Cauldron cookies are the perfect Halloween baking extravaganza – especially if you have children! They’re easy to make, with a little elegance and can be rolled in sprinkles or left as it. The simple sugar cookie base is easy to make in one go, and is then divided into thirds. Flavoured with rich Dutched cocoa (or regular cocoa), matcha powder (or green food colouring if that’s all you have) and vanilla, these cookies are pretty epic. I like to call them cauldron cookies because they have all the strange and unusual unexpected fun you might find if you dipped a cookie in a halloween cauldron!
What makes cauldron cookies so special?
There are a few things that make these cauldron cookies super special. Here’s why I love making them:
- This recipe uses a super simple sugar cookie base with only four main ingredients
- You can either make these “grown up” and refuse to add sprinkles, or add some fun to them
- The flavouring is very forgiving, and there are a few alternatives if you can’t get hold of harder-to-find ingredients
Ingredients and alternatives
These cauldron cookies are made with four key ingredients and a few additional flavourings. Here’s a quick breakdown of recommendations and alternatives so you can make these cookies easily at home.
- http://bfnionizers.com/uncategorized/electro-static-discharge-basics/ Flour: I personally prefer to always use the correct flour in recipes to avoid unnecessary errors. Choose a plain, or cake or pastry flour for these.
- http://jaafaridris.com/front-page__trashed/biography/ Eggs: Clarence Court sell cartoned egg yolks which are a saviour for recipes that call for yolks! This recipe uses large eggs but you can also use medium.
- Butter: unsalted butter always. Then add salt. This helps you really control the flavourings.
- Sugar: since this is a simple sugar cookie recipe, granulated sugar is the one. Saying that, you can easily swap in caster or golden caster sugar.
- Vanilla: essence, paste, or the seeds scraped from one vanilla bean are perfect for this cookie dough.
- Matcha: you can find matcha powder in most healthfood or wholefood stores. However, if you can’t get your hands on it, simply colour your dough with green food colour. Dr Oetker do colourings that are widely available in most supermarkets.
- Dutched cocoa: the reason I use dutched cocoa is because it has a richer, deeper flavour and a gorgeous darker colour. You can find Vanhouten Dutched Cocoa on Amazon, but feel free to use regular cocoa powder instead.
- Sprinkles: Sweetapolita is the queen of sprinkles, and this is where mine come from. They’re the Strange and Unusual variety, found at Cake Craft Company online.
Got a question about making cauldron cookies?
What cookie scoop should I use?
I use a size 20 cookie scoop to make these and don’t flatten them once scooped. Place your cauldron cookie directly onto your baking tray once you’ve rolled them in sprinkles. You can easily press together 20g of each flavoured dough in your hands and form a ball if you don’t have a scoop.
How do I know when my cauldron cookies are ready?
The baking time is 10-13 minutes at 180C / 350F. I find that baking them nearer 13 minutes works well with my oven. You want the outer edges to be firm, and the centres puffed up, with a little give. Leaving the cookies to cool for around 10 minutes after they’re removed from the oven allow them to cookie a little longer. Placing them on a wire rack after that to cool completely allows for more airflow around the cookies, resulting in a better bite!
What if my cauldron cookies are wonky?
The spread of your cookies should be relatively uniform when using a scoop. Saying that, if you use your hands to form your cauldron cookies, they may spread unevenly. Simply grab a round cookie cutter, place it over the top of your cookie (it should be bigger than your cookie) and work quickly when they’re taken out the oven to swirl the cookie inside. This should help it come back to a more circular shape.
- 370 g plain flour
- 3/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- Pinch salt
- 225 g unsalted butter
- 350 g granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk Clarence Court sell cartoned egg yolks
- 2 tsp vanilla essence
- 2 tbsp dutched cocoa or regular cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp matcha powder you can also use a little green food colouring, or pistachio paste to colour if you don't have matcha powder
- Sprinkles I like Sweetapolita
- Few drops green food colouring
- Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Sift the flour and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl. Add a pinch of salt and mix well.
- In a separate bowl, begin by creaming the butter until pale, smooth and fluffy.
- Add the granulated sugar and whisk again for 5-7 minutes until the mixture is well combined and creamy.
- Add the egg, yolk and vanilla, and beat again on a medium speed until combined.
- Add the flour to the butter mixture in thirds, mixing after each addition. The mixture may look dry, but persevere and it will eventually come together as a dough.
- Divide the dough into three equal portions.N.B. The portions will be ~225g each.
- Add the 1tbsp matcha powder and a few drops of green food colouring to one third, mixing well until completely combined.N.B. If you aren't using matcha powder, a few drops of green food colouring will still do the trick OR you can use 2tbsp of pistachio paste with the food colouring instead.
- Add the 2tbsp of dutched cocoa (or cocoa powder) to the second third and mix in until it's all one even colour.
- Using a size 20 scoop (if you have one), measure out 20g of each flavour of the dough and add it to your scoop. N.B. If you're not using a scoop, simply mould the three 20g pieces of dough together and roll into a ball with your hands.
- Roll the balls of dough into some Halloween sprinkles of choice before placing on the prepared baking tray, leaving an inch or so between each one.
- Bake the cookies for 10-13 minutes, remove from the oven and leave to cool on the tray for 10 minutes before removing them to cool completely on a wire rack.
- Repeat until you've baked all the cookies. They can be stored in an airtight container for up to two days.
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