Tag Archives: christmas cookies

These No Bake Toffee Fudge Bars Are The Perfect Holiday Gift!

23 Nov

Well. It’s that time again – the holidays. It really snuck up on me this year, not sure about you – but suddenly it was September and fall, then Halloween, and now Thanksgiving, and Christmas is looming, too! 2016 is quickly coming to an end, and if you haven’t started Christmas shopping already, then you might want to get on it!

I love to incorporate handmade gifts whenever and wherever I can – I make applesauce and jar it every year to share with friends and family, and cookies are another item I love to give (and receive!). This year I plan to make at least two kinds to share (maybe more, time permitting!), and I came across a recipe that would make a perfect addition to my sweet gifts – these No Bake Toffee Fudge Bars. Whipped them up in no time and they were so easy and delicious! Check it out:

No Bake Toffee Fudge Bars Recipe

Ingredients:

2-1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup (2 sticks) butter , divided
1 cup sugar
1 can (5 oz.) evaporated milk
1 bag (10 oz.) miniature marshmallows
2 cups (12-oz. pkg.) HERSHEY’S Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 cup HEATH Milk Chocolate Toffee Bits
1 cup HERSHEY’S Milk Chocolate Chips or HERSHEY’S Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips

Directions:

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1. Line 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan with foil. Melt 3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) butter; combine with graham cracker crumbs. Press crumb mixture evenly in bottom of prepared pan.

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2. Combine sugar, evaporated milk, remaining 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter and marshmallows in large saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring frequently, until mixture comes to a boil. Boil 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, stirring until chips are melted.

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3. Immediately pour over crust, spreading evenly. Sprinkle surface with milk chocolate toffee bits and milk chocolate chips, pressing in lightly. Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours. Cut into bars. Store leftover bars covered in refrigerator. Makes 24 bars.

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These set up nicely and were easy to remove from the pan and cut after being in the fridge all morning

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These were loved by all – big and small!

And the great thing is the recipe makes 24 – so they are great to share (as they are pretty sweet so you only need to tuck a couple in each gift package!).  What’s better than an easy and delicious recipe that you can share with those you love this Christmas? Not much in my book!

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Christmas Means Cookies – And LOTS Of Them!

18 Dec

Caroling, ornaments, lights, presents, shopping, eggnog, family….just a few of the things that come to mind when I think of Christmas. But what’s the first thing I think of when thinking about the holiday season? Why, COOKIES, of course!

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Last year, I made Christmas cookies as gifts for people – a LOT of cookies….and it took a lot of time. Was it worth it? Debatable, because it IS great to give something homemade as a gift, but I do know one thing for sure – I won’t be doing that again anytime soon!

 

This year, I had no real reason to make any cookies, which meant I could take my time and pick which ones I wanted to make and actually make them for fun!

 

So what did I make? Well, there were the Sugar cookies – and since I couldn’t decide which recipe to use, I made two batches (cuz you can never have too many cookies, right?)

 

And what could be more perfect for Christmas that Peppermint Patty cookies, a chocolate cookie sandwich filled with minty creamy frosting…yum

 

Gingerbread men are a classic Christmas cookie, and while I enjoy the taste, I am not a fan of the ginger”snap”/crunchy cookie. So I found these Soft Gingersnaps, which combined the unique taste of the gingersnap with a nice soft, chewy cookie (perfect with some milk!)

 

Then there were these …..

 

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Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Chunk Cookies Long name, super delicious results! chocolate, fruit and oats (so you can pretend they are healthy!) combine to make an amazing treat. If you only have time to make one kind of cookie this Christmas, I highly recommend these – they are easy and unique, plus they taste great

Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Ingredients:
2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 5-ounce package Ocean Spray® Craisins® Original Dried Cranberries
2/3 cup white chocolate chunks or chips

Directions:
Preheat oven to 375ºF.

Using an electric mixer, beat butter or margarine and sugar together in a medium mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs, mixing well. Combine oats, flour, baking soda and salt in a separate mixing bowl. Add to butter mixture in several additions, mixing well after each addition. Stir in dried cranberries and white chocolate chunks.

Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack.

Makes approximately 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

**The only thing I like to add is some cinnamon and nutmeg, just a pinch of each, I feel like it really adds to the flavor!

 

So those are my top picks for Christmas Cookies, but I would love to know what kinds you are baking – either for fun or for gifts!

Cookies As Christmas Gifts – The Snickerdoodle Pinwheel

25 Mar

Since I love baking so much, I thought it would be a fun idea to give everyone cookie tins for Christmas this past year. Because honestly, what is better than receiving a tin full of yummy cookies that were baked with love?

I decided to include Snickerdoodle Pinwheels in my cookie tins, a cookie introduced to me by my mother in law (who is a seriously amazing baker and cake decorator). So I decided to make them for all 12 tins, and I realized I would need 6 batches of them (each batch makes 2 ‘rolls’ of dough, which you then slice and bake and each roll will give you about 2 dozen cookies)

My 6 batches of dough (it was a LOT of cookie dough!)

 

My husband loves helping me (and is in no way scared of screwing up and dealing with the wrath of Catie!)

 

The end result – a delicious buttery cookie with yummy sweet cinnamon sugar inside. They almost look too pretty to eat!

Here’s the recipe:

Snickerdoodle Pinwheels

Yield: about 5 dozen cookies

Ingredients

  • For the cookies:
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • For the cinnamon mixture:
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Instructions

  1. Cream butter, cream cheese, and sugar in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add in egg and vanilla; beat until combined. Sift in flour and baking powder. Mix just until combined, being careful not to overmix. Dump dough onto counter and knead 2 or 3 times just to incorporate any leftover flour. Divide into 2 discs and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about an hour.
  2. To make cinnamon mixture, combine sugar and cinnamon. Melt butter; set aside.
  3. Working with one disc of dough at a time, roll out into a 12 x 8 inch rectangle on a floured surface. Brush dough with half of the melted butter. Sprinkle with half of the cinnamon mixture. Starting from one of the short sides, roll into a tight log. Wrap in plastic wrap. Repeat with other disc. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
  4. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375F.
  5. Use a sharp knife to cut dough into 1/4-inch rounds; place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are just slightly golden. Cool on wire rack.

These freeze easily which worked perfectly for me because I like to be prepared and organized ahead of time, so I was able to make and bake these in early December and then assemble the tins closer to Christmas time.

Would I make these again? In a heartbeat. Would I make so many of them again? No, definitely not, and I would probably not include them in cookie tins again. They are amazing and taste and look great and the dough is not difficult to make, but they are somewhat labor intensive when it comes to rolling it out into a rectangle, and then rolling it super tight to ensure you get that perfect pinwheel shape.

This year I think I am going to give everyone else cookie mix in a jar, and make just one perfect batch of snickerdoodle pinwheels and eat them all myself (well, maybe I will share a few with my husband if he is nice to me….we will see!)