Apple Snickerdoodle Cobbler

by Jillian

Fresh apples baked to perfection in a lusciously sweet brown sugary sauce and topped with a soft and buttery snickerdoodle cookie crust!

There’s definitely something to be said about a good apple cobbler. With tender apples that have been infused with the sweetness of brown sugar and the warmth of cinnamon along with a rich and buttery biscuit topping, you really can’t get any more comforting than this classic fall dessert.

Due to my obsession with buttery, crumbly, sugary, oaty crisp toppings, I tend to favor fruit crisps over fruit cobblers. To me, the biscuit topping on cobblers was never sweet enough for my tastes (Surprise, surprise!), so I haven’t really had a ton of experience in the cobbler-making world.

This week, however, I decided it was time to change that.

Well, sort of.

Instead of the traditional biscuit topping, I decided to try something sweeter, aka, BETTER…

This Apple Snickerdoodle Cobbler did NOT disappoint. Honestly, I don’t know why we don’t top cobblers with cookies more often! The soft and slight chewiness of the snickerdoodle cookie combined with the tender brown sugary-drenched baked apples is fall comfort food at its finest. And when you top it with a cold and creamy scoop of vanilla ice cream, you can literally hear angels singing in the distance.

Literally.

Now, this ain’t my first snickerdoodle cobbler rodeo. A while back, I made this Peach Snickerdoodle Cobbler that was an absolute hit with my family and friends. Of course, I didn’t’ think it would take me SIX WHOLE FREAKIN’ YEARS to try this heavenly cookie cobbler combo again, but here I am! 

When it comes to apple cobblers, the type of apple you use is absolutely crucial. Tart and crisp apples, such as Granny Smith, Gala, and Honey Crisp are stupendous options since they hold up well while baking and their tartness offsets some of the sweetness.

It’s also important to consider the doneness/tenderness of the apples after they’ve baked in the oven. To me, there’s nothing worse than eating a spoonful of apple cobbler or a forkful of apple pie, only to find out that the apples are hard and not the least bit tender. This is a BIG no bueno in my opinion. It ruins the whole dessert!

So in order to ensure that this baking blasphemy never occurs, I pre-cook the apples. Not only are you able to give the apples a little head-start in the cooking process, but you also don’t risk over-baking/burning the topping. All you have to do is melt some butter (and BROWN it, if you like to live dangerously), toss your sliced apples with some brown sugar, cornstarch, spices, and salt, then throw this mixture in with the butter, and cook for about 10-15 minutes. The apples will be slightly tender (NOT soft yet) and surrounded by a nice thick sauce.

As for the snickerdoodle portion, this dough can easily be made ahead of time and chill in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You’ll definitely want to chill it for at least 2 hours so that it’s easier to handle. It’s a rather sticky dough even after chilling, so I highly recommend greasing your hands with butter or cooking spray before flattening portions of the dough and placing them on top of the apple filling.

After a generous dusting of cinnamon-sugar is evenly sprinkled on top of the cobbler, it’s time to let the oven finish the job. To ensure that the snickerdoodle cookie crust doesn’t get too brown/dark, I tented a piece of tin foil over the cobbler before placing it into the oven. I let this cobbler bake for 45 minutes, which was JUST the right amount of time. The apples were tender, NOT mushy, and the snickerdoodle crust was soft, fluffy, and slightly chewy.

When I pulled the cobbler out of the oven, the first thing I wanted to do was stab a spoon right into it! But alas, I had to wait for what seemed like days to allow the cobbler to cool so that the juices could settle and I wouldn’t burn my tongue on a spoonful of cobbler hotter than lava.

Of course the wait was TOTALLY worth it once I topped a bowlful with a creamy crown of vanilla ice cream, sank back into my chair, and devoured every single morsel of this autumnal delicacy…

Apple Snickerdoodle Cobbler

Fresh apples baked to perfection in a lusciously sweet brown sugary sauce and topped with a soft and buttery snickerdoodle cookie crust!
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 45 minutes
Chilling Time 2 hours
Total Time 3 hours 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 8 Servings

Ingredients
  

Snickerdoodle Cookie Crust:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 3 Tablespoons milk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla

Cinnamon-Sugar:

  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon

Apple Filling:

  • 2 ½ pounds apples* peeled, cored, and sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 3 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • teaspoon ground cloves
  • teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Instructions
 

Make the Cookie Crust:

  • In a large mixing bowl, whisk the flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt together; set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter until smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes. Add both sugars and continue beating on medium speed until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg, and beat just until combined. Add the milk and vanilla and beat on medium-high speed until fully incorporated.
  • Dump in the flour mixture and beat on low just until combined, about 1 minute. Wrap dough tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours, or until it's less sticky, and easier to handle.

Make the Cinnamon-Sugar:

  • In a small bowl, stir the sugar and cinnamon together.

Make the Filling:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Place the sliced apples into a large mixing bowl and toss with the lemon juice.
  • In a medium bowl, combine the brown sugar, cornstarch, spices, and salt. Add this mixture to the apples, and stir to coat evenly.
  • Place the butter in a large pot, and melt over medium-low heat. As the butter melts, it’ll start to foam, then turn a clear golden color. Continue to stir the butter, scraping up any browned specks from the bottom of the pan as it starts to brown. It should have a nutty aroma. Once browned and nutty, add the apple mixture.
  • Turn the heat up to medium-high, stirring the apples occasionally. After about 10-15 minutes, the apples will have softened slightly, and the juices will have thickened.
  • Transfer the filling to an 8-inch square baking dish. Use greased hands to place flattened pieces of the snickerdoodle dough evenly over the filling. Sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar evenly on top.
  • Tent a piece of tin foil over the top of the cobbler. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the topping is slightly golden and the juices are bubbling around the edges.
  • Allow cobbler to cool for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Notes

*Gala, Granny Smith, Honey Crisp, Fuji, Braeburn, Jonagold, and Golden Delicious are all great options!
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