Jolly Santa Cookies

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Day SEVEN ya’ll! We’re seven days in on 12 Days of cookies! We’re over half way now so I thought it would be a good time to throw in a super fun and CUTE Christmas cookie.

I mean look at these things. They’re chunky little Santa’s. How can you not love these?

I saw these cookies on halfbakedharvest.com and immediately thought of what a great addition to a cookie platter these would be and started testing them out. Usually I change any recipe I test to make it my own, but guys I don’t think I changed a thing. Tieghan, you did good on these ones.

So, of course, whilst making them to post for ya’ll, disaster after disaster hit. First, I was on a time frame. If anyone knows me, you know this was just a bad idea to start. Second, I rolled all the dough balls out and realized I had forgotten mini chocolate chips. KAY. COOL. Third, I had to finish these cookies at my moms house and forgot my piping star tip for the beards. F*CK. ME. (I ended up making a run to Walmart, the best choice for the small little town I was in, and found something that I could make work.) Fourth, I needed to add the chips after they’ve been baked, which as you can see I did and I very strongly discourage you from doing. In doing so I broke all Santa’s limbs off. I’M JUST GONNA THROW THEM AWAY.

…Obviously I got a pep talk and didn’t. So here they are! Not too shabby for dismembered Santa’s, eh?

Despite my huge fail, these were still fun. They are a little labor intensive but would be so fun to make with younger kids. I can’t wait for Oliver to get a little older and have fun baking days with him. We will definitely be making these.

Here’s what you’ll need.

For the cookies:

1 cup salted butter, at room temp

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg, at room temp

2 tsps vanilla

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Red food coloring

Mini chocolate chips (for eyes and buttons)

Mini holiday m&ms (for Santa’s nose)

For the cream cheese buttercream:

1/2 cup salted butter, at room temp

2 ounces cream cheese, at room temp

1 tsp vanilla

1 1/2 cups powder sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter, sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Add the egg and beat until combined. Add flour and salt. Mix until combined and dough begins to form a ball. (Color will slightly darken over time)

4. Roll 1 (1-inch) ball and 5 (1/2-inch) balls from red dough. From the plain dough, roll 1 (3/4 inch) ball and 5 (1/4-inch) balls. You will have a body, head, hat, four red arms and four white hands and a white ball for the top of the hat.

5. On the prepared baking sheet, place the red 1-inch ball, gently flatten until 1/2 inch thick. Attach four of the red 1/2-inch balls for arms and legs. Next, attach the plain 3/4-inch ball for a head, gently flatten until 1/2 inch thick. Attach the plain 1/4-inch balls for hands and feet. Shape the remaining red 1/2-inch ball into a triangle for a hat and attach it. Repeat with remaining dough, arranging the cookies 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. Add chocolate pieces for eyes and buttons. (Do not forget this step like I did!)

6. Transfer to the oven and bake the Santa’s for 12-15 minutes, until lightly golden

7. To make the frosting: In a stand mixer fitted with a whip attachment add butter and cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer and whip until fluffy. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat together until whipped, about 2 more minutes.

8. To decorate. Transfer half the frosting to a piping bag fitted with a small tip. Use the bag to go around Santa’s face, arms, and legs. Put a small dot on the tip of his hat and then place one red mini m&m on his face as his nose.

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