Apple Cookies in a Jar

If your kiddos haven’t already headed back to school, it’s getting pretty close to time. I for one am wondering where the heck summer went!  Although I’ll be glad to be rid of the scorching heat, I’ll miss the relaxed pace of summer.

Since my oldest heading back to school, I thought I would make a little gift for his teacher to suck up a little as a thank you for taking on one of the most important jobs in the world.  This is what I came up with…

This idea is not my own, I found it flipping through one of mom’s old cookbooks called, ” The Cookie Jar”.  I think it came from one of those mail-order cookbook clubs you can join but I’m not sure.  It’s a little old and I wasn’t able to find it online so I  plan on sharing several of the recipes I found, that way no one misses out.

Anyway, this recipe really caught my attention because it called for marzipan.  I’ve never used it in cookies before, so I was really curious.

I adapted it a little from the original to suit my taste.

Apple Cookies in a Jar

Yield: 4-5 dozen

Apple Cookies in a Jar


  • 8 oz almond paste {marzipan}
  • 1 cup of butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tsp almond emulsion or extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Americolor tulip red gel color
  • whole cloves


  1. Soften the almond paste in the microwave. About 20 seconds should do. Combine the butter and almond paste and beat until well combined. Add both sugars and beat until fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla and enough of the gel paste to tint the mixture red. Finally sift together the flour and salt and add it to the creamed mixture, mixing until a soft dough forms. If the dough is not dark enough, add more coloring.
  2. At this point,use a small cookie scoop {1 1/2 teaspoon size} to make little balls. Drop them onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Use your thumb to make a light impression on top of the cookie, and then insert a clove as the stem.
  3. Chill for one hour.
  4. After chilling, bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.

 The cookies bake up beautifully and decorating them is so simple I am not even sure if it qualifies as decorating.

  I used a #66 leaf tip from Wilton and stiff-ish green RI to add tiny little leaves.

After a few hours of drying, they’re ready to go.

How ’bout them apples?

I worried about how the marzipan would go over with my in-house taste testers, but I shouldn’t have. With the exception of my daughter, who, for some reason decided to eat the clove first, I got a big ol’ thumbs up.

As for texture, the cookies are firm and dry on the outside, but moist and crumbly on the inside.  After baking, they have a “clovey” aroma that disappears when the clove is removed.  If you aren’t into super sweet cookies, this is the cookie for you.  They’re the kind of cookie my Nanny would have liked with her morning coffee rather than a children’s birthday party snack, if that makes sense.

My husband especially liked these, which is great because I will be making these again.

A few baking tips that I learned along the way:

Use tulip red gel paste to tint these so that they don’t have that bitter red taste.  For more hints on red, click HERE.
I used an itsy bitsy cookie scoop to make these.  You can get yours HERE.  A little pricey, but worth the investment.  Around Christmas time, it’ll come in handy for candies and truffles
Marzipan might sound like an exotic ingredient, but it’s not too hard to find.  It’s usually in the baking section of larger food stores.
Test your baking time by starting with the least amount of time suggested.  When time is up, take the cookies out of the oven, lift one up {the tester, which will be eaten later for quality control} and check the bottom.  It should be slightly browned, which will be a little harder to see because of the red coloring, but not too dark.  It’s easy to over bake colored cookies because of the color.  If they haven’t browned enough, put them back in the oven for one minute intervals until they are done.
If you don’t have the fridge space to chill the dough on sheets, it can be chilled all at once, then shaped.
This recipe halves well, just use an egg yolk + one teaspoon of white {much easier than halving an egg}
If you don’t want to use marzipan, use my basic cookie recipe, it will work fine.  Just increase the baking time and keep a close eye on them.

I love the cookies, but even more than that, I LOVE these gorgeous back-to-school apple printables that I found on Lil Luna. They were created by the amazingly talented Amanda from Shindig.  What’s even better is that they come with a the step-by-step tutorial, a HUGE help for people like me who end up wasting a ton of paper and ink when left unattended with paper crafts.

I am so excited about these.  They will definitely be making a comeback as pumpkins this fall.  I’m excited for y’all to try them too. Don’t let the marzipan intimidate you, it’s not as gourmet as it sounds.

Be sure to make these for your teacher. There’s no better way to begin the school year than with cookies!

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