These apple blondies are a warm and indulgent treat for the colder months. They're perfectly spiced and extra gooey and soft.
I think everyone knows by now how much I love fall. I've posted plenty of gluten free pumpkin recipes, baked up tons of cinnamon apple goodies, and I think I profess my love for the season every single time. So I won't go there this time 😉
But what I WILL tell you is, these apple blondies are seriously good. They're extra soft, which is actually one of the things I love about them. They are melt-in-your-mouth good. And, as always, I'm keeping it super easy, too.
I was inspired to develop this recipe simply because we are huge fans of gluten free blondies in this house. So I started thinking, how can I take a beloved blonde brownie recipe and give it a sprinkle of fall flavor? With applesauce + my favorite fall spices, that's how!
Oh, and I'm warning you now: your whole kitchen will be filled with the most warm and cozy aroma when you whip up a batch of these apple blondies.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Did I mention that they're extra soft? And gooey? If you want to encourage these blondies to firm up a bit, I recommend popping them into the refrigerator to chill a little after cooling. Otherwise, you can enjoy them right away. You just might need a fork.
- It's just SO easy. The applesauce gives us all that great apple flavor, so you can technically make these blondies year-round. No need to have fresh apples on-hand.
- Between the cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg, the mix of spices in these blondies are just perfect.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Gluten free flour: My favorite gluten free flour blend is Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 flour, hands down. If you are using a different blend, make sure it contains xanthan gum. And if you're not following a gluten free diet, you should be able to use AP flour since this recipe was developed using a cup for cup flour.
- Brown sugar: You can use either light or dark brown sugar here, both would be delicious! That's why I haven't specified in the recipe.
- Applesauce: Be sure to use 100% pure, unsweetened applesauce. No added sugar or ingredients. You can also use homemade applesauce if you'd like!
- Caramel chips: I happened upon sea salt caramel baking chips at Trader Joe's (note: not sure if they are seasonal or available year-round) and knew I had to try them in this recipe. The original recipe didn't call for chips, and you can certainly leave them out if you're unable to find caramel chips at the grocery store, but they sure are a delicious addition.
STEP ONE: Start by combining all of the dry ingredients so that it's ready to use when we need it. Set that mixture aside and grab your electric mixer.
STEP TWO: Cream the butter with both sugars until it's nice and smooth.
STEP THREE: Next, add in your applesauce and vanilla extract. And we're almost done! Told you I'm keeping it easy.
STEP FOUR: Add the dry mix into the wet mixture and mix on low speed until the batter just comes together.
STEP FIVE: If you decide to add the caramel chips, fold them into your batter now.
STEP SIX: Transfer the batter to a square pan lined with parchment paper, and use your spatula to smooth it out. It will be thick and slightly sticky.
STEP SEVEN: Bake on 350ºF for about 25-30 minutes. Allow the apple blondies to cool completely before slicing up into individual bars.
- As always, my top tip is to weigh your flour out using a kitchen scale, if you have one. This is the best way to ensure accuracy! Adding too much or too little flour can really affect the end result. We'll need 246 grams of flour for this recipe.
- Once you pull these blondies out of the oven, you may notice the center slightly jiggles and looks under baked. If it's SUPER soft and under baked, then it may need another 2 minutes. However, if it's slightly soft and jiggly, that's OK. It will continue to cook as it cools in the warm pan, and that's why you need to really wait before slicing these blondies up. I err on the side of under baking these, if I'm being honest, because I like them gooey.
- Depending on your oven, you may need to leave these in closer to 30 minutes but start checking in around the 25 minute mark.
- As I've stated, these are VERY soft and gooey, and probably best enjoyed with a fork. If you wanted to firm them up a bit, you can store in the refrigerator before serving.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes! Simply use your favorite non-dairy butte.
The blondies are done when the edges look crisp and set. The center may jiggle VERY slightly, but not too much, when you take them out. The blondies will continue to cook and set up while they cool in the warm pan.
The blondies may be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. You can also store in the refrigerator if you'd like.
Easy Apple Blondies
- 1 ⅔ cups (246g) gluten free flour blend
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ginger
- ½ cup (113g) unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup (200g) brown sugar packed
- ⅓ cup (67g) granulated sugar
- ½ cup (128g) unsweetened applesauce
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup (57g) caramel chips optional
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8" square baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and ginger together and set aside.1 ⅔ cups (246g) gluten free flour blend, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ½ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon ginger
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter with both sugars. Add the applesauce and vanilla and beat to incorporate. Add in the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until combined. Fold in the caramel chips, if using.½ cup (113g) unsalted butter, 1 cup (200g) brown sugar, ⅓ cup (67g) granulated sugar, ½ cup (128g) unsweetened applesauce, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, ⅓ cup (57g) caramel chips
- Spread batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25-30 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars.
- For dairy free blondies, substitute your favorite non-dairy butter.
- I use sea salt caramel baking chips that I get at Trader Joe's during the fall season. The caramel chips can be left out if you have trouble finding them or would prefer to make without.