Christmas cookie making can be messy! It's definitely not the first thing I'm eager to do with the boys, but they LOVE helping me in the kitchen. And eventually I'd love help in feeding this gang of boys, so it would be amazing if they have some kitchen skills!
#1 - Chewy Sugar Cookies
When i think "Christmas Cookies" i think sugar cookies. You know, the kind you see on Pinterest... that are beautiful, colourful & artistic. The only problem is that i live in a house full of toddlers/preschoolers and that whole "sugar cookie bake & decorate thing" is just going to have to wait a few years until these little ones of mine can tie their own shoes, clean up their own messes and yes, decorate their own cookies!
But I've found a solution that works for us... these Chewy Sugar Cookies! The reason that i love this recipe is that is is SUPER EASY! I discovered it 2 years ago, and we make them every year as part of our advent activity calendar. I let the kids take turns putting the ingredients in the bowl, which makes them oh so happy! Seriously it takes less than 5 minutes to make the dough... that's right up my alley!
This year they were old enough to roll the balls (with a bit of help) and decorate them (with limited supplies). Our boys are 3, 4, 5 years old right now and daddy helped the 3 year old.
#2 - Canadian Cookies
A sweet friend of mine shared this recipe with me years ago. I'm not sure entirely how the got their name but it was endearing to me since my American friend gave it to me 'the Canadian'! The are really yummy and the reason they work well to do with the littles is basically the dough is the consistency of play dough! I made the cookie dough the night before and then the boys helped me roll the balls. Seriously it went 4x faster than if i had done it myself! After they had cooled, my calmest child helped me put the tops on the cookie & jam sandwiches (which he thought was the BEST IDEA ever!) What kid wouldn't take 2 cookies while calling it one?!? Now that i think about it what adult wouldn't either?!!
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup honey
1 tsp. vanilla
3 1/2 cups flour
2 tsp. baking soda
- Beat butter, shortening, brown sugar and eggs in large bowl.
- Stir in honey and vanilla.
- Mix flour and baking soda together in a small bowl.
- Add to shortening mix and stir until blended.
- Chill several hours or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Shape dough into walnut sized drops.
- Place on ungreased baking sheet (or baking paper).
- Bake 10-12 minutes.
- When slightly cooled, spread jam onto one cookie and sandwich together with another cookie.
*the Canadian in me is interested in substituting maple syrup for the honey! maybe next year...
Merry Christmas! And happy baking with your littles... remember the messes & the little years won't last but the memories will!