I think I have already mentioned that I am not really a muffin person. Maybe it’s because muffins are often too sweet. Well then, I can’t begin to explain why this recipe from Southern Living magazine caught my eye. But for some unknown reason, I thought these muffins would be wonderful for the Christmas day brunch I was planning for Mr. Cs family. And when I am right, I am right!

These muffins are absolutely delicious. They are however, a pain in the derrière to get out of the pan! You have to have the patience of a saint, the determination of a 2 year old, and enough will power not to throw the muffins, including the pan, off your back porch! (That thought actually crossed my mind at one point!)

But once they are out of the pan – perfection. The cake part of the muffin itself is tender and moist. But it’s the topping that really sends your whole mouth into “OMG” mode. And yes, I did consider using muffin papers. But I felt then, and I still feel that too much of the muffin would remain on the paper. And I really hate seeing my family and friends chewing on paper!

So if you too love apples, pecans, and streusel – this is the muffin for you. Just don’t wait until next Christmas. This is a muffin for all occasions.


  • 1 c. unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ¾ c. granulated sugar
  • ¾ c. firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 lg. eggs, room temperature
  • 2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. fine grained salt
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 c. sour cream
  • 1 c. chopped toasted pecans
  • 1 c. peeled and finely chopped Granny Smith apple
  • 1 T. vanilla extract
  • vegetable cooking spray

Beat the butter with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add granulated sugar and brown sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating at low speed after each addition, just until blended.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a small bowl. Add to butter mixture alternately with sour cream, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in pecans, apples, and vanilla.

Spoon batter into well-greased (with cooking spray) muffin pans, filling only three-fourths full. (I actually use a fairly large ice cream scoop.) Sprinkle about 1 tablespoon Pecan Streusel (recipe below) over each muffin. Makes roughly 22 muffins.

Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 20 to 22 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks for 5 minutes before removing (good luck) to wire racks. Cool completely and store in an airtight container.

Note: As stated above, the muffins are not easy to remove from the tins. If you don’t already have non-stick muffin pans, now is a good time to buy a couple. In fact, after making these muffins I decided I too need new muffin pans. Meet you at Bed, Bath and Beyond!

Pecan Streusel:

  • ½ c. firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 T. unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 c. chopped toasted pecans
  • 2 T. butter, melted

Stir the brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon together in a small bowl. Stir in pecans and melted butter until crumbly.

Please let me know if you like this recipe. Thanks