Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes with Crispy Bacon Sprinkles

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Bacon

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Crispy Bacon Sprinkles

Sweet and Seasonal Cupcakes with All the Flavors of your Favorite Pancake Breakfast!  These Cupcakes are Baked with Buttermilk, Apples, & Cinnamon, with a Luscious Maple Swiss Meringue Buttercream and a Sprinkling of Crisp Bacon!

I have to admit, I was a little uncertain when Dani first approached me about being a part of Mystery Dish.  You see, the whole concept is based upon a tv show that I have never even seen…!

But once I got going with it, I was so happy to have been invited!

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Dani gave us a list of ingredients, and all 11 of us were tasked with coming up with a fabulous recipe that included at least 2 of the ingredients.  I had so much fun brainstorming ideas!

Here are the contents of our “Mystery Box”:

Apples
Cheddar Cheese
Bacon
Cinnamon
Maple Syrup
Peanut Butter

I chose to use apples, bacon, cinnamon, and maple syrup.

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Bacon

I had seen this recipe a while back and thought the concept was just brilliant.  I knew I wanted to put my own spin on it, and Mystery Dish gave me the perfect excuse!

It took me a few tries to get the recipe right.  It all started with my Simply Perfect Vanilla Cupcake recipe.  This has been, by far, the most popular post on my blog since I originally published it back in July!  It really makes a stellar cupcake!

Simply Perfect Vanilla Cupcakes

Simply Perfect Vanilla Cupcakes with Vanilla Bean Swiss Meringue Buttercream

But we are here to talk about apple cinnamon pancake cupcakes.  To get the pancakey flavor, I wanted to include buttermilk, brown sugar, and maple syrup.  Subbing those ingredients in, cup for cup, resulted in a flatter cupcake with a bit of a chewy texture.  I like fluffy, moist and light!  So I added another egg, upped the leavening, and switched to 100% cake flour.  (If you don’t know about cake flour, it’s got a lower gluten content and it can be purchased easily, for $3 or $4, in the baking aisle at a regular supermarket.  Or you can purchase it through my shop.)  The result was perfect!  So fluffy and light, with a fine crumb and a slightly domed top.  I just love the hint of warm cinnamon spice and the subtle tang from the buttermilk, and the brown sugar and fresh apple keep it super moist.

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Bacon

To further enhance the apple theme, you’ll want to stuff them with a dab of apple butter.  Do not skip this step, friend!  It’s just what the cupcakes need to really bring out the apple vibe.  Just insert a sharp knife into the top of the cupcake, at an angle, and saw around in a circle to make a little well for the sticky goodness.

A generous swirl of maple swiss meringue buttercream and a sprinkling of crispy bacon adds the perfect breakfasty touch!

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Bacon

There are times when the idea of maple doesn’t really appeal to me.  I took way too much fenugreek tincture when I was nursing, and I think it messed with my brain/tastebuds.  (Fenugreek is used to infuse flavor into lower-quality pancake syrups.)  But omg.  This maple buttercream is a completely different story.  The maple flavor is subtle, and the butter just brings something so wonderful out of it.  It really tastes like the most amazing pancake breakfast, with a pool of melty butter, and warm syrup drizzled on top.  The crisp bacon adds a savory touch, which I really enjoyed, but if that sounds a little “out there,” to you, feel free to omit.  It’s still so incredible, even without!

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Yield: Makes 18 cupcakes

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes

Sweet and Seasonal Cupcakes with All the Flavors of your Favorite Pancake Breakfast! These Cupcakes are Baked with Buttermilk, Apples, & Cinnamon, with a Luscious Maple Swiss Meringue Buttercream and a Sprinkling of Crisp Bacon!

Ingredients

    For the Cupcakes:
  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar (lightly packed)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, cold, & cut into small cubes
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups fresh apple, peeled, cored, and grated (about 2 medium sized apples)
  • about 3/4 cup of prepared apple butter
  • For the Topping:
  • 4 slices thick-cut bacon
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened but cool

Instructions

    To Make the Cupcakes:
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the first 6 (dry) ingredients.
  3. Add the butter, and blend on low speed, until the mixture resembles moist crumbs.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, and stir until well combined.
  5. Add the buttermilk, maple syrup, and vanilla, stirring to combine.
  6. Scrape the bottom of the mixing bowl with a rubber spatula, and fold in the grated apple.
  7. Fill each well of a lined cupcake pan 2/3 full, and bake for 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a cupcake comes out clean, and the edges are just barely beginning to brown.
  8. Cool completely, and cut a small well into the top of each cupcake. Fill the well with about a teaspoon of apple butter.
  9. To Make the Topping:
  10. Cut the bacon slices in half lengthwise, and then slice into rectangles about 1/8-inch wide.
  11. Place in a cold skillet over low heat, and cook until crisp. Drain on paper towels and set aside.
  12. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg whites, sugar, and maple syrup together slightly, to combine.
  13. Place the bowl over a medium pot of simmering water, on medium-low heat. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until the sugars have completely dissolved and the mixture no longer feels gritty when rubbed between the thumb and forefinger.
  14. Remove from heat and whip on high speed until the meringue holds stiff peaks and the mixture has completely cooled. There should be no hint of warmth left.
  15. Add in the butter, a tablespoon at a time, whipping on high speed. If the mixture begins to look curdled, keep whipping until it comes back together before adding more butter. If it is too runny to pipe or spread properly, place the mixture (in the mixing bowl) into the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes, and whip again, until fluffy and thick.
  16. Pipe the maple buttercream on the cupcakes, and garnish with crisp bacon sprinkles.
http://bakingamoment.com/apple-cinnamon-pancake-cupcakes/

Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Bacon

Big thank yous go out to Dani of See Hubby Cook, for including me in this fun challenge and helping to make Apple Cinnamon Pancake Cupcakes a reality.  ;)

I can’t wait to see what my October Mystery Box Ingredients will be!

Apple Pancake Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream and Bacon

*This post was featured on Buns In My Oven’s What’s Cookin’ Wednesday Link Party*

I Was Featured

**This post was featured on What’s Cooking with Ruthie’s Super Saturday Show and Tell Link Party**

***This post was featured on Made From Pinterest’s Share It Sunday Link Party***

 

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For now, be sure to check out all the other fabulous recipes from Mystery Dish Gals:

Maple Bacon Cookies

Soft Baked Maple Bacon Cookies by Nora of Buttercream Fanatic

Apple Bacon Cheddar Soup by Dani & JT of See Hubby Cook

Apple Bacon Cheddar Soup by Dani & JT of See Hubby Cook

Apple Cinnamon Crepes with Maple Mascarpone Topping by Krista at Joyful Healthy Eats

Apple Cinnamon Crepes with Maple Mascarpone Topping by Krista of Joyful Healthy Eats

Peanut Butter Apple Crisp by Christine at I Dig Pinterest

Peanut Butter Apple Crisp by Christine of I Dig Pinterest

Apple Muffins with Nut Crumble Topping by Jen of Yummy Healthy Easy

Apple Muffins with Nut Crumble Topping by Jen of Yummy Healthy Easy

Brie, Apple, Bacon Grilled Cheese by Kat of I Want Crazy:

Brie, Apple, Bacon Grilled Cheese by Kat of I Want Crazy

Maple Apple Pie-Crisp with Cheddar Crust & Bacon Crumb Topping by Sarah K. of The Pajama Chef

Maple Apple Pie-Crisp with Cheddar Crust & Bacon Crumb Topping by Sarah K. of The Pajama Chef

Cheesy Bacon Monkey Bread by Sherri of The Well Floured Kitchen

Cheesy Bacon Monkey Bread by Sherri of The Well Floured Kitchen

Apple Peanut Butter Muffins with Cinnamon Glaze by Meriem of Culinary Couture

Apple Peanut Butter Muffins with Cinnamon Glaze by Meriem of Culinary Couture

A Fall Inspired Apple Chicken Salad by Amanda of The Taste Tester

A Fall Inspired Apple Chicken Salad by Amanda of The Taste Tester

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About Allie {Baking A Moment}

Hi! I'm Allie, and when I find myself with a few free moments, I head straight for my kitchen! I love to bake, and I especially love pastry and desserts.

You can also follow me via: RSS | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | G+ | BlogLovin'

Comments

  1. OMG! Great minds think alike!! I just made pancake cupcakes over the weekend! These look fabulous, Allie! Pinning these beauties!
    Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet recently posted…Apple Pie Spice Latte RecipeMy Profile

  2. I am SO GLAD you took me up on the offer without even knowing the show. I am a cupcake FREAK so when I saw what you made I may or may not have whooped for joy. ;-) Bonus: these can totally sub for breakfast, right? I mean…there’s breakfast flavors. Legit breakfast.
    I’m sticking with that logic so I can get away with it.
    Dani @ See Hubby Cook recently posted…Apple Bacon Cheddar Soup – Sept Mystery DishMy Profile

  3. Ahhh apple butter! I just tried some for the first time the other day at a apple festival and it was amazing! I bet these taste fantabulous! Also, I LOVE LOVE LOVE that cupcake stand from the vanilla cupcake post…where did you get it?
    Mimi @ Culinary Couture recently posted…Apple Peanut Butter Muffins with Cinnamon GlazeMy Profile

    • Hey Mimi! The cupcake stand was from Joss & Main. So happy you liked! The apple flavor was a little lacking before I thought of adding apple butter, and that just took them over the top! Thanks so much and have a great week, dear!

  4. OMG!!!!!!!!!!! These cupcakes look SOOOOOOO DARN PRETTTTTTTY!!!! It looks like something straight out of a food magazine! Soooooo PERFECT!!!! this is breakfast in a cupcake! Such a cute idea !!!! LOVEEEEED IT! :)
    Samina | The Cupcake Confession recently posted…Spiced Chicken Mince in Homemade Puff PastryMy Profile

    • Thank you so much, Samina! I can’t take full credit for the idea, I did see pancake cupcakes on another blog. I just put my own spin on it ;)

      Sometimes I just get lucky with the pics. I don’t know what it was that day, but the photos really came out well! I wish all my posts looked as pretty as this one turned out!

  5. Wow! Apple butter is genius! I probably won’t be able to help myself by only adding a dab of it but I will try my hardest. I love anything turned into a cupcake and turning breakfast into a cupcake is even better! Thanks for being a rockstar!
    Kat recently posted…Brie, Apple & Bacon Grilled Cheese: Mystery DishMy Profile

  6. I’m spechless, these are so original and awesome!! What a fabulous idea, that buttercream looks so so awesome! Also, you’re like the cupcake master, yours always come out flawless ;-)
    Consuelo @ Honey & Figs recently posted…Spicy Hummus, Grilled Chicken and Vegetables QuesadillasMy Profile

  7. Oh my gosh. I gasped at least three times while reading this description! There are so many elements of surprise – the buttermilk! the apple butter! the maple buttercream! And the crispy bacon sprinkles are totally brilliant!
    Nora (Buttercream Fanatic) recently posted…Soft-Baked Maple Bacon Cookies with Easy Peanut Butter White Chocolate Frosting {Mystery Dish Challenge}My Profile

  8. Love pancake, love cupcakes, love your blog Allie. Those look divine, I’d take a scoop of the filling first. Yum!
    Laura@baking in pyjamas recently posted…Baking News!My Profile

  9. Allie, these sound ABSURDLY good! I love the salty bacon with all the luscious sweetness. What a fabulous fall creation :)
    Amy | Club Narwhal recently posted…FREE PRINTABLE | DANCE WHERE YOU CAN – ANNIE DILLARD & WEEKLY WISHESMy Profile

  10. The pictures are absolutely incredible on these, you can see ever bit of detail and it makes me want to take a bite out of my computer screen. Love how you used the mystery ingredients on this challenge!
    Krista @ joyfulhealthyeats recently posted…One Awesome Giveaway | $300 Gift CardMy Profile

    • Wow, thanks Krista! Every once in a while the pics just come out better. Wish I knew why, I’d do that every time, lol! I had a lot of fun coming up with this recipe. Isn’t Mystery Dish a fun idea? Thanks for the sweet comment ;)

  11. These look FANTASTIC! I have been wanting to make something very similar but want to give it a shot using pancake mix!! :-)
    Rachel (teacher-chef) recently posted…Caramel Apple ShakeMy Profile

  12. Hey Allie, I remember you telling us about this mystery challenge at IFBC. So cool to see your end product. These cupcakes look ah-may-zing, especially with the crispy bacon against that gorgeous fluffy frosting. I need to buy some apple butter, although I have a feeling I’d eat it right out of the jar. Yum!
    Nancy @ gottagetbaked recently posted…#IFBC 2013 I Went For Dorie GreenspanMy Profile

  13. Oh Allie! These cupcakes look divine! So much fantastic flavor and so gorgeous too – love these! Pinned :)
    Trish – Mom On Timeout recently posted…Candy Corn Sugar Cookie BarkMy Profile

  14. Whaaaat! These look so good! I love this idea!

  15. Best cupcakes ever! All you had to say was bacon! :)
    Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious recently posted…Baked Apple Butter Brown Sugar WingsMy Profile

  16. Oh my goodness, these apple cinnamon cupcakes look phenomenal! I love that they’re filled with apple butter and that maple buttercream sounds insanely good – I could eat it by the spoonful :)

  17. Your pictures are incredible just as this creative idea. Love the recipe very much!! Can I just say…I really enjoy reading your blog girl :)
    Zainab @ Blahnik Baker recently posted…Brown Butter Ginger Apple TorteMy Profile

  18. LOVE what you did with the mystery box contents!!! LOVE these cupcakes! Oh my gawd. . can you send me 3 please?! and beautiful beautiful photos!!
    Alice // Hip Foodie Mom recently posted…Best Ever Leek and Mushroom Galette + a giveaway!My Profile

    • Maybe when you’re done moving to Madison you can pick up and move again, to Philly? That’s totally doable, right? Especially if there’s cupcakes in it for ya. ;)

      So glad you liked the post; thanks for reading and for the sweet comment! xoxo

  19. I’m amazed by the colour of your topping – it has such a retro fell to it! Those cupcakes look delicious!
    Erika recently posted…Lemon fudge tarts and ballsMy Profile

    • Thanks, Erika! They were super appley, especially with that apple butter filling inside. The maple buttercream totally surprised me, and I liked it just as much with the bacon as without! Thanks for reading! <3

  20. pancake cupcakes? what a great idea!
    Sarah K. @ The Pajama Chef recently posted…Maple Apple Pie-Crisp with Cheddar Crust & Bacon Crumb ToppingMy Profile

  21. These just look divine! I cannot even wait to try them. My sister just got me a huge jar of apple butter I was wondering what I was going to do with! Thanks for sharing!
    Emily from Reaching Beyond My Reach recently posted…Hand-Me-Down WisdomMy Profile

  22. Thanks for dropping by Saturday Dishes with this cupcake. Love the flavors. “Lick the frosting off a cupcake and you have a muffin. Muffins are healthy!” TKW said that today on her blog.

    Linda
    Linda recently posted…What’d You Do This Weekend? #38My Profile

  23. Hi Alie, this is really interesting combo for cupcakes, I’ve featured this recipe on my blog, hoping that you don’t mind, but if you do, please contact me and I’ll remove it. All the best.

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