Week 40: Frosted Apple Cider Cookies

We’re officially in the autumnal season, and this week is something else related to fall: apples! This week’s recipe is a cookie that also feels like a fall day.

I spent a good amount of time yesterday finding fall-themed cookie recipes, so I’ll have some more tasty treats in the weeks to come. I tried to keep the recipes related to the season, and this one came up first. It’s funny how fall and the holidays have their own themed cookies, but summer doesn’t seem to have much in the realm. They’re just…cookies.

The good news is that this is a recipe that can be made on impulse (as long as you have butter at room temperature at all times). You’ll need to get some extra ingredients for these cookies though. The unusual ingredients you might not keep on hand include:

  • Cloves
  • Applesauce
  • Vegetable shortening

Well, I usually have vegetable shortening on hand at all times, but most people might not since it isn’t used in a lot of baking.

Unfortunately, I made a rookie mistake when I was measuring my flour and sugar. I accidentally used the 1.5 cup measuring cup instead of the 1 cup measuring cup. I wasn’t paying attention to the measuring cup I was using, probably because I was distracted while doing so. I was wondering why the bowl with flour was looking pretty full, and it turns out I had put in 6 cups of flour instead of the recipe calling for 4 of them. Could I have saved the recipe by adding 50% more of everything? Probably, but then I would have had around 60 cookies instead of the 40 that I got, and I would have been baking for even longer.

Also, don’t ask why I have a 1.5 cup measuring cup. I think it came with a set of measuring cups from Costco.

I baked these on my aluminum cookie sheets at 18 minutes per batch for good measure on a sheet of parchment paper. Make sure you keep the cookies well separated because they might ending up mingling a bit together.

The cookies came out super chewy, which I’m guessing is because of the applesauce thrown into the mix.

The frosting is pretty easy to make, although you don’t need to make it right away after the cookies are baked. The recipe tells you to have it come to a boil, but I think just a little bit of bubbling is fine. This one, I had to dust off my hand mixer and use it for the frosting.


  • 4 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter – softened
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups applesauce
  • 1 cup chopped pecans – optional

Apple Cider Frosting:

  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 packets spiced apple cider instant drink mix
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar


  1. Begin by preheating your oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and cloves. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, using a mixer, cream together the butter, shortening, and sugar for about 5 minutes or until light and fluffy. Then add the eggs and applesauce, mixing to combine.
  4. Add in the dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated.
  5. With a medium scoop, drop spoonfuls of the batter onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the edges of the cookie just start to brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  6. While the cookies cool, prepare the frosting. In a pot over medium heat, combine the brown sugar and milk. While constantly stirring bring the mixture to a boil; then remove from the heat. Stir in the butter, spiced apple cider drink mix, and salt.
  7. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat with an electric mixer until smooth. The frosting will firm as it cools, so work quickly to frost your cookies. If the frosting seems too thin, add a bit more confectioners’ sugar.
  8. Use about 1 tablespoon of frosting for each cookie. Top with chopped pecans (if desired) before the frosting sets. Pack and store in an airtight container.


Author: Michael Maravick

I hold a Bachelor's of Science in Manufacturing Engineering from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. I'm a process engineer by day with a passion for baking and trying new recipes.

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