Classic Holiday Thumbprint Cookies

We love all cookies at our house, especially those that are part of a holiday tradition. These are a simple recipe that taste like they are very complicated. They’re the perfect whipped shortbread cookie that isn’t overly sweet, but is filled with jam and rolled in pecans and delicious coconut. As the cookie bakes the coconut and pecans become toasted.  Delish!  Our favorite filling is plum jam, but other great options would be strawberry, blackberry or raspberry.  This recipe can also easily be doubled.  Any way you make them, they will be fabulous! ~Kathy

½ c. butter, softened

½ c. shortening

½ c. brown sugar, firmly packed

3 egg yolks

1 ½ tsp. vanilla

¼ tsp. salt

2 c. flour

¾ c. coconut

½ c. finely chopped pecans

½ c. plum jam, stirred smooth

Heat oven to 350˚ F.

Beat butter, shortening and brown sugar in large bowl with mixer on high speed until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, vanilla and salt. Mix on medium until combined.  Add flour and mix just until blended.

Mix coconut and pecans on a plate. Roll dough into 1” balls. Roll in coconut and pecans to coat. Place on cookie sheet. Using your knuckle or fingertip, make an indentation in the center of each cookie.

Bake for 8 minutes and remove from oven. Press indentations carefully again if needed. Spoon ½ teaspoon jam onto the center of each cookie. Bake an additional 3 to 5 minutes or until the cookie is just slightly browned.  Cool on cookie sheet for 5 minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely.  


The Scotcharoo recipe was originally printed on the side of a Rice Krispies box in the mid 1960s.  That recipe became an instant classic, but we’ve updated our version to make it even better!  One of the best things about these treats is that they’re the perfect dessert for a hot summer night when you don’t want to turn on your oven. Our version adds the perfect amount of gooeyness that we always thought was missing from the original recipe.   Even if you once thought you didn’t love Scotcharoos, we think you’ll love ours. Make them when you want something sweet that also has a sense of nostalgia!   ~Kathy


1 c. creamy peanut butter

1 c. plus 1 T. light corn syrup

¾ c. firmly packed brown sugar

3 T. butter

1/8 tsp. salt

½ tsp. vanilla

1 c. miniature marshmallows

5 c. Rice Krispies cereal

1 c. chocolate chips (I prefer milk chocolate, but semi-sweet would work fine)

½ c. butterscotch chips


Spray a 9×13 pan with non-stick spray.

In a heavy large pot combine the peanut butter, corn syrup, brown sugar, butter and salt. Place over medium high heat. Stir continuously; the sugar should completely dissolved and the mixture should be smooth and creamy. Remove from heat just as it begins to bubble. Immediately add marshmallows and vanilla. Stir until they are completely incorporated. Add rice cereal and mix carefully to completely coat.

Spread into prepared pan using a spatula. Be careful not to compact it tightly.  Set aside to cool.

In a microwave safe bowl, microwave chocolate and butterscotch chips in 30 second intervals, stirring between, until it is completely melted and smooth. Pour over cereal mixture and spread evenly.

Allow to cool (or refrigerate briefly) until the topping is set. Cut into bars and enjoy!

Coconut Lime Bars

At my house, it’s definitely not close to being spring.  I absolutely love the intermountain west, but this has been a LOOOONG winter.  There is NO sign of green grass here.  Seriously, we are still completely covered in snow!!!  I start to crave warmer days and “summer food”.  So until the snow is gone, these Coconut Lime bars are helping fill my need for warmth. Travel through food when necessary, I say!   You can eat these bars as soon as they are done, but I highly recommend letting them chill several hours before devouring!  ~Kathy

Ingredients for Bars:

  • 1 stick butter, softened (8 oz)
  • 1 1/3 c. light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. lime zest
  • 2 1/8 c. flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 3/4 c. coconut toasted
  • 3 oz. white baking chocolate, finely chopped

Ingredients for Frosting:

  • 1 pkg. cream cheese, softened (8 oz)
  • ¾ c. powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp. fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1 tsp. lime zest
  • 4 oz. white baking chocolate, melted and slightly cooled
  • ½ c. toasted coconut

Preheat oven to 350°.   Lightly grease a 9×13 baking dish.  

Start by making sure butter is extremely soft, just shy of melting.  Mix together softened butter and brown sugar in a large bowl.  Add in eggs, one at a time. Stir in vanilla and lime zest.  

In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt.   Add to butter mixture and mix, just until combined.  Gently fold in coconut and white chocolate.

Spread the batter into prepared pan.  Bake for 19-23 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

For the frosting, beat the softened cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth.  Add in powdered sugar and lime juice.  Mix in zest and cooled melted white chocolate, combine well.   Spread over cooled bars and top with toasted coconut.   Chill 4 hours or overnight before serving.

3C Oatmeal Cookies ~ Chocolate, Coconut, Cranberries

I bake cookies.  Often. OK, too often.  Actually, I take that back – it’s always a good time for cookies!  I definitely have my favorite recipes, but often, when I try something new, I’m left a little disappointed that I didn’t make one of my standard favorites.  So, this time, I decided to create my own recipe combining some of my favorite things (there’s a song in there somewhere, I think). The result was this plate of cookie perfection!  This cookie is the perfect blend of chewy and chocolatey, while including the perfect hint of tart flavor with the dried cranberries. Even for folks who don’t like raw coconut, the toasted coconut in these cookies provides the perfect amount of nuttiness.  Try ‘em today! ~Tracy


  • 1 c. stick butter, softened to room temperature
  • ¾ c. brown sugar
  • ½ c. granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 ½ c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 ½ c. quick cook oats
  • 1 c. dried Cranberries
  • 4 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped into small chunks
  • 1 ½ c. toasted coconut (see note)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Beat eggs and sugars together until creamy.
  3. Add eggs and vanilla.
  4. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Pour into butter mixture and mix well.
  5. Stir in oatmeal and cranberries just until mixed into cookie mixture.
  6. Gently stir in the toasted coconut to avoid breaking it up.
  7. Drop by generous tablespoons full onto sprayed or parchment lined cookie sheet.
  8. Bake approximately 10-12 minutes (cooking times vary by oven).
  9. Cool on rack before serving.

Note: To toast coconut, thinly spread coconut in medium skillet. Cook on medium to low temperature until coconut begins to brown slightly. Stir coconut occasionally until all turns a golden brown color. Watch the coconut closely and adjust temperature to avoid burning. Once most of the coconut is toasted and golden (you may have a few pieces that stay somewhat white), remove from skillet and spread on wax paper or parchment paper and allow to cool before use.

Honey Spice Cookies

A regular request of the grandkids when they’re at our parent’s house (and as you’d suspect, they usually get what they want at Grandma and Pappaw’s house), these cookies are the perfect chewy goodness with a cup of coffee or ice cold glass of milk.  I’ve been craving these cookies lately…I’m ready for those comfort foods that are perfect on a cool, crisp fall day.  You can keep your pumpkin spice latte.  I’m eating cookies!  ~Tracy

  • 2 ¼ c. all purpose flour
  • 1 ½ t. baking soda
  • ½ t. salt
  • 1 t. ground ginger
  • ½ t. cinnamon (make this a heaping ½ tsp. if you love cinnamon like we do)
  • ½ t. ground cloves
  • 1 c. firmly packed brown sugar
  • ¾ c. vegetable shortening
  • ¼ c. honey
  • 1 unbeaten egg


  1. In a small bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine brown sugar, shortening, honey, and egg. Beat well.
  3. Gradually add dry ingredients, mixing well.
  4. Chill dough for 1 hour.
  5. Shape rounded teaspoons full into balls.
  6. Dip half of each dough ball into water and then into sugar.
  7. Place sugar side up on parchment lined baking sheet.
  8. Bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.


Coconut Pecan Meringue Melts

Erin used to make these all the time at Dad’s request.  These are his favorite cookie. My favorite memory of them, however, is from a camping trip. We normally went to the lake in the summertime for our family vacation, but this time it was in October down at Pine Creek Lake in SE Oklahoma.  I was very serious about fishing, so I’d get up crazy early to get ready to go some days while the other girls were still sleeping. They would go too, but I just couldn’t wait to get up and be ready—if you know how much I like my sleep, you’ll know just how much I love to fish.

It’s possible we’d sneak a couple (several) with our coffee those cold fall mornings before we’d take the boat out to fish. I very clearly remember watching the sun coming up while standing outside (it was too cold to sit down on the concrete picnic bench) on a very chilly morning, just Dad and me, eating these cookies, drinking piping hot coffee (yes, my love of coffee goes way back), and listening to the sounds of the morning. The mist coming up off the water in the early morning is a sight everyone should see.

As you might guess from the name, these cookies do indeed melt in your mouth, and they are absolutely incredible if you make sure to let them brown up juuuust a bit.  That’s what gives them their slightly toasted flavor that takes them from the pretty darn great to heavenly – especially with a steaming cup of coffee.  ~Robin




Heat oven to 325°F.

Line a baking sheet with brown wrapping paper (can be found at any craft store) OR a brown paper grocery bag cut to the size of the baking sheet (non-printed side up—you don’t want a grocery logo on your cookies).

Beat egg whites just until they’re frothy.  Gradually beat in the sugar. Continue to beat with mixer until it forms very stiff peaks when you raise the beaters out of the mixture. Will have a glossy appearance as well.

Gently fold in salt, vanilla, coconut, and pecans.

Drop heaping teaspoons of dough 2” apart on the paper.

Bake about 20 minutes or until set and lightly browned.

Immediately upon removal from the oven, carefully remove the paper (with the cookies still on it) from the hot pan and set it aside.

Place a clean wet dish towel on the hot baking sheet; then return the paper with the cookies onto the towel so the wet towel lies between the baking sheet and the paper.  Allow to sit for one minute.

The steam created by the hot pan will loosen the cookies so you can easily remove them from the paper with a turner.

Soft Molasses Cookies

I love these cookies​. I don’t know how to say it more emphatically than that. When I was pregnant with my first son I gorged myself ​on them. I had​ no willpower. As in, I could eat every single cookie by myself.  I had no shame! I have since come to realize pregnancy was not the only reason I have no willpower; I will ​still ​eat these nonstop if they are in my presence!  

In fact, this is the recipe that inspired (and began) my annual ​Christmas card recipe for family and friends. I have used this cookie for cookie exchanges, for parties, for dropping off at a friend’s,  and of course to enjoy at home.   ​

These are ​a flawless, soft, warm​ balance of spice and sweet. Even people that say they don’t like molasses or ginger love these cookies.

​It’s a perfect cookie for fall. It’s a perfect cookie for holidays. It. Is. The​. Perfect. Cookie​! ~Kathy



  • 1/2 c. butter or margarine, softened
  • 1/2 c. shortening
  • 1 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. molasses
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2-1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2-1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1-1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1-1/2 tsp ground cinnamon


Preheat oven to 350° F.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter, shortening and sugar until light-colored and fluffy. Beat in molasses and eggs; set mixture aside.

In another large bowl, combine flour, salt, baking soda, ginger, cloves and cinnamon. Blend thoroughly with wire whisk. Gradually mix flour mixture into creamed ingredients until dough is blended and smooth.

Roll dough into 1½ inch balls. Roll cookies in sugar; place on greased or parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Bake for 11 minutes. Do not overbake. Cool on wire rack.  

Store in tightly covered container to maintain softness.  

Butterfinger Cookies


Making homemade cookies can be a twice weekly occurrence at my house.  School lunches and (multiple) after school snacks can cause a batch of cookies to disappear within 24 hours.  Let’s not even talk about how many two teenage boys can eat in one sitting!  Since I do get tired of the classic chocolate chip (Yes, I eat my share of the cookies, too!) these are a fun twist on classic cookies that your family will enjoy.  Just be sure to hide a few for yourself.

~ Tracy


  • 1 c. (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 c. packed light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 ½ c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. cream of tartar
  • 10 oz. (1 package) Butterfinger baking bits


Preheat oven to 350.

Combine flour, baking soda, salt, and cream of tartar.  Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla.

Add eggs one at a time, mixing after each.

Gradually mix dry ingredients into butter mixture.

Stir in Butterfinger bits.

Drop by heaping teaspoons full onto parchment lined cookie sheet.

Bake 10-11 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.



I have a confession.  I am kind of a dessert snob.  Now let me clarify what that means… I am not a snob when it comes to eating desserts. I will eat any and all desserts. (With the exception of minced meat.  Sorry minced meat, you and I cannot be friends.  Ever.  No offense to the minced meat lovers in the world -I know there are some out there.)  Ultimately what it boils down to is that I will only make desserts that I really like.  I like a lot of desserts!  Lots!  Many!  All kinds!  You get the picture.  And I like to make desserts as often as I can.  Unfortunately my waistline suffers.  That’s a blog post for another time.  Oh well.

Anywho, on occasion, I need/love a dessert that’s quick and easy to throw together but extremely tasty.  Sometimes, something just a little different.  What could BE (reference Chandler Bing here) more awesome than a brownie and chocolate chip cookies combined?  I’m glad you asked!  A semi homemade version that won’t let ya down!  You will not miss any of the extra effort that you would have to put into making all the batters yourself.  I promise!  Give this a whirl.  You will thank yourself!  I will not judge if you hide in a closet and devour the whole pan.  I feel your pain!  ~ Kathy


  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • 1 stick of butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • Pinch of salt
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 1/3 c. chocolate chips
  • 1 pkg. refrigerated Tollhouse mini chocolate chip cookies (you will only need 14 from the package)


Preheat oven to 350˚F.  Spray a 9×13 cake pan with non-stick spray and set aside.

Melt butter and pour into a large mixing bowl.  Add cake mix, egg, salt and vanilla.  Combine well.  Mix in chocolate chips.  Spread mixture evenly into the bottom of cake pan.

Remove one and a half rows of chocolate chip cookie dough (14 Mini cookies).  Randomly spread them out over cake mixture, placing them whole, broken pieces, etc.

(Use the remainder for more Brookies or bake them for good old chocolate chip cookies).

Bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean.

Chocolate Chip Skillet Cookie


Posted by Erin

Here’s a fun fact about me:  I love to bake but I have no self-control around really good homemade desserts.  Like, NONE.  I’ll nibble and take a bite here and there throughout the day and, before I know it, I’ve eaten the majority of the pan of brownies or half a pie.  It’s why I’ve been in Weight Watchers going on 17 years!  I recognize my own weaknesses so I’ve learned to make portion controlled desserts.  My favorite is this skillet cookie.  On a night when I need something rich, warm, and decadent but don’t want a pan of desserts sitting around all weekend to tempt me, I make this cookie.  It’s big enough for my husband and me to share but, I’m not going to lie, I usually eat it all by myself with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.  So, go ahead and make one for you and one for your husband.  Wait until your kids go to bed and that will save you from having to share.  Ha!  Oh, don’t act like you haven’t done it.  😉

I always make this cookie in small cast iron skillets that I got one year for Christmas.  They were part of a little skillet brownie kit.  That mix’s brownies were BLECH (if you haven’t tried our family brownie recipe, you really need to do that for yourself), but the skillets are awesome so if you see any of those sets around the after-Christmas sales this year, grab a few!  If you don’t happen to have a cast iron skillet yet, you can just make these in a regular baking pan too.


  • 2 T. butter (I always use real butter for baking.)
  • 2 T. firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 T. granulated sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • ¼ tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ¼ c. all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ¼ c. roughly chopped pecans, optional (but SO good – I usually add extra!)
  • Non-stick cooking spray


Preheat oven to 350° F.  Spray a 7″ or larger skillet/pan lightly with non-stick cooking spray; set aside.  In a microwave safe bowl, microwave the butter in 10 second increments until it’s soft and just beginning to melt.  Blend softened butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt, and vanilla together with a spoon.  Add the egg yolk and stir until it’s well blended.  Add flour and baking soda and stir again until combined.  Lastly, stir in chocolate chips (and pecans, if desired).  Heap the dough into the center of skillet/pan and flatten slightly.  No need to spread it to the edge; it will spread as it cooks.  Bake for 10 -12 minutes, or until the edges are lightly browned.  Remove from the oven and let it cool slightly.  Do me a favor and wait until it’s not scalding hot before you dig in.  It will be the longest few minutes of your life.  Top it with ice cream, and eat it straight from the pan!