Candy corn has the worst rap. Of all the Halloween candies, it is up there with Bit-O-Honey for most reviled seasonal treat. But I seriously don't get it. I love the stuff, particularly when it's mixed up with peanuts or other salty goodness.
My kids love it too, bless their hearts. I realize it’s not exactly health food, so I don’t buy it in bulk or anything, much as I might want to. I did, however, make a delicious cookie inspired by the treat recently that we thought was pretty fun.
Halloween is a blast for kids and I’m not afraid to get all “Martha Stewart” about it, in my own more “Roseanne Barr” way. These were easy and cheap to make and, though they don’t taste like real candy corn, are a fun treat to make the season seem just a little more special.
I loved this because it's just simple ingredients that most of us probably have lying around: sugar, butter, shortening, vanilla, food coloring. So basic, but fun for kids to help with and a pretty cute product when it's finished. And there's no messy frosting or fancy piping that needs to happen. The decoration is built right in.
'Candy Corn' Cookies
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 teaspoon salt
3 cups flour
Red food coloring
Yellow food coloring
Combine the sugars, butter and shortening in a mixing bowl and beat well.
Add in the egg, and vanilla and again, combine thoroughly.
In another bowl, combine the dry ingredients and then slowly add them into the sugar mixture. It should create a very nice soft dough.
When everything is mixed, separate the dough into three sections: small, medium and large. The small section will be yellow, the medium will be left "white" or natural, and the large will be orange.
Add food coloring to get your desired colors and mix it thoroughly. I found the paddle on my stand mixer to be the best way to do this.
Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap and layer in the dough, bringing it to a smaller point as you go. First, the widest white layer, then a thicker but less-wide orange layer, and then a smaller and narrower yellow layer.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a least a few hours.
When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 F. Slice the "loaf" from top to bottom and roll out. I had to use a knife to cut off the sides at a nice angle — this will leave nice scraps for a few "hodgepodge" cookies at the end.
The thicker you can roll these, the better. It will only make about 10 good-sized cookies, but that's all you need! They're rather large.
My cookies are very imperfect and not "Pinterest-worthy" but I think that makes them even more fun.
I only baked them for about 5 or 6 minutes. A little underbaked is better than too crispy in my opinion.