These Reindeer Animal Cookies add a seasonal spin and tip a nostalgic nod to childhood classic. The crisp, honey sweet cookies are spiced with warm cinnamon and a tart hit of bright and earthy sumac. They get dipped in creamy white chocolate and topped with wintery white sprinkles.
REINDEER ANIMAL COOKIES
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon ground sumac (- or sub in lemon zest)
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter (- at room temperature)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg (- at room temperature)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
WHITE CHOCOLATE ICING
- 12 ounces white chocolate melting wafers or baking bar
- 2 tablespoons white sprinkles
- 1 teaspoon red sprinkles for Rudolph noses (- optional)
REINDEER ANIMAL COOKIES
- Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and sumac in medium bowl and set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, sugar and honey together on high speed for about 5 minutes, until the mix is light and fluffy. Stopping the mixer occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the egg, vanilla and almond extract and beat for about a minute, stopping the mixer once to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the dry ingredients and beat on low speed until the flour has been absorbed.
- On a clean work surface, divide dough and form into 2 equal balls. Shape the balls into disks and wrap separately in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 2 days. Or wrap tightly and freeze up to 2 months.
- Let the dough stand at room temperature for 10-15 minutes. Remove the plastic wrap. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface and sprinkle the top with a bit of flour. Roll out the dough to a 1/8" thickness. (If the dough cracks while rolling, let it stand at room temperature for a few more minutes.)
- Gently stamp out as many reindeer shapes as possible from the rolled dough. Transfer the reindeer to a parchment lined baking sheet and chill in the freezer for at least 20 minutes. This will help keep the cookies from spreading and keep their sharp edges. Re-roll the remaining scraps and stamp out as many reindeer as possible until the dough is all accounted for.
- Preheat an oven to 350°F and line baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpat mats.
Fill the baking sheets with the chilled reindeer cookies. These cookies won't expand too much so you can place them fairly close together on the sheet (at least 1/2" – 3/4" apart).
- Bake the cookies for 10-15 minutes (depending on the size of your cookies) until the edges start to turn a golden brown. Transfer the cookies to wire racks and let allow cool to room temperature.
ICING THE REINDEER ANIMAL COOKIES
- While the cookies are cooling, line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper or if you have available cooling racks, have them ready.
- Using a double boiler or a heatproof bowl over a saucepan, melt the white chocolate over just simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth.
- Working in rows or batches, dip cookies, one at a time and face down, into the melted white chocolate. I only covered the front halves of the cookies. Set the cookies backside down, with the chocolate side facing up, on the prepared baking sheets or cooling racks. Then top with sprinkles, and add red Rudolph noses if you'd like, while the white chocolate is still tacky.
- Repeat the dipping and decorating process with the remaining cookies.
- Allow the chocolate icing on the cookies to set for at least an hour. The chocolate will turn a matte white finish once it's set.
This recipe was adapted from the Frosted Animal Cookies recipe.