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Tastes Like Fall: Applesauce Cookies with Browned Butter Frosting

Spiced applesauce cookies are a quintessential fall dessert, and this recipe—complete with an irresistible browned butter frosting—is no exception!
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Every October, I welcome the cool temperatures because they mark the start of fall baking! As far as I’m concerned, there’s no better way to celebrate the change of the season than enjoying some baked goods straight from the oven, especially if they’re made with classic fall harvest flavors and warm spices.

These cakey cookies are a great way to rejoice in fall’s return, and they come together easily thanks to some help from Betty Crocker SuperMoist spice cake mix. The cake mix adds all those warm spice notes we crave in autumn, while applesauce keeps the cookies chewy and moist. A generous spread of browned butter-cream cheese frosting to finish makes these cookies taste like perfection! Here’s how to make them.

First, preheat the oven to 350°F. To start, you’ll make the cookie batter, which comes together with just four ingredients: a box of cake mix, applesauce, an egg and some canola oil.

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Mix all of the batter ingredients together. The batter will come together very quickly! Next, drop the cookies onto parchment-lined cookie sheets about two inches apart. I like to use a two-tablespoon levered scoop for this step, but a large spoon works just fine too.

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Bake the cookies for 10 minutes, or until the edges start to brown, tops are dry and the cookies spring back to touch. Though it’s tempting to frost these guys right away, it’s important to wait until they cool completely, otherwise the frosting will melt right off!

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Start making the frosting while you are waiting for the cookies to cool. First, brown the butter by melting it over medium heat in a one-quart saucepan until it begins to foam. Stir constantly until solid bits in the butter turn dark brown and smell fragrant like toffee. Remove from the heat and pour it into heatproof dish to cool. Beat the cream cheese and cooled butter until smooth, and then add the powdered sugar and salt and beat to combine. Once the cookies are cool, go ahead and ice them with a generous smear of frosting! Sprinkle some cinnamon on top, if desired.

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