These brown butter apple blondies are buttery and soft, bursting with apples, and drizzled with a brown butter glaze. The brown butter and brown sugar gives these blondies are rich caramel flavor, and with a hint of cinnamon, these easy blondies will be your new go-to treat.
Why this Recipe Works
The brown butter in this recipe adds the right level of nuttiness and saltiness that pairs perfectly with the sweet and tart Granny Smith apples and gives them that delicious caramel apple flavor. You can have these blondies out of the oven, start to finish in just 45 minutes
- Butter. We brown the butter for a salty and nutty flavor that pairs perfectly with the apples and elevates them further. The brown butter is used in both the glaze and the blondie batter.
- Apple. A tart apple like a Granny Smith apple is better for these blondies. The slight tartness add the perfect contrast to the sweetness and caramel flavor that these brown butter apple blondie have.
- Brown Sugar. We use brown sugar, not white sugar in this recipe. The molasses in the brown sugar complements the apple and brown butter and helps add that signature caramel-y flavor
- Egg. Instead of 2 eggs, we do 1 egg + 1 yolk which adds richness by gives a fudgier texture making these bars extra decadent.
- Cinnamon. We add just a little bit of cinnamon to the apples so we get the cinnamon notes, but it doesn’t outshine the rest of the flavors in this recipe.
How to Make this Recipe
- Brown the Butter. In a large pot add the butter for your blondies and your brown butter glaze and brown the butter until it has a nutty aroma and reaches a deep amber color. Remove 3 tablespoons of the browned butter and set aside for your glaze. Pour the rest of the butter into a mixing bowl for your blondies.
- Cook the Apples. In the same pot you browned your butter (butter has been removed, but no need to clean it), add your chopped apple, 1 tablespoon of butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Cook for 3-5 minutes until the apples are softened. Remove from heat and aside.
- Make the Blondie Batter. In the mixing bowl that contains your brown butter, add the brown sugar and vanilla. Mix well before adding the egg and egg yolk, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and mix. Add the flour and gently stir until it has just disappeared. Then fold in your cooked apples.
- Bake. Pour the apple blondie batter into a greased or parchment lined pan and spread evenly. Then bake for 24-29 minutes until the edges are set. Cool completely.
- Make the Brown Butter Glaze. Take the 3 tablespoons of brown butter you set aside and add in the powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla. Whisk together until smooth. Then drizzle over the cooled brown butter apple blondies.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) and Expert Tips
A blondie is sometimes called a blonde brownie. It rich and fudgy like a brownie, but without the chocolate! So it might remind you of the flavor of a cookie base, but these are designed to be chewy and fudgier than a cookie bar.
Picking what kind of apples to add into your baked goods can be a little controversial. I personally like to use a Granny Smith Apple (a.k.a. a green apple). I think the crispness and tartness of the apples contrasts nicely with the caramely flavor of these brown butter apple blondies and the apples don’t get too mushy when cooked.
My second choice would be something like a Fuji, gala, or pink lady apple—or something similar. I would not recommend using a softer apple, like a red or golden delicious apple. I’ve found that they tend to be too soft and the flavor sort of disappears into the blondies.
With cookies, the reason we want the brown butter to come back to a solid state is so that when we cream the butter, sugar, and eggs together we whip some air into these cookies. This is what gives them such a great cookie texture!
However, it is the opposite with these brown butter apple blondies. We want these blondies to be denser, fudgy like a brownie, so adding the butter while it’s melted is ideal.
Brown butter is magic. When you brown butter, the milk solids in the butter are toasted giving it an extra salty and nutty flavor. We use brown butter in the blondie batter and in the glaze.
Browning butter is not complicated. It usually takes about 8 minutes on the stove. Just place your butter in a pot on the stove over medium to medium-high heat and keep stirring. The butter will start to melt, then bubble, and will eventually take on a golden amber color. You’ll be able to smell the nutty aroma as it browns.
We have an entire tutorial on how to brown butter, complete with pictures and a video if you’re a little nervous or want a little more guidance about browning butter.
Storage and Freezing Tips
At Room Temperature. These blondies are best eaten within two days at room temperature. Part that is because the apple tend to make these blondies super soft and they can get softer the longer they sit. So eat up!
In the Fridge. You can store these in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days.
In the Freezer. You can store these in the freezer for up to three months. If you plan on freezing these, I recommend wrapping them individually in plastic wrap, so it’s easy to grab one out of the freezer any time you want.
Try it frozen or let it come to room temperature before eating. They’re usually soft enough that they’re delicious straight from the freezer if you’re impatient like me.
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Brown Butter Apple Blondies
- ¾ cup butter
- 1 ¼ cup brown sugar packed
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1 egg + 1 yolk
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 ½ cup flour measured correctly
- 1 ¼ cup peeled and chopped apple (about 1 large apple)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 ½ tablespoons brown sugar
- ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon
Brown Butter Glaze
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 ¼ cups powdered sugar
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla
- 1 ½ tablespoons milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Take an
8x8 or 9x9 inch pan and spray with cooking spray, or line with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray and set aside
- In a pot, add your butter (you can do both the butter for the glaze and blondies at the same time) and brown your butter until it has a nutty aroma and a deep amber color. See our tutorial on How to Brown Butter if you need help (link in notes below).
- Remove 3 tablespoons of butter from the pot and
set aside for your glaze. Add the remaining brown butter for you blondies to a large mixing bowl.
- In your same pot add in your chopped apples and all ingredients listed below the apples section (1 tablespoon of butter, 1 ½ tablespoons brown sugar, and ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon). Cook for 3-5 minutes until apples are softened. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Take the brown butter you added to a mixing bowl and add in your brown sugar and vanilla and mix. Then add in your egg and egg yolk and salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and mix.
- Then add in your flour and mix until all the
flour has disappeared. Fold in your apples until they are evenly dispersed throughout the batter..
- Pour batter into your prepared baking dish and
smooth batter out so it is dispersed evenly. Bake for 24-29 minutes until the edges are set. Let cool completely before glazing and slicing into.
- While your blondies are cooling prepare your
brown butter glaze. If the 3 tablespoons of brown butter you set aside has solidified, microwave for a few seconds to liquefy it again.
- Whisk the powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla together with the brown butter. If the mixture is too thick you can add more milk, if it is too thin, add additional powdered sugar.
- Drizzle the brown butter glaze over top of the
cooled blondies, then cut into squares. Eat and enjoy!