Soft fluffy dough, warm gooey apple inside, a caramel drizzle on top–this healthy Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll Mug Cake is one cozy quick microwave treat you need to try this fall! Vegan, gluten-free, oil-free.
A single serve recipe?? How un-Thanksgiving of me considering it is Thanksgiving tomorrow. Instead of attempting some sort of savory stuffing or sweet potato something or traditional Thanksgiving thing, I decided to take advantage of this last feels-like-fall week before the Christmas craze hits to focus on one of my favorite fruits: apples!
If you are currently operating in Thanksgiving brain, then maybe hop over to this post instead and just ignore the little number at the top that reads 2015. A Thanksgiving feast Buddha bowl style would still be a perfect last minute meal. I honestly haven’t decided yet what I will be doing, all I know for sure is that there will be pumpkin pie. (Read: I’m probably just going to skip the meal and eat an obscene amount of pumpkin pie instead. Don’t judge, it’s my tradition.)
So no last minute side dish ideas here. However, if you are still searching for that perfect pumpkin dessert that I can help with…
-There is my favorite Date-Sweetened Pumpkin Pie.
-Or there are the mini Pumpkin Pie Cups, party of 4 (Or 8 or 12, just multiply that recipe as needed!)
-The pudding form: Pumpkin Pie Parfait
-The frozen form: Pumpkin Pie Nice Cream
-And I think that is…no wait! Pumpkin Creme Brûlée–can’t forget that fancier form.
But enough pumpkin talk, the Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll Mug Cake is starting to get jealous…
But Thanksgiving really isn’t supposed to be just about the food anyways, so I am thankful for ramekins for being the perfect vessel for baking up single serve desserts. I am thankful for microwaves, the perfect power source for the hungry and impatient. I am thankful to whomever it was that first thought to make cake in the microwave–a true genius.
I am thankful for tapioca starch for making the spongy gluten-like cinnamon roll texture possible without gluten. I am thankful for 5-Minute Caramel Apple Butter for being a super fast and fantastically fruity filling for this rolled up ramekin recipe. I am thankful for baking powder and lemon juice because together they are an unstoppable fluffiness-creating force.
And you thought this wasn’t going to be a Thanksgiving themed post! Actually I was thinking the same thing at the beginning there, but once I got to writing I realized just how many little things there are to be grateful for in something as simple as a mug
cake roll. And in every recipe or snack or bite of food for that matter. I’m sure I could expand this into some sort of cinnamon roll = life metaphor right about now, but I will refrain and just get to the recipe.
The caramel apple butter is really the star of this recipe, acting as both the sweetener in the dough and as the filling. Oh, and the sauce drizzled on top actually, just thinned out a bit.
So I know there are some of you out there who are tired of me using tapioca starch in so many of my recipes, but I don’t do it without good reason. It’s amazing stuff! And very much necessary to keep this cinnamon roll in a mug from turning into cinnamon crumbles in a mug. Tapioca starch simultaneous acts as the egg replacer and gluten-substitute in this recipe, binding the dough to make it easier to roll and also giving it a very gluten-like texture after baking.
I tested it with both ground chia and flax in place of the tapioca flour and the texture was nowhere near as good. Cornstarch would be the next best thing, but I highly suggest you invest in a bag of tapioca starch. Most oat flour based baked goods are better with it I have found. It’s relatively inexpensive, and one bag will last you a while since most recipes only use a quarter cup or so.
Soft fluffy cinnamon dough, warm gooey caramel apple insides, drizzle of extra apple flavor on top–diving into this irresistible warm-from-the-microwave mug is quite the cozy treat!
Caramel Apple Cinnamon Roll Mug Cake
In a mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients for the dough. Mix to form a sticky ball of dough.
Lightly spray a sheet of wax paper with coconut oil.
Press out the dough into a long thin strip about 1-2 inches wide and 10-12 inches long (see video for example).
Dollop a line of apple butter down the center of the dough. Roll up the dough, using the wax paper to help it along. Transfer to a ramekin.
Microwave for 1.5-2 minutes on high (see notes for oven option).
Let it cool slightly before topping with more apple butter (I thinned it out with maple syrup to a drizzle-able consistency) and a sprinkling of chopped pecans. Enjoy!
If you prefer not to use the microwave, you can bake it in the oven for 15-17 minutes at 350F.
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