Apple Fritter Bread is filled with chunks of fresh apple, ribbons of cinnamon-sugar, and topped with boiled cider glaze. Nearly dessert, yet breakfast-appropriate. A loaf makes a wonderful homespun gift for a deserving friend or neighbor.
Confession: I can’t stop making and eating this Apple Fritter Bread. It holds all the best things about baking season. It’s hearty and sweet; uncomplicated to make and it fills your home with delicious aromas. It’s jam-packed with chunks of fresh apple and ribbons of cinnamon sugar. I have plans to make several more loaves just to give to friends and neighbors. I can’t think of anyone who wouldn’t love a hefty loaf covered with cider glaze and chopped pecans.
The first layer.
First, mix up the simple batter. It’s the buttery, vanilla-scented base that will support and hold all of those tasty additions throughout the loaf. You can use a hand mixer for this task. Layer 1/3 of the batter into the bottom of a 9×5 inch greased loaf pan.
Next, toss some chopped apples in cinnamon-sugar. You’ll need 3 large or 4 small apples for this recipe. Use practically any apple you have on hand. This bread is very forgiving. Granny Smith is my preference for baking, Gala, Honeycrisp, and Pink Lady work well, too.
Next, sprinkle brown sugar and cinnamon over the apples. I added some chopped pecans, which could be optional. However, the nutty, sweet flavor of pecans is so good in this bread!
Continue the layering process two more times with the remaining batter and ingredients. Doing this creates ribbons of brown sugar throughout the loaf.
The final layer will be apples and cinnamon-sugar. The top bakes to deep golden and sugar crusted while the interior becomes moist with the juices from the baked apple chunks.
Let the bread cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before turning it out. Cool on a wire rack before adding the glaze.
A magic ingredient.
Here’s one of my favorite fall ingredients of all time! Boiled cider imparts tart apple flavor. It’s pure concentrated apple in a bottle. You can find it for purchase online from King Arthur Baking. Mixed with powdered sugar, it makes an incredibly flavorful glaze. However, you can still make a cider glaze without it. Use regular bottled apple cider or apple juice in its place.
Top it off.
Drizzle the glaze over the bread. This loaf won’t crown much on top, because it is dense with all those apples, pecans, and sugar. This inhibits the middle from puffing up, but doesn’t affect the tenderness of the crumb.
Add a few more pecans on top, if you’re feeling a little extra.
This Apple Fritter Bread gets its inspiration from – you guessed it! – fried apple fritters. Which are absolutely delicious but slightly more involved with all that frying. (Find my Homemade Apple Fritters right here – they are worth the effort!) However, this bread doesn’t require much attention, and it is well-suited to those who want to cozy up with a book for an hour while it bakes.
Apple Fritter Bread with Boiled Cider Glaze
This bread is the perfect way to celebrate fall’s apple harvest, but it’s good any time of year! It is truly reminiscent of fried apple fritters with all those chunks of fresh apple in the batter. You’ll need about 3 large apples to yield the 2 cups of chopped apple required for this recipe. The baker’s stand-by, Granny Smith, is great; however you can use whatever variety you have on hand. Juicier apples will impart more moisture into the crumb, which is nice. I have used Gala, Pink Lady, and Golden Delicious with success.
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3 eggs at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1/2 cup milk at room temperature
- 2 cups chopped apples 3 large, about 10 oz.
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
Cinnamon-brown sugar mixture
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans
Glaze and toppings
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tablespoon boiled cider or 2 tablespoons apple cider
- 1 tablespoon milk or cream
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans optional
In the bowl of an electric mixer (I used a hand-held mixer) cream together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well with each addition. Mix in the vanilla extract.
In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add it to the creamed mixture, beating on low speed, alternately with the milk. Begin and end with the flour mixture. Set aside.
Cinnamon-brown sugar mixture
Spread 1/3 of the bread batter into the bottom of the prepared loaf pan. Top with 1/3 of the apples, and sprinkle over 1/3 of the cinnamon-brown sugar mixture. Tamp the mixture down with the back of a spoon.
Spread another 1/3 of the batter over the apples and brown sugar mixture. Do this with two spoons, placing dollops of batter over the sugared surface (see image in blog post), and spread using a mini spatula if you have one. Top with another 1/3 of apples and another 1/3 of the brown sugar mixture. Tamp down.
Finally, spread the last 1/3 of batter over the last layer (dolloping as before) and finish with the final 1/3 of apples and 1/3 of brown sugar mixture.
Bake for 1 hour, or until the top is deeply browned and crusty and a toothpick tester inserted near the center comes out clean. If the top starts to overbrown, tent with aluminum foil.
Let the bread loaf stand for about 10 minutes before turning it out to a cooling rack.
Glaze and toppings
In a medium bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 1 tablespoon of boiled cider (or apple cider, if using). Add the milk and mix until a thick pourable glaze is formed (you may need more or less milk, add it a little at a time). Drizzle or pour the glaze over the loaf and sprinkle the center with chopped pecans.
Store the bread covered in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 2 days. Refrigerate for longevity, up to a week. Bring bread slices to room temperature before serving.
Thaw bread in the refrigerator overnight. Glaze before serving.