IT IS GINGERBREAD COOKIE TIME!!!
Not just any old gingerbread cookie, a dual purpose cookie! I wasn’t quite sure how to title this one of where to categorize it, it just does so many beautiful things. It is a cookie AND a craft!
We have been making this gingerbread recipe in my family for as long as I can remember. It isn’t too sweet and has a serious spicy flavor to it. Not too much though, just the right amount! They are the perfect blend of crispy and chewy and it does very well in the rolling & cutting process.
I am not even kidding you, in the middle of the night, this idea came to me (that is where my best ideas happen, at 3 am and in the shower). Cut out the center of the cookie and melt candies in it to make a stained glass ornament! Now I know I am not the first person to think of this, but I had not seen it before so to me, it was my genius idea. Yessssssss.
It is just a couple additional steps in making the regular gingerbread cookie. This is just extra credit! Once you cut out your shapes for your ginger cookies, take a smaller cut out shape and cut out the center. You can bake the center piece or put it back in the dough to roll out again. Crush up some hard candies, for this I used jolly ranchers because their colors are so vibrant. I did, however, find out that not many red candies come in a Jolly Rancher bag, mostly pink. So I bought a bag of the Brach Cinnamon Candies for the bright red color. For the stars I mixed the colors to create a stained glass look. For the round cut outs I just used one color.
Once you put in your candies on the cookie sheet (do not try to add the crushed candies in the center then transfer to cookie sheet, it doesn’t work), then you are ready to punch your hole for the ribbon. For this I would want to use a straw because it is the perfect little hole cut-out. However, straws don’t live in my house so Cam came up with the idea of a birthday candle. It worked! Props honey!
Once you punch the hole and add your crushed candies, you are ready to bake! These are rolled so thin (about 1/8 of an inch) that it takes no time to bake, 5 minutes!)
These little cookie/ornaments are the perfect addition to your tree. Just make sure you hang it in front of a light so you can really see the stained glass! Or you can add these to a gift or give them as a hostess gift in….you guessed it….. a mason jar! So many options!
Add your ribbon through the hole in the cookie and tie a knot at the top so you can hang it on your tree.
Make these with your littles this weekend and let the fun begin!
These snappy little gingerbread cookies are dual purpose. You can cut them into fun shapes and eat as-is, or you can. make stained glass ornaments! BOTH which you can eat! Doesn't get better than that.
20 minPrep Time
1 hrCook Time
1 hr, 20 Total Time
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice or ground cloves
- 1 large egg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 bag of Jolly Rancher Candies
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees
- In a large bowl, beat butter, brown sugar, and egg on medium speed until well blended
- Add molasses and vanilla, blend
- In a separate bowl combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, ginger, cloves, cinnamon
- Add in the dry ingredients to wet and mix, in batches of 3 (I use the 1 cup measuring cup here and just gradually add that way to the mixer)
- Divide dough in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap
- Let the dough sit at room temperature for 2-6 hours (unless you are making dough ahead to freeze, here you would place in freezer until ready to thaw)
- In the meantime, unwrap your Jolly Rancher candies and place in a ziplock, break up candies with a rolling pin until they are in small chunks
- Roll dough thin on a lightly dusted surface, about 1/8-1/4 inch thickness (the thinner the dough is rolled out the crispier the cookie)
- Flour your cookie cutter every few cut-outs, this helps prevent dough from sticking to cutter
- Line baking sheet with parchment paper
- Cut out your shapes, place on lined baking sheet about 1 1/2 inches apart, add your broken-up candies to center of cut-out shapes
- Bake for 7-10 minutes (depending on thickness of dough)
- Remove cookies from sheet and let them sit on the sheet for a couple of minutes (the candies will be warm and plyable)
- Once they have sat for a couple minutes, transfer to a wire rack to cool completely
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