or in a bowl, make the filling. Whisk together all ingredients except pumpkin and set aside. Grease a 9 inch round springform or cake pan with cooking spray and set aside.

After dough has been turned out onto the countertop, use a rolling pin or your hands to shape the dough into a 12 by 16 inch rectangle. Spread the 1/4 cup pumpkin over dough, leaving about an inch margin on all sides and then top with the sugar/spice mixture.

Roll the dough into a log the long way; it may stretch out some. Use a sharp, serrated knife and cut the log into 10 slices. Place in prepared pan.

The recipe can be prepared up to this point the night before, then covered with foil and refrigerated. In the morning, remove the pan from the refrigerator and take off the foil. Continue with below recipe, noting that the initial rising time may be longer because the dough is chilled.

Cover pan with a towel, and let rise until doubled, about 40-50 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and bake for about 25-35 minutes, or until rolls are golden brown and pull away from the edge of the pan slightly.

During the baking process, make the frosting. In a food processor, combine cream cheese, vanilla, butter, and lemon juice and pulse until smooth. Mix in the powdered sugar in 1/3 cup increments, beating in between additions, until all sugar is full incorporated. [If you need to use more than 2 cups to reach desired consistency, then feel free to do so!]

Frost warm rolls and enjoy immediately! Leftovers can be frozen… if there are any!

Click here for the printable version: pumpkin cinnamon rolls with cream cheese frosting

Question of the Day: What’s your favorite special food memory?