One of my favorite aspects of autumn is the plentiful, seasonal produce – especially apples and pumpkins. I’m not in a cool weather climate until the end of fall, but I still wanted to use apples and make applesauce (which is SO easy!). I had a bit of left over applesauce and wanted to use it for some baked goodies. I was inspired by this cookie recipe, but tweaked it slightly to make it healthier and enhance the apple flavor. So I’m really happy I came up with this oatmeal applesauce cranberry cookies recipe.
I also discovered that homemade applesauce is ridiculously delicious. I never liked or ate applesauce as a kid. But homemade applesauce is fresh, delicious, and wonderfully fragrant with a touch of lemon zest. My husband, who is allergic to apples in their raw form, can’t keep his hands off these cookies – can you?
Oatmeal applesauce cranberry cookies recipe
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup chunky-style applesauce
- 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
- 1 cup cranberries or raisins soaked in 1 teaspoon of vanilla
- 4 large or 6 smaller Fuji apples
- 1/2 cup water
- lemon zest from 1/2 lemon
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 2 tablespoons caramel or maple syrup
Makes about 20-22 cookies
- Cookie sheet
- Silicone baking sheet (if available, these really rock)
- Soak cranberries in vanilla and set aside.
- Make applesauce: Peel, core, and slice apples and combine with remaining ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and then lower heat to simmer and cover pan. Cook for additional 30-45 minutes until apples are tender. Cool mixture and blend. You will have some applesauce left over after using it for these cookies.
- Make cookies: Preheat oven to 350. Put butter and sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until combined. Add egg and applesauce, stir until well blended, 2 to 3 minutes. Mix in oats, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add in cranberries.
- Using a 1/8 cup scoop, drop dough onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper, spacing 2 inches apart. Bake cookies until golden and just set, 16 to 20 minutes. Let cool on sheets 10 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and let cool completely.
- For icing (optional): Whisk confectioners’ sugar, caramel or syrup, and 2 tablespoons water until smooth. Drizzle over cookies, let set. For frosting, use only 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons of water.