Soft and moist applesauce cookies, perfect as a sweet snack. These cookies get most of their sweetness from the sweet and tangy applesauce, so they’re also healthier.
This post first appeared as my submission on Savory Experiments, where I’m a contributor.
Applesauce is a great sweetener for all things baked and is also a lifesaver in a lot of vegan recipes. Sweet and tangy, applesauce is a healthier substitute to sugar, as you will need less added sugar.
Using applesauce in cookies makes them healthier due to the reduced sugar, but also reduced fat. The soft homemade applesauce adds moisture to cookies, so you won’t need as much fat (butter or oil).
These applesauce cookies are not just healthier, but also make for a great snack. They are spiced to perfection, fragrant and incredibly moist. I love having them with coffee, tea or on their own when I’m craving something yummy.
Once you make these old school applesauce cookies, they will become a family favourite. I love these cookies because they are:
- Easy to make and takes only 5 minutes to prep
- Healthier, lower in sugar and fat
- Can be made with homemade or store-bought applesauce
- Incredibly moist and soft
- Sweet and fragrant
- Perfect for fall
- Great for children
- Spiced to perfection
Apart from the applesauce, all ingredients used in this recipe can be found in most households.
- Applesauce – the main ingredient in this recipe. You can use either store-bought or homemade applesauce. For more fragrant cookies, I recommend using my homemade applesauce. If using store-bought applesauce, choose a variety without added sugar.
- Butter – unsalted works best for this recipe. Ensure the butter is softened before using in the recipe by leaving it at room temperature for 2-3 hours.
- Brown sugar – adds a deeper, caramelised flavour to the applesauce cookies. You can also use granulated sugar instead.
- Egg – large, organic eggs work best. Ensure the egg is used at room temperature.
- Vanilla – adds flavour to the cookies. You can use either vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste.
- Flour – all-purpose flour works best. Do not use self-rising, as we will be adding separate raising agents.
- Baking powder – the main rising agent in the cookies.
- Baking soda – used to make the apple cookies soft and keep them moist.
- Spices – cinnamon and nutmeg powder add a spiced flavour that works best with the apple flavour. You can also add cloves powder, allspice or ginger.
Apart from their deliciousness, the best part of these applesauce cookies is how easy they are to make. All you need is one bowl to mix everything.
- Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, then mix in the egg and applesauce.
- Add in all the dry ingredients, mixing until just about combined.
- Place small scoops of dough onto the cookie sheet.
- Bake until golden in colour.
These cookies are fuss free and they look rustic – that’s their charm! I like to decorate mine with melted white chocolate or dust with cinnamon and icing sugar.
Applesauce cookies are very versatile, so you can experiment and customise them as desired.
- Add extra spices for a signature fall flavour: allspice, ginger, cloves or star anise.
- Extra texture with candied or dried fruit: citrus, ginger, berries and more.
- Nuts for days: walnut, pistachio, hazelnut or almond are only a few choices.
- Extracts can take you the extra mile: adding a bit of almond extract will make the cookies taste more Middle Eastern. A bit of citrus extract can make the apple cookies fresher and more summery.
- Drizzle or icing: anything from white chocolate, dark chocolate or salted caramel can change the flavour of your applesauce cookies.
- Deeper flavours – replace the vanilla extract in the recipe with a dash of maple syrup, golden syrup or even molasses for a richer, deeper flavour.
How to store
These old school applesauce cookies are best stored at room temperature. Place in an airtight container and store in a dry place for up to 3 days. Although these cookies can last for longer, they can taste stale after 3 days.
For longer storage, you can also freeze these cookies. Place in an airtight container and freeze for up to 3-4 months.
Frequently asked questions
Applesauce is called apple puree or apple sauce in the UK. It can be found in most supermarkets and it's usually made from Bramley apples. The texture is slightly lumpier and can contain chunks of apple.
Yes, applesauce cookies can be frozen for up to 3-4 months. To store, place in an airtight container.
Applesauce makes cookies soft and chewy, and it gives them a cake-like texture. It also adds sweetness and a bit of tanginess to the flavour.
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If you’ve tried this recipe out, please don’t forget to rate and comment on this post. I love hearing from you, so feel free to reach out to me on social media as well and tag me in your posts!
Applesauce Cookies Recipe
- ½ cup butter (100 grams)
- ¾ cup brown sugar (150 grams)
- 1 large egg, room temperature
- ⅔ cup applesauce (150 grams)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour (300 grams)
- ½ teaspoon salt, fine
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ⅓ cup white chocolate (50 grams)
- Pre-heat the oven to 350°F (180°C) and line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Cream the softened butter with the sugar until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add in the egg, then mix again to combine. Pour in the applesauce and mix once more to fully incorporate.
- Separately, whisk the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg.
- Using a spatula, combine the dry and wet ingredients, mixing until just about combined.
- Using a cookie scoop or a tablespoon place the cookie dough onto the cookie sheet. Leave 1 or 2 inches spaces between the cookies, as they will spread when baking.
- Bake for 10 minutes or until the surface looks golden. Let cool on the sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack tocool completely.
- Once cooled, drizzle with melted white chocolate.
- Nutritional value is estimative only and it is calculated per serving (this recipe yields 24 servings).