Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal Cups

Using a few simple ingredients and 1 bowl, throw these healthy apple cinnamon baked oatmeal cups in the oven. They’re ready in about 30 minutes. The whole family, kids included, love them. Try the other flavors listed, too!

stack of apple cinnamon baked oatmeal muffins

These Baked Oatmeal Cups Are:

  • Refined sugar free (no added refined sugar)
  • Definitely healthy
  • Easy & quick
  • Soft-baked & moist in the center
  • Chewy on top
  • Garnished with crunchy coarse sugar
  • Dairy free if using dairy free milk
  • Gluten free if using certified GF oats

The fall season may mean saying GOODBYE to pool days, but it also means giving a big HELLO to favorite seasonal flavors like apple cinnamon bread and comforting snacks like pumpkin oatmeal bars. With fall flavors on my mind, I tested out a muffin version of my baked oatmeal. These oatmeal cups are a little more solid and sturdy than the creamy baked oatmeal, so they’re awesome as a portable breakfast or snack. And if you’re still in summer mode (I totally am!), swap the apples for blueberries or strawberries. These were so good!

apple cinnamon oatmeal muffins

Are They Oatmeal? Are They Muffins?

Yes and yes. More solid than oatmeal, but not as cakey as blueberry oatmeal muffins.


Ingredients in Baked Oatmeal Cups

You need 11 simple ingredients for my baked oatmeal cups. Each is important!

  1. Milk: Milk softens the oats and keeps the centers moist. I reduced the amount from my baked oatmeal so the oatmeal muffins are a little more solid.
  2. Eggs: Eggs provide protein and structure.
  3. Maple Syrup: Pure maple syrup sweetens and flavors these baked oatmeal cups. If needed, honey is a wonderful substitute.
  4. Unsweetened Applesauce: Applesauce adds flavor and takes the place of butter or oil. I love using applesauce to replace all or some oil in certain baked goods, like my morning glory muffins.
  5. Oats: Oats are the base of the entire recipe. Old-fashioned whole rolled oats are the best and also what I recommend for oatmeal raisin cookies. Quick oats work, but the centers of the oatmeal cups aren’t as moist. Steel cut oats require extra prep, see recipe note.
  6. Baking Powder: Baking powder prevents the oatmeal cups from tasting dense.
  7. Cinnamon & Nutmeg: Can you eat an apple baked good without either?! If you have any in the house, feel free to use apple pie spice instead.
  8. Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract adds flavor.
  9. Salt: Salt adds flavor.
  10. Apples: Grab your favorite apple variety, peel it, and chop it into bite-size pieces. I usually use Granny Smith or Honeycrisp. Any variety works. No need to pre-cook the apples before adding to the oat mixture.

apple cinnamon oatmeal cups batter in a glass bowl

Baker’s Tip: The batter is liquid-y. When you’re dividing the batter between the muffin cups, make sure you have both liquid AND oats/apples in each. Spoon batter all the way to the top of each. The recipe yields 12 apple cinnamon baked oatmeal cups.

apple cinnamon oatmeal cups batter in a muffin pan

1 Bowl, No Mixer Recipe

Besides taking approximately 2 seconds to prep, these oatmeal cups only require 1 bowl. No need to break out your mixer– instead, fold the mixture together by hand. They’re done in about 25 minutes. It’s practically shocking how easy these are.

Little workbig reward.

I usually prep these or regular baked oatmeal in the beginning of the week, then refrigerate for quick breakfasts or snacks. Reheat in the microwave for a few seconds to warm them up. They freeze and thaw beautifully, too!

healthy apple cinnamon baked oatmeal cups in a muffin pan

stack of apple cinnamon baked oatmeal cups

Who doesn’t crave a little variety?! Instead of apple, try any of these flavors.

Flavors & Add-Ins

  1. Pumpkin: See my pumpkin baked oatmeal cups. I swapped applesauce for pumpkin and reduced the milk to make up for extra pumpkin.
  2. Blueberry: Leave out the nutmeg, reduce cinnamon to 1 teaspoon, and swap apples for fresh or frozen blueberries. No need to thaw.
  3. Banana: Swap the applesauce for mashed banana.
  4. Chocolate Chip: Swap apples for chocolate chips. If desired, leave out the nutmeg.
  5. Peanut Butter / Nut Butter: Reduce applesauce to 1/3 cup. Add 1/2 cup nut butter. Leave out apples and nutmeg, if desired.
Print
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stack of apple cinnamon baked oatmeal cups

Baked Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Cups

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 12 cups
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Using a few simple ingredients and 1 bowl, throw together these healthy apple cinnamon baked oatmeal cups. They’re soft and moist inside with chewy tops and plenty of flavor. Make them ahead and enjoy all week long!


Ingredients

  • 1 and 1/2 cups (360ml) milk (dairy or nondairy)
  • 2 large eggs*
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) pure maple syrup*
  • 1/2 cup (120g) unsweetened applesauce
  • 3 cups (240g) old-fashioned whole oats*
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 heaping cup peeled chopped apple*
  • optional: 1/2 cup (50g) chopped walnuts or pecans
  • optional: coarse sugar for topping

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Generously spray a muffin pan with nonstick spray. If using muffin liners, spray them with nonstick spray. The oatmeal cups stick to the liners a bit regardless, so I recommend skipping them.
  2. Whisk all of the ingredients together, except for the apples (and nuts and coarse sugar), in 1 large bowl. Using a spoon or rubber spatula, fold in the apples and nuts (if using). Batter will be a little liquid-y. Spoon batter evenly into muffin cups, making sure both the oats/apples and liquid are in each. Fill all the way to the top. See photo above. If desired, sprinkle the tops with coarse sugar.
  3. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned and top appears set. If the tops appear to brown very quickly, tent a piece of aluminum foil on top.
  4. Cool for 5 minutes before serving. Cover leftover oatmeal cups tightly and refrigerate for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Bake the oatmeal cups, cool completely, and store in the refrigerator all week for easy breakfasts. Reheat in the microwave or bake in a 350°F (177°C) oven for 5-6 minutes. To freeze, bake and cool oatmeal cups. Cover tightly and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator or at room temperature. Warm to your liking.
  2. Don’t: Do not make oatmeal batter ahead of time. The oats will soak up all the liquid! Whisk it all together, then bake right away. See make ahead instructions above for alternative.
  3. Eggs: Eggs bind the ingredients and add wonderful flavor. If needed, you can replace the eggs with 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce or mashed banana.
  4. Sugar: I recommend pure maple syrup because the flavor is outstanding and the baked oatmeal is extra moist! Instead, you can use packed brown sugar, coconut sugar, or honey.
  5. Oats: Whole oats give you the best texture. You can use quick oats instead, but they soak up more moisture so the centers won’t be as moist. If using steel-cut oats, soak the oats in the milk for 30 minutes, then stir in the rest of the ingredients. Add a few extra minutes to the bake time. The oatmeal cups are best with whole oats.
  6. Apples: Use your favorite variety such as Granny Smith, Fuji, or Honeycrisp. You need about 1 medium apple.
  7. Nutrition Information Per Oatmeal Cup (with unsweetened applesauce and unsweetened almond milk using Spark Recipe Calculator): Calories 138, Total Fat 3g, Carbohydrate 26g, Dietary Fiber 3g, Sugars 11g, Protein 4g.

Keywords: oatmeal

162 Comments

  1. These are delicious! Very easy to make and I love having them in the refrigerator for the week. I do not usually have applesauce in the house, so I just boiled down two apples and made my own. 🙂 I look forward to trying some other flavor combinations!

  2. I wish I had this recipe sooner! My son was allergic to wheat when he was younger. This recipe is great and they are perfect for breakfast on the go!
    So yummy!

  3. My husband doesn’t like oatmeal and he had seconds. So easy and delicious.

  4. Loved these! I thought they had too much liquid since I added additional apple sauce to replace the egg (thank you for the substitutions listed). They were perfect. I added some whole-fresh cranberries (no nuts) because I like the tart contrast, my spouse would have preferred dried cranberries or chopped-fresh ones. I had 2 additional ramekins that I filled, so mine made 14. I had vanilla soy milk for the milk in these.
    I’ve been following your site for years but this one I HAD to comment on right away. Thanks for the recipe that will be soooooo much fun to experiment with! I respect your addiction!!!!

  5. These turned out amazing. My picky eater daughter gobbled them. How long do they last in the refrigerator? I made 12 and she can’t eat more than one a day so wondering how to store the rest. Thanks 🙂

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Riddhi, these last for about a week in the refrigerator. So glad your daughter enjoyed them!

  6. Love these, had to substitute 1:1 ratio water for milk due to allergies in family and added tbsp of butter. They kind-of fall apart easy so I know I need to tweak the recipe somehow? Can not wait to try different substitutions like raspberries and peanut butter ‘n banana instead of apple!!!

  7. If I am to use quick oats for this recipe do I need to change any specific ingredients to make it more moist.

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Quick oats work, but the centers of the oatmeal cups aren’t as moist. You can try shortening the bake time by a few minutes but we haven’t tested it. Let us know if you try!

  8. Cristi Williams says:

    Great recipe! I have made them at least six times in the last three weeks. I use a large six muffin tin, and leave out the sugar / syrup / honey. I did add a little Stevia the first time I made them, but leaving out the sweetner hasn’t changed the taste for us. We love baked oatmeal and this is the best recipe we have tried. Thank you!!!

  9. How would you adjust the recipe for large muffin tins?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Emma, You can use a jumbo muffin pan without changing the recipe. I’m unsure exactly how many it will yield or the exact bake time needed. The bake time will be longer – keep an eye on them and bake until the edges are lightly browned and top appears set.

  10. What adjustment can I make to make them more cakey, similar to your Blueberry Oatmeal muffins?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Jackie! That would take some recipe testing. You could use the blueberry oatmeal muffins recipe as a base and add apples instead of blueberries or you may love these whole wheat apple cinnamon muffins instead!

  11. I have made these three times. The last two times I added cranberries, coconut and mini chocolate chips. I toast them in the morning and sometimes spread peanut butter on top.
    They were easy and delicious! Thanks for the recipe.

  12. I have made these three times. The last two times I added cranberries, coconut and mini chocolate chips. I toast them in the morning and sometimes spread peanut butter on top.
    They were easy and delicious! Thanks for the recipe.

  13. Hi Sally,
    Made these and the flavor is great. Question, they had soggy bottoms – do I need to bake them longer? They were brown on the edges and the moisture appeared gone. Just looking for that crispy crust along the sides and bottoms. Thanks in advance!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Nicole, You can definitely bake them longer if you prefer!

    2. My bottom was also a little soggy after 30 mins….I may bake them for 4 more mins next time.

    3. I baked these for 35 minutes. Still very soggy and falling apart at bottoms. Maybe less applesauce or milk next time?

  14. Hi
    Could you check the nutritional info please – I added this up and they were 168 cals at least ? I did use unsweetened almond milk and unsweetened apple sauce ?

  15. I love these! They are so easy to make and don’t require a lot of cleaning up afterward! My house smells amazing and I got a lot of positive feedback from these muffins. They’re also healthy and can be eaten for breakfast or for a snack. I got these right on the first try.

    P.S: I am a beginner baker!

  16. Would there be any way you could think of to make these in an instant pot or similar pressure cooker? I don’t have an oven but I’m not sure how long I would need to pressure cook them for. I’ve made muffins in the pressure cooker for instance using the silicone egg bite style molds. Thanks in advance, especially cuz I do miss being able to make baked oatmeal it’s so delicious!

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Tracey! We’ve never tried making these in a pressure cooker or instant pot, so we’re unsure of how they’d turn out. But perhaps another reader can chime in if they’ve done so! Or you might try searching online to see if any similar recipes provide instant pot cooking directions. If you give it a try, we’d love to know how it goes for you.

  17. Vicki Bimblich says:

    Has anyone tried a savory version? No sweetener, maybe cheese or ham? Any ideas on how to do this?

  18. I love this recipe! I am going to try another version for fun! How many cups of mashed banana would you use to replace the 2 eggs? Also, what ratio of cups of banana to cups of applesauce if I want to swap that?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Miriam, you can use 1/3 cup of mashed banana in place of the two eggs. You can swap the applesauce for the same amount of mashed banana — 1/2 cup (120g).

  19. Made these today for my kiddo for easy healthy breakfasts during the week. She ate two right away and said they were so good schools should serve them for breakfast. Followed recipe exactly. Thank you!

  20. Followed recipe exactly but liquid pooled at the top of my muffin pan. Thank goodness none spilled over into the stove. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    1. Hi Tee, this isn’t typical muffin batter and you’ll have a lot of liquid pooling at the top before baking. That’s normal with this recipe. Unless the muffin cups are over-filled, it doesn’t spill over when baking.

  21. Oh my gosh! My 60 year old father who is super picky and usually hates muffins was eager to eat these right when they were in the oven! These are scrumptious! I recommend these more than anything! Beautiful, and you can decorate them as you wish!

  22. What a delightful discovery these are! And so quick! I’m wondering if it would be possible to substitute some or all of the milk with cider to boost the apple flavor a tad? In the meantime, thanks yet again for another family favorite!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi John! Apple cider is a bit thinner, we recommend sticking with milk for best results but let us know if you try cider!

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