Easy holiday gifts kids can make

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By GreatSchools Staff

Thumb-print cookies

Children love making these classic cookies. Sticking their thumbs into warm cookie dough and then filling their thumbprints with sweet fillings is almost as thrilling as sharing (or eating) the finished product! If you use a variety of fillings, such as ruby red strawberry jam, sapphire berry preserve, bronze pumpkin pie filling or golden lemon curd, these cookies will make an impressive collection for a gift box. In shaping and squishing the dough and assembling the "jewel"-encrusted cookies, your child will practice the valuable math and reading skills of measuring ingredients and following step-by-step instructions.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

What you'll need:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon double-acting baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • a variety of fillings: strawberry jam, blueberry preserves, pumpkin pie filling and/or lemon curd

How to make them:

  1. Smash the sugar and butter together with a fork
  2. Beat in the vanilla, eggs, flour, baking powder and salt
  3. Roll the dough into a ball
  4. Chill the dough for 1/2 hour
  5. Pinch off pieces of dough and roll into 1-inch balls
  6. Place the dough balls on a lightly greased and floured cookie sheet
  7. Bake for 5 minutes
  8. Remove the cookies from the oven, let cool briefly, then make a thumbprint in each one
  9. Put the cookies back in the oven and continue baking until done, about 8 minutes
  10. When the cookies are cool, fill the pits with a bit of jelly, jam, pumpkin pie filling or lemon curd.
  11. Put them in a gift box or a basket with a festive holiday napkin for gift giving.

Comments from readers

"UHm yes great idea s i LUV it but how bout non food gifts Hmmmmm!!!"
"These are great idea's and im a kid aswell and think they easy as pie!!!"
"wow the hot chocolate is a great idea. and also i am a kid and even i find it easy to make. thats a very good thing. keep up the good work. Happy Holidays! Anonymous :0)"
"I thought this artice was great. I printed several different gift/crafts for our two youngsters to make. thanks a bunch and we will have fun making them,"
"I think it is wonderful that these ideas have been shared with us. I have a first grader who loves to create things and give them to loved ones. Lori A."