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10 Baking Recipes for Apple Picking Season, from Breakfast to Dessert

When temperatures turn crisp, there’s nothing quite like a baked apple treat. From the comforting aromas that fill your home to that just out of the oven first bite, a baked apple dessert has a way of putting you in a fall sort of mood. In the spirit of fall baking season, we rounded up some of our favorite recipes for baking with apples.

What apples are best for baking?

Before we launch into some truly delectable recipes, we’d like to spend a moment on the star of the show — apples. We love them for snacking, cider, sauce and yes, baking. But not every apple is able to withstand the heat of an oven. While softer apples like Red Delicious or McIntosh work great in sauces or cider, they don’t hold their own when baked.

A bowl of red and green apples sitting on a kitchen counter.

Your best apple baking options generally have the following characteristics:

  • Firmness
  • Sweet-tart balance
  • Higher acidity
  • High flavor
  • Freshness
  • Strong apple aroma

While overripe or bruised apples work great for sauce, apples for baking should be ripe and free of bruises. You might also find differences in texture and flavor with mass-produced apples versus those sourced locally.

Of course, everyone has different flavor and texture preference, but some of the best apple choices for baking include:

  • Braeburn
  • Cortland
  • Crispin
  • Fuji
  • Golden Delicious
  • Granny Smith
  • Honeycrisp
  • Honey Gold
  • Jonathan
  • Jonagold
  • Ida Red
  • Northern Spy
  • Pink Lady
  • Rome
  • Winesap

Don’t be afraid to mix apple varieties when baking, catering your selection to your palate. Doing so adds depth of flavor and texture.

Now that you’re briefed in the art of apple selection, let’s get baking.

Go-to baked apple breakfast recipes

1. Fresh Apple Coffee Cake

Fresh Apple Coffee Cake

With chunks of apples and walnuts and a cinnamon crumble topping, this moist coffee cake makes a delightful breakfast (or afternoon coffee break). It’s simple to make and can be served warm or cold. But of course, fresh out of the oven is best.

2. Apple Cinnamon Rolls with Caramel Icing

Apple Cinnamon Rolls

Give your cinnamon rolls a fall spin with an apple cinnamon filling and an indulgent caramel icing. You can make these apple cinnamon rolls the night before and throw them in the oven in the morning. Or double the batch and freeze some of the baked rolls for later. Because one thing’s for sure, you’ll want to revisit these ooey, gooey, apple-filled sweet rolls.

3. Brioche Apple Fritters

Brioche Apple Fritters

Pillowy dough wrapped around a tender apple in all its golden, fried glory? Yes, please. You can feed a crowd by frying them in one sitting or make the dough ahead of time and enjoy fresh apple fritters all week. Serve these bite-sized apple treats warm with a dusting of powdered sugar. Chef’s kiss.

4. Overnight Apple Fritter Monkey Bread

Overnight Apple Fritter Monkey Bread

Craving an apple fritter but don’t want the mess of a deep fryer? Give this fritter-like monkey bread a try. Featuring butter and sugar-coated dough loaded with caramelized apples, a brown sugar coating and a light glaze, this Bundt pan monkey bread gives an apple fritter a run for its money.

Must-try baked apple desserts

5. Golden Delicious Apple Squares

Golden Delicious Apple Squares

Golden Delicious apples and an almondy-crust are an unexpected but delightful combo. Also delightful? The aromas that fill your house as you simmer the apple-based syrup on the stove. Top the syrup-infused apple bars with a dollop of whipped cream and enjoy.

6. Apple Honey Pecan Sticky Buns

Apple Honey Pecan Sticky Buns

Filled with tender apples and smothered in a honey pecan topping, these sticky buns are to die for. Serves 18, but don’t be surprised by the clamor for seconds. The sticky, sweet buns go well with your morning coffee.

7. Apple Cream Cheese Brioche Tart

Apple Cream Cheese Brioche Tart

As pretty as it is delicious, this apple tart is perfect for an elevated brunch or fall gathering. Buttery, soft brioche topped with spiced cream cheese and Honeycrisp apple slices — I mean, does it get any better? You’ll also want to check out the tartlet version. They’re equally delicious, not to mention there’s something darling about the sharable minis.

Homemade apple breads that are big on flavor

8. Apple Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Apple Cinnamon Raisin Bread

A classic for a reason. It’s simple to make and uses ingredients you likely have in the pantry. What’s more, it’s delicious. Short on time? Not a problem. There’s also a bread machine version of this recipe. Give it a try today.

9. Apple Cinnamon Streusel Pull-Apart Bread

Apple Cinnamon Streusel Pull-Apart Bread

All the flavors of fall, enveloped in a soft, buttery loaf. The apple and cinnamon infused pull-apart bread topped with streusel is straight up delicious. It’s sweet, but not too sweet. It’s soft and the streusel topping is irresistibly crumbly. It’s a must-try. But don’t take our word for it. Check out the rave reviews.

10. Caramel Apple Twist Bread

Caramel Apple Twist Bread

Caramel apples have cemented their place in the world of fall fare. This yeasty twist bread embraces that power pairing and tops it with a drizzle of vanilla bean glaze. The result is a caramelly, appley loaf that’s big on flavor and style. It’s unapologetically extra. And we love it.

After hot, summer days, the fall cooldown and migration indoors can be a welcome shift. We bake more often. We light candles. We indulge in all the warm, sweet, and spicy smells and flavors of the season. It’s a mood, and we hope this list of recipes baked with fresh apples helps you embrace it!

Looking for more seasonal recipes? Explore our favorite fall recipes collection for more fall baking inspiration.

Apple Selection Sources: How to Bake with Apples, The best (and worst) apples for pie, The Best Baking Apples


Fall Baking Favorites

Explore our how-to recipe blogs to master the flavors of fall in your kitchen.

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