I know this is a contentious thing to say on a baking blog, but it needs to be said: I really don’t like pie.
But cookies inspired by pie? Yes please, gimme, sign me up.
These Apple Pie Cookies caught my eye a long time ago and I finally got around to making them this week. What a winner! The base cookie is similar to a snickerdoodle with a cinnamon sugar topping. And then you cook down some spiced apples, and stuff them right inside the cookie. In every bite, you get a bit of crisp cookie shell, a bit of spiced apple and a chewy hit of cookie. As my coworker put it: “It’s like pie, but with a better ratio of crust to filling.”
They’re also more portable than pie, though you’ll want to make sure to carry these babies right-side-up in a sturdy container. Since they have fruit in the middle, they don’t hold their shape as well as some other cookies, and might fall apart in transit if you put them on their sides.
These do take a fair amount of time since you need to prep apples, let your filling cool and go through assembly. I promise they’re worth it!
Apple Pie Cookies
Original recipe: Cookie Dough and Oven Mitt. I’ve rewritten things a bit and added commentary.
Yield: ~20 cookies
Suggested equipment: Mixer
Total Time: ~2 hours
Cook Time: ~16 minutes
Apple pie filling
- 1 3/4 cups apples—peeled, cored and diced. This takes about 2 medium apples.
- 3 tbsp light brown sugar, tightly packed
- 1/2 tbsp flour
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup butter, at room temp
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar, tightly packed
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 3/4 cups flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tbsp cinnamon
- 1/2 cup sugar
Make your filling
- Add all your filling ingredients to a medium saucepan (apples, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and butter). Stir to combine.
- Crank the heat up to medium, and let your pan come to a simmer. Simmer for about 3-4 minutes, stirring continuously. You’re good to go when your apples are soft, with a thick syrup around them.
- Take your pan off the heat and let your filling cool for a while. You don’t want to stuff hot filling into cookies since the heat could affect your cookie dough. My filling took about 20 minutes to cool, but definitely keep an eye on yours to make sure it’s right before you move onto the next step.
Make your dough
- Preheat your oven to 350F
- Use your mixer to cream the butter and shortening together. On medium speed, mix until the two are combined.
- Add granulated sugar and brown sugar, then mix on medium until it’s light and fluffy.
- Add the vanilla and one of your eggs. Mix the egg in completely, then add your second egg and mix it all again.
- Put your flour, baking powder and salt into the mixer bowl. Mix it on low until the flour starts to get incorporated into your wet ingredients. Then, turn up the speed to medium and make sure everything is completely combined.
Fill, roll and bake
- First, make your cinnamon sugar topping. In a shallow bowl, stir the sugar and cinnamon until they’re completely combined.
- Scoop some dough from your mixer bowl—I used a couple tablespoons of dough per cookie. Smush the dough a bit so it’s easier to stuff.
- Put about 1/4 a teaspoon of filling in the center of your dough, and roll the dough back into a circle. You might want to play around with your filling ratio until it feels right, since it depends a bit on how big you make your cookies.
- Roll the dough ball in your cinnamon sugar so it’s completely covered in the topping.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment. Leave at least an inch between your dough balls so they have space to spread—these will spread quite a bit during baking!
- Bake your cookies 12-16 minutes. Mine took the full 16 minutes. Your edges should look set, but the centers will still look a little soft and will firm up as the cookies cool.
- Let the cookies cool on a wire rack, then move them into an airtight container for storage.