Gluten free Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies offer all the flavours of the iconic Autumn toffee apple, but in a delicious cookie. A rich caramel-sugared biscuit, dotted with sumptuous bites of real chewy dairy toffee and tart little apple cubes, warmly spiced with exotic seasonal cinnamon.
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Gluten Free Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies… Autumnal childhood memories recalled.
My Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies are an annual treat here at Gluten Free Alchemist and date way back to my first year of blogging in 2013. Originally made to celebrate Bonfire Night, they have since been offered as Christmas Foodie Gifts and eaten just because we love them…
The inspiration behind these cookies is, of course the deliciousness of toffee apples… Fresh, crisp apples dipped in shiny crackling toffee. Synonymous with Autumn, they nostalgically trigger the childhood joy of crunching through glassy caramelised sugar into sharply contrasting tart apple. Memories on the tastebuds that linger… Laughing round the bonfire… Home-set fireworks in the back garden… The Catherine Wheel on the fence that never really turned… And writing names with sparklers in the sky.
The iconic Toffee Apple in Cookie form
My Toffee Apple Cookies are of course very different in texture to their sugar-dipped fruit inspiration. But nonetheless, they take the iconic flavour combination and mingle it together in deliciously chewy, cinnamon-spiced cookies… The slight sharpness of apple set against rich caramel-sweetness of toffee and warming spice.
And while the toffee may not be crunchy, it is nonetheless true. REAL dairy toffee, carefully chopped and melted by the baking process for pockets of decadent, creamy sweetness with each and every bite.
What is the best apple and best toffee for making Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies?
Although these cookies are meant to be chewy, it’s important that they are not wet. Wet cookies will mould quickly and fall apart. Thus, fresh apple is not the best option for Toffee Apple Cookies… So, what is?
To get the right texture, it is super-important to use dried apple. I always use little cubes of freeze-dried apple, which are easy to source on-line. They are perfect for avoiding any excess moisture and the freeze-drying seals in an intensity of flavour which is incredible, without the need for any preservatives. If necessary however, you can sub for ordinary chopped dried apple. But you may wish to judge the amount used by sight (dependent on the fruit level required).
As for the toffee? You need to use soft dairy toffee, which has been chopped into very small pieces. I use Werther’s Original Creamy Chewy Toffee, but other varieties are available in good supermarkets.
Other ingredients used to make this recipe
In addition to the apple and toffee, my gluten free Toffee Apple Cookies specify a handful of other ingredients, some of which are ‘givens’ and some of which can be substituted.
For a true toffee flavour and colour to the cookies, it is important to use brown sugars. I use a combination of less refined coconut sugar and soft light brown sugar. The coconut sugar offers deep, rich caramel notes to the biscuits, without adding excessive sweetness. But it’s fine to use soft light brown sugar only if you prefer.
Gluten Free Flour
The gluten free flour used for these toffee apple cookies is blended for the best texture. I use my Gluten Free Alchemist white Blend A as the base flour, but it should be fine to use a good commercial alternative such as Doves Freee Plain White blend for this one.
The tapioca starch and corn starch (UK cornflour) is added to balance the texture and to add lightness and crunch. The corn starch can be substituted for arrowroot if necessary. And if need be, the amount of basic flour blend A can be upped in place of the tapioca. The texture will without doubt not be as good (more gritty), but the cookies should still work. It depends on whether you like your cookies to taste ‘gluten free’ or not. Ground almonds are added for nuttiness and structure and are best left in the mix.
Actually… If you’re not gluten free, the cookies will also probably work fine with ‘ordinary’ wheat flour… But for obvious reasons, it’s not something I’ve tried.
The recipe uses 1 large UK egg. However, be aware that not all eggs are labelled the same around the world. So, if you live outside the UK, make sure your egg is of an equivalent size. If unsure, check my International Egg Size and Weight Comparison Chart.
Are these Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies suitable for Coeliacs (Celiacs)?
Yes, they are! They use gluten free flours and there are no gluten containing ingredients in the recipe. So if you are Coeliac (or Celiac), the recipe is safe for you. Just be sure to check all ingredients for any hidden gluten or cross contamination risks. In particular, the corn starch, almonds, baking powder, spice and toffee can include ‘may contain’ type warnings due to manufacturing processes.
Can these cookies be made dairy free?
Possibly, but it is more tricky due to the toffee they contain. While it is easy to substitute the butter in the recipe for a dairy free alternative, finding toffee with the right texture is harder. Fudge is the wrong texture. So, if anyone knows of a buyable dairy free chewy toffee option, please let me know and I will add a link.
Alternatively, there are a few recipes on the internet that look like they will work… This recipe from Free From Favourites caught my eye.
Ready to make my Gluten Free Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies recipe?
I hope you love my gluten free Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies. If you make them, do let me know with a comment. Don’t forget to rate the recipe, so that other people can find it. And remember to tag me in to your cookie photos on social media. You can always find me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter.
Thank you, as always, for reading and happy baking
Other Autumnal recipes we think you’ll love…
Chewy Toffee Apple Cookies (gluten free)
- sharp knife
- chopping board
- 175 g plain gluten free flour blend I use GFA Blend A – See NOTES
- 25 g corn starch (UK cornflour)
- 25 g tapioca starch
- 65 g ground almonds almond meal
- ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp baking powder gluten free
- ¼ tsp fine sea salt
- 2½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 150 g unsalted butter softened
- 100 g soft light brown sugar
- 120 g coconut sugar (or use additional soft light brown sugar)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 large egg At room temperature – UK large (Canadian ‘Extra Large’; Australian ‘Jumbo’; and US ‘Extra or Very Large’)
- 35 g freeze-dried apple cubes (or sub with ordinary chopped dried apple – you may need more than 35g as it is heavier in weight)
- 65 g soft dairy toffee chopped into tiny pieces
- Weigh and mix together the flours, almonds, bicarbonate of soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon, making sure any lumps are broken down. Set aside. TIP: Weigh into an airtight container and shake vigorously.
- Cream together the butter and sugars in a large bowl using an electric whisk until pale and fluffy.
- Add the vanilla extract and egg and beat until thoroughly combined.
- Stir in the flour mixture, apple cubes and chopped dairy toffee using a firm mixing spoon or spatula until the ingredients are evenly mixed.
- Place the mix in the fridge to chill for 45 minute to an hour.
- Line about 4 baking sheets with baking paper (or batch-bake if you do not have enough baking sheets).
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 C/350 F/Gas 4.
- When chilled, remove the biscuit dough from the fridge and spoon into small, walnut-sized rounded mounds (or roll into balls) on the baking sheets (making sure you leave plenty of room between each for spreading).
- Gently flatten the top of each mound very slightly using the palm of your hand.
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until just beginning to brown and crisp at the very edges. Be very careful not to over-bake as you want the cookies to remain soft in the centre. To ensure an even bake, swap the trays of cookies round in the oven half way through baking.
- When baked, remove from the oven and leave on the tray for 10 to 15 minutes to cool and harden slightly.
- When cooled enough to move without them breaking, transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
© 2019-2023 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist
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