Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies

Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies at RoamingRosie.com

I love tiny cookies.  They’re just so much fun.

And I had a bunch of mini M&Ms left over from our Rice Krispies Christmas Trees, so I decided to bake with them, instead of just devouring the bag in a single sitting.

Thus was born:  Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Because the mini M&Ms weren’t enough:  I really felt we could use some mini chocolate chips, too.  :)

Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies at RoamingRosie.com

It’s a pretty basic chocolate chip cookie recipe, and a variation of the one I normally make.

One difference is that I usually make chocolate chip cookies with dark brown sugar.

But we were out.

So I used light brown – which is fine.  It’s just not quite as dark in color or as sweet.

But still good.

Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies at RoamingRosie.com

Doesn’t that look amazing??

I mean – the colors – the ooey gooey-ness!!

*drooling now*

Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies at RoamingRosie.com

To make the cookies miniature, just scoop the dough out with teaspoons, not quite filling them up all the way.

Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies at RoamingRosie.com

If you prefer, you could also make giant cookies, but I liked the way they look small.

Besides, I added these to some Christmas cookie platters, so small was convenient.

And cute.  Did I mention cute??

Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies at RoamingRosie.com

Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 cup miniature chocolate chips
1 cup miniature M&M candies

Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).

Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl.

Either with a mixer or by hand, blend softened butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla until creamy. Add egg, beating well until combined. Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Stir in the chocolate chips and M&Ms.

Drop about a half-teaspoon to a teaspoonful of dough onto ungreased baking pans. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes, or until edges are just beginning to brown.

Cool on wire racks. Store covered.

Makes about 5 dozen.

[Note: you can use either light or dark brown sugar for this recipe. I used light brown sugar here, which has a milder flavor. If you use dark brown, the cookies will be a little darker in color, as well as a little sweeter.]

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And click here for the free printable PDF version:  Mini M&M Chocolate Chip Cookies

Enjoy!

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Mini Soft Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

So my daughter came home from school with one of those individually wrapped, soft, iced gingerbread men cookies that had red and green sprinkles on it.

I love those things.

And I suddenly realized I hadn’t made gingerbread cookies in years.  Seriously:  years.

So I tweaked an old recipe, rolled out the dough thickly, and dipped them in some royal icing that got a touch of sugar sprinkles.

Uh… YUM.

And I made them miniature.  I did this mostly because I was looking for an excuse to use the miniature cookie cutters I bought on clearance last year, but it turned out to be a wonderful idea.

Bite-sized deliciousness.

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Look at all the spices and all that sweetness!

You can just tell they’re going to be awesome.

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

It’s a soft dough.

This means it needs to go in the fridge for at least 2 hours before you roll it out.

And you’ll need to sprinkle lots of flour over the counter before you roll it out, and flour the rolling pin, and probably add a little more as you’re rolling.

But that’s okay:  there isn’t that much flour in the recipe itself, so using the extra flour to roll it all out without sticking makes it just the right consistency.

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

And you really need to roll them out quite thickly to get that pillowy softness in the finished cookie.

Nearly a half-inch.  At least a quarter inch.  At minimum.

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Once the cookies are cooled, just dip them in the royal icing.

Use a fork to stir the icing in between dipping the cookies, and also to scrape excess icing off of the cookies just after dipping them.  You don’t need to scrape the fork directly across the surface of the cookie – just close to it.  If there’s too much icing, it’ll ooze all of the edges and make a mess.

A thin coating is really all you need.  And it spreads as it sits.

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Be sure to add the sprinkles before the icing starts to harden.

I usually dip about 3 or 4 cookies before sprinkling them.

To make my red and green sprinkles, I simply mixed some red and some green sugar sprinkles together in a small bowl ahead of time.

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Don’t they look yummy?

I could seriously have eaten all of the cookies by myself.

Luckily, I had help.  :)

But the recipe makes a ton.  Like 12 dozen miniature {1-inch} cookies.  Enough to feed an army.  Or 2 or 3 over-stressed moms.

Either way – seriously worth a try.

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup molasses
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Icing:
2 cups confectionery sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons meringue powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 to 4 tablespoons water
Red and green sugar sprinkles

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves until well combined. In a large bowl, beat butter, brown sugar, and egg with a mixer until creamy. Add the molasses and vanilla and mix until well blended. Gradually add the flour mixture, switching to mixing by hand. Divide dough in half, wrap each half in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Generously sprinkle flour over prep space, including the rolling pin. Remove one portion of dough from refrigerator and roll it out to about 1/2-inch thickness, using extra flour if necessary to avoid sticking.

Use mini cookie cutters (or regular sized cutters, if desired) to cut shapes from dough. Place on cookie sheets and bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Let cookies sit on baking sheets for 2 minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Mix together the powdered sugar, meringue powder, and vanilla extract. Add water, one tablespoon at a time, until you reach a consistency where a thick line of icing slowly and smoothly drips off of the fork when lifted from the bowl. Dip cookies into icing, wiping off excess with fork while cookie is still upside down over bowl. Immediately sprinkle with a mixture of red and green sugar sprinkles.

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For the free printable PDF version of the recipe, click here:  Mini Iced Gingerbread Cookies

Enjoy!

Roaming Rosie Signature

Almond Wreath Cookies

Almond Wreath Cookies

This is another of my favorites when it comes to Christmas baking.

These Land O’ Lakes Almond Wreaths are a soft, flavorful, fun-shaped cookie.

They take a little effort to construct, but once you get the hang of things, they’re pretty quick to bust out.

Almond Wreath Cookies

The use of confectionery sugar in the batter gives the finished cookies a smooth texture.

Almond Wreath Cookies

They are a little soft, though, so you have to wrap up the dough and refrigerate it before shaping the cookies.

But while they’re in the fridge, it’s a good time to clean up the kitchen or even make a different type of Christmas cookie.

Almond Wreath Cookies

I follow the directions given in the recipe for making my wreaths:  Shape one-inch balls, cut balls in half, roll each half into a rope, twist the two rope pieces together and form the twisted rope into a circle.

Again, it takes a minute or two to get the hang of it, but it’s not nearly as daunting as it looks!

Almond Wreath Cookies

I don’t dye my dough.  You could make the cookies green, but I never do.

In the original recipe, they’re left uncolored and decorated with white icing and white sprinkles.  I change that up a bit by using green sugar sprinkles on top of the icing.  I like the look of it.

Almond Wreath Cookies

After brushing the icing on two or three cookies, add the sprinkles before the icing hardens.

If using a larger decoration, like the sugar pearls I used, add them first, and then add the finer textured sugar sprinkles.

You could also use regular nonpareils for a more colorful look.

Almond Wreath Cookies

This recipe can be found on the Land O’ Lakes website: Land O’ Lakes Almond Wreaths

And if you thought they looked scrumptious, you may also want to check out these:

Spritz Butter Cookies

Soft Iced Sugar Cookies

Chocolate Almond Mummy Cookies

Strawberry Cream Cheese Sandwich Cookies

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies

Ultimate Norwegian Spice Cookies

Elf-Sized Chocolate Chip Confetti Cookies

Easter Bunny Spiced Sandwich Cookies

Yum!

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Spritz Butter Cookies

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

I looooove Spritz cookies!

Of course, I usually just refer to them as “butter cookies” since I’ve found there are a lot of people who have never heard of “spritz.”

Which is a shame, really.

These cookies are almost entirely made of butter and sugar.

There isn’t much in life that’s better than that.

And one of the reasons I made sure to share this recipe is that I recently did a search for spritz and every recipe I found was different than the one I use.  I LOVE these cookies!  The thought of not sharing them with the world was just too terribly depressing.

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

These are totally a favorite of mine at Christmas.  I may make them a few times a year, but they’re definitely always part of my Christmas baking.

And my favorite way to make these little guys around Christmastime is by dying the dough green and making little Christmas trees.  It’s easy but super cute.

I also tend to make some red and leave some plain, too, which you’ll see in the pictures.

The easiest way to add the food coloring is to add it into the butter mixture, before you add in the flour.  I usually toss it in with the egg.

But if you’re not planning to dye the entire batch one color {you can see some plain dough in these photos – I did it half plain and half red}, then you can just massage some color into the finished dough with a gentle hand kneading.

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

There are a lot of cookie presses out there.

I’ve tried quite a few.

I’ve attempted the electronic version and tackled the pump handle ones, too… but they’re all just plastic pieces of crap, in my opinion.

There’s nothing like my mom’s old copper cookie press.

That said, if you don’t have one, the closest I can come to making a recommendation is the OXO Good Grips one,and only because it has a lot of positive reviews on Amazon.  But you’ll have to judge for yourself.

And please – PLEASE – if you know of a good cookie press, please tell me!!!

The good news?  You don’t actually need a cookie press to make these butter cookies.  Sometimes I just roll the dough into 1-inch balls and dip them in nonpareils.  You could also roll them out and cut them out with a fancy roller, kind of a la my easy cut out cookies.

But I usually use my press because they’re just so darned adorable.

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

Another fun option for these little cookies are making cherry wreaths.

These are another big hit and look lovely on cookie platters.

You simply cut a maraschino cherry in half and add it to a wreath-shaped cookie before baking.

If you didn’t dye the dough, you can also add some green sugar sprinkles.  Or some nonpareils for decoration.

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

I like the little swirl-looking cookies in red because they remind me of poinsettias.  :)

The sprinkles on those are the white sugar pearls.

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

And here they are baked.

Look almost the same as before they were baked, don’t they?

They’re just so pretty … which, if you didn’t know, also makes them taste better.  :)

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

And the trees again.  These are totally my favorites – so cute!

You could also take the time to add a little star to the tops of the trees, if you like.  Sometimes I use daisy sprinkles for stuff like that.

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

When you cook the spritz with cherries on them, you’ll notice a slight darkening of the dough around the cherry.

That’s from the cherry juice.

It’s part of what makes those particular cookies so good, but it also will make them soft.

This is awesome if you like soft cookies – but you need to keep it in mind.  These cookies get REALLY soft over time, so if you’re planning to serve them more than a couple of days past making them, then go ahead and freeze them the day you make them.  Then pull them out the day you’re going to serve them.  I also store these cookies separate from the other spritz that don’t have cherries.

Oh – and below you can see most of what I made out of two batches of the recipe.

I also made some dog-shaped cookies out of the plain {non-dyed} dough.  My girls love these.  :)

Spritz Butter Cookies with FREE Printable Recipe at RoamingRosie.com

Spritz Butter Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Cream together butter and sugar with a mixer. Blend in egg and vanilla. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Gradually add to butter mixture.

Put dough into a cookie press and follow manufacturer’s directions for making cookies. Press the cookies out onto ungreased cookie sheets. Decorate with sprinkles or cherries, if desired.

Bake for 6 to 8 minutes or until just starting to brown on the edges.

Transfer cookies to wire racks and cool completely. Store covered. Cookies can be sprinkled with powdered sugar just before serving, if desired.

[Color Option: mix gel or liquid food coloring into the batter for colored cookies. You can do this by adding the color to the butter mixture before adding the flour, or, if you only want to color a portion of the dough, by massaging it into the finished dough.]

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And click here to print the free PDF version of the recipe:  Spritz Butter Cookies

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Ultimate Norwegian Spice Cookies

Norwegian Spice Cookies

These Norwegian Spice Cookies are my mom’s favorite Christmas cookie.

I know that, originally, we had copied the recipe from a magazine.  Many years ago I typed it up and put it in my recipe binder.  Unfortunately, I don’t know the original source.  But I’ve made a few changes over the years anyway (to turn them into the proclaimed “ultimate” spice cookie), and so my own version of the recipe is featured here, along with a printable version.

But first, all the yumminess my camera could capture:

Norwegian Spice Cookies

I just love how the shadow of the mixer in the mixing bowl looks like a Christmas tree.  :)

This is the butter and sugar about to be creamed together, with the eggs and vanilla waiting patiently nearby.

Norwegian Spice Cookies

When you blend together the dry ingredients (flour and spices) be sure to thoroughly sift them together.  I use a fork for this. You want the spices to be evenly distributed.

I know it looks like a lot of spice when you’re measuring it out, but don’t worry, it won’t look like that much once it’s all mixed – and the flavor is fantastic!

Norwegian Spice Cookies

The gooey, spicy, luscious dough…

Once it’s blended, it’s pretty soft.  At this point you need to divide the dough in half, shape each half into a disc, wrap the discs in plastic wrap, and refrigerate them for an hour.

I’ve found that the easiest way to do this is to lay out a sheet of plastic wrap on the counter and scoop the dough into the center of it.  Fold the plastic wrap over the small mountain of dough and shape generally into a flattened circle as you pull the wrap over and around the dough.

It’s sticky, so using the plastic wrap to shape it instead of your hands saves you some time and aggravation.

Norwegian Spice Cookies

After you’ve had an hour to clean the mixer, sort through your cookie cutters, place some parchment paper on your baking sheets, and dance to a few Christmas songs, then the dough will be ready to be rolled out.

You could actually leave it in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, but I don’t think I’ve ever left it overnight.  After a few hours the butter in it gets too hard to roll out and then it needs to sit at room temperature for awhile, but if you leave it too long then it gets too soft, and that just makes my life complicated… so, really, between 1 to 2 hours is best.

Usually, in the midst of Christmas cookie baking marathons, I’ll make this dough, put it in the fridge, make and bake another cookie (like chocolate chip, for example), and then cut out and bake these.  Works out pretty well that way.

Norwegian Spice Cookies

And look at the spices in those snowflakes:  you can SEE the cinnamon, the cloves… *mouth waters*  …mmm, you should smell the magnificence.

Norwegian Spice Cookies

And these reindeer cookies are a great way to illustrate that flour helps you cut out the cookies.  The dough is soft and will stick to the cutters, but dipping the cutter in a dish of flour before stamping out a couple of cookies will help the dough to fall right out of the cutter.

Also, peeling away some of the dough surrounding the cookies before trying to lift them will help.  As will using a spatula like the one pictured below, or like this.

Norwegian Spice Cookies

But, sometimes I peel away the extra dough, and sometimes I don’t bother.  I certainly don’t pull away ALL of the dough… except for in the above photo because I thought it would make a neat picture.  :)

But you really only need to do a little at a time to help with transferring the cookies to the baking sheets.

If you’ve rolled out the dough without enough flour under it, the cookies will stick to the counter.  Just dip your spatula in flour before sliding it under the dough to loosen them.

And remember, with soft cookie dough like this, flour is your friend:

Norwegian Spice Cookies

You should put flour under the dough, on top of the dough, on the rolling pin, on the cookie cutters, and on the spatula.  I mean it:  flour party.

If there is too much on the finished cookie, just blow off the excess before baking.  Any extra at that point will be absorbed by the egg wash that you put on the cookies just before baking.

Although, I have to admit, I sometimes forget to add the egg wash.  But that’s okay.  It’s not essential to the cookie, but it does add a nice shine and a silky smoothness to them.

Norwegian Spice Cookies

The above picture is what was left of my dough after I collected all the scraps, rerolled them, cut out more cookies, and did it all again.  I got two small stars out of the last roll.

But we don’t waste food in our family.

Especially cookies.

So, I rolled up these scraps into a circle, flattened it into an oval, and placed it on my last sheet of cookies to bake.  After all, sometimes these last-of-the-scraps creations are the best part of making cookies.  :)

Norwegian Spice Cookies

And really, these cookies are great two ways:  thick and soft or thin and crunchy.  My mom likes them crunchy, I prefer them soft.  Luckily, that’s an easy problem to solve when baking multiple trays:  just cook some longer.

So, even tho the directions call for 10 to 12 minutes, I’ve cooked some larger ones up to 14 or 15 minutes.  Just keep an eye on them, to prevent burning.

Once the cookies were fully cooled, I sprinkled them with powdered sugar.  This step is not necessary, and I wouldn’t suggest doing it until you are ready to eat/serve them, but it is a nice touch.

Oh, and I didn’t bake them in that little metal pan – it was just to keep the sugar contained.  :)  The cookies need to cool on racks before you add the powdered sugar.

Norwegian Spice Cookies

These ultimate spice cookies go great with coffee:

Norwegian Spice Cookies

And with Christmas trees:

Norwegian Spice Cookies

Ultimate Norwegian Spice Cookies

Ingredients:
3 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
4 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 egg white mixed with 1 teaspoon water
Powdered sugar (optional)

Combine flour, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, cardamom, and salt in a bowl until well blended.

Beat butter and sugar in a bowl until creamy.  Mix in eggs and vanilla.  Gradually add flour mixture.

Divide dough in half, flattening each piece into a disc.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Roll dough about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thickness on a well-floured surface.  Cut out cookies with cookie cutters that have been dipped in flour.  Place cookies on ungreased baking sheet, preferably covered with parchment paper, and brush with the eggs white mixture.

Reroll scraps and repeat with remaining dough.

Bake cookies for 10 to 12 minutes or until just browning on edges.  Cool on wire racks.  Store covered.

Before serving, as an optional step, you can sprinkle them with powdered sugar.

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Click for the FREE printable PDF:  Norwegian Spice Cookies

Merry Christmas!

And Happy Baking!  :)