Caramel Apple Cinnamon Sugar Cookie Sandwiches

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In New England, it always seems that fall is the fastest season. Just as soon as we begin to appreciate it (leaf peeping, pumpkin picking, pumpkin-coffee-drinking), it seems that all the sudden all the leaves are falling and winter is coming. Because of this, the last couple of years I have made it my mission to soak up every second of fall I can while it's here. Whether it be a pumpkin-shaped mug, an autumn candle, or as many flannels as I can physically wear, I know it's short-lived so I always like to fit as much fall in as I can.

And for the most fall activity of all...

Apple picking! Apples are one of the gems of autumn, and apple picking is one of the most fun activities. While I do love a caramel apple as much as the next guy, I think we can all agree they aren't always the ideal treat. So in the spirit of fall, these caramel apple cinnamon sugar cookie sandwiches embody it all. The apple vibe, the cinnamon flavor, and the classic caramel. Easy as pie and so fun and reminiscent of all the autumn memories.

cut out apple shaped sugar cookies

We'll start by making the sugar cookie dough, which is just a variation of our Coconut Sugar Cookies recipe with a bit less sugar and a dash of cornstarch to make sure they keep their shaped once baked. We'll beat together the butter sugars, and vanilla, and then beat in each egg until combined.

Next it's as easy as combining the other ingredients (the basic sugar cookie dry ingredients, plus a bit of cinnamon!), whisking them up, and gradually adding them to the mixing bowl. With sugar cookies, we definitely don't want to over-mix them, but we also want to make sure they are equally mixed and that the dough isn't too sticky. Once combined, we'll scoop it out of the bowl with floured hands, divide it in half, tightly wrap each half in plastic wrap, and let them chill in the fridge for just 15 minutes to making the cookie cutting extra easy.

apple shaped cookie dunked in sugar

Now for all the apples!

Once chilled, it's time to grab the apple cookie cutter, and lots of extra flour. For me, the true key to making shaped sugar cookies is flour on the counter, flour on the cookie cutter, flour on the rolling pin, flour on the spatula, and parchment paper. Aka, lots of flour, and parchment paper lined cookie sheets. Once the dough is rolled out, we'll cut out 18 or so apple-shaped cookies one way, and if the cookie cutter has a stem, flip that over to cut the 18 others. While it may seem unnecessary, this step ensures symmetrical sandwiches which will be sure to look extra cute.

cookie with caramel spread on it

Once the apple cookies have been cut, we'll pop them in the oven for 9-12 minutes until the edges are golden, depending on the thickness of your cookies. If your oven has certain spots that are hotter than others, it may be helpful to rotate the baking sheet partway through. Once all your cookies are golden, lay them out to cool while you grab the rest of the ingredients.

Now I do love a plain sugar cookie, but I think we can all agree a sugar dusted sugar cookie is superior. Add some sugar to a shallow bowl, some melted butter to another, and grab a pastry brush or a spoon. Brush each cookie with a bit of butter, and carefully dunk away into the granulated sugar. Not only do they turn out so pretty, but they also have the crystalized sugar bite that is extra delicious.

caramel apple sugar cookies

Now for the caramel! First of all, caramel screams fall. And while there may not be actual apples in this recipe, the caramel still pairs perfectly with the cutest apple shaped cookies. Our homemade caramel recipe is also so easy, only four ingredients, and so worth the extra step. We'll basically stir down sugar until it is melted, then add a bit of butter, heavy cream, and salt. So easy, and the perfect homemade fall recipe that will have your kitchen smelling like an autumn candle. This caramel is also the perfect consistency for these cookies- sticky enough to make the perfect sandwich and soft enough to ensure the perfect bite.

caramel apple cookie sandwich

Now for the fun part!

Now that the sugar-dusted apple cookies are done, and the caramel is warm, all that's left to do is make the sandwiches! The easiest way to do it for me was to grab one cookie, carefully lay it sugar-side down in my palm, and spoon on a tablespoon of caramel. Now, let me tell you, I know it's tempting to spread the caramel all the way, if not past, the edges, but hear me out when I say it spreads! So leave a little extra room, and then sprinkle on a bit of salt for the tried and true sweet and salty flavor. Honestly though, what pairs better with caramel than a pinch of salt.

Once you've added the caramel, grab a cookie of a similar size and carefully press it on top of the caramel, creating the cutest sandwich. Repeat until you have around 18 sandwiches, or until you've used up all your cookies.

caramel apple cookie sandwiches

In terms of fall festive desserts that are easy but also fun, these caramel apple cinnamon sugar cookie sandwiches are the best. Sugar cookies are always the best, and one of the most fun ways to add a festive twist is to grab a seasonal cookie cutter like an apple. If you like, you can also order other fall cookie cutter shapes like leaves or acorns and make the cutest autumn assortment.

caramel apple cookie sandwiches stacked

While these caramel apple sandwiches are super satisfying for any fall dessert, they would also be perfect for a back to school treat, a Thanksgiving side, or a fall-themed dinner party recipe. Delicious, easy, and so cute, these adorable apple autumn bites are even easier than they look. Trust me, once you take one bite you'll be reaching to pick more of these little sugar-dusted apples.

caramel and apple cookie sandwiches

This take on a caramel apple is a little sweet, a little salty, perfect for a fall dessert, and reminiscent of the best autumn activities. Grab a cider or a cup of tea and enjoy each sugary, soft, homemade, caramel bite.

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Sugar Cookie Sandwiches

Fall apple picking meets the caramel sweetness we all love in these seasonal cinnamon sugar cookie sandwiches.

Author:
Jackie

Ingredients

Servings: 18 sandwiches

Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

  • 1 3/4 sticks butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar + 2/3 cup sugar, divided
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, room-temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 3 tbsp butter, melted
  • kosher salt

Caramel

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 tbsp butter, chilled
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Instructions

Cinnamon Sugar Cookies

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. In a medium sized mixing bowl, beat butter, 3/4 cup sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla extract on medium speed until combined and creamy. Beat in eggs one at a time, scraping down sides of bowl between additions.

3. Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, and cornstarch in a separate mixing bowl.

4. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture and beat on low to medium speed until combined. Dust hands with flour, combine dough into a ball, divide in half, and cover each half tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.

5. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Flour a work surface and roll out dough to 1/4 of an inch thick. Using an apple-shaped cookie cutter, cut 18 sugar cookies, flip cookie cutter over, and cut 18 more, rolling out dough as needed. Place cookies on prepared baking sheets and place each in freezer for 15 minutes.

6. Bake for 9-12 minutes until edges are golden. Remove from oven and let cool completely.

7. Add remaining sugar to a medium bowl and melted butter to a small bowl. Brush the front of each cookie with melted butter then dip in sugar. Set aside.

8. Make caramel recipe below. Once finished, hold one cookie upside down in your palm, add a tablespoon of caramel and spread it almost to the edges. Sprinkle lightly with kosher salt. Place opposite shaped cookie on top, creating a sandwich. Repeat until all cookies are used.

Caramel

1. Add granulated sugar to a heavy-bottomed pot on the stove and set over medium-high heat. Stir periodically.

2. Once sugar has melted, turn off heat and add butter, one tablespoon at a time, and mix until melted. Add the heavy cream and salt and stir to combine.

Prep Time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

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