Santa Cookies

Santa Cookies
Servings: 48 Yield: 4 dozen cookies Prep 1 hr Total Time 5 hrs 30 mins (includes chilling)

Ingredients

  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 ounces neufchatel cheese, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 12 drops red food coloring
  • 1 10 ounce bag miniature marshmallows
  • 1 10 ounce bag red candy melts® (Wilton®)
  • 1 10 ounce bag plus 2 cups white candy melts® (Wilton®)
  • 1 10 ounce bag mini candy-coated chocolates (M&M's®)

Make It

1. Line 4 cookie sheets with parchment paper; set aside.

2. in a medium bowl combine the flour and salt.

3. In a medium bowl beat the butter, cream cheese and sugar using an electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla and food coloring. Gradually add the flour and beat until just blended.

4. Divide the dough in half. Shape each half into a 10-inch log (about 2 1/2 inches around) on a sheet of wax paper. Wrap up, twisting the ends, and refrigerate until firm, about 4 hours.

5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Working with 1 log of dough at a time, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices.

6. Arrange the slices on the prepared cookie sheets, about 2 inches apart. Bake until just beginning to brown, 11 to 13 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and cool completely.

7. Cut the mini marshmallows in half crosswise with clean scissors. Melt the red candy melts in a medium bowl in the microwave until smooth, about 45 seconds. Dip the top third of a cookie in the melted candy to coat to make Santa's hat. Use a spatulato remove any excess candy. Return cookie to the lined pan. Add a row of marshmallows along the candy edge and one at the top of the cookie. Repeat with the remaining cookies. Refrigerate until set, about 5 minutes.

8. Place 1 cup of the white candy melts in a small bowl; set aside. Melt the remaining white candy melts in a medium bowl in the microwave until smooth. Holding a cookie in the center, dip the remaining cookie edge in candy to create a 1/2 to 1-inch band, which will be Santa's beard. Remove any excess. Repeat with the remaining cookies.

9. Melt the 1 cup white candy melts in the small bowl in the microwave, stopping and stirring every few seconds until smooth. Transfer to a freezer weight zip-top bag. Snip a small (1/8-inch) corner from the bag. Pipe 2 dots of candy melt on the cookie where the eyes belong and top with the chocolate candies. Repeat with the remaining cookies.

10. Snip a larger (1/4-inch) corner from the bag and pipe Santa's mustache. While candy melt is still wet add a chocolate candy for his nose. Refrigerate cookies until set, about 5 minutes.

Nutrition Facts

Servings Per Recipe: 48; Amount Per Serving: cal. (kcal): 284, Fat, total (g): 13, chol. (mg): 22, sat. fat (g): 9, carb. (g): 40, Monounsaturated fat (g): 1, Polyunsaturated fat (g): , Trans fatty acid (g): , fiber (g): , sugar (g): 29, pro. (g): 3, vit. A (IU): 183, vit. C (mg): , Thiamin (mg): , Riboflavin (mg): , Niacin (mg): 1, Pyridoxine (Vit. B6) (mg): , Folate (µg): 23, Cobalamin (Vit. B12) (µg): , sodium (mg): 75, Potassium (mg): 24, calcium (mg): 27, iron (mg): 1, Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.