Apple Pie Caramel Apple Cookies

I am ridiculously excited about sharing these cookies with you guys because they turned out even better than I could have hoped! I have always been obsessed with Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory's Apple Pie Caramel Apple because the flavors go SO well together. You've got your Granny Smith apple dipped in caramel, white chocolate and cinnamon sugar. YUM. A few weeks ago, I had the idea to turn the flavors of that caramel apple into a cookie and it was the best idea I've ever had!
These Apple Pie Caramel Apple Cookies have a snickerdoodle base with fresh Granny Smith apples mixed in. Then they're topped with some soft caramel and a drizzle of white chocolate. The cookies are incredibly soft and have the best apple/cinnamon sugar flavor. The caramel and white chocolate on top really trick your mind into thinking you're eating an apple pie caramel apple. So dang good!
These look complicated, but anyone can make them. I promise! Do yourself a favor and make them ASAP. I'm not a huge apple dessert person so when I say these are amazing, you better believe me!

Apple Pie Caramel Apple Cookies

Makes 2 dozen cookies

3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks, softened)

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

1 egg

2 cups flour

1 (3.5 oz. box) instant white chocolate or vanilla pudding mix, not prepared

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp. salt

pinch of nutmeg

1 cup Granny Smith apple (about 1 large apple), peeled and finely chopped

12 soft caramels, cut in half (I recommend Werther’s)

6 oz. white vanilla melting wafers or candy coating

Cinnamon Sugar Topping:

1/4 cup sugar

3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon

1. In a large bowl or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugars for 2 minutes until fluffy. Mix in vanilla and egg until smooth.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, pudding mix, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg. Add dry mixture to wet ingredients and mix until well combined. Stir in apples until evenly distributed. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes. (The dough will be sticky.)

3. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.

4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Measure 2 tablespoons of dough and roll into a ball. Then roll generously in the cinnamon sugar. Place on prepared baking sheet.

5. Place cookies in oven for 9 minutes. While cookies are baking, prepare caramels by pressing each piece into a small round disc with your fingers.

6. Remove baking sheet from oven and place a disc of caramel onto the center of each cookie. Place back in oven for 3 minutes. The cookies will be slightly under baked, which is what you want.

7. Allow cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet on top of a cooling rack.

8. Once cookies have cooled, melt vanilla wafers or candy coating according to package instructions and pour into a quart sized plastic bag. Cut a tiny hole off of one corner and carefully pipe the melted white chocolate over each cookie. (I drizzled back and forth one way and then turned and made a crisscross pattern.)

*Store in an airtight container on the counter for up to 3 days.


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