Saturday, December 20, 2008


Most of these tips I have found out after YEARS of trial and error.
I love to experiment, and I have thrown away batches of cookies that have turned out horrible (much to Wes' dismay...I have now promised to let him taste the yucky or burnt cookies.....After hearing "you aren't going to throw these away are you???" for years and years)

TIP #1:
Bake your cookies at 350.

It may take a minute or two longer....but this temp just seems right for my recipes...even if it calls for 375. The ONE exception would be the Snicker Surprise. They are best at 300. (that is what the recipe calls for)

TIP #2
Bake all of your cookies on parchment paper.

I know the stuff is expensive, but it is totally worth it. It makes pans SO much easier to clean. They just turn out great each overcooking, no burnt bottoms, and no PAM spray needed.

Don't be afraid to experiment.

What I mean by this is don't be afraid to go 'off' the recipe a bit. Throwing in an extra egg or some extra flour is NOT the end of the world. I never measure salt or vanilla....just dump some in!! If you put in too much liquid, then add some extra flour. Dough too sticky?? Add an extra egg and some flour until it stiffens up. Sometimes the best recipes are the ones played with a bit.

Use room temperature butter, margarine and crisco.

Having these at room temperature just makes better cookies. I used to microwave EVERYTHING straight out of the fridge, and the cookies would turn out flat EVERY TIME....then I started listening to Paula Deen. She was right :)

TIP #5
Use your favorite chocolate glaze.

You don't ALWAYS have to follow the chocolate glaze recipe that comes with that particular cookie or cheesecake. My favorite one is very simple...Melting regular chocolate chips. Scoop the melted chocolate into a ziplock bag, snip off the end, and away you go!! I have used this glaze for years and years. I like it because it dries firm and then you can stack your cookies. I have found that alot of glazes stay soft/moist to the touch. You cannot stack your cookies for storage, or if you make a sharp turn in the car, the cookies will look crummy before you get to your party :) (we learned that one the hard way)

TIP #6
Pick your favorite recipe and stick to it!!

The oldies are usually the goodies.....I have been using the same cookie recipes since before there was an internet to search on. I love to try new ones too, but I have to make the family's old favorites each year. Everyone has their favorite cookie, and everyone should be included!!



Here is the recipe for my AWARD WINNING cookies...yes, Grand Champion at the fair a few years ago. I still have the ribbon to prove it :)

2 sticks softened butter
1 C. creamy peanut butter
1 C. light brown sugar
1 C. sugar
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla
3 1/2 C. all purpose flour, sifted
1 t. baking soda
1/2 ts. salt
1 pkg. (13 oz.) Snickers Brand Miniatures

Combine the butter, peanut butter and sugars using a mixer on medium-low speed
Slowly add eggs and vanilla until thoroughly combined.
Then mix in flour, salt and baking soda.
Cover and chill dough for 2-3 hours.
Unwrap all of the Snickers Brand miniatures
Remove dough from refrigerator.
Divide into 1 tablespoon pieces and flatten.
Place a Snickers miniature in the center of each piece of dough.
Form the dough into a ball around each Snickers miniature.
Place on a greased cookie sheet and bake at 300° F. for 10-12 minutes.
Let cookies cool on baking rack or wax paper.
Spruce up with powdered sugar or drizzle melted Dove Brand Chocolates over the top of each cookie.


2 cups packed brown sugar
2 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
4 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups butter
4 eggs
3 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups flaked coconut
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup ground walnuts (optional) I usually leave these out :)

Beat together the sugars, butter or margarine and eggs.
Stir in vanilla and milk and mix well.

Add in the flour, baking powder and salt and mix well.
Stir in the oatmeal and coconut.

Add in the chocolate chips and nuts (optional) and mix well.
Drop by teaspoon on cookie sheets.

Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.


My all time favorite cookie:

1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
Hershey kisses, unwrapped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a large bowl, cream together shortening and peanut butter;
gradually add sugar and brown sugar, creaming well.
Beat in the egg and vanilla.
Sift together dry ingredients and add to creamy mixture.
Shape dough into balls, using a rounded teaspoon for each ball.
Roll balls in sugar and place on cookie sheet.
Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.
Top with a kiss


3/4 Cups pecans
3/4 sugar
1/2 Cup unsalted butter
2 Large eggs
2 Cups flour
1 Tsp baking powder
1/4 Tsp salt
48 Soft And Chewy caramels

Mix butter And eggs, blend until smooth. Add 1/2 of the pecans (chopped fine)

Roll Dough Into 1 Inch Balls, Then Roll in Chopped Nuts to Coat.

Press a Caramel in Center of Each. Bake 12 min. at 350 Degrees













Beat butter, cream cheese and sugar.

Add egg, almond extract and OJ

Stir in the dry ingredients gradually

Stir in 3 cups coconut, Refrigerate 1 hour

Roll them into little balls, then roll in coconut to coat.

Bake 350 for 10- 12 minutes

Take them out and top with a kiss!!


I stumbled across this recipe yesterday while looking for a good pecan cookie...and boy was I glad I did!!

These taste like a mini chocolate cake. The marshmallow on top is so cute!! We will have to add these to our tins each year!

3/4 cup Butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/4cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup instant milk chocolate hot cocoa mix
1 teaspoon baking soda
48 large marshmallows, cut in half crosswise*
Glaze Ingredients:
1 3/4 cups powdered sugar
6 tablespoons LAND O LAKES® Butter
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
Heat oven to 350°F. Combine 3/4 cup butter and sugar in large bowl.
Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy.
Add eggs, 1/4 cup milk and vanilla.
Continue beating until well mixed.
Reduce speed to low; add flour, cocoa mix and baking soda.
Beat until well mixed.
Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake for 8 to 9 minutes or until set.
Remove from oven; top each cookie with marshmallow half, cut-side down.
Continue baking for 1 to 2 minutes until marshmallow just begins to puff.
Immediately remove cookies to cooling racks. Cool completely.
Meanwhile, place powdered sugar into medium bowl; set aside. Combine all remaining glaze ingredients in 1-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil; boil 1 minute. Remove from heat; cool 5 minutes. Pour mixture over powdered sugar in bowl. Beat at medium speed until creamy. Immediately spoon glaze over cooled cookies. Store between sheets of waxed paper in a loosely covered container.
Can Substitute 24 holiday-shaped marshmallows.


I love these cookies just because they look so christmas-y

I played around with this recipe this year.
The recipe as it is listed below makes a pretty sticky dough, and I wanted something easier to handle.

Here are my changes:

take out the water
add an extra egg, including the yolk...(2 eggs total)
They were really good!! Very fudgy!!

2 cups semisweet chocolate chips, divided
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 egg whites
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

In a microwave, melt 1 cup chocolate chips.
Stir until smooth; set aside.
In a small mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar until crumbly
Add egg whites and vanilla; beat well.
Stir in melted chocolate.

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt;
gradually add to butter mixture alternately with water.
Stir in remaining chocolate chips.
Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or until easy to handle.
Shape dough into 1-in. balls. Roll in confectioners' sugar.
Place 2 in. apart on baking sheets coated with nonstick cooking spray.
Bake at 350 degrees F for 10-12 minutes or until set.


I made these for the first time last year...and my family LOVED them!! I decided to make these again instead of the traditional Gingerbread men. These are VERY easy and quick. The recipe doubles perfectly!! Don't forget to roll them in sugar!!

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup shortening
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 cup molasses
1/3 cup granulated sugar for decoration

Preheat oven to 375 degrees
In large bowl, cream shortening, brown sugar, egg, and molasses.

Slowly mix in flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt.

Mix until well blended.
Pinch off 1 inch sized pieces of dough and roll into balls.

Roll in sugar and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheets.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes.