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In prison I like to chop up the apples first. Then, I put them in a hot pot and boil them in root beer soda,  cinnamon and sweetener. After it’s at the right softness, I empty them in a bowl, strain what’s left of the juice and mix in my vanilla creamer to make a thick paste like frosting. Next, I take a bag of cookies and smash them real fine. Feel free to add graham crackers too. Smash real good and mix with melted butter, some of the liquid and mash to make a crust. Take a piece of crust and roll it out flat. I then take the boiled apples and fold them in the middle like a crescent moon shape. I use a fork to seal the sides then drip the frosting over the top. Let them sit to cool and they are yummy good.

Prison-Style Apple Fritters

Prison-Style Apple Fritters

Ben | San Quentin State Prison
Apple fritters using root beer soda, cinnamon and sweetener for the filling and graham crackers and butter for the outer crust.
Servings 10 Fritter


  • 4 apples peeled, cored and chopped (about 5 cups, prepped)
  • ¾ cup root beer
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 14 oz. chocolate chip cookies
  • 4 whole graham crackers
  • 1 tablespoon butter melted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ¼ cup powdered vanilla coffee creamer


  • Place the apples in a medium saucepan with the root beer and cinnamon. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally. Lower the heat to medium-low, cover and cook until the apples are soft, 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Strain the cooking liquid into a bowl and set the apples aside. 
  • Place the chocolate chip cookies and graham crackers in a plastic storage bag and crush into fine crumbs using a meat pounder or rolling pin. Transfer to a medium mixing bowl and add the melted butter, sugar. Add 1 tablespoon of the cooking liquid and mix with a fork to combine. The dough should be just moist enough to stick together and roll out. Add additional liquid, a tablespoon at a time, until the dough just holds together.
  • Divide evenly into 10 balls of dough and roll each one out into a circle, about ⅛” to ¼”  thick. Use a piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper under the dough if it’s on the sticky side - it will make it easier to handle.
  • Place 1 tablespoon of apple filling onto the top of a dough circle, fold over into a half moon shape, and crimp the edges together with a fork. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.
  • To make the frosting, combine the creamer and 1 teaspoon of the leftover cooking liquid. Mix well. It should be thick enough to drizzle but not runny - add additional liquid, a teaspoon at a time, if needed. Drizzle a teaspoon of frosting over each fritter and let sit for a few minutes to set up.


  • The apple filling here is delicious on its own as a chunky applesauce. For a special treat, cook down the leftover apple cooking liquid until it’s syrupy (about 30 minutes, then mix with the apples.
  • Use caution when adding the liquid to the crumbs - you want the dough to hold together, but if it’s too moist it will be difficult to handle.

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