Brown Butter & Apple Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

Brown butter combined with apples and cinnamon to truly bring your taste buds into the Fall season

Updated July 22, 2022

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Say hello to one of the most delicious roll out sugar cookie recipes you will ever try. This recipe oozes Fall – apples, cinnamon, and brown butter all come together to create this soft and tasty cookie. Updated now to incorporate some staple ingredients that are currently sitting in your pantry, this recipe is now easier than ever to make!

This recipe I originally had cake flour in it which seemed totally doable in my eyes. After all, I bake cakes and cookies so cake flour is typical in my pantry. However I quickly realized it’s not a staple for most people. So after the Fall season passed I made a mental note to come back and update this recipe to exclude cake flour and work to make this an easier recipe for all – not just the every day bakers.

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Q & A

Do I have to use browned butter? Can I just use regular unsalted butter?

Yes, of course you totally can…but your cookie isn’t going to be as flavorful as intended. The brown butter really helps elevate the flavors of the apple and cinnamon, and just pulls together the whole cookie beautifully. I recommend browning your butter but of course it is entirely up to you.

Do I have to add the apple sugar mix on top of the cookie?

Not at all! The apple sugar mix sprinkled on top of the cookie is just helping to push those flavors even further. The benefit of the apple sugar mix is you don’t need to be a master royal icing or buttercream decorator to enjoy this gorgeous cookie. This apple sugar mix helps make this cookie beautiful – and ready to eat! If you plan to decorate with royal icing or buttercream then you can leave the cookie without (or with! It’s up to you!).

Do I need a kitchen scale?

If you bake even a handful of times a year I reallyyyyy recommend having a kitchen scale. Measuring by weight vs. volume can dramatically reduce the errors we make when measuring, so as always – yes, I absolutely think you should use a kitchen scale for (and all) recipes.

Can I sub the freeze dried apples for baked/dried apples?

I used freeze dried apples for the recipe because freeze dried fruit remove all the moisture but you still have the benefit of the flavor. The recipe is balanced so that the moisture allowed (sugar, eggs, etc) is just enough to ensure the cookie holds its shape, but also stays soft. Dried fruit does not remove all the water so I don’t recommend using it in the recipe because it will disrupt the overall intended structure of the cookie.


Tools For The Job

kitchen scale

stand mixer or hand mixer

parchment paper

blender or food processor

fine mesh strainer

Brown Butter & Apple Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

Brown butter combined with apples and cinnamon to truly bring your taste buds into the Fall season.
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: apple cinnamon cookies, apple cookie, cinnamon cookies, sugar cookies
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Chill Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 5 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 18 cookies
Author: Sharon Alvarenga


  • 390 g all purpose flour 3 c
  • 282 g unsalted butter (~227 g after browning) 2 ¼ c
  • 170 g light brown sugar, lightly packed 1 c
  • 35 g freeze dried apples 2 c
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Apple Sugar Mixture (Optional)

  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tsp freeze dried apple powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon


Browning Butter

  • 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.

Brown Butter & Apple Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

  • Place browned butter and sugar into stand mixer bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, and mix on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Scrape down bowl and add egg and vanilla, and mix on medium high until the egg is incorporated.
  • n a food processor or blender, grind down freeze dried apples into a powder. Then sift through the fine mesh strainer to remove the larger pieces/skin of apple. If you are making the apple cinnamon sugar mixture, take 2 tsp of the powder and place in a small bowl, and then add the sugar and cinnamon and mix well. Place in ziplock bag and store in a cool, dry location. The remaining apple powder will be added to the dry ingredients in the next step.
  • In a separate bowl, add flour, apple powder, baking powder, corn starch, cinnamon and sea salt. You will need to sift the dry ingredients to ensure the apple powder evenly distributes. Once ingredients are well combined you will pour into the wet ingredients.
  • Turn mixer on low to allow the dry ingredients to begin mixing slowly into the wet ingredients. After about 30 seconds turn to medium. You will know the dough is ready when it pulls away from the sides of the bowl and comes together on the paddle attachment. 
  • If your dough is a bit crumbly and not pulling together well, place out on parchment paper and knead with hands for a bit until it comes together – typically about 1 minute. You may also need to knead between cutting shapes.
  • Place dough between two pieces of parchment paper and roll to ?” thickness, or desired thickness. 
  • Place in refrigerator for a minimum of 2 hours, or up to 24 hours. I generally prepare my dough the night before and bake in the morning. So I average having my dough in the refrigerator for about 12 hours before baking.
  • Preheat oven to 375 F. Remove cookies from refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for about 5 minutes before cutting shapes. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a baking mat about 1” apart.
  • Bake for approximately 10 minutes, or until you begin to see edges begin to brown. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. 
  • Allow cookies to cool on wire rack completely before enjoying.


  • If you want to use the apple cinnamon sugar but don’t want it as a top coating, here is another trick – once you have cut the shapes, coat the bottom of the cookie in the cinnamon sugar and then place on the baking sheet. This will create a crystalized sugar coating on the bottom so you’ll get all the extra flavor without sacrificing the smooth top.
  • If you plan to use the apple sugar mixture on the cookie surface, generously sprinkle the mixture on the cookies right after being removed from oven. A hot/warm cookie will ensure that the sugar ‘sticks’.
  • The dough may be crumbly. You can add 1 to 2 tbsp of milk/whipping cream in the stand mixer/bowl to help cohere the dough together.


  1. Cake flour……??? Is there a sub/hack so that I don’t have to buy an entire bag for a single batch of cookies?

    1. Yes, cake flour! It is finer and softer than all purpose flour so it helps give a softer texture and bite to the cookie. You can find cake flour at most local grocery stores for as little as $3 a box. If you prefer to make a substitute, I recommend using Sally’s Baking Addiction hack.

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