Pros: Easy to make, consistent taste and texture, works well with cookie press or roll out
While I enjoy cooking in general, baking and making sweets is my real passion. Whenever I am invited to a friend's house, a potluck, or just about any event, the host or planner knows that they can put me down for a dessert of some kind. I often bake from scratch, either using a tried and true recipe or giving a new one a try, but other times, using a mix just works better for me. Using the Krusteaz Holiday Christmas Cookies - Sugar Cookies Kit has been a great help in my kitchen for quite a few holiday seasons.
My children like to roll out and decorate sugar cookies for both Chanukah and Christmas, and if I am going to a party, a platter of cookies prepared with a cookie press makes a nice presentation since they come out uniform in shape and size. However, if the cookie dough used is too wet and sticky or too dry and crumbly, you will have a big mess on your hands rather than beautiful cookies. I have tried many recipes for sugar cookies over the years and none have given me the consistent correct texture, along with good taste, as this Krusteaz mix has.
I have only seen this mix in my warehouse-type stores, but each year, it is there on the shelf. The box contains dry cookie mix, a pouch of dry icing mix, red and green food coloring, red and green sprinkles and three plastic cookie cutters (a snowman, a star and a Christmas tree).
All you need to add to the mix to prepare the cookies is water. I often add red or green food coloring to a portion of the mix to make more festive looking cookies. I usually simply stir the mix and the water together by hand, but the instructions state that if a mixer is used, it should be kept on a low speed for only about thirty seconds.
If you are rolling the dough, it should be spread to 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch thick, and if you are making drop cookies, about a tablespoon of dough should be used. The cookie cutters that are included are about 3.5" and for that size, the cookies should be baked for 10 to 12 minutes at 375 degrees. When I use a cookie press, the cookies are about half that size and I bake them for 8 to 10 minutes.
These cookies do not spread very much while baking, so that you can place them fairly close together on the baking sheet, which means that the baking process goes faster since more can be prepared each time.
To make the icing, combine the full pouch of the icing mix with 1/3 cup of hot water. Mix with an electric mixer on low speed for thirty seconds, then mix for five more minutes on medium-high speed. Divide the icing equally into three bowls and mix the red into one bowl and the green to another bowl. Ice the cookies when they have completely cooled and use the sprinkles to make them more festive.
These Krusteaz Holiday Cookies are Kosher, but do contain wheat, milk, eggs and soy and are processed on equipment that also handles peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, milk, eggs and soy.
The box indicates that it contains enough mix to create five and a half dozen cookies, but that depends on the type and size of cookies that you are making. Included are ideas on how to decorate your finished cookies, how to make cookie ornaments and recipes for using this mix as a base for other flavored cookies such as peppermint and gingerbread.
This kit is perfect for using with children or for first-time bakers since it really is an all-in-one product since contains cookie mix, icing, cookie cutters and decorating items. Even though this is marketed for Christmas cookie making, I usually purchase a second box around the winter holidays and use it to bake cookies for Easter since the mix is so easy to use and my family does enjoy the flavor of the cookies. Each time I use this product, whether I roll them out or use a cookie press, the mix is easy to work with and gives the same consistent results.
I have used Krusteaz Holiday Christmas Cookies - Sugar Cookies Kit for a number of years and have always had perfect results. Every so often I try a new recipe for sugar cookies and each time I regret not using Krusteaz' delicious and easy to use mix.