Easy Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

4.34 from 3 votes

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Our celebration of fall is going full force, here on Platter Talk.  Cooler temps, falling leaves, and Green Bay Packer games.  These are all sure signs of autumn here in Wisconsin.  Of course there are many other signs of fall here and apples are high on that list. That’s where these whole wheat apple muffins come in to play!

Some muffins on a plate.

About these

A group of muffins and some apples.

We haven’t made a ton of muffins on this site and after putting these together with some of our very own honey crisps, I have to ask myself “Why?”    We are very much in an apple-type of theme here in our kitchen at home.  Over the past day we’ve had apple butter cooking, applesauce in the making (for use in this recipe),  and of course today’s featured Easy Whole Wheat Apple Muffins.

Some muffins and an apple.

These muffins, in my humble opinion, are far superior to those in most bakeries, delis, and food stores.  They’re light, they’re spongy, moist, and all-in-all, mouthwatering.

A bunch of muffins with apples.

I decided to have a little fun with this recipe and in addition to conventional size muffins, I found one of our mini-muffin pans to prepare these in.   In mini-form, these  little apple muffins make delightful bite-sized treats that are great for work, school, church, and special parties.  Of course they taste best when eaten in your own kitchen, preferably with a hot cup of coffee or an ice-cold glass of milk.

A close-up of a muffin.Besides whole wheat flour, the recipe I was following for these calls for pastry flour.  This was somewhat of a wild card for me,  being unfamiliar with that type of flour.  I learned that pastry flour is a high-starch and low-protein flour. It falls somewhere between the (average) 8% protein content of cake flour and the 10-11% protein content of all purpose flour. This means that it is similar to, but not the same as, cake flour.   Doing some reading on pastry flour, I learned that you can substitute equal amounts of a combination of cake flour and all-purpose flour and achieve good results.   I also learned that for the purpose of these muffins, equal parts whole wheat and all-purpose flour work just fine.  Better than fine, even.   To that end, I’m predicting these apple muffins won’t last in our household.   Happy fall.   -Dan

A close-up of a muffin split in half.

Easy Whole Wheat Apple Muffins

4.34 from 3 votes
Adapted from recipe by Ellie Krieger
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Yield: 12 servings


  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup low fat buttermilk
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4-inch pieces


  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Coat a 12-capacity standard muffin pan with cooking spray.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the pecans, 2 tablespoons of the brown sugar and the cinnamon.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the all-purpose and whole wheat flour and baking soda.
  • In a large bowl, whisk the remaining 3/4 cup sugar and the oil until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Whisk in the applesauce and vanilla.
  • Whisk in the flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the buttermilk. Whisk just until combined. Gently stir in the apple chunks.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared muffin pan and sprinkle with the pecan mixture. Tap the pan on the counter a few times to remove any air bubbles. Bake until a wooden pick inserted in center of one of the muffins comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Let cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Run a knife around the muffins to loosen them and unmold. Cool completely on the rack.


No buttermilk? No worries. Here are two great substitutions for buttermilk. I used the first method for these.
1. For 1 cup of buttermilk, substitute 3/4 cup greek yogurt mixed with 1/4 cup water.
2 For 1 cup of buttermilk, substitute 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice plus enough milk to measure 1 cup. Stir, then let stand for 5 minutes.


Calories: 215kcal, Carbohydrates: 34g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 27mg, Sodium: 122mg, Potassium: 139mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 17g, Vitamin A: 60IU, Vitamin C: 1.1mg, Calcium: 40mg, Iron: 1.2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @plattertalk or tag #plattertalk!

Meet the Platter Talk Guys

Dan & Scott split their time between Wisconsin and Southwest Florida and are dads to six boys. Good food runs through their veins, and they love showing others how to cook easy recipes.

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4.34 from 3 votes (2 ratings without comment)

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  1. These look so good. I’m doing some healthy meals next week, so I’ve been looking for yummy and healthy goodies. This is perfect. Thanks!

  2. Thank you so much for attending week 8 of #PureBlogLove and linking your fantastic blog post. Apple and pecan sounds lovely. I love the use of buttermilk, doesn’t it just give the most fantastic texture?, I can’t wait to see what you have in store for our party next week Thursday 8 PM EST- Sundays at midnight. Your post has been added to the #PureBlogLove Pinterest board for all to see 🙂 Have a great day!

  3. Bring on the Fall/Winter cooking and baking! These muffins look great. It’s always good to at least start off the Holiday season with healthier recipes….so come Christmas I haven’t gained 20 lbs! Love how moist and soft they look

  4. 5 stars
    Love these…especially your healthier tweaks! I completely agree with Renee about using whole wheat pastry flour as it gives cakes and muffins a wonderful texture and “crumb.” If you try it, I recommend sifting it twice which will help add “lightness.” Also, if you can, it helps to let the batter sit for 30 minutes to allow the fiber to be absorbed by the liquid. A little extra effort, but so worth it!

  5. When a baking recipe calls for all whole wheat flour, I generally prefer to use whole wheat pastry flour. Try it sometime! You will love the crumb it gives your baked goods! I have been all about apple in my house lately too. I love the freshness of apples this time of year! Your muffins look so good…I’ll be adding this one to my list of goodies I’m making next week!!

  6. I love reading your blog. You write so well and it flows so nicely and of course these muffins look spectacular!

  7. There is no doubt that these are better than a bakery muffin. And my opinion is not humble since this is not my recipe—-I can say it forthright. Lol. The selection of ingredients support my case as well as the photo. Now if I could have an instant taste test, life would be perfect. Smiles—-