So yes, typically pies take the cake so to speak when it comes to Thanksgiving, but diners shouldn't be expected to overindulge on pie alone. There's all sorts of room for a supporting cast of desserts, and Thanksgiving cookies are perfect for the role.
They're easy to set out for pre-dinner treats, and to pass around with coffee while pie is served. Kids love not only to eat them, but to help make them too, so they're a great productive project for those days leading up to the holiday when school is out.
Here are eight incredible Thanksgiving cookie recipes your whole family will gobble up, including this first one for handprint turkey sugar cookies from Taste of Home.
Turkey Handprint Cookies
1/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup sour cream
5 cups confectioners' sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons water
2-1/4 teaspoons light corn syrup
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Red, yellow, orange, green and brown gel food coloring
3-3/4-inch hand-shaped cookie cutter or scissors, pencil and a piece of cardboard for tracing a child's handprint
In a large bowl, cream the shortening, butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg: add to the creamed mixture alternately with sour cream. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or until easy to handle.
Use a floured hand-shaped cookie cutter or trace a child's hand onto a piece of cardboard with pencil and cut out for a pattern.
On a well-floured surface, roll out dough to a 1/2-in. thickness. Either use a sharp knife to cut around the cardboard hand pattern in dough or use cookie cutter to cut out hand shapes. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 425° for 7-9 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool.
In a small bowl, combine the glaze ingredients and beat until smooth. Set aside 1 teaspoon of white glaze for eyes. Place 1/4 cup of glaze into each of four bowls. Tint one red, one yellow, one orange and one green. Place 1 tablespoon of glaze in another bowl and tint dark brown. Tint the remaining glaze light brown.
Frost the palm and thumb of each cookie light brown. Frost each finger a different color, using red, yellow, orange and green.
Place the remaining yellow glaze in a pastry or plastic bag. Cut a small hole in the corner of bag. Pipe a beak on each thumb.
Repeat with dark brown glaze to pipe a pupil in the center of each eye and to pipe wings in the center of each cookie.
Use remaining red glaze to pipe wattles on each thumb. Let dry completely.
Yield: about 3 dozen.
Here are seven more Thanksgiving cookie recipes to try:
Adorable, fun, and yum!
These are so bright and adorable, they add pop to any dessert presentation.
These will give that pie a particularly good run for its money.
These are, I think, the cutest ones I've ever seen. Seriously adorable with a sugar cone as the cornucopia and little cookies adorned with fruits and vegetables filling it. Almost too cute to eat.
The best part about these is that you can use up some of that leftover Halloween candy you may have lying around to make them. I have a whole bag of leftover candy corn, and my kids and I will definitely be making these.
A glass bowl filled with these adorable little treats would make a great centerpiece on a table or buffet.
These are delish, and they're actually pretty healthy to boot.
What are your favorite Thanksgiving cookie recipes?
Image via snowpea & bokchoi/Flickr