If you love apples and apple pie, then this cookie is just for you. A brown butter and cinnamon base cookie with a delicious apple pie filling in the middle, and then topped with a crumb streusel. Warm it up to discover a delicious cookie that tastes just like apple pie.
Updated September 16, 2022
Disclaimer: blog post contains affiliate links
Nothing says Fall more than apple desserts, and especially apple pie. It is my favorite pie, and if it has the streusel on top then I might as well throw my diet to the wind. And the option to make this a la mode only elevates this delicious dessert so much more.
Last year (2021) I began creating cookie recipes that I personally would love but also to share with all of you. I thought an apple pie cookie would be absolutely fantastic to attempt, and so I gave it a go and was so pleasantly surprised at how delicious and close to an apple pie it was! I was nervous it would be a bit soggy after baking because of the apple pie filling, but nope! It’s warm and oozy and honestly absolutely delicious!
Be cautioned though that there is some work involved in creating these delicious fall cookies, but I’ve done my best to simplify the process from the first version and I hope this second version is much easier for you! The original version had us bake the filling the day before making the cookies, but I tossed that out the window. The apple crumb topping also got easier! We are going with a simple streusel to make things easy and very convenient for ourselves.
With this updated version I really wanted to also give the option to you on being able to make a delicious apple pie cookie without the filling. There may be those of us who love apples and apple flavored dessert, but prefer the actual fruit kept out of it. The fix for this dilemma is freeze dried apples. Freeze dried apples are readily available at Target or Amazon, and you only need about 2 cups to help pump out that apple flavor. I grind the freeze dried apples down in my blender, and just add directly into the batter prior to adding in the flour. I still top the cookie with the streusel to give it that dutch apple pie look.
Notes Prior To Baking
Brown Butter: take your average every day butter and transform it into a delicious, nutty flavor. It is easy to do, and all you need is preferably a light colored medium sized pot (helps make it easier to see the color of the butter vs. dark pot), rubber spatula and heat proof bowl. The process takes only a few minutes to do, and then another hour or two to cool and slightly solidify. I recommend not skipping this step! It truly helps bring out the flavor of the cookie.
Apples: the star of the show! We are using two kinds of apples here – Honeycrisp apples, and freeze dried apples. I recommend Honeycrisp apples for the apple filling because they are extra crisp (hence the name!), and hold well during the bake. You can also use Granny Smith if you like a more tart flavor or pink lady. You will dice the apples into ½” to ¾” cubes, combine with the other filling ingredients and NOT cook over the stovetop (like you would if preparing pie filling). Instead we will allow them to bake along with the cookie. For the freeze dried apples, these will be ground down in your food processor or blender, and added to the wet ingredients prior to adding the dry ingredients.
Streusel: this is made up to mimic the topping of a dutch apple pie (my favorite!). You can forego it if you’d like but I honestly think it helps with the flavor of the cookie. Plus it gives it a bit of a crunch in each bite.
Chill Time: I recommend chilling the cookies for at least 12 hours, or up to 36 hours. A long chill time helps those flavors really blend into one another, and your tastebuds will thank you for it.
Storage: You can keep these room temp in a sealed container or ziplock bag for up to 3 days. You can also refrigerate for up to one week. Freezing is also a great option in a freezer safe container or ziplock bag for up to 3 months. I do recommend eating them slightly warm, so if you plan to warm from room temperature than pop in the microwave for only about 5 – 10 seconds. If frozen, allow the cookie to thaw within the container at room temperature. Once thawed, follow the steps to warm for the room temperature cookie.
Tools For The Job
Apple Pie Cookies
- 2 1/2 cup all purpose flour (325 g)
- 1 cup unsalted butter (~180g after browning)
- 2 cup freeze dried apples (35 g)
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed (100 g)
- 1/2 cup sugar (100 g)
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
Apple Pie Filling
- 2 ea honey crisp apples peeled and cubed
- 3 tbsp light brown sugar
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter melted
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour (60 g)
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter (56 g) cold and cubed
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar (50 g) tightly packed
- 1/4 cup sugar (50 g)
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- We begin with browning the butter. In a light colored medium sized pot, place butter inside and cook on low medium heat. No need to stir consistently, just allow the butter to melt and begin cooking.
- About half way through the butter will begin to foam up a bit, but you only need to take your rubber spatula and give it a stir to bring it back down a bit. Continue to cook on the same heat, and about 6 to 7 minutes in you will begin to see light foaming on the top.
- Prepare the kitchen scale and small heat proof bowl close by because once the butter is ready you will want to remove from heat immediately.
- You will notice the along the edges browning, and if you stir the butter there will be small browned pieces at the bottom. Begin stirring at this point until the color is a light to medium color and you smell the nutty flavor of the butter.
- Remove from heat and pour into heat safe bowl making sure the kitchen scale is on so you can measure the amount of butter.
- Allow butter to cool for about 1 hour before placing in refrigerator to continue cooling. Allow to sit in fridge between 15 to 30 minutes. You are looking to slightly solidify the butter where it is still palpable and easy to smooth.
- The brown butter bits will naturally fall to the bottom of the bowl. Take your rubber spatula and mix the butter together so that the browned bits are distributed evenly throughout. The butter should be soft but not melted. Set aside.
Apple Pie Filling Prep
- Peel apples and remove core. Cut into ¼" cubes and then toss with melted butter, sugars, vanilla, flour, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.2 ea honey crisp apples, 3 tbsp light brown sugar, 1 tbsp sugar, 1 tbsp all purpose flour, 1 tbsp unsalted butter, 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, 1/4 tsp salt
- Combine all ingredients into a small bowl and use your fingers or fork to combine the ingredients into one another. You should be looking for a crumbly texture. Set aside.1/2 cup all purpose flour (60 g), 1/4 cup unsalted butter (56 g), 1/4 cup light brown sugar (50 g), 1/4 cup sugar (50 g), ½ tsp ground cinnamon
Apple Pie Cookies
- In a large bowl, add the browned butter, sugars and vanilla. Whisk ingredients together until well combined.1 cup unsalted butter (~180g after browning), 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed (100 g), 1/2 cup sugar (100 g), 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Add eggs and whisk until well combined. Set aside.2 large eggs
- Place freeze dried apples into blender or food processor, and grind into a powder. Pour all apple powder into the wet ingredients and whisk together.2 cup freeze dried apples (35 g)
- Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt to wet ingredients and whisk together until just combined. Use a rubber spatula after to pull together any remaining flour into the dough.2 1/2 cup all purpose flour (325 g), 1 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/2 tsp baking powder, ¼ tsp baking soda, ½ tsp salt
- Prepare a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper, and using the 3 tbsp ice cream scoop, scoop out the dough and place on sheet. Repeat until all dough is done.
- Then take a tbsp or spoon and push into the middle of the cookie to create a well. This will be for the filling, so if you prefer to not add the apple filling then you can skip this step. When the wells are done, spoon about 1 tsp of apple filling into each well. Then spoon about 2 tsp of streusel on top of the apple filling. If you are opting out of the apple filling but still want to use the streusel then just coat the top part of the cookie with the streusel.
- Refrigerate/freeze any excess apple filling or crumble topping. Place baking sheet in refrigerator for at least 12 hours, or up to 36 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375 F. Remove cookies from refrigerator and place 6 cookies per baking sheet, and bake for 11 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool.
- I HIGHLY recommend using a kitchen scale to weigh ingredients. There is less room for error on the recipe is you weigh the ingredients.