Apple Oatmeal Crumble Muffins

It's Muffin Monday! I just made that up.

Here's what I love about muffins: everything. They're perfect when you have overnight guests, after school snacks and they're my ultimate fave breakfast. You are super smart if you stock your freezer with them for unexpected events or simple snack needs. They're "healthy" cake.

Recently, I was sitting at my desk and got super hungry. All I wanted was an oatmeal muffin with apples and crumb topping. Like, absolutely nothing else would do. At all.

If you scour the internet, you'll find several lovely recipes. Some of them require toasting the oats. Others want Irish oatmeal made first. None that I liked incorporated apples and crumb topping. Plus, I wanted SIMPLE. Easy. And immediate.

In 45 minutes start to finish, I had one of these warm and heading toward my mouth. It was so good I had to eat another one after they cooled to make sure I wasn't just in a bubble of instant gratification. These are good. Spicy, hearty and sweet, these cover breakfast and dessert. 

I have to thank And Then We Saved for the base of the recipe. I added in an apple and then baked in some crumb topping originally sourced from Ina Garten. 

If you have guests coming during the holidays, these will have you covered. If not, 




Apple Oatmeal Crumble Muffins
Makes 12 ample muffins

1 C milk (any kind - I used almond milk)
1 C old-fashioned oats
1 egg
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 C flour
1/4 C sugar
1 t baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 t allspice or cloves
1/4 t nutmeg
one Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and diced 

Crumb Topping:
1/4 C sugar
1/3 C brown sugar
1 t cinnamon
1/8 t nutmeg
1 stick butter, melted
1-1/3 C flour

1. In a small bowl, combine milk and oats. Soak 15 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, make the crumb topping. Whisk together the sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg in a bowl.  Stir in the melted butter. Then, stir in the flour and mix well. Set aside.

3. Preheat oven to 400°.  Line one 12-muffin pan with paper muffin cups and set aside.

4. In a large bowl, beat together egg and oil until mixed. 
Stir in oatmeal mixture.

5. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking soda, spices and salt.

6. Fold flour mixture into batter until combined and then fold in the diced apples.

7. Scoop batter into prepared muffin cups. Crumble topping over each. You can pack the crumble on, but you may have a little topping left over. 

8. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned and domed. Muffin should spring back when gently touched with your finger. 

9. Cool 15-45 minutes (whatever you can handle!) and munch away!

Best Ever Carrot Cake

What a whirlwind October was. It was so busy that here we are one week into November and I'm still recovering!

The best way I know to recover from anything is by baking up something delicious and filled with love. (Also related: this blog's current name!)

This recipe has been handed down and modified several times along the way. Personally, it's at its very best right now. Spicy, dense and the perfect amount of crunchy & soft, this carrot cake will delight any and all.

Let me know what you think. Here goes!



Best Ever Carrot Cake
Makes one three-layer 9" cake

Dry ingredients:
2 C flour
2 t cinnamon
1 t ginger
1 t nutmeg
1 t allspice
2 t baking soda

Wet ingredients:
1 C oil
2 C sugar
4 eggs
2 t vanilla

Ingredients to fold in last:
3 C shredded carrots
1 8 oz can crushed pineapple, including juices

Cream Cheese Icing:
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 C butter, softened
4-1/2 C powdered sugar, sifted for best texture
1 t vanilla

1 C shopped, toasted walnuts

Here's what we do:
1. Preheat your oven to 350.

2. Butter and flour three 9" cake pans.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Set aside.

4. Using a hand or stand mixer, blend wet ingredients until thoroughly combined.

5. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ones and mix on medium speed until blended - maybe 2 minutes, max.

6. Fold in the carrots and pineapple (including juices) until the batter comes together.

7. Pour evenly into your three prepared pans and bake for 30-40 minutes or until each layer is slightly browned and set.

8. Let cakes cool and whip up the icing.

9. Blend butter and cream cheese until thoroughly combined. Add in half the powdered sugar and blend until mixed in. Add the rest of the sugar and beat on medium-high until it reaches a creamy, soft texture. Add in the vanilla and mix quickly to incorporate.

10. Toast the walnuts on a baking sheet 5-8 minutes at 350. Let cool completely.

11. Once the cake is cooled, frost using the cream cheese icing. Your filling layers will be a bit sparse but, trust me, you don't need more than this amount of frosting or it'll be sweet overload.

12. Using your clean hands, gently press the walnuts into the sides of the cake. You can chop them as fine as you like or as coarse as you like, depending upon your preference.

13. Lucky thirteen. Slice and EAT!