If you love old-school apple fritters but are worried about the health effects of deep-frying, you have to try making air fryer apple fritters. These deliciously sweet apple fritters have the same crispy outside and soft inside as deep-fried apple fritters but are healthier because they're made in an air fryer and need next to no oil to cook.
With an irresistible apple cinnamon flavor and mouthwatering brown butter glaze, these easy air fryer apple fritters make a great dessert you can make on the fly. Serve them with ice cream, whipped cream, or enjoy them with a simple glaze. Whichever way you choose, they're sure to be a hit!
Start by preparing the brown butter glaze. Melt the butter in a saucepan and cook it until it turns golden brown and takes on a rich, nutty aroma. Let it cool down, then stir in the sugar, milk, and vanilla. Set the glaze off to the side for the moment.
Now it's time to make the apple fritter batter. Let your air fryer preheat to 400°F. While it's heating, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a bowl. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the wet ingredients. Mix everything until it's nice and smooth, then gently fold in the diced apples.
Next up, line the basket of your air fryer with parchment paper. Scoop ¼ cup of the batter onto the parchment paper and fry them for 4 to 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Turn them over, cook them for another 5 minutes, then set the fritters on a rack to cool. Brush them generously with the glaze and serve warm, preferably with a cup of coffee or tea.
There are a few different apple varieties that make great apple fritters. Tarter apples like Granny Smith and Jonagold are perfect for balancing out the sweetness of the sugar and brown butter glaze, but if you like extra sweet fritters, Honey Crisp or Braeburn are fantastic options.
If your brown butter glaze is too thin, mix in more powdered sugar to thicken it up. If it's too thick, you can stir in some more milk to let it thin out.
For a more intense apple flavor, use apple cider instead of milk to make the brown butter glaze.
Keep leftover apple fritters in an airtight container at room temperature and enjoy within 2 days.
For the brown butter glaze. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Heat the butter until it turns begins to foam and start browning. Stir continuously. Once browned, remove the butter from the heat to cool. Whisk in powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla, then set to the side.
Preheat your air fryer to 400°F.
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.
Create a well in the center of the flour mixture. Pour in milk, vanilla, lemon juice, and eggs. Whisk until smooth. Fold in the apples.
Line your air fryer with parchment paper. Lightly grease with cooking spray.
Scoop ¼ cup of batter onto the parchment paper. Spray the fritters lightly with cooking spray. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes or until the fritters turn deep golden brown. Turn the fritters over, spray, and cook for another 4 to 5 minutes.
Remove the fritters from the air fryer and place them on a wire rack to cool. Drizzle the glaze over the fritters while they're still warm. Repeat until all the batter has been used.
Don't overcrowd your air fryer when cooking the fritters or they won't get that lovely crispy texture.