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Cider Doughnut Muffins

Cider Doughnut Muffins

Delicious doughnut-like muffins, perfect for the fall.MORE+LESS-

Updated November 11, 2014

2

tablespoons thawed apple juice concentrate

1 1/2

teaspoon baking powder

2 2/3

cups unbleached, all-purpose flour

3

tablespoons butter (for topping)

6

tablespoons cinnamon sugar

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  • 1

    Preheat oven to 425°F (375°F if using a dark, non-stick tin). Place baking cups in a 12-cup muffin tin and lightly grease the insides. Set aside.

  • 2

    In the bowl of a stand mixer, thoroughly whisk together butter, oil, sugars and apple juice concentrate. Add eggs, beating to combine, until mixture is smooth. Stir in baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt.

  • 3

    Add the flour to the butter mixture alternately with the milk, starting and ending with the flour. Stir to combine well.

  • 4

    Spoon or scoop batter evenly into muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted into one of the center muffins comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool 10 minutes.

  • 5

    Melt butter for topping. Dip the tops of each muffin into the butter, then roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place on a cooling rack to cool completely.

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More About This Recipe

  • To me, doughnuts are a real treat.

    I love biting into that cake-like dough topped with a sugary glaze. But muffins are equally as tasty, and sometimes hit the spot even better than a doughnut. From blueberry to apple to chocolate chip, a muffin can make any day brighter.

    But a doughnut muffin? That is the best of both worlds.

    These Cider Doughnut Muffins are great to make for a quick breakfast or yummy snack during these crisp, cool fall months. They combine the texture of a doughnut with the ease of making muffins (no doughnut pans or hot oil baths for frying needed). Plus, the flavors of apple, cinnamon and sugar really shine through with the additions of cider or apple juice concentrate and a buttery, cinnamon-sugar topping.

    These doughnut muffins make great on-the-go school day breakfasts or after-school treats. They’re also perfect for Sunday brunches, potlucks or other get-togethers. Of course, you can make a whole batch just because and enjoy them yourself, too – let’s be honest, “just because” is reason enough to bake something this delicious.

    I personally prefer to make this recipe as simple as possible, so the doughnut texture can stand out, but for fans of extra crunch and flavor, feel free to add a little chopped apple or nuts to the mix. You also can swap out the cinnamon-sugar topping for your favorite streusel topping or doughnut glaze. When you’re making something called a doughnut muffin, you really can’t go wrong.

    Go Nuts with Doughnuts

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    Stephanie (aka Girl Versus Dough) joined Tablespoon to share her adventures in the kitchen. Check out Stephanie’s Tablespoon member profile and keep checking back for her own personal recipes on Tablespoon!


Cider doughnut muffins

I’ve had this here blog now for about two years. It’s turned into more of a blessing than I could ever have imagined — not to mention the fact that I’ve made a lot of recipe testers happy. I am grateful for what has happened and even more excited for where my baking adventures will continue to take me. And I’m grateful that you, dear friend, have come along for the ride.

One of my most faithful readers (and avid recipe testers) was my grandfather. Grandpa Jim would always be willing to try whatever I made, even when I was a little girl working my make-believe Meadowside Restaurant (complete with a handwritten menu) at his kitchen table. That man would eat whatever I put in front of him, even if it looked like inedible green slop. I like to think that in more recent years, my recipes were a little more appetizing. But I never had any doubt that my grandfather would be willing to sample something I made. And I beamed at his approval.

Grandpa Jim died on Friday. I was there to say goodbye to him, to hold his hand and pray for him in the last few hours of his rich, full life. There is no one in my world who can fill the void that my grandfather filled, and I am heartbroken. Even as I type this, my heart crumbles and I am reduced to a fountain of tears at the thought that I can’t give him one more recipe to try. I think he really would have enjoyed these muffins.

I made these muffins at a happier time, before my grandpa was in the hospital, hooked up to cords and monitors and unconscious. I made them when I thought he’d still have a chance to eat something I’d baked, so I didn’t put much thought into deciding to make these. If I had known — if I had just known that an e-mail, a phone call, a visit, a meal I prepared would be my last with him, I would have made it more worthwhile. I would have told him how dang much I loved him, how he meant more to me than I could ever describe, how he was the most loyal, the most selfless, the most loving and caring grandfather than any granddaughter could have asked for. And I would have made him a better recipe.

But I also know that, even if these muffins were made out of anchovies and gummy worms, he’d still eat them with a smile on his face and tell me how delicious they were. Because that’s just the kind of man he was. And I will never forget that kind of love.

I don’t know how to end this. Endings are often messy, especially when they are so abrupt and unexpected — like ugly, jagged edges that pierce the very core of your being. I suppose all I can say is this: Love your loved ones like there is no tomorrow. Because sometimes, there just isn’t one. And find comfort in the knowledge that someone out there, near or far, loves you and what you have to give, whether it’s green slop or a plate of muffins.

To them, all of it is gold.

Cider Doughnut Muffins
Adapted from King Arthur Flour

Yields: 12 muffins

Ingredients:
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp thawed apple juice concentrate
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
pinch of nutmeg
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp salt
2 2/3 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 cup milk

Topping —
3 tbsp butter
6 tbsp cinnamon-sugar mixture

Directions:
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (375 degrees F if using a dark, non-stick tin). Place baking cups in a 12-cup muffin tin and lightly grease the insides. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, thoroughly whisk together butter, oil, sugars and apple juice concentrate. Add eggs, beating to combine, until mixture is smooth. Stir in baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt.
Add the flour to the butter mixture alternately with the milk, starting and ending with the flour. Stir to combine well.
Spoon or scoop batter evenly into muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted into one of the center muffins comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool 10 minutes.
Melt butter for topping. Dip the tops of each muffin into the butter, then roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place on a cooling rack to cool completely.


Apple Cider Doughnut Muffins

Here is the apple cider post I promised last week. Apple Cider Doughnut Muffins- I think that may be enough said? I have been making a plain and a chocolate version of doughnut muffins that my family loves for several years now. So, when I had a cider doughnut at a car show that we brought our boys to, I had the idea to transform the plain doughnut muffin into a cider muffin. I really wanted to make the muffin taste like a cider doughnut with apple cider flavor shining through. I think I succeeded with this recipe. I think they taste almost just like a moist cider doughnut, minus all the work and mess of rolling, cutting, and frying. Works for me!

An important step to this recipe is boiling and reducing down the apple cider. This really concentrates the flavor and helps the cider flavor really come through. It’s an easy step and you can do it a day or two ahead if you want. I also highly recommend using parchment liners, if you can find them, as after several tests, I think the muffins really cook the best in them. You can use also use regular liners and lightly grease them or just grease the tins (least recommended method). I hope you enjoy these as much as we have- there were no complaints in this house having to eat so many test batches!


Cider Doughnut Muffins - Recipes

Besides the iconic wild blueberry, Maine apples are one of my favorite year-round fruits. An important crop for the early Colonial settlers, apples were a vital part of homesteading life and used in numerous ways including as a beverage (hard and sweet cider), for animal feed, in baking, cooking and dried, and as a sweetener.

Apple cider syrup or apple molasses was once a kitchen staple, in particular during the Revolutionary War times, as molasses and sugar were imported from British plantations in the West Indies. Much like maple syrup, apple cider syrup is made by boiling down apple cider until it thickens to a syrup consistency about 1/7 the volume. The product has a long shelf life and was a nutritious way for folks to sweeten and flavor foods. Depending upon the harvest, the apple syrup flavor would vary in complexity and taste, just like a fine wine.

Thanks to our early ancestors and dedicated heritage apple saviors, we can still enjoy the subtle flavors, textures and aromas of dozens of varieties of America’s favorite fruit. Apple picking is a favorite family activity, and the good times are easily continued in the kitchen. Learning to peel and core an apple is an invaluable skill, appropriate for kindergarten–age and older folks. Knife knowledge is the foundation of becoming a chef, and often the difference between loving or hating to cook.

The recipe for Cider Donut Muffins reminds of the donuts our family used to enjoy every fall when we visited Maine orchards and cider houses. The cake-like texture of the batter comes from creaming the butter and sugar, while the flavor comes from boiling down apple cider to make light syrup. Rolling the muffins in butter and then a spiced sugar mixture makes for a delicious, melt-in-your mouth creation.