Apple Butter Rugelach

Despite its name, apple butter doesn’t contain butter. Instead, it refers to a thick spread made by slow cooking apples and spices until concentrated and jammy. It makes the perfect filling for these cookies, which herald in fall baking season like no other.

Apple Butter Rugelach

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Despite its name, apple butter doesn't contain butter. Instead, it refers to a thick spread made by slow cooking apples and spices until concentrated and jammy. It makes the perfect filling for these cookies, which herald in fall baking season like no other.
No ratings yet
Course Dessert
Servings 30 cookies

Ingredients
 

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups (240 grams) all-purpose flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup apple butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup sugar mixed with 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Instructions
 

  • Make the dough. In a stand mixer, combine the cream cheese, butter, pinch of salt and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Beat until combined using the paddle attachment. Add the flour and mix until the dough just comes together. Divide in half, flatten into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours, or up to a day.
  • In a small bowl, mix together the apple butter and brown sugar. You should taste this mixture to make sure it is the appropriate sweetness. Depending on your brand of apple butter, you may need more or less brown sugar.
  • Preheat the oven to 375 F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Dust another sheet of parchment with flour. Working with one piece of dough at a time, roll into a rectangle ⅛ inch thick on the floured parchment. If it is still too cold to roll, let it rest 10 or so minutes and try again.
  • Trim the edges to make an even rectangle. Cover with half of the apple butter, spreading to the edges, and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of pecans. Roll tightly into a log starting at the longest end. Use the parchment paper to assist in rolling the dough up – it really is helpful!
  • Using a sharp serrated knife, cut the log in half, then half again, until you have 12 pieces. Use a sawing motion so that the cookies don’t compress as you cut them. Place the rolled cookies on the prepared baking sheet 2 inches apart and repeat with all of the remaining dough. If you have a lot of scraps left from the trimming, you can reroll them and fill with any extra filling, cinnamon sugar or any jam you have on hand.
  • Mix the egg with 1 teaspoon water. Brush the tops of the log with the egg wash, then sprinkle liberally with the cinnamon sugar mixture.
  • Bake cookies in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through for even browning.
  • Remove and let cool completely. Cookies keep in a sealed container for 3-4 days at room temperature.

Notes

The parchment paper I use is lined at 2” increments, which is helpful when trimming the dough to get an even edge.
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