Okay, maybe I’m jumping the gun, but the store across the street from where I live has had Christmas decorations in their windows since October 23, so I think it’s perfectly fine to officially declare November the beginning of the holiday season.
I love the fall/winter holidays more than anytime of the year.
I know it’s a busy time of year — between decorating, cooking shopping, and celebrations — and it’s definitely easy to get overwhelmed. But nonetheless it's an awesome time, except of course my birthday.
And it’s not holiday season without an outrageously gooey and rich dessert to seal your feast.
Am I right?
Enters Mom’s Caramel Apple Blondies.
Though I’m a huge fan of chocolate in baked form (especially when there’s avocado involved), apple blondies hold a special place in my heart.
Blondies are a dessert with their own unique deliciousness and personality.
While brownies depend on chocolate for their flavor, for blondies it’s all about the brown sugar, giving the blondies their distinctive molasses flavor.
And when you add apple to the blondie-equation. It gets even better.
Chewy, rich, and flavorful apple blondies, when made right, are an indulgent dessert that are hard to resist.
Trust me when I say that this is the only apple blondie recipe you’ll ever need.
Though I am fairly certain that you have an awesome and trusted blondie recipe, this one's special, really special.
And since people (including myself) this time of year make small gift bags of baked goods, or larger tins for parties, which gives us a chance to try out tons of recipes while also never showing up to a party empty-handed. I firmly believe you need to give these Caramel Apple Blondies a try.
Like it's a must, must, must.
This recipe is nothing new. My mom has been making this for as far as I can remember (hence the name!)
But to be honest I tweaked her recipe quite a bit (less sugar, less butter, more apples, etc.) Also, instead of her classic butter+sugar+heavy cream caramel frosting I topped my apple blondies with a coconut milk+maple syrup+sugar one.
A tad more work but definitely worth it.
Gild the lily? Oh, not me. Never.
Mom’s Caramel Apple Blondies are the perfect baked good to whip up for a holiday party.
They’re rich, appley, gooey, crunchy, decadent, and so incredibly delicious.
You can cut the pieces into squares or really small, almost like cubes if you’re afraid of overdoing it. Oh no, not me. Never.
Mom’s Caramel Apple Blondies Print this recipe!
Note. I like to toast the pecans before chopping them, it adds crispness and brings out the flavor of the nut. I usually place the pecans on a rimmed cookie sheet and bake them for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring them halfway through, or until they smell roasted.
Makes 16 blondies
1 ½ cups flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free flour)
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar (I used coconut sugar)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 ½ cups peeled Granny Smith apple chunks (about ¼-inch in size)
½ cup maple syrup (or mild tasting honey)
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil (or butter)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup powdered sugar (use this recipe to make powdered coconut sugar)
1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and place a rack in the middle. Line a 9x13-inch (2 quart) baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.
In a medium bowl, sift flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, stir together the melted butter, brown sugar, and vanilla extract.
Beat in eggs, one at a time, and stir just until combined.
Fold in the dry ingredients, stirring just until no lumps are visible. Fold in apple chunks, making sure not to overmix.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the edges have lightly browned and the middle jiggles just slightly.
In the meantime, in a large saucepan combine coconut milk, maple syrup, and salt.
Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Lower a gentle simmer and let reduce for about 40 minutes, stirring every now and then.
Add coconut oil (or butter), vanilla and cook for further 5 minutes until it reaches a deep caramel color.
The process could be faster or slower, depending on the quality of the coconut milk.
Remove from the heat, gradually whisk powdered sugar and mix until smooth and the frosting has slightly thickened.
Pour over the cooled blondies. If it's thickened too much, place back on the heat for a few moments.
Spread the frosting over the cooled blondies and top with the chopped pecans.
Devour or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 days.
One blondie yields 283 calories, 13 grams of fat, 43 grams of carbs, and 3 grams of protein.