Apple Cider Cutout Cookies #appleweek

This post is sponsored in conjunction with AppleWeek . I received product samples from sponsor companies to aid in the creation of the AppleWeek recipes. All opinions are mine alone.

Guys, I have been chomping at the bit to share these adorable cookies with you! These are such a fun treat for the season – not only do they look like apples, they’re also loaded up with apple cider flavor! I added apple cider mix to the cookie dough, and  apple cider to the icing, so you get a nice apple bite all the way through.

Also, even though these look impressive, they’re really easy to decorate – a great first project if you’re new to royal icing!


I portioned out just a little icing for the leaves and stems, then colored the rest red. After outlining all of the apples, I thinned the icing a little to flood the outlined area. Squeezed on a little stem and some leaves and voila! Apples.

The face and highlights were added with a food-safe marker (an easy way to add some extra decoration without making more icing colors)!


These were the perfect use for the sugar Imperial Sugar sent us, too! To get the depth of flavor, the cookies use both white and brown sugar, and the icing uses powdered sugar, too!

If you want to win a prize pack from Imperial Sugar, including # pounds of sugar, be sure to enter here: a Rafflecopter giveaway


Fresh Corn Salsa (8)

Apple Cider Cutout Cookies
(adapted from Semi Sweet Designs and Nifty Spoon)
Makes about 18 cookies, depending on cookie cutter size

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar (I used Imperial Sugar)
1/2 cup granulated sugar (I used Imperial Sugar)
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. baking powder
3 packets hot apple cider mix
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 Tbsp. meringue powder
2½ cups powdered sugar
2 Tbsp. apple cider
3 Tbsp. water

In a stand mixer, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg, vanilla, baking powder, and cider mix and beat until well incorporated.

Mix in flour, one cupful at a time. If the dough is sticky after all the flour is well incorporated, add additional flour, 2 Tbsp. at a time, until no longer sticky.

Sandwich the dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll out until 1/4″ thick. Chill the dough for at least 30 minutes. Once the dough is hard to the touch, cut out shapes and place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Bake at 375 degrees for 7-9 minutes. You want to remove them before the edges start to brown. Cool on the pan for 10 minutes and then transfer to a baking rack to cool completely.

When the cookies are fully cooled, make the icing:

In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the meringue powder, powdered sugar, cider and water. Mix until thick and glossy – about 7 minutes.

Remove 1/3 cup of the icing  – tint half brown and half green. Tint the remaining icing red.

Using a piping bag, outline the cookies with the red icing, then add 1 Tbsp. cider to the remaining red and use it to flood the outlined cookies, spreading the frosting gently when needed.

Pip the stem and leaves on using the brown and green icing.

Let dry for several hours or overnight. Store in an airtight container.

And there are so many more Monday’s Recipes:

  • Apple & Lentil Andouille Crockpot Stew by Faith, Hope, Love & Luck 
  • Apples and Chai Smoothie by Our Good Life
  • Apple Cider Cutout Cookies by Kate’s Recipe Box
  • Apple Cider Pancakes by Family Around the Table
  • Apple Cinnamon Pull Aparts by The Freshman Cook
  • Apple Crepes by Caroline’s Cooking
  • Apple Crisp Ebelskivers by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
  • Apple Fritter Monkey Bread by Mildly Meandering
  • Apple Herb Stuffed Pork Chops by West Via Midwest
  • Apple Pudding by The Anthony Kitchen
  • Apple Raisin Oatmeal Cookies by The Monday Box
  • Apple Cinnamon Scones with Maple Sugar Butter by Strawberry Blondie Kitchen
  • Apple Stuffed Chicken Breast by Seduction in the Kitchen
  • Apple Upside Down Cake by Lemon Blossoms
  • Appledoodle Cookies by Cookaholic Wife
  • Applesauce Coffee Cake by An Affair from the Heart
  • Applesauce Muffins by A Day in the Life on the Farm 
  • Baked Apple Donuts by Corn, Beans, Pigs and Kids
  • Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Apples by Simple and Savory
  • Bourbon Apple Pecan Bread Pudding by Soulfully Made
  • Caramel Apple Crumb Cake by The Redhead Baker
  • Caramel Apple Jam by Books n’ Cooks
  • Gingersnapple Tart by Jolene’s Recipe Journal
  • Chicken Salad Apple Bites by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
  • Dutch Apple Cobbler with Cheesecake Topping by Who Needs a Cape?
  • Dutch Apple Coffee Cake by Daily Dish Recipes
  • German Apple Pancakes with Cider Syrup by House of Nash Eats
  • Grilled Cheddar Cheese with Apples and Hatch Chile Hot Sauce by Culinary Adventures With Camilla
  • One Pot Jamaican Jerk Chicken and Apples by Jonesin’ for Taste
  • Oven Roasted Apple Butter by Savory Moments
  • Salted Caramel Apple Crumble by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
  • Savory Skillet Chicken and Apples by Cooking With Carlee
  • Skillet Pork Chops with Apples and Bacon by The Anthony Kitchen
  • Slow Cooker Pork with Apples by Palatable Pastime
  • Sugar Free Apple Pie with Crumble Topping by Tip Garden
  • White Cheddar and Apple Chicken Chili by 4 Sons R Us
  • Vegan Caramel Apple Galette by The Baking Fairy
  • Disclaimer: Thank you AppleWeek Sponsors: Swiss Diamond, Nordic Ware, Envy Apples, Imperial Sugar, The Spice House, Rodelle Vanilla, Flahavan’s Irish Oats and Nairn’s  for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for AppleWeek  recipes. All opinions are my own. The AppleWeek giveaway is open to U.S. residents, age 18 & up. All entries for the winner will be checked and verified. By entering you give the right to use your name and likeness. The number of entries received determines the odds of winning. Seven (7) winners will be selected. The prize packages will be sent directly from the giveaway sponsors. The AppleWeek Bloggers are not responsible for the fulfillment or delivery of the prize packages. Bloggers hosting this giveaway and their immediate family members in their household cannot enter or win the giveaway. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter or any other social channel mentioned in the AppleWeek posts or entry.


    Chocolate Mint Chip Cookies #ChristmasCookies

    If you like the idea of mint for the holidays, but aren’t a huge peppermint fan, these are the cookies for you.

    For me, these are a nod to my Grandma.

    For as long as I can remember, my Grandma’s contribution to holiday dessert has been a box of Andes Candies. We’ve all come to expect them and holiday dessert is not quite right without them on the table.

    When I ran across this recipe that uses Andes chips, I knew Grandma would love them – and I just had to make them.


    Chocolate Mint Chip Cookies
    (from The Diary of a Real Housewife)
    Makes 3 dozen

    1 1/2 cup sugar
    1 cup butter, at room temperature
    2 eggs
    2 tsp. vanilla extract
    2 cups flour
    2/3 cup cocoa powder
    1/4 tsp. salt
    3/4 tsp. baking soda
    1 package Andes mint pieces

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

    In a stand mixer, cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs and vanilla and mix until well combined.

    In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder.

    Add the dry ingredients to the wet in batches and mix until just combined. Fold in mint pieces.

    Roll dough into 1″ balls and place on parchment-lined cookie sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Let cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

    Can’t get enough cookies? For #ChristmasCookies Week, I’m linking up with lots of other bloggers sharing awesome recipes. You can find today’s batch of goodies below!

    Chewy M&M Cookies #ChristmasCookies

    When I was planning out cookies to share this week, my 3-year-old begged for these. He was totally smitten with the colorful candies mixed in – and I totally understand why.

    These are pretty simple, but they’re so good. I’m sure these will be year-round cookies for us!


    Chewy M&M Cookies
    (from Rachel Cooks)
    Makes 3 dozen

    2 cups flour
    1 Tbsp. cornstarch
    3/4 tsp. salt
    1 tsp. baking soda
    3/4 cup brown sugar
    3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
    1/2 cup sugar
    1 egg
    1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
    1 12-ounce package of M&Ms

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

    In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, salt, and baking powder.

    In the bowl of stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugars. Stir in the egg and vanilla.

    Add the dry ingredients in batches, mixing until just combined. Fold in the M&Ms.

    Roll the dough into 1″ balls and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 9-11 minutes. Let cook for 5 minutes than transfer to a rack to cool completely.

    Can’t get enough cookies? For #ChristmasCookies Week, I’m linking up with lots of other bloggers sharing awesome recipes. You can find today’s batch of goodies below!

    Ginger Chocolate Chip Cookies #ChristmasCookies

    If gingerbread and chocolate chip cookies had a baby, these would be the result. They are the ultimate Christmas cookie. I love everything gingerbread-spiced this time of year, but I’m also a chocolate fanatic. Marrying them is a match made in heaven.

    These unassuming cookies are going to be the star of your holiday cookie trays or the hit of your cookie exchange this year – trust me!


    Ginger Chocolate Chip Cookies
    (from Marsha’s Baking Addiction)
    Makes 3 dozen

    2 cups flour
    1 tsp. baking powder
    1/2 tsp. baking soda
    2 tsp. cornstarch
    1/4 tsp. salt
    2 tsp. ginger
    1/2 tsp. cinnamon
    1/4 tsp. nutmeg
    1/2 cup unsalted butter
    3/4 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup sugar
    1 egg
    1/4 cup molasses
    1 cup chocolate chips

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

    In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cornstarch, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg until combined.

    In another bowl, whisk together the butter and sugars until well combined. Mix in the egg and molasses.

    Add the dry ingredients to the wet in increments, stirring until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

    Roll the dough into 1-1 1/2 balls and place on parchment-lined cookie sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until golden around the edges. Let cool for 10 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

    Can’t get enough cookies? For #ChristmasCookies Week, I’m linking up with lots of other bloggers sharing awesome recipes. You can find today’s batch of goodies below!


    Opa’s Chocolate Chip Cookies #ChristmasCookies

    I’ve mentioned it here before, but my Opa used to work in a bakery. Even after he retired, he continued baking for us at home – especially for the holidays. Now that he’s gone, I’ve taken over his baking. I absolutely love his recipes.

    These are crisp around the edges and soft and chewy in the middle – so good. This is one of my favorites for cookie exchanges – since it’s  recipe from the bakery it makes a lot.

    I recommend using a food scale to measure the ingredients for the best results.


    Opa’s Chocolate Chip Cookies
    (a family recipe)
    Makes 9 dozen

    12 oz. brown sugar
    12 oz. sugar
    1 tsp. salt
    3/4 lb. shortening
    1/4 lb. butter
    5 eggs
    2 tsp. vanilla extract
    1 1/2 lbs. flour
    3 Tbsp. baking powder
    1 lb. semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

    In a stand mixer, cream together the sugars, salt, shortening, and butter until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla.

    In another bowl, sift together the flour and baking powder. Add the dry ingredients into the wet and mix until well combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

    Drop by rounded tablespoons onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake for 8-9 minutes, until lightly browned around the edges. Cool for five minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

    Can’t get enough cookies? For #ChristmasCookies Week, I’m linking up with lots of other bloggers sharing awesome recipes. You can find today’s batch of goodies below!

    Chocolate Almond Biscotti #ChristmasCookies

    Disclosure:  I received complimentary products to use in this post. All opinions are my own.

    Today’s cookie recipe is my unexpected favorite of the week – and features #ChristmasCookies week sponsor Nielsen-Massey Fine Vanillas and Flavors.  This biscotti is amazing – even if you’re not a biscotti fan, you need to try this! There is such an awesome flavor here – thanks, in large part, to the Nielsen-Massey products – and they pair just delightfully with coffee, tea, and hot chocolate. A small bag of these paired up with some K-Cups would be an amazing teacher or neighbor gift this season!


    Nielsen-Massey Vanillas has been crafting the world’s finest vanillas and flavors since 1907. Each of Nielsen-Massey’s all-nature pure flavors are crafted with premium ingredients, sourced from around the world and chosen to meet the utmost quality standards. From lemon to peppermint to coffee or chocolate, Nielsen-Massey’s pure flavors offer convenience, quality and consistency to ensure your favorite recipes taste delicious every single time. All products are gluten-free, allergen-free, GMO-free, all-natural and Kosher.


    Nielsen-Massey Fine Vanillas & Flavors is giving one winner a set of their pure flavors: 2-oz each of Orange, Lemon, Peppermint, Almond, Chocolate, Coffee, Rose Water, and Orange Blossom Water. Enter below!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway


    Chocolate Almond Biscotti
    (adapted from Italian Food Forever)
    Makes about 20

    2 Tbsp. softened butter
    3/4 cup sugar
    2 eggs
    1 tsp. Nielsen-Massey Pure Vanilla Extract
    1/2 tsp. Nielsen-Massey Pure Almond Extract
    2 cups flour
    2 tsp. baking powder
    Pinch of salt
    1 cup sliced almonds
    1/2 cup chopped dark chocolate
    Dark chocolate candy melts

    Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

    Whisk together the flour, slat, and baking powder until well combined.

    In another both, whisk the butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and almond extract together until completely combined.

    Add the dry ingredients to the wet and stir until the dough comes together. Fold in the sliced almonds and chocolate.

    Knead the dough for a minute or two, until it comes together well. If too sticky, add another Tbsp. of flour.

    For them dough into a log approximately 4″ wide and 1 1/2″ high.

    Bake for 35 minutes, than remove to cool and reduce oven to 300 degrees.

    When it has cooled for about 15-20 minutes, use a serrated knife to slice the log into 1/2″ slices and place, cut side down, on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cook for an additional 15 minutes, flipping halfway.

    Remove and cool completely.

    Melt candy melts according to package directions. Drizzle over biscotti and cool completely.

    Can’t get enough cookies? For #ChristmasCookies Week, I’m linking up with lots of other bloggers sharing awesome recipes. You can find today’s batch of goodies below!


    White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies #FBLCookieExchange #ChristmasCookies

    Guys, it’s COOKIE SEASON! I’m seriously so pumped. Baking is one of my favorite things of the holidays. All week I’m going to be sharing new-to-the-blog cookie recipes. Some are new to me, others are family favorites. All of them are on point if you’re looking for some cookies to add to your baking list!

    These little beauties were the cookies I baked up for the annual Food Blogger Love Cookie Exchange. They’re pretty simple, but once they’re dipped in white chocolate and some sprinkles are added, they look like the star of the cookie tray. And who can say no to a ginger cookie this time of year?!

    I mailed these out to three food blogger friends and in return I received Chocolate Caramel Chip Cookies from If Spoons Could Talk, Oatmeal Cookies with Chocolate Chunks and Butterscotch from Jennifer Bakes, and Salted Caramel Kahlua Sugar Cookies from Seduction in the Kitchen. They were all amazing – be sure to check out those recipes today, too!


    White Chocolate Dipped Ginger Cookies
    (from Cooking Classy)
    Makes 3 dozen

    2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
    1 tsp. baking soda
    1/2 tsp. salt
    2 tsp. ginger
    1 tsp. cinnamon
    1/4 tsp. cloves
    1/4 tsp. nutmeg
    3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1/2 cup + 3 Tbsp. sugar , divided
    1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
    1 egg
    1/4 cup molasses
    2 tsp vanilla extract
    3 cups white candy melt wafers
    Sprinkles, for decorating

    In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg until combined.

    Using a stand mixer, cream together the butter, 1/2 cup sugar and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in egg. Mix in molasses and vanilla.

    Add the dry ingredients in increments, mixing until just combined. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill for at least an hour.

    When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and add the remaining sugar to a small bowl.

    Roll dough into 1-1 1/2″ balls, roll in the sugar, and place on parchment-lined baking sheets. Using the bottom of a cup, flatted the dough balls slightly. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

    Melt the candy melts according to package directions. Dip the cookies or drizzle the melted candy over. Top with sprinkles if desired.

    The Food Blogger Love Cookie Exchange was full of delicious cookies from a great group of bloggers. You can see what everyone baked up here:

    Can’t get enough cookies? Today kicks off #ChristmasCookieWeek so today – and all week! – I’m linking up with lots of other bloggers sharing awesome recipes. You can find today’s batch of goodies below!

    Apricot Oatmeal Bars #Tresomega #OrganicsForLife

    Disclosure: This post is part of the Tresomega Nutrition Blogger Recipe Challenge. I received complimentary products to use in this post. All opinions are my own.

    Another recipe for Tresomega, and another dish I’ll be re-making this holiday. The food sign-up list for the family Christmas Eve got emailed out – and I snatched up the cookies slot PDQ. Mostly because my freezer is already chock full of cookies (#ChristmasCookieWeek kicks off on Monday!)

    But, the family also has two celiacs so I’ll be making up a tray of gluten-free cookies too – and these will be added to the plate for sure. These are a great (and easy!) gluten free treat and the flavor can be easily switched up by using a different flavor of preserves. I think raspberry would be perfect for the holidays!

    For more recipe inspiration, you can visit them on Facebook and Twitter. You can purchase Tresomega products at:, and


    Apricot Oatmeal Bars
    (a Kate’s Recipe Box original)
    Makes 18 bars

    3/4 cup Tresomega Virgin Coconut Oil
    1 cup packed light brown sugar
    1 1/2 cups rolled oats
    1 1/2 cups almond flour
    1 tsp. salt
    1/2 tsp. baking powder
    3/4 cup apricot preserves

    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 9×9″ pan with nonstick cooking spray and line with baking parchment.

    Mix together the coconut oil, brown sugar, oats, flour, salt and baking powder. Press half of the mixture into the pan.

    Spread the preserves over the mixture in the pan and then crumble the remaining mixture over, pressing down lightly.

    Bake for 30-35 minutes, until edges are beginning to brown. Let cool to room temperature, then place in the refrigerator to cool completely.

    When chilled, lift the bars out of the pan using the edges of the parchment. Slice and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.


    Sweet Potato Brownies #RecipeMakeover

    Jake gets such a kick out of being my sous chef that I let him pick my last project for #RecipeMakeover week.  He picked brownies. Challenge accepted.

    These, admittedly, still aren’t the healthiest brownies ever – but they’re a solid step in the right direction. This recipe uses less sweeteners than most and sneaks in some sweet potato to boot. And while I didn’t plan it this way, they’re vegan, too.

    I mashed my sweet potatoes with a fork so they were still a little lumpy going into the batter. Jake isn’t picky (and is thrilled with anything chocolate), so he didn’t mind at all, but if you’re catering to a finicky crowd, pureeing the sweet potatoes would be a better way to hide them!


    Sweet Potato Brownies
    (adapted from Better Homes and Gardens)
    Makes 1 9×9 ban

    1/2 cup unrefined organic cane sugar
    1/3 cup flour
    1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
    Pinch of salt
    1 cup almond butter
    3/4 cup mashed, cooked sweet potato
    1/4 cup pure maple syrup
    1 tsp. vanilla
    3 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

    Preheat your oven to 325 degrees and line a 9×9 baking pan with parchment.

    In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.

    In a larger bowl, whisk together the almond butter, sweet potato, syrup and vanilla until well combined. Add the dry ingredients and stir just until everything is moistened. Fold in chocolate.

    Transfer to the prepared baking pan and smooth out evenly in the pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until the top looks dry and puffed. Cool completely before removing from the pan.

    Dust with additional cocoa powder, if desired.

    Chocolate Bunny Brownies #ChocolateBunnyPledge

    Are you working on filling Easter baskets this week? We are. I’m so looking forward to stocking up on jellybeans, marshmallow chicks, and chocolate bunnies for my crew. You know what won’t be in our Easter baskets? Any live animals.

    Each year after Easter, animal shelters and rescue groups get countless requests to take in baby chicks, ducks, and bunnies that were gifted in Easter baskets. It might seem like an adorable idea, but those animals aren’t toys – they’re a lot of work.

    The Bunny Hutch is one of these groups and this year they’re asking people to take the #ChocolateBunnyPledge. Will you commit to making your Easter basket fillers candy instead of live animals? Sign the pledge here.


    And if you’re looking for the easiest Easter dessert ever – featuring a chocolate bunny! – look no further. This is a standard brownie mix (or your favorite brownie recipe – I love this one.) Take it out of the oven during the last two minutes of baking and press a chocolate bunny and some Cadbury mini eggs into the brownies. Return to the oven for 2 more minutes to let everything meld together. Voila! Easy Chocolate Bunny Brownies.