Spice Cupcakes with Apple Pie Filling and Cinnamon Buttercream

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Spice Cupcakes
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I needed a dessert other than pie to make for Thanksgiving. I was originally going to make a spice cake, but I opted for cupcakes because they’re easier to distribute (and grab and go). This recipe uses a boxed spice cake mix as the base to save a few steps, but I disregard all of the preparation instructions on the box. They turned out great, though the buttercream was very sweet. These would also be good with a cream cheese frosting if you want something with a bit less sweetness.

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5 from 1 vote

Spice Cupcakes with Apple Pie Filling and Cinnamon Buttercream

Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Cupcake cooling time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 20 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: apple cupcake filling, cinnamon buttercream, cinnamon cupcakes, pumpkin spice cupcakes
Servings: 24 cupcakes



  • 1 box spice cake mix
  • 1 package instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 stick butter softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
Apple Pie Cupcake Filling
Cinnamon Buttercream


  • Preheat oven to 350°. Line cupcake tins with paper liners.
  • Place all ingredients for the cake into a large mixing bowl. Stir until well-combined (recommended: use a stand mixer or hand mixer).
  • Transfer batter to cupcake tin, filling each cup between half and two-thirds of the way. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean, about 15 minutes.
Apple Pie Cupcake Filling
  • While the cupcakes are baking, make the filling. Peel and dice apples (very small dice) and place into a large mixing bowl.
  • Sprinkle the apples with flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Stir to coat.
  • Preheat a saute pan over medium-high heat. Melt butter in the pan, then add apples. Keep the bowl for the apples handy – you'll need it again. Stir frequently so the sugar doesn’t burn. 
  • Cook for about 5 minutes, then reduce the heat to low and cover. Continue to stir fairly frequently. Once the apples begin to soften, remove from heat. 
  • Transfer the filling back into the mixing bowl and transfer to the refrigerator to cool.
Cinnamon Buttercream
  • Cream the butter with a mixer until it’s a smooth, even consistency. 
  • Add the powdered sugar gradually, continuing to beat until incorporated. 
  • Add the remaining ingredients and beat on a medium-high speed for about a minute. 
  • Cover the buttercream tightly with plastic wrap until ready to use.
Assemble Cupcakes
  • Once the cupcakes are out of the oven and have cooled completely (and the filling has also cooled to at least room temperature), use an apple corer to remove the center and make space for the filling. 
  • Add the filling to a piping bag and fill each cupcake.
  • Frost each cupcake with buttercream.

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