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You all know I love to bake. For me it is a gift I can give people that they know comes from the heart and is hand made. Teachers are who I wind up baking for the most since I am the hospitality person on our PTA. So in honor of back to school I made them some applesauce cake mix cookies that I am sure will get them back in the school spirit. I am going to show you how to make iced apple decorations without fancy equipment. Yep you read that right. After this post, I believe even you could learn how to pipe apple shapes onto delicious M&M’s® Pecan Pie Applesauce Cake Mix Cookies.
Say what??!! M&M’s® Pecan Pie … No way!! Oh yes they are a reality this year.
While I was on one of my many Walmart shopping trips I saw them sitting on the shelf on the Seasonal Candy Aisle. Do you know how fun it is to go shopping now that the kids are back in school. Oh man it is glorious. I also picked up some Mott’s® Original applesauce, Snapple® Apple and Pillsbury™ Moist Supreme® Cake Mix in white as well. Cake mix cookies are crazy easy to make and the less ingredients the better. The cookies turn out fluffy and soft with bits of crunchy candy.
If you love baking like me and love sweepstakes then go enter the MARS Bake In The Fun Sweepstakes You will have a chance to win a KitchenAid Stand Mixer. Contest ends 10/1. Then come back here and make this recipe!!
Here is how you make the cookies:
- 1 box Pillsbury™ Moist Supreme® Cake Mix White
- 1/2 cup Mott's® Original Applesauce
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 chopped M&M's® Pecan Pie
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpat.
- Add cake mix to a large bowl as well as the applesauce and eggs.
- Mix all ingredients until they come together.
- Stir in the chopped M&M's®.
- Scoop 2 T of mix onto lined cookie sheet about two inches apart. The cookies will spread a bit so you don't want to overcrowd the pan.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until the edges are just slightly brown. Eat plain or decorate with royal icing if so desired.
As the cookies bake you can then make the royal icing to decorate the cookies. My basic recipe is 3 T meringue powder, 4 cups powdered sugar, 1 tsp clear vanilla extract, and 5-6 T of water. Mix for about 5-10 minutes until it forms a fairly stiff icing. You don’t want this one too runny since the cookies are not flat like basic sugar cookies would be. Once your royal icing in mixed, divide it into three bowls. You will now add in your gel food coloring of red, brown, and green to make the parts of the apple. I add probably 1 tsp of food coloring to 1 cup icing. You may need more or less depending upon how deep of a color your food coloring is.
Next add the icing to quart size storage bags. To make it easier to fill I fold the sides of the bag down over my hand then with the other hand I scoop it out of the bowl and into the bad in one fell swoop. If you are anything like me then you can also fold the bag down into a glass so both of your hand are free to guide the icing into the bag.
-Snip a small hole in the edge of the bag and you can begin icing.
-Pipe the red apple, brown stem, and green leaf onto the cooled cookies. The beauty of piping this way is that the design can be free form and more rustic. No tips are needed either.
-Another little trick with this method is if you get the pointy tips on the icing that come when you pull the bag away, you can use your finger to smooth out the design. You will want to cookies to set overnight so that the apple design doesn’t not get smeared. It will be like a crunchy apple topper to your M&M’s® Pecan Pie Applesauce Cake Mix Cookies.
-Once the cookies and icing are set, you can pack a couple of the cookies into clear bag and tie with some burlap ribbon.
Send along a Snapple® Apple as well to wash the cookies down with a sweet drink.