Last Christmas I introduced my then two-year old to cookie baking. We’d spend many a day mixing cookie dough, rolling it out, choosing fancy cookie cutters, and icing to our sweet tooth’s delight. This year, Jack is three and in a full day preschool program. He still loves to bake cookies, but by the time we get home from school at 3 in the afternoon…there really isn’t time to do the whole cookie bake-off routine. Enter Walkers Shortbread Cookies. They’ve got a line of shortbread cookies in Christmas shapes that are perfect for decorating when you need a quick cookie fix with your kid. They were kind enough to send us a couple of packages to have fun with – and so we did!
You could buy icing or frosting pre-made and save even more time, but my kid loves to stir things and considers it a crucial part of the cookie process. We compromised by whipping up some quick and easy cookie icing after school yesterday, and got down to decorating.
For icing cookies I like to use this simple icing recipe:
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- food coloring
Put all ingredients in a bowl and stir until smooth. Use food coloring to tint the icing to your desired colors.
Jack mixed the icing all on his own after helping me measure the three ingredients. Stirring in the color is his favorite part.
To ice the cookies I let him use the little knives that came with his toddler silverware sets. They’re about the size of those little fancy cheese spreader knives you have but never use. Perfect for kids to frost cookies or cupcakes with! We had a bunch of sprinkles in our cupboard already – what kid doesn’t love sprinkles? Jack delighted in making piles of sprinkles – as most three-year old’s do I imagine!
With minimal fuss we had a plate full of decorated Christmas cookies in no time at all. It was a lovely way to spend our after school time before I had to clean up and start dinner. Jack was proud to have decorated cookies to serve at dessert too.
I’ve been on a mission this year to enjoy the holiday season more than I have in years past. Finding ways to squeeze in holiday fun with Jack and watching him enjoy all the wonder of the season has been key. Things don’t have to be picture perfect or 100% from scratch to matter. Spending time together is what counts. This little cookie activity was just the thing we needed!
Have you found any holiday hacks or cheats to help you out this season? I’d love some more tips as we head into the final countdown!
Disclaimer: We were provided with cookie samples from Walker’s – no other compensation was provided. All opinions are my own.