These crisp maple cookies are so easy to make and decorate. Use large pretzel twists to make the antlers.
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1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup Land O Lakes® Butter softened
1 teaspoon maple flavoring
1 large Land O Lakes® Egg
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
48 large pretzel twists, broken in half
96 brown candy-coated milk chocolate pieces
16 small red spice gumdrops, sliced 1/4-inch thick (3 slices per gumdrop)
*Substitute chocolate chips, pressing into cookies immediately after baking.
Heat oven to 350°F.
Combine brown sugar, butter and maple flavoring in bowl. Beat at medium speed until creamy. Add egg; continue beating until well mixed. Add flour, baking powder and baking soda; beat at low speed until well mixed.
Divide dough in half. Roll each half into 6-inch log. Wrap each in plastic food wrap. Refrigerate at least 2 hours until firm.
Cut 1 log at a time, keeping remaining log refrigerated, into 1/4-inch slices with sharp knife. Place each slice onto ungreased cookie sheet; pinch 1 end of slice to form triangle-shape. Press 2 pretzel pieces into dough on wide end for antlers, 2 chocolate pieces for eyes and 1 gumdrop piece for nose.
Bake 8-11 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool 1 minute on cookie sheets; remove to cooling racks. Cool completely.
Store between sheets of waxed paper in loosely covered container.
- Be sure dough is well chilled so cookies retain their shape while baking.
- This dough can be made ahead and stored in the freezer up to 1 month. Place wrapped logs in resealable freezer bag. Let dough thaw in refrigerator.
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2 out of my 5 kids liked these cookies. The maple flavor was a bit too over powering for most the other 3 kids and my husband and me. For the first try on this recipe, I used dark brown sugar. For the second batch, i used 1/2 light brown sugar and 1/2 white sugar, and used vanilla instead of maple flavoring. everyone in the familiy loved the cookies after the recipe adjustments. make sure you have about twice as many pretzels as you need, breaking them "just right" is more difficult for little ones than you may think. save those left over broken bits of pretzel, there are many great recipes on this site that makes good use of them, or they make great low fat salad toppings.
This is a great tasting cookie but I ran into a few minor stumbling blocks. First, when I shaped the dough into the 6 inch rolls, they were too small for the size of the eyes and nose (although I suppose you could use mini candy pieces and gumdrops if you prefer smaller cookies). What I did was make only one 6 inch roll at about 2-2 ½ in diameter that I shaped into a triangle before chilling. Having the dough already in a triangle shape made the slicing and shaping process much faster so as to keep the dough as cold as possible so they retain their shape during baking. Secondly, the candy coated pieces split and the gumdrops melted when I added them before baking. The easy and successful solution was to press in the eyes and nose just after the cookies were removed from the oven. The pretzels added before baking worked without a hitch. The texture and flavor of these cookies are top notch!! In fact, I made another batch using banana flavor instead of maple.