Try these recipes with applesauce to make the most of this versatile fruit puree! Cakes, muffins, and brownies are all better with applesauce.
Got a jar of applesauce and not sure how to use it up? This versatile ingredient is not just for snacking! Applesauce is a well-known substitute for oil and eggs in baking — and it’s intentionally included in lots of baked good recipes to make them perfectly moist. And some of the best recipes with applesauce call for it as the star ingredient: like our family favorite applesauce cake: moist, fluffy and light, and perfectly spiced.
Here are all the best recipes with applesauce to use up a jar…or to get your applesauce fix! Cakes, muffins, brownies, and cookies are all more perfect with applesauce (we think).
First up in our best recipes with applesauce: applesauce cake! This fruit puree makes for incredibly moist cake: this one is scented with cinnamon and perfectly fluffy. It’s got a healthy spin with olive oil and Greek yogurt, and instead of calorie-rich icing there’s a sprinkle of powdered sugar. And the best part? It’s beyond easy: simply mix all the ingredients together in the baking pan. No mixing bowls required!
Hello and welcome to our favorite cookie recipe…spiced Applesauce Cookies! These are so moist and irresistible, you’ll forget about everything else and you savory each chewy bite. The applesauce makes them ultra moist, and they’ve got a little oatmeal to balance the sweet. They’re like a lighter version of an oatmeal cream pie: which is AOK in our book.
Another great recipe with applesauce: this spiced and iced applesauce bread! This one is perfectly spiced with cinnamon, allspice and cloves, and studded with oats. It’s so tasty and perfect for special occasions! Take it over the top with an easy icing drizzle. It’s great for an occasional treat or as a way to use up applesauce. Here’s how to make this impressive loaf!
What to do with leftover applesauce? Make pancakes, of course! This fruit puree makes the ideal soft and moist texture for flapjacks. These pancakes are perfectly fluffy and spiced with cinnamon. They’re perfect for a cozy breakfast…and easy enough for anyone (even kids!).
This applesauce muffins recipe is a total go to! They’re light and fluffy, spiced with just the right amount of cinnamon and ginger. They couldn’t be easier to make: just pop all the ingredients in the blender. The best part? The batter has no flour: just rolled oats! It makes them a healthy way to get your muffin fix. You’ll be amazed at how the oats blend into the perfect muffin texture.
Applesauce is perfect for quick bread recipes like this zucchini bread! A little confident over here, but we think this is the best zucchini bread recipe you’ll find. Yep, we said it! This zucchini bread is moist, cinnamon-scented, and the perfect sweetness. It’s got just the right texture: it’s not too oily or dense: thanks to that applesauce. And, it’s easy to put together!
These brownies are insanely fudgy and at the same time filled with nutrient dense whole foods! They’ve got almond butter and applesauce to make them extra gooey, then they’re topped with chopped almonds and chocolate chips! After they’re baked, pop them in the refrigerator to get them extra chewy.
Many of our recipes with applesauce include muffins: because it's perfect for attaining that beautifully moist texture! These apple muffins have a a crunchy streusel topping made of glittery turbinado sugar and a little butter and oats. The nice thing about a streusel topping is that it adds just the right sweetness and crunch to each bite. The muffin is flavored with cinnamon, ginger and allspice, and features both applesauce in the batter and chunks of diced apple throughout.
Wow, will a beautiful bite of these pumpkin cream cheese muffins have you meditating on it for hours! The moist cake is cozy-scented and just sweet enough, since after all it really is a muffin. It's got some oats and applesauce in the batter for good measure. Top that with a generous gooey mound of maple cream cheese, and each bite is like eating cheesecake and a muffin all at once. It’s really a bit of heaven in a muffin wrapper.
Here's another recipe with applesauce that benefits from the beautiful moisture: blueberry cake! It's fluffy and moist, and it’s topped with a layer of purple-blue ripe blueberries. Made with olive oil, Greek yogurt and applesauce, it tastes light and fresh instead of indulgent. This means you could serve it as a blueberry breakfast cake, or turn around and serve it for dessert with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.
Make your own applesauce!
Now, you probably already know this. But the best applesauce in the world? Homemade applesauce! The homemade version can’t hold a candle to the store bought stuff. Here are a few of our favorite ways to make it:
Stovetop Applesauce All you need is a 45 minutes, apples and a cinnamon stick. The flavor is out of this world!
Instant Pot Applesauce Even quicker! You can make applesauce in an instant in a pressure cooker: it takes just 25 minutes total time.
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce (or homemade applesauce)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Powdered sugar, for dusting
Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan.
Put the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into the baking pan. Use a fork to thoroughly mix the ingredients together.
Use your hands to make a hole in the center of the dry ingredients. Into the hole, crack the egg and add the olive oil, yogurt, applesauce, and vanilla. Use a fork to mix the ingredients together until smooth and blended. Smooth the top of the batter with the side of a butter knife.
Bake until the cake is fairly firm when you press lightly at its center and a toothpick inserted in the middle has no wet batter sticking to it, 25 to 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven and leave on the counter to cool completely, 1 hour. Leave the cake in the pan. Dust with powdered sugar. Cut into pieces and use a small spatula to lift them from the pan.
Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.