Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas Tree Cookies

I never learn. Several years ago I made the mistake of scheduling my annual physical in January. Stepping on that scale was a big wake up call. Holy cookies and crumb-cakes Bat Man! But this year I’ve done one worse. We have a Caribbean vacation planned for January. As in bikinis and beaches and lots and lots and lots of candid photo opportunities. Yeah

I’d like to say that this has motivated me to find healthier ways to bake, but I’m just too stuck in my ways. Instead, I’m making less of the good stuff. Like these Christmas cookies. We all love these little guys. We love frosting them. We love decorating them. But most of all we love eating them. (Any May I Please Have a Cookie? fans out there?). I’m happy to share the recipe with you though. Does that cut calories?
Basic Rolled Sugar Cookies4-5 dozen cookies, depending on the size of your cookie cutter
3 sticks butter, room temp
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp almond flavoring
5 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1.) Cream butter, sugar and eggs.
2.) In separate bowl, mix together dry ingredients and add to wet ingredients in batches.
3.) Cover and chill overnight if you can.
4.) Roll out dough to 1/4” thick and cut in tree shapes. Helps to flour the cookie cutter.
5.) Bake 400’ for 6-8 minutes. Let cool completely and brush away any crumbs before frosting.

In the past I’ve made royal icing, but I’ve returned to good, old-fashioned shortening-based decorator frosting. We just prefer the taste. The frosting sets up overnight, and you can stack them in a container the next day. The hot dots candies help cushion the trees too.

Shortening Decorator Frosting
4 cups confectioner sugar
1/2 cup shortening
5 Tb milk (plus more until right consistency)
1 tsp vanilla
1.) Cream all ingredients together. Add more milk until desired consistency.
2.) For the cookies above I used Wilton’s leaf green food gel.
3.) We love rainbow sprinkles and hot dots for decorating but you can always get fancy too.
4.) Freeze any leftover frosting and re-use it at a later date. You’ll never know the difference.

Just a word about timing. I confess that when I do these cookies every year I usually take a few days. I make the dough one night. Put it away. I bake the cookies off the next day and let them cool. The day after that I make the frosting and we decorate. The next day we eat them all. You get the idea.


  1. I so fail at making cookies. Today our cookie making consisted of pulling out precut predyed cookies off a sheet placing them in the oven to bake. We did decorate them though... I think I need to try your recipe I can handle it if I can do it over several days!!! BTW- are you bringing these to the MOPS Cookie swap next Tuesday?

  2. What they really remember is the time spent together...and the sugar. :-) We've eaten all the Christmas tree cookies. Will have to come up with something else!

  3. well you have to burn calories by spreading out the making of them, so that should help a little in the bikini area.

  4. Haha, Sue, I like the way you think. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. I love a good sugar cookie- you always have to make some at holiday time! Thanks for linking up this week.

  6. These are beautiful! Yummy. Thanks for sharing on Crazy Sweet Tuesday!


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