No one will be able to stop eating these applesauce cookies! Made with applesauce and oatmeal, they’re laced with an easy icing drizzle.

Applesauce cookies

Hello and welcome to our new favorite cookie recipe…spiced Applesauce Cookies! These are so moist and irresistible, you’ll forget about everything else as you savor each chewy bite. (Sorry, not sorry.) The applesauce makes them ultra moist, and they’ve got a little oatmeal to balance the sweet. But make no mistake: these aren’t a health food. They’re more like a lighter version of an oatmeal cream pie: which is AOK in our book. Here’s what to know about them!

Ingredients for applesauce cookies

These applesauce cookies are perfectly spiced to perfection, and so moist you won’t believe how soft and chewy they are. I always reach for a soft cookie over a crispy one (chewy ginger molasses cookies, any day). So this type of cookie is my ultimate. Here’s what you’ll need for the tastiest applesauce oatmeal cookies:

  • All purpose flour
  • Old Fashioned rolled oats (aka oatmeal!)
  • Light brown sugar & granulated sugar
  • Cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cloves
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Applesauce
  • Neutral oil
  • Egg
  • Vanilla extract

When it comes to a neutral oil, you can use grapeseed oil, organic canola oil, or vegetable oil: any oil that has a neutral flavor. Avoid olive oil since it’s rather strong! You can also substitute melted butter for oil if you wish.

Applesauce oatmeal cookies

Add icing for best results!

The best part about these applesauce cookies? The powdered sugar icing! This icing takes them up a notch: both in overall presentation and in flavor! The sweet icing adds just the right additional sweetness to each bite. (Side bonus: it reminds us of an oatmeal cream pie.) Here’s what to know about this easy icing:

  • Mix powdered sugar with milk until smooth (quantities here). Easy as that! Make it dairy free with dairy free milk.
  • Drizzle with a fork, not a spoon! Yes, that’s right. We always reach for a spoon: but it’s the tines of a fork that make the best icing drizzle! Trust us.
  • Add color if desired. We made a cute holiday version as a winter dessert by splitting the icing and adding food coloring to make each half red and green.

Tips for making applesauce cookies

Here are a few tips for the baking portion of applesauce cookies. It’s very easy and similar to most standard cookie recipes. Just a few things to note are:

  • The dough will be very sticky. It’s stickier than what you’d expect for say, a chocolate chip cookie dough.
  • Observe the chill time. After you mix up the dough, chill for 10 minutes. Don’t skip this part: it helps so the cookies don’t spread when baking.
  • Use 2 spoons or a cookie scoop to shape drops. Don’t adjust the cookies once they’re on the tray. The dough is sticky, so it’s a little harder to work with and form into a round drop (the cookie scoop is easiest). But never fear: once your cookies are on the try, they’ll bake up nicely.
Applesauce cookies

Vegan variation

Want a vegan variation on these applesauce oatmeal cookies? Luckily, they’re easy to make plant based! All you have to do is substitute the egg with a flax egg. A flax egg is ground flax seed that’s mixed with water. Let it sit and it forms a gel-like substance you can use as a binder in vegan baked goods. It might sound odd but use it once, and you’ll see how easy it is! It works well in quick breads, cookies and pancakes.

Why bake with applesauce?

Why bake with applesauce? Adding this fruit puree gives cake a rich, moist crumb to baked goods. Applesauce is a well-known substitute for butter and oil in baking recipes, an easy way to cut the overall calories. In these cookies it’s used for moisture and overall flavor (the oil is still necessary!). Even though it only uses ½ cup applesauce, you can taste it in every bite.

Applesauce cookies

Storage info

These applesauce cookies store well and stay very moist in a closed container. Here’s what to know about storage:

  • Store at room temperature in a cookie tin for up to 5 days. If the cookies are becoming too moist, you can unseal the top and let it loosely cover the tin.
  • Freeze un-iced cookies for up to 3 months.

More recipes with applesauce

Applesauce is one of our favorite tricks in baking! If you love these applesauce oatmeal cookies (which we know you will), here are a few more recipes with applesauce you’ll enjoy:

This applesauce cookies recipe is…

Vegetarian. For vegan, plant-based, and dairy-free, see the substitutes in the recipe.

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Applesauce cookies

Iced Applesauce Cookies

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 20 cookies 1x


No one will be able to stop eating these applesauce cookies! Made with applesauce and oatmeal, they’re laced with an easy icing drizzle.


  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup Old Fashioned rolled oats
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated cane sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon allspice (or ginger)
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup applesauce
  • 6 tablespoons neutral oil
  • 1 egg (or flax egg for vegan)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 x recipe of Powdered Sugar Icing


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix the dry ingredients. In a separate medium bowl, mix the wet ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until a sticky dough forms (it will be wetter than you expect).
  3. Place the bowl in the refrigerator and chill for 10 minutes. 
  4. Make 1 ½ tablespoon-sized balls (using a size 40 cookie scoop, if you have it) and place them onto the baking sheet. Scoop or use 2 spoons to make evenly spaced drops onto the paper — don’t try to adjust or move them once they’re on the sheet. 
  5. Bake the cookies for 10 to 12 minutes until lightly browned. Allow to cool to room temperature before enjoying. If desired, make a criss-cross icing drizzle with a fork using our 1 Minute Powdered Sugar Icing. Store at room temperature in a cookie tin for up to 5 days, or freeze (un-iced) for up to 3 months.
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: Cookies
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Keywords: Applesauce cookies

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you'll want to make again and again.

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1 Comment

  1. These are more of a muffin top than what I would classify a cookie but they are delicious nonetheless! A light and tasty treat – perfect for fall or winter …. Or any time of year :)