Bursting with cinnamon apple flavor and dusted in sugar, learn just how easy it is to make these fried homemade apple fritters.
My first memories of this homemade apple fritter recipe come from a family trip to the Smokey Mountains in Tennessee when I was about seven years old. Up until then, I’d never had them before but it was obvious that my parents were no strangers as they hunted down one particular restaurant just to partake of the treat, served alongside apple butter for dipping.
Apple lovers seem to hold these little handheld delights in such high regard that their eyes glaze over when talking of them. I’ve had more readers than I can count ask me if I had an apple fritter recipe and so today I’m bringing you my very own recipe for them. It’s one that my husband swears could bring about world peace if I played my cards right and kept the sides of apple butter coming.
So, what do you need to make homemade apple fritters? Ingredients I bet you have at home right now! Like milk, brown sugar, fresh apples, eggs, melted butter, cinnamon, and self-rising flour. These fritters are so easy to make. All you need to do is hand-mix the ingredients to make the batter, and then fry them in oil. Add a dusting of powdered sugar and you have yourself a batch of homemade apple fritters.
Your house is going to smell like a bakery and these apple fritters taste as if they came straight from a bakery too. With that cinnamon apple flavor in a buttery crispy fritter coating, and topped with sugar, these apple fritters are fall comfort food at its finest.
So, how ’bout them fritters?
The ingredients you’ll need for this recipe are:
- Brown sugar
- Apples (I use a mix of red and Granny Smith apples to mix up the taste)
- Melted butter
- Self-rising flour
How to Make Homemade Apple Fritters, Southern-Style
Before you mix up your batter, pour about 1/2 inch of oil into a skillet and put it on medium heat on your stove eye/burner so it will be ready to fry in.
In a medium bowl, place your dry ingredients: flour, sugar, and cinnamon.
Stir that up well, breaking up any sugar lumps as you go.
Now you know if any of those lumps are really stubborn, it’s bad luck not to eat them.
Add in the wet ingredients: your milk and melted butter.
Add in eggs and stir that up well.
Peel and dice up your apples.
Toss that into your batter.
Mix together until your batter looks like this.
Now you’re ready to go!
Drop batter by spoonfuls into the hot oil.
I use a big spoon that holds about 1/8 of a cup but feel free to make these as large or as small as you like. Another option is to use a cookie dough scoop or ice cream scoop.
After they get golden brown on one side, turn them over to brown on the other.
Use a slotted spoon to remove them from the skillet and place them on a paper towel-lined plate.
If you like, you can roll some in confectioner’s sugar or just sprinkle confectioner’s sugar over them. I put some in a pie plate and roll them a bit but I usually only do this with half of them since we can never decide which we like best!
The cool thing about doing half in sugar and half plain is that you have to eat at least one of each!
I did volunteer to take a bite of one so y’all could see all the chunks of apple inside.
These are so moist and delicious!
And then I thought I wouldn’t be doing y’all right unless I showed you what it looked like with a little apple butter slathered on.
These fried apple fritters are best eaten immediately. However, you can keep leftovers in an airtight container for up to 24 hours and quickly reheat them in the oven or air fryer.
- To ensure your apple fritters don’t break apart once they hit the oil, it needs to be hot enough (375 degrees is the optimal temperature).
- If you can’t get enough cinnamon, add cinnamon to the powdered sugar topping.
- For added flavor, add a pinch of ground nutmeg, ground ginger, and/or apple pie spice.
- Speaking of added flavor, you can also add a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the fritter batter.
- Any type of flour and milk works, like gluten-free flour, almond flour, and almond milk.
- For a touch of acidity and to keep the apples from browning, add 2 tablespoons of bottled or fresh lemon juice.
What are the best kinds of apples to use in homemade apple fritters?
I use Red Delicious and Granny Smith to give two different sweet tastes to the fritters. Nothing like tingling the taste buds with different levels of sweetness and sour. But honestly, you can use whatever type of apples you fancy. Honeycrisp, Gala, and Fuji also work.
How do I make baked apple fritters instead of frying them?
Well, every Southerner knows it ain’t Southern unless it’s fried! But yes, you can bake apple fritters. I would recommend the following changes to the recipe:
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and use a lined baking sheet or spray the sheet with cooking spray.
- Add two teaspoons of baking soda.
- Don’t melt the unsalted butter, cut it into the dry ingredients mix.
- Don’t over-mix the batter once you add in the milk and eggs.
- Bake at 400 for 10-14 minutes, but if they are smaller fritters then check after 8 minutes.
- If you want them a little crunchy versus soft, then broil them for 1 minute or so on each side.
- Coat with a bit of melted butter and then dip in the confectioner’s sugar, have them plain, or dip in the apple butter. Have ’em any way you like ’em!
You can also follow these instructions to bake apple fritters in the air fryer.
Can I top my apple fritters with a vanilla glaze?
Yes, if you’d like to top your homemade apple fritters with a glaze instead of sugar, you’ll want to combine 1.5 cups of powdered sugar, a dash of vanilla extra, and 1-1.5 tablespoons of milk in a bowl. Stir until smooth and then drizzle this over the fritters or dunk them into the glaze instead.
What’s the best oil for frying apple fritters?
You want to use an oil with a high smoke point, which is generally canola oil, vegetable oil, or peanut oil.
You may also enjoy these appetizing apple recipes:
Cinnamon Apple Crisps (Only 3 ingredients)
Ten Best Apple Recipes For Fall
- 2 cups apples, peeled and diced any kind of apple
- 2 cups self-rising flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup milk
- 3 tbsp melted butter
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 cup confectioner's sugar, optional
- Mix flour, sugar, and cinnamon together in a mixing bowl, using a fork to break up any lumps.2 cups self-rising flour, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- Add in milk, melted butter, and eggs. Stir well to combine.1 cup milk, 3 tbsp melted butter, 2 large eggs
- Peel and dice apples, then stir them into the batter.2 cups apples, peeled and diced
- Drop 1/8 cup of the batter into the hot oil and turn to allow them to brown on both sides.
- Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Dust with confectioner’s sugar, if desired.1 cup confectioner's sugar, optional
- Serve with apple butter.
Would love recipe for spice cake fritters I was unable to pull it up at the pumpkin spice fritters recipe request. They both sound delicious
Hi CJ, here is our Pumpkin fritters recipe. https://www.southernplate.com/pumpkin-fritters-with-orange-marmalade-dipping-sauce/
Thought that might help. Also we have a bunch of Pumpkin spice recipes on southernplate.com. If you put pumpkin spice in the search box you will come up with a bunch. Thanks for stopping by 🙂
These pretty much define fall for me
My goodness! So flavorful! So tasty! Will make this recipe again!
So glad you enjoyed, thanks for your comment!
Melissa, thank you so much letting me know. This is one of my son’s favorites too. So glad you enjoyed this recipe, warms my heart!
Christy, I had my first apple fritters at the Chatanooga Choo Choo soon after Jim and I first married. My parents were with us and we had such a good time! That was back in the mid-70s when the Choo Choo had a really great menu and made you feel like you were someone special when you visited! 🙂 I can hardly wait to try these. I just wish Momma and Daddy could enjoy them with us.
looks great! how many fritters come out from this recipe? 🙂
just saw ur note lol
Do you have a recipe for something like these fritters that you can bake instead of fry?
Hey Cecile! I dont but let me tell you what, if you haven’t tried my Mama’s Apple Spice Muffins – GOODNESS GRACIOUS! Those things are so good!!! Here is the link to the recipe: https://www.southernplate.com/mamas-apple-spice-muffins/
Can also roll in cinnamon/sugar and or switch out the apples for pears!