Tag Archives: holiday

Molasses Crinkles

molasses-crinklesTo be completely honest, I was short on time. I had intended to make a pie over the weekend, but just couldn’t swing it. So I baked a quick batch of cookies instead.

Just as tasty, but much quicker.

Of course, all this time I saved by making cookies instead of pie was wasted when I lost the charger for my camera battery. I spent a good hour looking for it, and another hour pouting about it, before I finally discovered it in the car, of all places.

(Pretty sure I put it there when we went on family vacation, and then I forgot the actual camera.)

I guess I could have just made cookies and not photographed them, but where’s the fun in that?

molasses-crinkles-5b

In my head, I was picturing the classic Chocolate Crinkles, a cookie I seriously adore, and hoping I could make something with the same texture, and a different flavor profile. I wasn’t really sure it was feasible.

In the end, I came pretty close.

Well, except that I burned the first pan-full. But let’s not talk about that.

molasses-crinkles-2b

For this recipe, I went a little heavy on the molasses, partly for the texture it gives the cookies, but mostly for the flavor.

This cookie is a little on the chewy side. If you want something crispier, just bake them an extra minute or two! The extra time you spend will be worth it.

molasses-crinkles
Print

Molasses Crinkles

A chewy, spiced molasses cookie, rolled in powdered sugar.

Cook Time 12 minutes
Servings 3 dozen

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 cups flour
  • about 1/2 cup powdered sugar for rolling

Instructions

  1. Combine butter, oil, sugar, and brown sugar. Add eggs and molasses and mix well.

  2. Add salt, baking powder, cloves, nutmeg, ginger, and cinnamon, and mix to incorporate. Add flour and mix just until incorporated.

  3. Place powdered sugar in a shallow dish. Roll dough into balls, and roll in powdered sugar to coat. Place on a greased or lined baking sheet.

  4. Bake at 350F for 11-13 minutes. Remove to a cooling rack and let cool.

 

National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day

It’s National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day today!  It might be the greatest food holiday EVER.  At least, it’s the only one I get truly excited about celebrating.

I don’t know how many chocolate chip cookies and chocolate chip cookie inspired recipes are on this site. Not sure I can count that high. Let’s just say, it’s a lot.  So today, I’m celebrating by sharing some of my favorites with you.

chocolate-chip-cookie-pops-4

Ever tried your chocolate chip cookies on a stick?  You’ll want a cookie pop for each hand!

brown-sugar-cookies-recipe

The extra brown sugar makes these cookies SO soft and chewy. They have an awesome rich flavor, and of course, taste great with milk!

chocolate-chocolate-chip-5

Sometimes a girl wants her chocolate chip cookies with a little extra chocolate. Or a lot of extra chocolate.

chocolate-chip-cookies-without-eggs

These are so creamy and tasty, you won’t even miss the eggs. Trust me.

Coconut-Chocolate-Chip-Bars-5

We’re huge fans of coconut around here. And coconut tastes awesome with chocolate chips!

butter-peanut-cookies

It’s like chocolate chips and peanut butter were made for each other.

Oatmeal CC New Slider

This is our family favorite, and the one that landed me a ribbon at the county fair.

three ingredient cookies

These super easy cookies are made with condensed milk, and have a texture similar to shortbread. My most popular recipe!

chocolate chip cookie

The fudge layer is gooey stuff, but I’ve never heard anyone complain.

smores-cookie-recipe

These are a summertime must, especially if you don’t build fires in your own yard.

chocolate chip cookie

The graham crackers give these cookies a kind of surprising, sweet edge. These are definitely near the top of the favorites list!

chocolate chip banana bread cookies

These taste amazingly similar to banana bread. Except they’re cookies!

recipe-for-blondies

Chocolate chips AND Kit Kat Bars. These chocolate chip cookie bars are heavenly!

cookie-dough-dip

This cookie inspired dip isn’t exactly like eating dough, but it’s darn close!

cookie-dough-truffles-2

Turn this egg-free cookie dough into easy candies! Your family and friends will thank you.

cookie-dough-brownies-3

Who needs frosting? Top these awesome brownies with chocolate chip cookie dough!

choc-chip-scones-4

These easy buttermilk drop scones will have you wrapped around their little finger!

Keep your eyes peeled, because there are more chocolate chip cookie – inspired recipes coming up this month!  In the meantime, be sure to stock your pantry with high quality chocolate chips, and find even more chocolate chip recipes on this Chocolate Chip FAVORITES Pinterest board.

And don’t forget to check out this awesome collection of 100 chocolate chip cookie treats!

CCC-roundup-3

 

Peppermint Bark Brownies

Peppermint chocolate candy brownies recipe;  These brownies use peppermint bark candy to take them to the next level!  You love this peppermint chocolate candy brownies recipe!

Peppermint Bark Brownies from Jen's Favorite CookiesI like flavors being seasonal, for the most party.  I like to save lemons for spring and summer, pumpkin for fall, and gingerbread for winter. But… there is an exception, and that is peppermint.

Why should peppermint be just for winter?  Why is Peppermint Bark only sold in December?  It’s a tragedy, if you ask me.  You can get peppermint gum anytime, why not peppermint baked goods?

I stocked up on the peppermint bark when I found it at the store during the after-Christmas clearance sale.  Maybe some people are tired of it by January, but not me.  Not even close.

Peppermint and I have some things in common, namely, that we are both close personal friends with chocolate.  Very close.  In fact, I think it’s fair to say, we both love chocolate.  And we’re both tired of cherries and strawberries monopolizing the Valentines Day dessert scene.  It’s time peppermint had it’s day.

Peppermint Bark Brownies from Jen's Favorite Cookies

I tweaked my basic One-Bowl Brownie recipe just a little, to keep these from being too gooey.

Continue reading “Peppermint Bark Brownies” »

Garlic and Onion Cheese Ball

Easy Cheese Ball Recipe; Garlic and onion makes a tasty and easy cheese ball recipe.

Garlic and Onion Cheese Ball from Jen's Favorite CookiesI have a couple friends that I have known since the dawn of time.  Friends who knew me when, and who forgave me anyway.

These awesome friends make sure we keep in touch with regular face-to-face visits, even though we are each about 45 minutes away from one another.  I can’t tell you how awesome it is to have friends like that.

We meet together about once a month, and we scrapbook or do a craft, or just talk and eat.

We always eat.  My friends make some fantastic grub, y’all.

I all out stole this cheese ball recipe from my awesome friend April.  Honestly, as much as I love cheese, I’ve had a hard time finding a cheese ball that really gets the job done.  This one is my hands-down favorite.  She always makes it for us on New Years Eve, and I always look forward to devouring it.

Garlic and Onion Cheese Ball from Jen's Favorite Cookies

Our New Years Eve party is one of the few things the three of us bring our husbands to.  Our guys get to listen to us reminisce, and make fun of each other, and give one another parenting advice that will probably never be used.  Lucky guys, right? Continue reading “Garlic and Onion Cheese Ball” »

How to Make Perfect Soft Sugar Cookies

How make sugar cookies;  The best sugar cookies recipes use this secret ingredient!  Learn how make sugar cookies perfectly.

How to Make the Perfect Sugar Cookies from Jen's Favorite CookiesThese cookies are my all-time fav for basically every single holiday.  Seriously, they’re like your favorite pair of black pumps, they go with everything.

Valentines Day?  Heart shaped cutter and pink frosting.
St. Patricks Day?  Shamrock cutter and green frosting.
4th of July?  Star shaped cutter and white frosting with red and blue sprinkles.
Your dog’s birthday?  Bone shaped cutter and make the frosting your dog’s favorite color.

Wait, dog’s don’t see in color.  Or is that horses?

While these are popular at any holiday, at our house, they are an inarguable MUST at Christmas.

Over the years, I have taken my mother’s long-time favorite sugar cookie recipe, and perfected the details.  These cookies are soft, never crumbly, and the cream cheese frosting is decadent, creamy, but never too oily.  While the recipe itself is heavenly, it is the process that makes them absolutely perfect.

How to Make the Perfect Soft Sugar Cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies

And so, it is the process I’ll be discussing today.  Below are your rules for making the perfect soft sugar cookies, the ones your friends will remember for years and years.  (Mine do.)

RULE #1: Follow the recipe exactly.

Those of you who do more cooking than baking may need to be reminded that when baking, you must measure.  You must be precise.  You don’t add flour until it looks about right, you add the exact amount of flour called for.

While normally I respect the choice of anyone to use butter or shortening more or less interchangeably, in this case, I strongly strongly recommend you use the shortening.  My apologies to the Europeans who can’t find the stuff.  Butter melts easier, which means your cookies will spread more, the consistency will change, and they may not turn out as well as hoped.  If you absolutely must use butter, honestly, you might want to scour the interwebs for a recipe that calls for butter.

My very favorite thing about this recipe, the secret ingredient if you will, is the sour cream.  It is the secret to success.  Sour cream makes these cookies so soft and creamy, they are even amazing to eat frozen.

RULE #2:  Chill the dough for 8 hours or more.

If you ever get impatient and think you’re going to chill for only 2-3 hours, you are going to regret it.  This particular recipe needs, NEEDS, the full 8-10 hours of chill time.  Personally, I chill the dough overnight before cutting.

Chilling the dough does two things.  One is that it gives the ingredients time to combine, time to become one, time to taste even more amazing.  The second is that it changes the texture of the dough.  The dough needs to be cold when you roll it out, and cold when it goes in the oven.  This will make the cutting clean and keep the cookies from spreading too far.

Plus, once you see the finished dough, you’ll know there is no way you can roll this dough without chilling it first.

RULE #3:  Roll the dough on a non-stick surface.

I’m hoping this one goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway.

If you are really passionate about preserving the softness of your cookies, you can roll the dough between two layers of wax paper.  However, I normally roll them on a floured countertop.  A WELL floured countertop.  It’s imperative the dough doesn’t stick to your rolling surface, because the cookies will not maintain their shape or thickness otherwise.

june-12-random-3june-12-random-2june-12-random-4

RULE #4:  Roll the dough to the correct thickness.

If this post only had one rule, it would be this one.  This is the absolute, total, and complete secret to well-made sugar cookies.  Do not, I repeat, DO NOT roll them too thin!  I find it’s a tendency of most people to roll the dough thinner than it needs to be.  The dough should be thicker than 1/4 inch.  Mine is generally somewhere between 1/4 – 1/2 inch.  Let’s call it 3/8 inch.

If the cookies are too thin, they will be crispy.  The edges will be brown, and have a tendency to break off.  They will lose all of the gorgeous softness that makes these cookies great.

Of course, if they are too thick, they can have different problems, like spreading too much and not being cooked through in the center.

If you are going to take care during just one step of the process, make it this step.  Dough thickness is key.

How to Make the Perfect Soft Sugar Cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies

RULE #5:  Don’t overwork the dough.

Get as many cookies as you can out of each roll.  You can gather and re-roll the leftover dough pieces, but be aware that the more you do this, the chewier the cookies will be.  The added flour (from the floured countertop) and the added working activates the gluten and turns your cookies into bread.  Which no one wants.  Trust me on this.

Instead of more rolling, I like to use up the little scraps with little cookie cutters like these.  I love these cute little 1-inch cutters!  And instead of frosting a bunch of little cookies, you can make the frosting a little thin (by adding more milk or using less powdered sugar) and just dip the cookies in it.  It’s fun, and kids love it.

Normally, I roll half the dough, and re-roll it once.  Then I start with the second half, and re-roll it once.  What is left from both halves is combined for a third and final roll.  Any dough left after that is eaten raw.  Because this might be the best raw cookie dough in the history of humanity.

RULE #6:  Trust the timer.

This one is actually a little tough, because altitude and some other factors can affect baking time.  I live in Utah, at an altitude of about 4500 feet.  Technically, this is a high altitude environment.  You may have to experiment just a little to get your baking time right.  Mine bake for 10 minutes exactly.  (Unless they’re tiny, then they bake for 8 minutes) Once you’re certain of the baking time, stick with it.

The reason I’m telling you this is that these bake slightly differently than an average cookie.  When I make chocolate chip cookies, I make sure the edges and tops are just ever-so-slighly browned before I take them out of the oven.  But sugar cookies are a different story.  If they get brown, in my opinion, they’re overdone.  There’s really no clear visual cue to when the cookies are done.  Trust your timer, pull them out at the right time, and don’t let them get brown.

How to Make the Perfect Soft Sugar Cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies

RULE #7:  Make the frosting soft and creamy.

First of all, the cream cheese and butter both need to be soft when you make the frosting.  Plan accordingly.  Maybe when you put the dough in the fridge, it’s a good time to take the cream cheese and butter out, and set the on the countertop to soften.

As much as I love mixing things simply, in a glass bowl with a wooden spoon, to make this frosting smooth, I recommend using beaters.  The small hand held electric beaters work great for this, much better than a spoon could ever do.

You can also adjust the texture of your frosting quite easily by adding more powdered sugar or more milk.  I like the frosting a little on the soft side to match the softness in the cookies.  I find that when I use a piping bag, I tend to use much more frosting than if I just spread it on with a knife, so if you’re planning to pipe the frosting, you may want to double the recipe.

RULE #8:  Store in an airtight container.

Once the cookies cool, you can frost them right away.  If you’re not going to frost them within an hour or so, though, put them in an airtight container, and make sure they are sealed up tight.  Even large plastic zipper bags will do.

After frosting, if you want to use sprinkles, do it quickly.  After you’re done frosting, let the cookies sit out for an hour or so, to let the frosting sit and harden a little.  After that, there are a couple choices.

CHOICE #1: Place the cookies on a baking sheet or tray, in a single layer, (I can fit about 14-15 cookies on a baking sheet) and freeze them.  Once frozen, put them in your airtight box with wax paper between layers.  Then keep the box in the fridge or freezer.  These cookies are fantastic frozen, but if you prefer them at room temperature, take them out of the freezer 60-90 minutes before serving.

CHOICE #2: (The faster choice)  Skip the freezing, and just layer your cookies in your airtight box with wax paper between each layer.  The down side here is that without freezing first, the wax paper will smush the frosting and all the work you did to make them pretty will go to waste.

If you’re going to eat your cookies within a day or two, you can leave them on the countertop with no problems.  If they need to last longer, keep them in the fridge or freezer.

How to Make the Perfect Soft Sugar Cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies

Is that enough rules?  Honestly, it seems like a lot of rules, but these cookies are sooooo worth it.  They’re just so soft and creamy and wonderful.  I know a lot of people use royal icing or a simple glaze on their cookies (my mom uses a lemon juice and powdered sugar glaze) but there is just nothing that can compare to cream cheese frosting.

I hope you enjoy these cookies, and please feel free to leave questions or comments below.  I will try to answer all questions!

Soft Sugar Cookies
Print

Soft Sugar Cookies

A simple soft sugar cookies with cream cheese frosting.

Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 4 dozen
Author Jen @ Jen's Favorite Cookies

Ingredients

Cookies:

  • 1 cup shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 cups flour (+ more for rolling)

Frosting:

  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 2 tablespoons butter softened
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2-3 drops food coloring (optional)

Instructions

For Cookies:

  1. Cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs, sour cream, and vanilla and mix well.

  2. Add salt, soda, and baking powder, and mix well. Add flour, and mix just until combined.

  3. Wrap dough tightly in plastic, or place in a plastic zipper bag, and chill 8-10 hours or overnight.

  4. Roll dough to ⅜-inch thickness and cut out shapes. Place on baking sheet and bake at 350F for 10-12 minutes.

For Frosting:

  1. Combine all ingredients, mixing until smooth. Frost cooled cookies.

  2. Store in an airtight container between layers of wax paper. Will keep best if refrigerated or frozen.

 

Homemade Caramels

Welcome to Day #6 of Christmas Week, a multi-blogger event co-hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Jen from Juanita’s Cocina! Each day we will be celebrating the holidays with a different set of Christmas-themed treats, as well as a fabulous Christmas giveaway. We hope you enjoy this fabulous event. Tune in each day starting today, Monday, December 9th and ending Saturday, December 14th.

***Disclaimer: This giveaway is being provided by Cake Boss Baking. #ChristmasWeek bloggers have not received product or been compensated as a part of this giveaway.***

Homemade Caramels from Jen's Favorite CookiesOf all the various kinds of food creation out there, candy making has got to be the hardest.  And hence, I only rarely make candy.

I make some pseudo-candies throughout the year, but at Christmas, we have to have homemade caramels.

My family never made homemade caramels, so I learned this tradition from Robb when we were married oh so many years ago.  He usually makes the caramels, but in recent years I have been his loyal assistant.  This year, I decided to go it alone, the result of which was that I basically ruined an entire batch of caramels.

It was extraordinarily disappointing, to say the least.

I over cooked the candy, and they turned out hard as a rock.  Worse than Sugar Daddies.  I’m not sure my big kitchen knife will cut them.

Homemade Caramels from Jen's Favorite Cookies

I’m telling you this story not to scare you away from candy making.  Quite the opposite, actually.  I want you to remember that candy making doesn’t always go perfectly, and if your batch doesn’t turn out the way you wanted, try, try again.  Practice makes perfect.  You can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs.  All that jazz.

It takes practice.  And since I only make caramels once a year, I’m a little rusty.  But I’m going to give you all my best tips and tricks here.

Well, Robb’s best tips and tricks, really.  He’s much more experienced at caramel making than I.

 

First, if you have one, use a candy thermometer.  The candy should be at a temperature of 248F when you pour it out.

Second, if you don’t have a candy thermometer, you can use the cold-water-in-a-dish method, which is what we usually do.

Here’s how it works.  You’ll put all your ingredients in a pot, and stir pretty much constantly for 12-15 minutes.  Once you get to the 11-12 minute mark, you can start testing.  Drip a little of the caramel into very cold water.  Add an ice cube or two to be sure this water is cold.  Use your fingers to pinch the caramel into one glob.  If the glob is the consistency you want for your caramels, it’s ready.  Most likely, it will take a few tries of dripping caramel into water to get to the right consistency.

Homemade Caramels from Jen's Favorite Cookies

Homemade Caramels from Jen's Favorite Cookies

Remember that once it gets close to reaching its final temperature, it changes consistency very quickly, and the longer it cooks, the harder it gets.   A minute or even a few seconds can mean the difference between perfect caramels and caramels that are too soft or too hard to be enjoyed.

Homemade Caramels from Jen's Favorite Cookies

Once you get the hang of these caramels, your family will thank you!

cakebossbaking

Today’s #ChristmasWeek giveaway comes courtesy of Cake Boss Baking. Cake Boss Baking is the new branded bake ware from Buddy Valastro, the talented chef and baker behind the TLC TV show, “Cake Boss”. Cake Boss Baking features a full line of cake pans, decorating tools, dessert plates and more, with product for all levels of expertise.

Cake Boss Baking is offering one #ChristmasWeek reader the opportunity to win a prize package full of baking tools and essentials {ARV: $260}, including:

To enter, read the details and use the Rafflecopter below!

***This giveaway is for one Cake Boss Baking baking essentials prize pack (details listed above)! This giveaway is open to Continental US residents only . When the contest concludes, the winner will be chosen by random draw. The winner will be notified through e-mail and they will have 3 days to respond or another winner will be chosen.***

a Rafflecopter giveaway

More great candies you might enjoy:

gumdropsHomemade
Gumdrops
Pretzel-Toffee-5Pretzel
Toffee
mint-sandwiches-4Mint
Sandwiches

 

5.0 from 2 reviews
Homemade Caramels
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Homemade caramel candies
Author:
Recipe type: Candy
Ingredients
  • 1 cup butter
  • 2¼ cups (or 1 pound) firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup corn syrup
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
Instructions
  1. Using a heavy saucepan, melt butter.
  2. Add brown sugar, corn syrup, and milk, and stir to combine.
  3. Continue cooking over medium high heat, stirring almost constantly, for about 12-15 minutes, until temperature reaches firm ball stage, about 248F / 119C.
  4. Pour into a 9x13 pan which has been either lined with parchment paper or heavily buttered.
  5. Let cool until completely set, about 3-4 hours. Cut into pieces and wrap in wax paper.

 More Christmas Week Recipes you might enjoy:

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies

Welcome to Christmas Week, a multi-blogger event co-hosted by Kim of Cravings of a Lunatic and Jen from Juanita’s Cocina! Each day we will be celebrating the holidays with a different set of Christmas-themed treats, as well as a fabulous Christmas giveaway. We hope you enjoy this fabulous event. Tune in each day starting today, Monday, December 9th and ending Saturday, December 14th.

***Disclaimer: This giveaway is being provided by Magimix by Robot-Coupe. #ChristmasWeek bloggers have not received product or been compensated as a part of this giveaway.***

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies from Jen's Favorite CookiesI’m a little disturbed by how far we are into December.  I mean, I’m still working on getting my decorations up and I’ve barely even begun my shopping.

Not to mention being prepared for holiday parties and lunch with friends.

This could be a problem.

In case you haven’t figured this out, I’m not one of those people who is uber-prepared and has the tree up on Thanksgiving Day, and all the shopping done by Halloween.  Not at all.  I’m more of a deal-with-one-crisis-at-a-time kind of person.

Except when there’s cookies involved.  The thing is, sometimes a girl just needs a chocolate cookie, and it can’t wait until I’ve dug out the holiday music and put the Christmas centerpiece on the table.

Luckily, this recipe is so quick and easy, you don’t have to wait.

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies

I hope you don’t get the wrong idea from all my complaining.  The truth is, I love Christmas.  I love all the holiday cheer, and twinkle lights, and music, and of course, the baked goods. Continue reading “Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies” »

Mint Sandwiches and Holiday Food Party

Chocolate Mint Candy; These easy candies are made with layers of chocolate and mint.

Mint Sandwiches from Jen's Favorite CookiesThis December is shaping up to be  an… umm… exciting one.  For lack of a better word.

After spending Thanksgiving recovering from pneumonia, which is, by the way, one of the least pleasant experiences I have ever had, my kids also got sick, my husband left town on a business trip and then my fridge died.

Merry Christmas, right?

I spent my week shopping for refrigerators and not for groceries, and running all my fridge-purchase-decision-questions past Robb over the phone.

Ugh.

And thus, this week’s dessert is simple, easy, and requires no refrigeration.

Mint Sandwiches from Jen's Favorite Cookies

If you haven’t yet, it’s time you met my friends!

I love spending the holidays with my friends, and we love sharing our favorite holiday treats with you.  Check out all the amazing recipes we came up with for this party!

Just click on each photo to jump to the recipes.

Christmas Food Party on Jen's Favorite Cookies

Red Velvet Parfait from Cravings of a Lunatic Cranberry & Brie Bites from Crumb Blog Soft Gingerbread Cookies from Roxana's Home Baking Coconut Spice Cake from Magnolia Days Gingerbread Biscotti from Created By Diane Caramel Biscoff Blossoms from That Skinny Chick Can Bake Mint Sandwiches from Jen's Favorite Cookies White Chocolate Cranberry Layer Cake from Pineapple and Coconut Candy Cane Kiss Brownies from Chocolate Moosey Triple Chocolate Buche de Noel from Girl in the Little Red Kitchen Gingerbread Pumpkin Trifle from Hungry Couple NYC Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars from Chocolate, Chocolate, and More

My Grandfather used to give all the girls in the family a box of mint sandwiches for Christmas, so this recipe holds nice memories for me.  To make life easy, I used candy melts like those in the links below.  If you want a nicer quality candy, you could splurge on better quality chocolate.

Either way, these simple candies make such a wonderful and memorable holiday treat!

More simple minty treats you’ll love:

chocolatePeppermint Bark fudge with candy canesPeppermint Fudge chocolate mintMint Popcorn Bark

 

Mint Sandwiches and Holiday Food Party
 
Simple chocolate and mint sandwiches.
Author:
Recipe type: Candy
Ingredients
  • 24 oz. chocolate candy melts
  • 12 oz. green candy melts
  • 1 tsp. peppermint extract
Instructions
  1. Melt 12 oz. chocolate. You can do this on the stove on low or medium heat, or in the microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring between each.
  2. Pour melted chocolate onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Spread out evenly, and let cool.
  3. Once first layer is set, (about 10-20 minutes) melt green candy for the second layer. Once melted, quickly stir in peppermint extract. Pour over first layer, and spread evenly. Let cool and set.
  4. Melt remaining chocolate candy, and spread over green layer. Let set.
  5. Use a large knife to cut candy into squares.

 chocolate mint candy

Eggnog Dip

Recipes that use eggnog;  This easy dip recipes uses eggs and nutmeg for an authentic eggnog flavor.

I was compensated by Safest Choice Eggs to create this eggnog recipe, but, as always, all opinions are my own.

Eggnog Dip from Jen's Favorite CookiesFunny thing about eggnog, people seem to love it or hate it, there are not many in between.

Growing up, my family would occasionally make a no-cook blender eggnog, which I always loved.   Now that I am an adult, there is something about watching raw eggs go in the blender and then get poured into my glass which is, shall we say, a little off-putting.

Raw eggs… Salmonella… ewww.

Recently, I discovered a solution to my problem.  One gorgeous product that ends the need for being squeamish at the idea of drinking raw eggs.  It’s the eggnog lovers dream come true.

The miracle product is… Davidson’s Safest Choice All-Natural Pasteurized Eggs.

That’s right, pasteurized eggs.  They have a water bath process which eliminates the salmonella and makes them totally safe to eat raw or undercooked.

Eggnog Dip from Jen's Favorite Cookies

As I am committed to only baking with items I can find in the grocery store, I feel the need to share this one piece of information.  Safest Choice Eggs can be found in regular grocery stores, but they are not yet in all parts of the country.  To find out whether you can get these eggs in your neck of the woods, go to their website and type in your zip code. Continue reading “Eggnog Dip” »

100 Christmas Cookies

Christmas Cookies Recipes;  More than 100 ideas, photos, and Christmas cookies recipes.

Brown Sugar Cinnamon Coconut Cookies Candy Cane Fudge Brownie Cookies

It’s nearing Christmas, and after all, this is a cookie blog, so how could I not bring you a humongous collection of amazing Christmas Cookie ideas?

I asked some of my friends to share their favorites, and I was overwhelmed with great recipes for molasses cookies, peanut butter blossoms, mint chocolate cookies, tea cakes, and just about everything else you can imagine.  So many, in fact, I didn’t even have room for them all here.

I’ve organized them into categories for you:  Molasses and Gingerbread Cookies; Shortbread Cookies and Tea Cakes; Mint and Peppermint Cookies; Chocolate and Chocolate Chip Cookies; and Other Great Christmas Cookies.  Just click on the picture to be taken to the corresponding recipe.

And drop me a comment while you are here.  Let me know, what’s your favorite Christmas cookie, and what new recipe are you excited to try?

 

Molasses and Gingerbread Cookies

iced-gingersnapIced Molasses
Cookies
I Heart Eating
gingersnap cookie recipeChocolate
Gingersnaps
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
healthy-ginger-cookiesHealthier Chocolate
Molasses Cookies
Running to the Kitchen
whoopie-pies-3-682x1024Gingerbread
Whoopie Pies
Diethood
GingersnapCookieSandwicheswithLemonCreamCheeseIcing21_thumbGingersnap Cookies
with Lemon Frosting
Keep it Sweet Desserts
3-gingerThree Ginger
Gingersnaps
Bake Love Give
2-Chocolate-Gingerbread-Christmas-Tree-Cookies-@createdbydiane-530x353Chocolate Gingerbread
Cookies
Created by Diane
gingersnap-mapleMolasses Maple
Cream Cookies
Law Student’s Wife
gingerbread-cut-outsGingerbread
Cut-Out Cookies
Bake Love Give
molasses-spiceMolasses
Spice Cookies
Corner Kitchen Blog
nantucket-gingerNantucket
Ginger Cookies
Cooking With Books
Gingerbread squaresClassic
Gingerbread
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
grain_free_gingerbread_men_2Gingerbread Men
Gluten and Grain Free
Texanerin
ginger-snap-682x1024Gingersnaps with
Cream Cheese Frosting
Diethood
chocolate-stuffed-gingerbread-cookies-600-wmChocolate Stuffed
Gingerbread Cookies
I Heart Eating
chewy-gingerChewy Ginger
Cookies
Alida’s Kitchen
White-ChocolateWhite Chocolate
Molasses Cookies
Julie’s Eats & Treats
molassescookies7R100% Whole Grain
Molasses Cookies
Texanerin
giant-ginger-6Giant Ginger
Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
gingersnap-christmas-time-1024x1024Ginger
Sparkles
Rachel Cooks
dbl-gingerDouble Ginger
Cookies
Noble Pig

 

Shortbread Cookies and Tea Cakes

Holiday-Funfetti-Shortbread-Cookies-RachelCooksHoliday Funfetti
Shortbread Cookies
Rachel Cooks
TeaCakes1Tangerine
Tea Cakes
Savvy Eat
Russian-tea-cakes-7Russian
Tea Cakes
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
chocolateshortbread2Chocolate
Shortbread
Persnickety Plates
Pecan SandiesPecan
Sandies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
orange-shortbreadOrange Creamsicle
Shortbread
Spabettie
shortbread recipeAlmond
Shortbread Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
cardamom-tea-cakesCardamom
Snowball Cookies
Savory Simple
Vanillekipferl - Christmas crescent shaped Vanilla shortcrust cookiesVanillekipferl
Crescent Cookies
Masala Herb Blog
Toffee-Almond-Snowball-Cookies-5Toffee Almond
Snowball Cookies
Cupcakes & Kale Chips
mintsurprisecookiesMint Surprise
Cookies
Kailley’s Kitchen
shortbreadShortbread
Cookies
Because I Like Chocolate
Spritzgebäck - Austrian German Shortcrust Christmas CookiesSpritzgeback
Shortbread Cookies
Masala Herb Blog
Almond-Crescents-5-wmAlmond
Crescents
Cupcakes & Kale Chips
almond-joyAlmond Joy
Cookies
The Pink Flour

 

Mint and Peppermint Cookies

melting-momentsMelting Moments
Cookies
Corner Kitchen
Mint-chocolate-muffin-top-cookiesMint Chocolate
Brownie Cookies
Roxana’s Home Baking
peppermint-thumbprints-7Peppermint
Thumbprints
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
Chocolate-Peppermint-CookiesChocolate Peppermint
Cookies
Around My Family Table
mint-cccMint Chocolate
Chip Cookies
Mom on Timeout
Peppermint-Thumbprints-1024x682Peppermint
Thumbprints
Lemons for Lulu
candy-cane-fudge-brownies-cookies-roxanashomebaking-2Candy Cane Fudge
Brownie Cookies
Roxana’s Home Baking
peppermint-twistPeppermint Twist
Kiss Cookies
Alida’s Kitchen
peppermintmocha-685x1024Peppermint
Mocha Cookies
Shugary Sweets
Candy-Cane-ThumbprintsCandy Cane
Thumbprints
Crumbs and Chaos
Peppermint-Swirl-Cookies-VertPeppermint Swirl
Sugar Cookies
Simple Bites
candy-cane-blossomsCandy Cane
Blossoms
Cupcake Diaries
Peppermint-Mocha-Pudding-Cookies-title (1)Peppermint Mocha
Pudding Cookies
Inside BruCrew Life
Peppermint-Patty-Fudge-Cookies-3Peppermint Patty
Fudge Cookies
Dinners Dishes & Dessert
chocolate-peppermint-4aPeppermint Choc
Sandwich Cookies
Snappy Gourmet
dark-chocolate-mint-cookiesDark Chocolate
Mint Cookies
Shugary Sweets
dk-choc-andesDark Chocolate Andes
Mint Cookie Cups
Beyond Frosting
Peppermint-Snowball-Cookies-6-titlePeppermint
Snowball Cookies
Inside BruCrew Life
mint_chocolate_cookies_1GF Fresh Mint Double
Chocolate Cookies
Texanerin
Chocolate-Mint-Cookies-3-thumb-labeledMint Chocolate
Pudding Cookies
Dinners Dishes & Dessert
Andes-Mint-Filled-Cookies-1Andes Mint Filled
Chocolate Cookies
Inside BruCrew Life
Candy Cane Crunch Cookies 4Candy Cane
Crunch Cookies
Kitchen is my Playground
peppcookie-685x1024Grandma’s Peppermint
Puff Cookies
Shugary Sweets
Dk-choc-mint-chipDark Chocolate
Mint Chip Cookies
Law Student’s Wife

 

Chocolate and Chocolate Chip Cookies

spiced-chocolate-crackle-cookies-recipeSpiced Chocolate
Crackle Cookies
Mom on Timeout
Cherry-Pistachio-Cookies-6Chocolate Cherry
Pistachio Cookies
Cravings of a Lunatic
Turtle Cookies 1Turtle Cookies
The Kitchen is
My Playground
buttermilk cookiesChocolate
Frosted Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
Gluten-Free-Chocolate-Chip-Cookies-The-Lemon-Bowl-1024x1024Gluten Free
Choc Chip Cookies
The Lemon Bowl
chocolate-cherry-thumbprints-2Chocolate Cherry
Thumbprints
Rachel Cooks
salted-caramel-chocolate-cookiesSalted Caramel
Hot Chocolate Cookies
Beyond Frosting
Chocolate CrinklesChocolate
Crinkles
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
choc-espressoChocolate
Espresso Cookies
Sheri Silver
orange_spice_cookiesOrange Chocolate
Spice Cookies
Wine & Glue
mexican-hot-chocolate-7aMexican Hot Chocolate
Sandwich Cookies
Snappy Gourmet
PB chocChocolate Peanut
Butter Cup Cookies
Cook Like a Champion
Reverse-White-Chocolate-Crackle-Cookie-Eat-The-Love-Irvin-Lin-Lead-TypeReverse White Choc
Crackle Cookies
Eat the Love
Hot-Chocolate-Cookies-Recipe-25recipestoXmas-roxanashomebaking-7Hot Chocolate Fudgy
Brownie Cookies
Roxana’s Home Baking
chocolate cookie recipeSalted Dark
Chocolate Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
choc-cherry-cookiesChocolate Covered
Cherry Cookies
Wonky Wonderful
turtle cups6Turtle Cookie
Cups – Hezzie-D’s
Books &  Cooks
dbl-chocBite Size Double
Chocolate Cookies
Back for Seconds

 

Other Seasonal Cookies

Eggnog-Cookies-6Eggnog
Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
Gingersnap-Pumpkin-Spice-Sandwich-Cookies-1024x687Gingersnap
Pumpkin Spice Cookies
Simply Southern Baking
Gluten-Free-Peanut-Butter-Cookies-RecipeGluten Free Peanut
Butter Cookies
Back for Seconds
cinnamon-roll-cookies-2-600-writing-wm-Cinnamon Roll
Cookies
I Heart Eating
linzer-cookies-6Linzer
Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
Italian-Sugar-Cookies_blogItalian
Sugar Cookies
Very Culinary
Pignole-hero-480x320Pignoli Cookies
(Pine Nut Cookies)
Shockingly Delicious
alice-sugar-cookieAlice’s Sugar
Cookies – Susie
Freaking Homemaker
brown sugar cookie recipeBrown Sugar
Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
egyptian-fig-rollsEgyptian
Fig Rolls
What Smells So Good
Nutella-Eggnog-Cookies-roxanashomebaking-2Nutella Eggnog
Cookies
Roxana’s Home Baking
Chai-Cut-Out-Cookies-6-wmChai Cut-Out
Cookies
Cupcakes & Kale Chips
copycatjingles-685x1024Homemade
Jingles
Shugary Sweets
italian-cookiesItalian
Cookies
Noble Pig
Apricot-Amaretti-Cookies-Irvin-Lin-Eat-The-Love-LeadApricot
Amaretti Cookies
Eat the Love
zimtsterne1kR3Zimsterne
(Cinnamon Star)
Bake or Break
Brown-Sugar-Cinnamon-Coconut-Cookies-0980Brown Sugar
Cinnamon Coconut
Chocolate Moosey
snickerdoodles-white-chocSnickerdoodles with
White Chocolate Chunks
Corner Kitchen
Graham-Cracker-Cookies-with-Roasted-Pumpkin-Marshmallow-Filling-11_thumbGraham Cookies with
Pumpkin Marshmallow
Keep it Sweet Desserts
Cinnabon-Sugar-Cookies-2Cinnabon
Sugar Cookies
Inside BruCrewLife
White-Chocolate-Cranberry-Cookies-Soft-chewy-cookies-full-of-white-chocolate-chips-and-dried-cranberriesWhite Chocolate
Cranberry Cookies
Julie’s Eats & Treats
Speculoos-Recipe-4Speculaas
(Biscoff Cookies)
Eat the Love
coconut cookieCoconut Crispies
(Corn Flake Cookies)
Jen’s Favorite Cookies
Caramel-Kiss-Cinnamon-Spritz-Cookies-0901Caramel Kiss
Cinnamon Spritz
Chocolate Moosey
florentine-laceFlorentine
Lace Cookies
Edible Mosaic
meltawaysCream Cheese
Meltaways
Alida’s Kitchen
Spiced-Mushroom-Cookies-Pineappleandcoconut-7Spiced Mushroom
Cookies
Coconut & Pineapple
Peanut-Butter-Cup-Blossom-Cookies-2-labeledPeanut Butter
Cup Blossoms
Dinners Dishes & Desserts
Cookies-and-Cream-Crunch-Cookie-Bites-822x1024Cookies & Cream
Crunch Bites
Simply Southern Baking
Cinnamon-Spice-Bun-Cookie-Honey-Buttermilk-Glaze-Eat-The-Love-Irvin-Lin-1Cinnamon Spice
Bun Cookies
Eat the Love
Buttery-Toffee-Walnut-Cookies-689x1024Buttery Toffee
Walnut Cookies
Simply Southern Baking
Fluffernutter-Flourless-Peanut-Butter-Marshmallow-Thumbprint-Cookies-2-title Flourless Fluffernutter
Thumbprints
Cupcakes & Kale Chips
graham cracker cc cookies thumb2Graham Cracker
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Jen’s Favorite Cookies

Christmas cookies recipes

Giant Ginger Cookies

Giant Ginger Cookies;  These giant ginger cookies are a holiday favorite, made extra large for big cookie lovers!

Giant Ginger Cookies from Jen's Favorite CookiesIt’s the very last day of Cookie Week.  The last day of bloggers banding together to share amazing cookies for the holiday season.

The last day of molasses, and eggnog, and peppermint, and blessed blessed chocolate.

It’s also the last day of the giveaway, which makes today your very last chance to win big.

Yes, yes, I might be a little overdramatic.  After all, cookie recipes cannot be stopped.  There are an infinite number of holiday cookie ideas out there to be discovered.

And next year, we will probably hold another fun Cookie Week event.

However, I thought these Giant Ginger Cookies would make a fitting finale to this year’s cookie week.  Wanna know why?  It’s because they are the very first recipe I ever put on this blog.

Giant Ginger Cookies

That’s right.  Clear back in December of 2009, this recipe was the beginning of my glorious blogging career.  This post had no photos, no stories, just a simple recipe.  And almost 4 years and over 300 blog posts later, they are back.

They’re back because they’re fantastic.

This is not my original recipe, by the way.  I wish I knew whose it was, so I could shake their hand.  I did make the odd tweak here and there, mostly to cut the recipe in half because 12 humongous cookies is quite enough, thank you very much.

Giant Ginger CookiesGiant Ginger Cookies

Before I say goodbye for today, let me share a couple ways you can make the most of this fun event.  First… Follow the COOKIE WEEK board on Pinterest!

 

Second, ENTER THE GIVEAWAY!  We’re giving away a 9-speed Kitchen Aid hand mixer, a silicone baking mat, and lots of other awesome cookie baking supplies, and there are lots of ways to enter.

And last, be sure to visit all of these lovely blogs and see what they have created for you.  I promise, you won’t regret it.

Bethmännchen cookies by Masala Herb
Chewy Brigadeiro Pecan Bars by Food Lust People Love
Chocolate Cookie Thumbprints with Pepper Jam by Omeletta
Chocolate-Stuffed Gingerbread Cookies by i heart eating
Earl Grey Icebox Cookies by Crumb
Giant Ginger Cookies from Jen’s Favorite Cookies
Simple Snowman Cookies from It’s Yummi!
Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies by Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker
Homemade Thin Mints by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
Malted Chocolate Chip Cookies by Like Mother Like Daughter
Miso Sesame Cookies by NinjaBaking.com
Peppermint Cream Thumbprint Cookies by Beyond Frosting
Salted Caramel Stuffed Toffee Chip Cookies by The Cooking Actress
Sandwich Cookies by Texana’s Kitchen
Shortbread Christmas Mouse Cookies by Cravings of a Lunatic

More molasses cookies for you to enjoy:

Molasses Snickerdoodle recipeMolasses
Snickerdoodles
ginger-cookies-with-molasses-2Molasses Waffle
Iron Cookies
gingersnap cookie recipeChocolate
Gingersnaps

Giant Ginger Cookies
 
Cook time
Total time
 
Very large, soft, spiced molasses cookies.
Author:
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • ½ cup butter (or shortening)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ginger
  • ¾ tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. ground cloves
  • 2 cups flour
  • sugar for rolling
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and molasses and mix well.
  2. Add salt, soda, and spices and mix well.
  3. Add flour and mix until combined.
  4. Roll dough into large 2-inch balls, you should have 10-12 total. Place on a baking sheet with plenty of room between each. (Only 6 on a large cookie sheet at a time)
  5. Bake at 350F for 11-14 minutes. Let sit on the baking sheet for about 2 minutes before moving to a cooling rack.

 

Linzer Cookies

Linzer Cookies Recipes; These cookies use ground almonds and plum jelly for a lovely flavor.  Try this linzer cookies recipes this season.

linzer-cookiesIt never occurred to me to have a favorite jam or jelly.  I just like them all.  Strawberry, raspberry, apricot, plum… I like them all.

My mom’s favorite is plum jam, and since grandma has a plum tree, I’ve made jam a couple times.  I’m not going to lie, it’s fantastic stuff.  Plus it’s easy as pie to make, because you don’t have to peel the fruit, you put it in the jam with skins on.

Then there is my diligent and hard working sister-in-law.  She made plum jelly this year (no fruit) which is far more difficult.  You have to cook it down and strain it before you can even turn it into jelly.  “Why are you doing all this work?” I asked her.  “Because I don’t like jam.”

Not that I blame her, I guess we all have our quirky little food preferences that we will go to great lengths to work around.

She gave me a jar of the most beautiful dark and flavorful plum jelly you’ve ever seen.  It’s tart, full of flavor, and frankly, tastes fantastic with these almond Linzers.  I debated about parting with it but finally decided the cookies were worth it. Linzer Cookies from Jen's Favorite Cookies It’s still cookie week, by the way.  I hope you’ve been checking in and enjoying all the fantastic cookie recipes we’ve created for you.  Let’s have a quick recap, shall we?

Monday I shared Eggnog Cookies and told you all about the fun giveaway.  Have you entered yet?  You totally should.  There are a mega ton of ways to enter.  Take your pick! Continue reading “Linzer Cookies” »

Spider Cookies

These Cute Halloween cookies are easy to make!

Spider Cookies for Halloween from JensFavoriteCookies.comFortunately for me, my kids are easily entertained.

The Hippie Chick thinks anything related to bathroom activities, farting, or rear ends is hysterical.  HYSTERICAL.  She’s far worse than both her brothers… combined.

Just say the word “crack” and she will start giggling uncontrollably.

The other day, while Robb and I were talking in the kitchen, Hippie Chick was around the corner in the hall.  Robb was describing himself as a crotchety old man.  She was quietly, closed-mouth giggling to herself.

“You have to stop saying crotchety,” I told Robb.  “All she hears is ‘crotch.’ ”

I suppose some teens would not be amused by something as simple as a chocolate chip spider on a cookie, but I can count on my kids to find some enjoyment in this.

Although, to be fair, I’m pretty sure the boys enjoyed the cookies more than the spiders.

Spider Cookies for Halloween from JensFavoriteCookies.com

The cookies themselves are a basic chocolate chip cookie.  I included a recipe below, but feel free to use whatever chocolate chip cookie recipe you prefer.  In fact, I have a collection of 100 Chocolate Chip Cookies, so you’re sure to find one you like here!

You will need some good chocolate chips.  For this project, I used the Ghirardelli Bittersweet Chocolate Chips.  They are seriously my favorite.  They’re so yummy.  They’re also slightly larger and flatter than the chips of my childhood, which makes them perfect for this job.

Spider Cookies for Halloween from JensFavoriteCookies.com

Before you mix the chocolate chips into the dough, reserve about a half cup of them.

Once you have mixed up the dough, and placed beautiful little cookie dough balls on your baking sheet, press one or two chocolate chips into the top of each cookie.  These need to sit on top, and not be mixed into the dough.

After the cookies are baked, and while they are still warm, use a toothpick to draw “legs” on your chocolate chip spiders.

Spider Cookies for Halloween from JensFavoriteCookies.comSpider Cookies for Halloween from JensFavoriteCookies.com

Some tips and tricks:

Tip #1:  Don’t try to drag the chocolate out into legs.  It just makes a mess.  Instead, pretend your toothpick is an old-fashioned fountain pen, (the kind Mr. Darcy uses!) and the chocolate is the ink.  Dip the toothpick in the chocolate and use it to draw the legs.

Tip #2:  The toothpick-fountain-pen doesn’t actually draw very well.  It works better if you make a series of small dots that connect into a line.

Tip #3:  A couple on each pan may not turn out perfect.  Plan accordingly.  {Read: These are not suitable for serving, and must be consumed immediately!}

When you’re all done, just look for some kids who are easily impressed to tell you how great they are!

More spooky Halloween treats:

chocolate cookie recipeSalted Dark Chocolate
Cookies
gumdropsHomemade
Gumdrops
printableFree Halloween
Printables

 

Basic Chocolate Chip Cookies
 
Cook time
Total time
 
A basic chocolate chip cookie.
Author:
Recipe type: Cookies
Serves: 4 dozen
Ingredients
  • ½ cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2½ cups flour
  • 1 bag chocolate chips (10 oz.)
Instructions
  1. Cream butter and sugars. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.
  2. Add soda, salt, and flour, and mix until combined.
  3. Fold in chocolate chips.
  4. Drop spoonfuls onto a baking sheet, and bake at 350F for 9-11 minutes.

If you enjoy this recipe, you might also enjoy:

Frankenstein Marshmallow Pops from Just a Taste
Halloween Cupcakes from Tidy Mom

cute halloween cookies

Pretzel Toffee

Toffee Pretzel Recipe; This recipe uses basic butter toffee poured over pretzels and topped with chocolate.  You’ll love this toffee pretzel recipe!

Pretzel-Toffee-recipeThe hypocrisy is strong around here some days.

Just yesterday, for example, Robb told the way-too-skinny and super active teenage boys that they needed to double their caloric intake if they want to be strong and healthy.

I fully supported this plan.

Then today, he told them they needed to get their jobs done before they could eat lunch.

I also fully supported this plan.

Eat, don’t eat… It’s confusing, I know.

Then I told everyone I would be making snacks, but ended up making candy instead.  What can I say? Life ain’t perfect.

Pretzel-Toffee

Toffee is one of my favorite candies.  Butter + Sugar… what’s not to love? Continue reading “Pretzel Toffee” »

Pumpkin Roll Bars

Easy Pumpkin Bars;  These bars taste just like a pumpkin roll, but without the rolling!  Try these easy pumpkin bars.

easy-pumpkin-barsI love a good pumpkin roll.

My sister-in-law and I usually make 2 every year for Christmas.  We store them in the freezer, bring them out all frozen and wonderful, cut a few slices, plop a big spoonful of fresh whipped cream on top, and savor slowly.

Then we get another slice.

This is one of my favorite Christmas traditions.

The problem is that pumpkin rolls are not particularly easy to make, and they are certainly not easy to make look good.  The cake always cracks, or the frosting squishes out, or our rolling technique fails us, or some other disaster happens to make our pumpkin rolls really not beautiful.

Tasty still, but not beautiful.

I decided it was time I make life easier on myself.  This year, I’m making my pumpkin roll into bars.  This way, I can still get all the pumpkin-and-cream-cheese goodness without the rolling.

pumpkin-roll

One thing I will say for these bars, they are a touch on the sticky side.  Which isn’t a huge problem for me, because I prefer them frozen anyway. Continue reading “Pumpkin Roll Bars” »

Berry Trifle and 4th of July Party

This trifle recipe uses strawberries and blueberries; Simple berry trifle for the 4th of July or any summer event.  It’s a beautiful red, white & blue berry trifle recipe!

trifle recipeTrifle has been an acquired taste for me.  The first trifle I had literally made me gag, because soggy cake is really really gross.

I refused to eat my Mother-in-Law’s Christmas trifle for several years because of it.

The real traditional-type trifle is supposed to be soggy.  It’s supposed to sit and chill for hours and let the flavors mesh, which I frankly think is code for letting the cake get soggy and disgusting.

The way to truly enjoy trifle, if you ask me, is to eat it fresh.  Put it all together just before serving, and that way there is no soggy texture or goopy desserts to politely force yourself to eat.  It also helps to put it in individual serving dishes.

Of course, the very, VERY best way to enjoy trifle is to enjoy it with friends.  With friends, on a holiday.

trifle recipe

This is why I have gathered my friends (again!) for this amazing 4th of July party where we will be serving all kinds of yummy summery foods.  And Canadian friends, you’re invited too.

You’re definitely going to want to check out what’s going on with all these amazing bloggers.  They’ve made some really delicious stuff, just for you.

I might be biased.  They are my very best online friends, after all.

4th of July Recipes

1. Berry Cheesecake Crumb Tart from Hungry Couple NYC
2. California Burgers from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
3. 4th of July Ice Cream Cones from Roxana’s Home Baking
4. Red, White & Blueberry Parfaits from Cravings of a Lunatic
5. Red, White & Blue Deviled Eggs from Created by Diane
6. Summer Berry Pizza from Magnolia Days
7. Sparkling Pineapple Cake Martini from The Messy Baker
8. Red, White & Bleu Mac ‘N Cheese from Juanita’s Cocina
9. Red, White & Blue Vanilla Bean Spritzers from Pineapple and Coconut
10. Red, White & Blue S’mores Pies from Big Bears Wife
11. Lemon Raspberry Sugarless Cookies from What Smells so Good
12. Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake Squares from Chocolate Moosey
13. Berry Trifle from Jen’s Favorite Cookies
14. Watermelon Mojito Ice Pops from Girl in the Little Red Kitchen

strawberry-pudding-6Strawberry Pudding blackberry-cobbler-5Blackberry Cobbler trifleChoc Cherry Trifle

Continue reading “Berry Trifle and 4th of July Party” »

Bizcochitos for Cinco de Mayo

Collection of Cinco de Mayo recipes, including Bizcochitos, or Mexican Wedding Cookies.  These Cinco de Mayo cookies are made with anise seed and lemon zest.

mexican wedding cookiesWhen I first decided to make something fun for Cinco de Mayo this year, I went to my Mexican sister-in-law for advice.  She turned me away from my first thought and suggested I make Mexican flan.  Her family eats it all the time, and she’s quite good at making it.

But I hate flan.  Like, really hate it.

I went looking for a cookie, because, after all, this is a cookie blog.  I found these little Bizcochitos, which, according to my research, are very traditional.  I asked my sister-in-law about them.  She said, “What are those?  I’ve never heard of them.”

Hmmm.  Perhaps my research was not all that amazing.

Then again, Bizcochitos are the state cookie of New Mexico, and in my nearly two years living there, I never heard of them either.

Honestly, all this conflicting information makes my head hurt.  At this point, I don’t care if they’re authentic or not.  They’re at least kind-of Mexican, (and by that, I mean they have a Mexican-sounding name) and my family is going to be eating them for Cinco de Mayo.

Maybe that’s all we need to know.

Mexican Wedding Cookies

By the way, as long as we’re not super worried about being authentic here, I should mention that these are meant to be made with lard, but I opted for shortening.  Mostly because I never keep lard in the pantry.  Aaaand, they’re meant to be a diamond shape, but mine are round.  I’m just bastardizing my “traditional” cookies right and left.

You’ll probably find something much more “Mexican” by searching through my friends’ blogs.  Remember last St. Patrick’s Day, when my friends and I got together to bring you a mega-ton of delicious somewhat-Irish food?  We had so much fun doing that, we decided to get together again, and this time bring you a mega-ton of delicious, somewhat-Mexican food.

We aim to please.

Cinco de Mayo

Find these amazing recipes and blogs here:

1. Alfajores from Roxana’s Home Baking
2. Spicy Fish Tacos with Avocado Yogurt Sauce from Crumb Blog
3. Classic Flan from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
4. Dulce de Leche Milkshake with Coconut Milk Whipped Cream from Chocolate Moosey
5. Lime Margerita Bars from Girl in the Little Red Kitchen
6. Shrimp and Avocado Ceviche from Magnolia Days
7. Tropical Fiesta Cocktail from Hungry Couple NYC
8. Paletas – Mexican Popsicles from Pineapple and Coconut
9. Bizcochitos Cookies from Jen’s Favorite Cookies
10. Mexican Hot Chocolate Cupcakes from Gotta Get Baked
11. Vegan Taco Salad from What Smells So Good
12. Gluten Free Tres Leches Cake from Kelly Bakes
13. Spicy Queso Blanco from The Messy Baker
14. Gorditas with Picadillo from Juanita’s Cocina
15. Strawberry Margerita Slurpee from Chocolate Chocolate and More

Continue reading “Bizcochitos for Cinco de Mayo” »

Cherry Cookies with Vanilla Frosting Dip

These pink cookies are so fun to dip in vanilla frosting.  The cookies get their pink color from maraschino cherries, and the frosting is made a little thin, to be the perfect consistency for dipping.

pink cookiesConfession time.  Sometimes I fall flat on my face in the kitchen.  Not literally, although that would be really funny.

I mean sometimes my cookies are not all-that-and-a-bag-of-chips.  Recently, I had this brilliant {I thought} idea to make cookies with sunflower seeds.  I even broke one of my cardinal rules and put applesauce in them.

Then I was reminded why those rules are there in the first place.  I mean, applesauce in a cookie?  What was I thinking?!

I took these really beautiful photos, with sunflowers in the background.  It was a little heartbreaking to scrap them, to be honest.

I’ll put them on my facebook page anyway, because that’s the kind of vain person I am.pink cookies

My decision to scrap the cookie altogether came when my kids came home from school.  They emptied their lunchboxes of napkins and leftover baggies, and the only thing left uneaten… was the cookies.

I was obviously thrilled.  Robb told me to just throw the whole box of cookies away, because no one is going to eat that sorry excuse for a cookie in this house.

I hate when he’s right.

I went back to the drawing board with this idea that’s been floating around my head for a while, this idea for cute pink heart-shaped cherry cookies.

vanilla frosting vanilla frosting

The funny thing about this whole story is that I like sunflower seeds.  They’re delicious.  But they make a terrible cookie.  Maraschino cherries, on the other hand?  Gag.  I won’t even eat the one on top of my chocolate milkshake.  Maybe one of these days McDonald’s will get the hint and quit giving them to me.

But… maraschino cherries make really delicious cookies.  No joke.

You should know, and I promise I am not exaggerating about this, my kids ate almost the entire batch of cookies within the space of an hour.  Robb had to fight to get one for himself.

I know after you eat these, you are going to consider making them at other times of the year besides just Valentines Day.  Besides, the cherries are far better this way than on top of a milkshake.

 More Cherry Desserts to love! 

sugar cookiesChocolate Cherry
Sugar Cookies
trifleChocolate
Cherry Trifle
cherry-chocolate-cookies-2Chocolate Covered
Cherry Cookies

Mom Blog to Money Blog Continue reading “Cherry Cookies with Vanilla Frosting Dip” »

Spicy Sweet Pecans

Spicy nuts with sugar; This recipe for sweet and spicy pecans is a simple and tasty holiday snack.

sweet pecansThese nuts are a metaphor for my life.

I don’t know if you know this about me, but I have kind of a strong personality.  I prefer to see myself as sweet, gentle, kind, and thoughtful.  In recent years, I have realized that some people disagree.

For example, here are some things I have {mistakenly} been called:
Opinionated.
Assertive.
Pushy.
The meanest woman in the church congregation.
Controlling.

Well, that last one might be true.

Even my parents have said that, as a baby, I would scream inconsolably for hours every night, and that I would utterly refuse to sleep if there was anything at all going on in the house.
candied nuts

I like to think that it’s my fiery personality that explains my love of spicy foods.  I actually really really enjoy when the food is so spicy, it burns your lips and the inside of your mouth and throat.  Mmmmm… It’s one of my favorite things.

On the other hand, I’m also known to have something of a sweet tooth.  I mix the Kool-Aid kind of heavy on the sugar, and I like to frost the brownies.  And, well let’s face it, I have a dessert blog.  All this is because I am so sweet and friendly and thoughtful.  I’ve also been called “kind” on occasion.

Look, I’m working on the sweet side of my personality.  I’ve become a hopeless optimist, I work hard not to speak ill of others {it’s a work in progress!}, and love finding ways to be a better friend.  I deserve a little sugar on my nuts.

spicy nuts

And thus, when I was deciding exactly how to make these magical metaphorical pecans, there was really only one choice.

Spicy AND Sweet.

And toasted, of course, because toasted nuts are obviously the very high-end best.

These pecans turned out basically just like me… sugar and spice and everything nice.  I can almost guarantee that the strong-personality types out there will love these.  And the gentle personality types?  Well, they’ll love these too.

Because I said so.

Spicy Roasted Chickpeas recipeSpicy Roasted
Chickpeas
Mustard PretzelsMustard
Pretzels
Pecan SandiesPecan
Sandies

 

Continue reading “Spicy Sweet Pecans” »

Black Cherry Eggnog

Christmas Drink; A simple non-alcoholic Christmas drink with eggnog.

eggnog mocktailThis isn’t a real post.

In fact, I’m not even going to put a recipe card at the bottom of this post.  Because this beverage is exactly what it sounds like… store bought eggnog mixed with black cherry soda.

Don’t knock it ’til you try it.  For real.

I’m posting this on Christmas Eve for a reason.  And not just because I’d rather be doing Christmasey stuff than blogging complicated recipes on Christmas Eve.

My paternal Grandma always has her family Christmas party on Christmas Eve.  I don’t remember ever going to this party when we didn’t have a little table with Eggnog and a selection of different flavors of fruity pop to mix in.  Some {weird} people used orange or strawberry soda, but by far the most popular flavor was black cherry.

Obviously.black cherry eggnog

This year, a cousin who lives about 10 states away wondered aloud {on Facebook} where this tradition began.  She said no one else she knows does this, and people think she’s crazy when she tells them about it, including her own husband.

She also confessed that she’s been mixing her eggnog with Cherry 7-Up, because you can’t get Shasta in the mid west.

Wha-whaaat?  No Shasta?!  No black cherry?! Inconceivable!  I immediately shed a tear for her.  {On the bright side, I’m pretty sure the mid west people can get Pomegranate 7-Up now, which I’m certain would be a far better choice than Cherry.}

Anyhow, with our curiosity piqued, we went to the source of all family history knowledge… Grandma.

She told us in all honesty that the source of this tradition was none other than my mother.

Mind. Blown.

eggnog mix ins

I swear I have never known that my own mother introduced my father’s family to this tradition until this year.  I asked Mom about it, and she said her family has been mixing eggnog and black cherry for ages.  I didn’t know this, because I don’t think I’ve ever seen it.  At least, it is not the tradition in Mom’s family that it is in Dad’s.  Mom also said that before she came around, Dad’s family was mixing their eggnog with Sprite.

Wow, Dad.  Good decision, marrying Mom.  I applaud you.

So, in lieu of recipe card, here are the official instructions: Pour some eggnog in a glass.  Then pour in some black cherry soda, as much as you like.  Consume slowly.  I recommend mixing it somewhere between 1:1 and 2:1 eggnog-to-cherry.  And don’t bother stirring.  The black cherry slowly settles toward the bottom as you drink.

If you think this sounds strange, I double dog dare you to try it and tell me it’s not delicious and festive.

Merry Christmas, -Jen Continue reading “Black Cherry Eggnog” »