If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, then you know that I’m usually all about the homemade. I love baking from scratch as much as possible, but every once in a while, I’m either too lazy or too rushed. And even less often, I have some little thing that I love, that comes in a box or a bag, and I can’t resist putting it in a cookie or a cake. That’s the case with these cookies.
These yummy little babies were inspired by not one, but two pre-made items, as well as a moment of need. I was on the search for a last minute Fall themed treat that I could make, and these cookies were born.
First, the cookies are made using Jiffy Apple Cinnamon muffin mix. Now, I’ll admit, these aren’t exactly ideal as far as muffins go (tending towards being quite dry), but there is something about them that I find completely irresistible. Probably the sweet little bits of apple flavored goodness.
The second pre-made ingredient in these cookies is Kraft’s new Caramel Bits. Um, hello… Super fun idea, or what?! I found these when i had to travel back to the States recently, and I’m so happy about them! I love, love, love that, with these, you don’t have to unwrap each of those caramels anymore. Plus, I can’t wait to mix some of these into cupcakes and muffins!! Yummmm!
For the cookies, I mixed two boxes of the muffin mix with butter, sugar, milk, and an egg. Then I chilled the dough until firm before rolling it out and cutting rounds out with a biscuit cutter. I rolled my dough to about three-eigths of an inch for nice fat cookies. These baked at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.
With the leftover scraps of dough, I made these adorable little apples! I just tinted most of it green, rolled it out, and cut out little apples with a mini cookie cutter. The “sticks” are just bits of plain cookie dough rolled to the right shape and stuck to the backs of the apples. When I rolled out the dough for the apples, I made them thinner than the big cookies (they’re about a quarter of an inch thick), and they only baked for about 8 minutes (at 350 degrees).
I have to say, I think these are just so stinking adorable! I’ll admit, they don’t particularly taste like caramel apples, but then, the muffins aren’t exactly true to the apple cinnamon flavors to begin with. These are still so yummy, though! And I love how fast and easy they are to make! These would be such a fun treat to whip up at the last minute, if needed. They’re simple, tasty, and cute to boot! Enjoy!
Caramel Apple Cookies
Makes about 1 dozen
2 boxes Jiffy Apple Cinnamon Muffin Mix
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2-4 tablespoons milk
Food coloring (optional)
5 oz. caramel bits
1 tablespoon water
In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. Add 1 box of the muffin mix and beat together until combined. Stir in the egg until just combined, then add the remaining box of muffin mix. Beat the mixture until it comes together. Add milk 1 tablespoon at a time until the mixture is barely sticky and a little wet. If necessary, add a little extra flour.Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the freezer for 30 minutes or the refrigerator for at least an hour.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with Silpat mats or parchment paper.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out chilled dough to about 3/8-inch thick. Cut out cookies using a round cookie cutter or biscuit cutter. Place 2-3 inches apart on prepared baking sheets and bake for 10-12 minutes.
For “apples:”make the “sticks” by rolling tiny bits of the leftover dough into the right shape and place them on prepared cookie sheets. With the remaining scraps of dough, then roll it out to about 1/4-inch thick and cut out mini apples. Position the apples over the bottom ends of the “sticks” and bake for 7-8 minutes.
Allow cookies to cool completely before decorating.
To decorate: Melt half of the caramel melts (about 5 oz.) in a small saucepan with 1 tablespoon of water. Drizzle the melted caramel over the cookies, then coat the “apples” so they look like dipped caramel apples. While the caramel is still wet, place the apples on top of the cookies.
Recipe by Darla