Caramel Apple Oatmeal Cookies
Oatmeal cookies are always a treat, but this oatmeal cookie recipe filled with fresh apple and caramel bits is a true fall favorite! Serve these for Halloween, Thanksgiving, or just because.
Every time I make an oatmeal cookie recipe, a funny parenting moment from a couple years ago pops into mind.
The kids and I were standing at the kitchen counter tied up in aprons, covered with flour, making oatmeal cookies. The kids were arguing over eggs.
Carson thought that chickens laid eggs and baby chicks separately and Ava was primly correcting him. With a voice of authority she said, “Carson all eggs turn into chickens at some point.”
Then I piped up and thoughtlessly said, “Actually, only fertilized eggs turn into chickens.”
Before the words were off my lips, remorse flooded my mind. What had I done?! Immediately I was bombarded with an onslaught of questions parents often have trouble answering.
“What does it mean to be fertilized?” (Sheepish answer.)
“How does the chicken get fertilized?” (Another sheepish answer.)
“Why does it take a male and female chicken to make the egg fertilized?”
Deep sigh from mommy, “Guys, Why don’t we finish the cookies and we can talk more about this later when daddy gets home.”
They both looked at me with wide knowing eyes. Even at ages 5 and 7 they could see right through my attempt to distract them. They looked at each other, then agreed, “No mommy, we want to talk about this RIGHT NOW.”
Panicked on the inside, but calm on the outside, I decided to stick with the word fertilization and tried to answer all their questions without passing out.
“Yes, all mammals must be fertilized to make babies.”
“Yes, even people.”
“Yes, with their special parts. That’s why we keep our special parts covered up. They are meant to be used only for fertilization.” (Really sweating….)
“Yes, that means daddy has fertilized mommy.”
“Yes, two times! Can we be done talking about this? The cookie dough is drying out.”
I just barely made it through that last one.
But at least we’ve had “the talk” be it ever so early. It has come up again a couple times in the last few years, never as in-depth as the first time and always holding strongly to the word fertilization.
Yet every time I think about it, I burst out in a deep belly laugh that only such conversations with children can cause.
Now we’d better get back to the oatmeal cookies before the dough dries out…
This variation of oatmeal cookies is one of my favorites. I added rich Musselman’s Apple Butter to the dough to give it a punch of deep apple flavor, then blended in fresh diced apples and little caramel bits. The combination of the rustic oats and apple butter, dappled with fresh apples and caramel bits, is so enticing. These cookies taste like fall!
The butter and apple butter make this oatmeal cookie recipe ultra soft and tender, almost like breakfast cookies. They are wonderful paired with hot apple cider on a chilly day, or for tucking into lunch boxes with XOXO notes.
The apple butter is most definitely the secret ingredient for endless flavor in these oatmeal cookies.
If you’re looking for more apple butter recipes this fall, I’ve got several here, but make sure to check out Musselman’s New Apple Butter Site. It’s full of great apple-icious recipes and is super easy to navigate!
Yield: 3 1/2 dozen
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Oatmeal Cookies - Caramel Apple Style
- 2 cups all-purpose Gold Medal Flour
- 1 tsp. apple pie spice (a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice)
- 3/4 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 cup softened unsalted butter (2 sticks)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/3 cup Musselman's Apple Butter
- 2 3/4 cups dry oats
- 1 apple, peeled and diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 1/2 cups caramel bits (Kraft makes these)
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside. Mix the flour, apple pie spice, salt, and baking powder in a bowl and set aside. Then cream the softened butter and sugars together in an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes.
- Scrape the bowl of the mixer, then turn on low as you add the eggs and Musselman's Apple Butter to combine. Slowly add the flour mixture to the mixing bowl. Then scrape the bowl again and turn on low as you add the oats, apples and caramel bits.
- Use a 2 Tb. scoop to drop the cookie dough onto the baking sheets 2 inches apart. Move some of the apple chunks to the tops if desired. Then bake for 15-18 minutes until golden around the edges. Cool on the cookies sheets before moving. Dust with powdered sugar to garnish.
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Musselman’s Apple Butter. All opinions are my own.
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