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6 Creative Cookie Recipes to Bake With the Kids (or for Yourself)

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Self-isolation is so much better with a sweet treat to snack on during your next Netflix binge.

What have you been baking during self-isolation in the Hudson Valley? Across the internet, snaps of sourdough bread and intricate cinnamon swirl rolls are taking over Instagram. They’re right alongside equally ambitious homemade pop-tarts, Girl Scout cookies, and multi-layer cakes topped with light-as-air frosting. Yet when it comes down to it, sometimes there’s nothing simpler – or sweeter – than a cookie.

Plus, did we mention how easy cookies are to prepare? While there may be some dough chilling involved, cookies are more often than not a wooden spoon-and-bowl sort of deal. Take a scroll through these Hudson Valley versions, then get ready to swirl them up, scoop them out, and slide them in the oven for a golden toasting. Just make sure you have a glass of milk handy when the kitchen timer rings.

P.S. Want to solidify your pro-cookie maker status? Read up on these tips from a Hudson Valley cookie master before you hit the kitchen.

These Are the Yummiest Thumbprint Cookies

Endlessly adaptable, thumbprints are the choose-your-own adventure of the cookie world. With the base dough in hand, you can get as creative as you want with toppings as simple as strawberry jam or as indulgent as dark chocolate ganache. Top them with chopped nuts, shredded coconut, or even a miniature candy piece for a fun treat that kids (and kids-at-heart) will love.

Make These Coconut Macaroons With the Kids

Looking for a cookie recipe that doesn’t involve a laundry list of ingredients? These coconut macaroons are it. With only six ingredients required, the cookies are ideal to make with kids. Let them try their hand at swirling the mixture together in a mixing bowl or, if they’re older, let them help you scoop up the dough into balls. (The recipe contains egg, so this second step is not recommended for young children). If you’re feeling extra, melt a little dipping chocolate for a show-stopping final dunk.

Pecan Sandies Are a Cookie Jar Essential

Pecan sandies are one of those cookies that deserve more love than they get. Why? With a medley of almond, coconut, and pecan flavor, they’re perfectly nutty and sweet at the same time. This recipe does require chilling time, so factor in an extra 15 minutes for the logs to chill. While these cookies are delightful on their own, they’re extra special with a partial coating of chocolate.

Adobe Stock / jlmcanally

Get Crafty With Chocolate Bark Cookies

OK, calling these “cookies” might be an overstatement. That being said, this easy recipe is a quarantine necessity and relies upon only five ingredients, all of which you probably have in your kitchen right now. Like the thumbprint cookies, these are incredibly customizable. Swap milk chocolate chips for dark or white ones, top them with peppermints or candy, or even switch out the Saltines for matzo to make use of whatever you have on hand.

Adobe Stock / Nataliia

Pumpkin Chocolate Cookies Embrace the Flavors of Fall All Year

You know that can of pumpkin sitting patiently in your pantry? It’s time to break it out. You’ll need a cup of puree for this recipe, which qualifies as healthy-ish thanks to the addition of whole wheat flour and lots of spices. Dark chocolate chips are the way to go here, since the intense flavor contrasts beautifully with the sweeter pumpkin base.

This Back-Pocket Linzer Cookie Recipe Is a Family Favorite

Who doesn’t love a good linzer cookie? Just as pretty to look at as they are tasty to eat, the cookies draw their signature flavor from toasted hazelnuts and a hefty scoop of cinnamon. Raspberry jam is the traditional filling, but feel free to switch it up with strawberry or blackberry spread if that’s what’s sitting pretty in your fridge.

Pro tip: The hazelnuts can easily be swapped for an equal amount of pistachios.

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