6 Easy Cookie Recipe Ideas

June 7, 2018

Your daughter just told you about her school's bake sale -- and it's tomorrow. Before you show up with a package of Oreos or pawn the task off on the nanny, take a peek at these six easy cookie recipe ideas. They're sure to be crowd pleasers and don't require much time in the kitchen, which means more time to enjoy the treats.

  1. Bake Some Cake Mix Cookies
    Instead of measuring out a bunch of separate ingredients and sifting together flours, take a shortcut with boxed cake mix. This recipe from My Baking Addiction uses a French vanilla mix to bake up fluffy cookies, and a dollop of buttercream frosting plays off the recipe's creative cake origins. If you're short on time though, skip the frosting and serve as-is.
  2. Enjoy a Batch of Butterscotch Pudding Cookies
    These delightful cookies satisfy any sweet tooth. Kids' baker Melissa, creator of Baking with Melissa, loves this butterscotch pudding cookie for its simplicity. "Even someone who thinks they can't bake can be successful with this cookie recipe," she explains. All the ingredients are mixed in one bowl, so the process doesn't require a lot of cleanup. "Measuring out ingredients and scooping out cookie dough gives kids the opportunity to learn something new and take pride in something they have accomplished," Melissa shares.
  3. Make Kid-Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
    How can you go wrong "kid-easy" in the title? This flourless peanut butter cookie recipe, developed by Bethany Nixon of Reware Vintage, requires just a cup of peanut butter, a cup of white sugar and one egg to make two dozen cookies."This is a great recipe for a busy parent," says Nixon. "In less than a half-hour, you're eating cookies!" Perfect for when you're short on time or out of traditional baking ingredients.
  4. Whip Up Some No-Bake Cookies
    The fastest way to make a batch of cookies? Don't bake them. These no-bake cookies from Gimme Some Oven only take 15 minutes from start to finish -- about the time it takes for your oven to preheat if you were making a traditional cookie recipe. Chocolaty and chewy, just dollop the hot mixture onto a sheet of parchment paper to cool and harden, then eat them up!
  5. Bite Into These Candy Bar Bars
    Ann Boyd of Boyds' News Nest created this candy bar bars recipe to use up leftover sweets. Once you combine the ingredients for this easy cookie recipe for shortbread bars, you simply press the mixture into the pan, put it in the oven and watch it bake -- no scooping or rolling dough required. Let the kids unwrap the candy while you start the dough. Boyd notes, "There is something delightfully forbidden in the act of unwrapping 25 mini-Twix bars!"
  6. Snack On Some Snickerdoodles
    Leah Brooks, director and founder of children's cooking school Y.U.M. Chefs, says these flavorful snickerdoodles are perfect for all ages. The recipe uses ingredients that are probably already in your pantry, and the cookies bake up soft and chewy. By including "tips for smaller hands," Brooks shows how children can help out. "Kids love rolling the cookie dough balls in the sparkly cinnamon-sugar mixture," she explains. "Have an example piece so they can make sure they're making the dough balls the right size!" Try this recipe, adapted from Brooks' cookbook, "Baking With Kids."

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white whole-wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 big pinch salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • For cinnamon-sugar coating:
    • 2 tablespoons sugar
    • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 400F, and line baking sheets with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, cream of tartar, baking soda and salt, then set aside. In a large mixing bowl, mix butter with a wooden spoon until it's smooth and shiny. Gradually add sugar, creaming until light and fluffy, and scrape down sides of bowl. Add egg and mix thoroughly. Add dry ingredients in two batches, gently mixing after each addition. (For Smaller Hands: Using a wooden spoon, smash butter against sides of bowl to soften. You can also microwave butter for about 15 seconds.)

For the coating, mix together the cinnamon and sugar in a small bowl. Form 1/4-cup portions of dough into balls and roll them in cinnamon and sugar to coat. Place each ball about 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Bake for about 10 minutes or until cookies are set in the center and beginning to crack, rotating the baking sheets after 5 minutes (cookies will not brown). Transfer sheets to wire rack to cool for about 10 minutes before moving cookies to rack.

You don't need an entire free afternoon to make cookies with your kids. These easy recipes can have you and your little ones satisfying your sweet tooth in no time!

Want more ideas? Try these 8 Easy Baking Recipes.

Christine O'Brien is a writer and a lover of sweets. Follow her on Twitter.

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