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This kid-approved Vegan Apple Fritter recipe is just the dessert-like breakfast you’ve been craving this Fall! It’s warm, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, just how it should be!
Apple fritters are traditionally made by deep frying dough in oil, which is exactly how you’ll find them made below. In all of their crispy and glazed glory!
But if you’re trying to make them without oil, you’ll find the directions below for baking apple fritters in the oven AND making the apple fritters in the air fryer!
Ingredients you’ll need for Apple Fritters
All-Purpose Flour: Forms the base of the fritter batter, providing structure. Other flours have not been tested yet.
Brown Sugar: Sweetens the fritters and contributes to their caramelized exterior. You can use coconut sugar or white sugar as alternatives.
Baking Powder: Helps the fritters rise and become light and airy.
Cinnamon: Adds warm, aromatic spice to the fritters, complementing the apples. Apple pie spice can be used for variation.
Salt: Enhances flavor and balances sweetness. A pinch of sea salt or kosher salt can be used.
Nutmeg: Offers a warm and nutty flavor that pairs well with apples. Cloves or allspice can provide a similar spice profile.
Applesauce: Provides moisture and apple flavor to the batter, making it moist. This takes the place of adding oil directly into the batter.
Almond Milk: Adds liquid to the batter and helps achieve the desired consistency. Any plant-based milk, like oat or soy, can be substituted.
Vanilla Extract: Enhances the overall flavor profile with a hint of sweetness. Almond extract or maple extract can offer alternative flavors.
Apples: The star of the show, diced apples add texture, sweetness, and a burst of fruity goodness. For best results go for firmer tart apples, such as granny smith or honeycrisp (we prefer honeycrisp every time!).
Vegetable Oil: Used for frying the fritters, creating a crispy exterior. Canola oil or peanut oil can be used for frying, or other oils with a high smoke point.
Powdered Sugar: Forms the base of the icing, providing sweetness and thickness. Adjust the amount for desired consistency.
Almond Milk: Thins the icing to the desired consistency for drizzling. Any plant-based milk can be used, we simply like almond the best for this icing.
Cinnamon: Adds a hint of spice and warmth to the icing, enhancing the flavor and also gives the icing the color to make these apple fritters look just like the ones from a bakery!
Vanilla Extract: Enhances the flavor of the icing . Feel free to sub in almond or maple extract different flavors.
How to Make Vegan Apple Fritters
*Note that these instructions can be printed below
Step one: Start heating your oil on the stove over medium heat.
Step two: Whisk together all of the dry ingredients for the fritters (flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg).
Step three: Mix in all of the wet ingredients for the fritters (applesauce, milk, vanilla).
Step four: Then gently fold in the diced apples
Step five: Once the oil is between 350℉ and 375℉ (keep heat at medium-low once it reaches this temperature), add about ⅓ cup of the batter into the oil, flatten the fritter batter at the bottom of the pot (or deep fryer) and cook for about 1-3 minutes both sides. It should be a medium to dark golden color when done.
Step six: Allow the fritters to cool on top of a paper towel(s) on top of a cooling rack.
Step seven: Make the icing and then dip the fritters in the icing once cool.
Step eight: Allow the icing to set, turn the apple fritters over and allow the icing to set on the other side, and then enjoy!
- Use baking apples, such as honeycrisp, or other firm and tart apples like granny smith for the best flavor & texture.
- Cut the apples right before adding them to the batter to help prevent them from browning.
- The batter should feel like a thick pancake batter, not like a bread dough.
- Be careful when working with hot oil, especially if teaching your kids how to make these.
- Only fry 2-3 at a time, give them plenty of room.
- Make sure the oil is at least 350℉ before dropping in the batter.
- Dip them in the icing as soon as they become cool enough to handle, they should still be warm.
- Allow the glaze to set before enjoying it!
Alternative Ways to Make Apple Fritters
Are you going to deep fry, bake, or air fry your vegan apple fritters? The choice is up to you!
Baking Apple Fritters
So many people wonder “Can I bake Apple Fritters?” and most people will flat out say “NO!”
But, that’s not entirely true.
You can bake apple fritters, they just don’t taste like traditional apple fritters.
Baked apple fritters are a bit softer, a bit juicier, and have no crisp to them.
They’re more like an apple donut, without the hole in the middle.
And the only thing that differs in the process from making them is that you bake them in the oven at 375℉ for about 15 minutes, instead of deep frying them.
So, apple fritters baked in the oven are a ton healthier than the deep fried version, but they don’t have that famous fritter crisp that you may be used to.
This would be a great way to make them for kids though, especially if they haven’t been introduced to deep fried foods yet!
Air Fryer Apple Fritters
If you’re looking for a bit of a crisp with your apple fritters, but are determined to not use oil or as much oil, then air frying them is the way to go!
You do lose a lot of the crisp without the oil, but there is still a slight crispiness to apple fritters made in the air fryer. It’s also important to note that they will be a bit softer in the air fryer, too.
Making them in the air fryer is just as easy, if not easier, than baking them.
- Preheat your air fryer to 375℉.
- Cut your parchment paper to fit inside your air fryer, and for best results spray your parchment paper with a cooking spray (this is optional, but makes it easier for removing the apple fritter from the parchment paper).
- Scoop out about ⅓ cup of your batter into the parchment lined air fryer and let air fry for about 10 minutes, flipping the apple fritter over halfway through the time.
- Finish making the apple fritters as outlined in the recipe below (allow to cool and dip in the glaze).
Again, they won’t be as crispy on the outside as frying them in oil, but they will be crispier than baking them.
How to Serve
Serve these FRESH!
Apple fritters are always best served fresh, like as soon as the glaze solidifies and up to the next 4-6 hours.
Storing them for later won’t give you the same result as eating them fresh.
You can serve them for breakfast, a snack, or dessert! Or just because!
How to Store
Room Temperature: Store them at room temperature for up to 4-5 days in an airtight container.
The icing will soak into the apple fritter overnight, but you can get some of the fried texture back by air frying them for about 4-5 minutes at any temperature from 350℉-400℉ (this has been tested many times with great results at every interval of 10 degrees between those temperatures).
Apple Fritter FAQ’s
Apple fritters are made of flour, sugar, baking powder, applesauce, milk, apples, and spices.
Apple fritters are more so donuts than they are pastries.
They will turn an almost dark golden color when done.
They need to be cool to the touch. Be careful, but once they are cool enough for you to handle with your hands, they are cool enough to ice.
Unfortunately I have not yet had success making these gluten-free. Let me know in the comments if you’ve tried this with success!
The best way to make sure your apple fritters turn out crispy and not soft is by making sure the temperature of the oil you are frying them in is at least 350℉. Eating them the same day they are made will also ensure they are crispy when you are eating them.
Not well. They technically can be, and can be reheated in an air fryer to help get some of their crispness back, but the glaze soaks into the fritters and makes them soft. So it’s best just to make them the same day you want to eat them to prevent any disappointment.
More Vegan Apple Recipes You’ll Love
- Apple Pie Bars
- Vegan Apple muffins
- Apple Enchiladas
- Vegan Apple pancakes
- Stovetop Apples
- Apple Oatmeal
- Apple Bites
- Vegan Apple French Toast Casserole
Vegan Apple FrittersShawna Clapper
- 1-2 Bowls
- Large pot or dutch oven or deep fryer
- Slotted spoon
- Cooking Rack
- Paper towels
- 1 ½ cups All Purpose Flour
- 3 tablespoons Brown Sugar
- 2 teaspoons Baking Powder
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon Salt
- ¼ teaspoon Nutmeg
- ½ cup Applesauce
- ½ cup Almond Milk
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 2 Large Apples diced
- Vegetable Oil for frying
- 2 ½ cups Powdered Sugar
- ⅓ cup Almond Milk
- ¼ teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- Start heating your oil on the stove over medium heat.
- Whisk together all of the dry ingredients for the fritters (flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg).
- Mix in all of the wet ingredients for the fritters (applesauce, milk, vanilla).
- Then gently fold in the diced apples
- Once the oil is between 350℉ and 375℉ (keep heat at medium-low once it reaches this temperature), add about ⅓ cup of the batter into the oil, flatten the fritter batter at the bottom of the pot (or deep fryer) and cook for about 1-3 minutes both sides. It should be a medium to dark golden color when done.
- Allow the fritters to cool on top of a paper towel(s) on top of a cooling rack.
- Make the icing and then dip the fritters in the icing once cool.
- Allow the icing to set, turn the apple fritters over and allow the icing to set on the other side, and then enjoy!