A New England staple, apple fritters are crispy on the outside, soft and pillowy on the inside, speckled with fresh chunks of apple, and coated with cinnamon sugar. How could you resist?
Growing up and still living in the heart of beautiful New England, I grew up eating apple fritters every fall without exception. On Sunday mornings, my dad would run out to this particular, unassuming fritter shack to bring home apple fritters for my sister and me (lucky us!). What was on the menu? Apple fritters and hot cider. That’s it. They were the best apple fritters I have EVER had.
This apple fritter recipe is as close to the apple fritters I had growing up as possible. Try this recipe. You won’t regret it!
Wash them down with apple cider, coffee or Homemade Cold Brew Coffee.
Why You’ll Love This Apple Fritters Recipe
There are a billion reasons to love this recipe, but here are my tops:
- They’re simply the BEST. From my New England kitchen to yours, this recipe is as close to the best ones I’ve had in New England!
- Crunchy, cinnamon sugar outside + soft, apple-studded center
- Freeze leftovers for later!
- All-purpose flour – flour is the base for apple fritters.
- Apples – I like Honeycrisp apples the best! They’re the perfect sweetness and crispiness for fritters.
- Granulated sugar – sugar is mixed with cinnamon to coat the outside of the fritters. Yum.
- Sweetened applesauce – sweetened applesauce adds apple flavor and a touch of sweetness, since there’s no additional sugar in the batter. You can use unsweetened applesauce if preferred, but the fritter itself will be pretty savory.
- Whole milk – whole milk adds moisture and tenderness.
- Unsalted butter – butter adds richness and flavor.
- Eggs – eggs add structure.
- Baking powder – baking powder helps them puff up.
- Vanilla extract – vanilla adds beautiful, complementary flavor.
- Salt – salt enhances flavor.
- Ground cinnamon – ground cinnamon adds warmth.
- Ground nutmeg – nutmeg also adds a subtle warm, fall touch.
- Vegetable or canola oil – you’ll need a flavorless oil with a high smoke point for frying.
How to Make Apple Fritters
Full instructions in the recipe card; this is just an outline!
- Cinnamon sugar.
Combine sugar and 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon on a large plate.
Mix flour, baking powder, salt, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and nutmeg in a bowl.
In another bowl, blend applesauce, milk, melted butter, eggs, and vanilla.
Combine dry ingredients with wet ingredients, avoiding over-mixing. Fold in diced apples.
Heat 1 inch of oil in a deep pan to 350 degrees.
Use a greased ¼ cup measure to scoop batter and drop into the hot oil (2-3 fritters at a time).
Fry for 2-3 minutes per side until deep golden.
Cut the first fritter open to check for doneness.
Toss the hot fritters in cinnamon sugar using a slotted spoon.
Repeat for additional batches, maintaining oil temperature around 350 degrees. Enjoy right away!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Apple fritters are a popular deep-fried breakfast or dessert made from batter mixed with diced apples. The batter is typically slightly sweet and spiced. The diced apples are folded into the batter before being deep-fried in hot oil until they turn golden brown and crispy. Once fried, apple fritters are often coated with a cinnamon sugar mixture. They are known for their irregular shapes, making each fritter unique!
My favorite apple for fritters is Honeycrisp, but you can also use Granny Smith, Gala, or Fuji.
I do not recommend baking fritters. The batter is too loose to bake and you won’t achieve the same, gloriously crunchy exterior and soft interior!
Apple fritters are best enjoyed hot, or within 2 hours of frying. If you don’t eat them all, store them in the fridge. You can reheat them in a 350-degree oven for 5-10 minutes but they won’t be as good as fresh! Also consider freezing them.
Yes! Freeze them in a freezer safe bag after they’ve cooled. To reheat, place frozen fritters on a baking sheet. Warm in a 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes until hot and crispy!
Apple Fritters Recipe Tips
- Uniform Size: Scoop ¼ cup batter into the hot oil for uniform cooking!
- Don’t Overmix: When combining the wet and dry ingredients, mix just until they come together. Overmixing can lead to tough fritters.
- Check Oil Temperature: Use a kitchen thermometer to maintain the oil temperature at around 350° at about medium heat. This ensures the fritters cook evenly.
- Use a Slotted Spoon: A slotted spoon or spider strainer is handy for flipping and removing the fritters from the hot oil. It drains excess oil and helps them crisp up.
- Test Doneness: Cut open the first fritter to check if the batter is cooked in the center. It will give you a good idea of how long the others need to fry.
- Cinnamon Sugar Coating: Coat the fritters with cinnamon sugar while they are still hot. This allows the sugar to adhere better and gives a flavorful, sweet crust.
- Serve Fresh: Apple fritters are best enjoyed fresh and warm. Serve them shortly after frying for the crispiest texture and best flavor.
More Fruit Recipes You’ll Love!
- Creamy Mango Smoothie
- How to Make an Acai Bowl
- Best Banana Bread Muffins
- Fluffy Blueberry Pancakes
- BEST Blueberry Coffee Cake
- Deep pan
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup diced apples I like Honeycrisp (no need to peel)
- ⅔ cup sweetened applesauce
- ⅔ cup whole milk
- 4 tablespoons (¼ cup) unsalted butter melted
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Vegetable or canola oil for frying
Cinnamon Sugar Coating
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- On a large plate, mix together sugar and 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon. Set aside.
- In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and nutmeg until well-combined.
- In a separate large bowl, mix together the applesauce, milk, butter, eggs, and vanilla. If the butter resolidifies, pop the bowl in the microwave for 15-20 seconds until it re-melts.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until just combined. Batter will be lumpy! Don’t over-mix. Fold in the diced apples.
- Add 1 inch of oil to a deep pan. Over medium heat, heat oil to 350℉.
- Once oil reaches 350℉, keep heat at medium, and grease a ¼ cup measure. Scoop ¼ cup batter. Use a spoon to loosen the batter and drop it into the oil. Drop 2-3 balls of batter, depending on the size of your pan. Fritters will be all different shapes!
- Fry for 2-3 minutes on the first side until deep golden, flip the fritters with a slotted spoon, and fry the second side for 2-3 minutes until deep golden.
- TIP: I recommend cutting the first fritter open to make sure the batter is cooked in the center. From there, you’ll know exactly how long each fritter will take in the oil!
- Use the slotted spoon to remove the fritters from the oil and toss them right away in the cinnamon sugar.
- Repeat for consecutive batches, keeping the oil at medium heat (around 350 degrees). Best enjoyed right away!
- Cut open the first fritter to check if the batter is cooked in the center. It will give you a good idea of how long the others need to fry.
- Dice your apples into small chunks, not large ones!