I LOVE Halloween. I love candy and dressing up ridiculously and I especially love putting Junior in costumes, so clearly it’s a great holiday. Junior has a pumpkin costume, which is pretty adorable (if you couldn’t have guessed) but you know what’s even more adorable? Junior, wearing his PUMPKIN costume, in a PUMPKIN patch!
Dan and I took Junior to a dog-friendly pumpkin patch, complete with a dog-friendly corn maze, and I though it would be a great idea for Junior to wear his pumpkin costume! Which, obviously, it was. We explored the corn maze and picked out some perfect pumpkins to carve to get in the Halloween spirit.
But, Junior wasn’t the only one to have a costume. I made myself a fantastic pinata costume and Dan dressed up in a sombrero (along with some face paint). Afterwards, my sister suggested Junior should have been a burrito (my brother’s idea was a chalupa) to complete the look, which would have been great but the idea came post-Halloween. Maybe next year. (Hopefully next year!)
However, all of this has nothing to do with baking! I knew I wanted to make something festive for the occasion, and initially thought of making something with pumpkin, but I am really not a big fan of pumpkin. I know a lot of you probably are but I’ve never really gotten into it! Instead, I settled on something more to my liking–sugar cookies. Specifically, sugar cookies in bar form made in candy corn colors! I thought they were quite appropriate.
They’re easy to make (bar cookies are rapidly becoming my favorite things because they’re so easy) and were a big hit in the math department. They’re a nice alternative to onslaught of pumpkin baked goods we’re faced with every fall.
Candy Corn Sugar Cookie Bars
makes 50 bars (a 9×13 inch pan)
For the cookies:
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 tbsp sour cream
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
red and yellow food coloring
For the frosting:
4 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup softened butter
1/4 cup half and half
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 9×13 inch baking pan and/or line with parchment paper. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 3-5 minutes). Mix in the egg, sour cream, and vanilla. In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, and salt, and add (slowly) to the wet ingredients until just combined.
Separate the dough into two halves, adding yellow food coloring to one half and red and yellow to the other (to make orange) until the dough is colored to your liking. I found that the best way to distribute the coloring evenly was to just knead the dough by hand. Roll the yellow dough into a rectangle (roughly 9×13) and place in to the prepared pan, smushing it around to cover the bottom evenly. Roll the orange dough out and place on top of the yellow dough, again smushing it as necessary to make an even second layer. Don’t press the orange dough too hard, though, because you want a nice, even line in your final product! Bake the cookies for 17-20 minutes, until the edges are just beginning to brown. Cool completely.
While the cookies are cooling, make the frosting. Combine 2 cups of the powdered sugar with the butter, half and half, vanilla, and salt. Once that is well combined, mix in the rest of the powdered sugar to make a nice, thick frosting. When the cookies are completely cooled, spread the frosting on top in a smooth, even layer. Cut the bars into squares and cut each square in half to make candy corn triangles.