caramel apple cupcakesThe last thing you probably want to think about after last night's sugar fest is more sweets, but soon that fog will lift and you'll be searching for something to bring to that tailgate party or even for Thanksgiving dessert recipes (it's just 23 days away!). These caramel apple cupcakes with cream cheese frosting are a perfect fit for either, or anytime really. 

This recipe from The Real Women of Philadelphia comes complete with a video if you like visual help as well. They're easy to whip up, as the base is a boxed spice cake mix. You add applesauce and some other ingredients to spice it up even more, and the cream cheese frosting on top puts them over the top.

  • 1 box spice cake mix
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup apple juice or water
  • 2 cups chunky applesauce
  • 1/2 cup caramel apple dip
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped glazed pecans
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 8 ounces Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 cup caramel apple dip
  • 3 cups powdered sugar


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with 12 cupcake liners.

In a large mixing bowl, mix cake mix, oil, apple juice, chunky applesauce, and caramel apple dip until well blended.

Add eggs one at a time mixing well after each. Stir in cinnamon. Add chopped pecans reserving some for tops of cupcakes.

Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full and bake 20 to 30 minutes until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove to a sheet pan and refrigerate 10 to 15 minutes until cool.

Meanwhile make the frosting. In large mixing bowl cream together butter, cream cheese, vanilla, and caramel apple dip until fluffy. Add powdered sugar one cup at a time until incorporated and well blended, about 3 minutes.

Fill piping bag with frosting fitted with large tube or no tube at all. Pipe frosting onto cooled cupcakes and sprinkle tops with reserved chopped glazed pecans. 

Note: You can also omit the pecans and drizzle extra caramel sauce over the tops of the cupcakes.