Recipe courtesy of Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger

Chile Pepper Christmas Cookies

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 40 min
  • Prep: 30 min
  • Cook: 10 min
  • Yield: about 4 dozen 3-inch cookies
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12 tablespoons unsalted butter

3/4 cup sugar

1 large egg

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

Cookie Paint:

2 large egg yolks, lightly beaten and separated in equal portions into 2 or more bowls or cups

food coloring


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Soften the butter. In a mixing bowl, cream the sugar and butter and add the egg, lemon zest and vanilla. Beat until blended. Whisk together the flour and salt and gradually add them to the creamed mixture, on low speed. Add some water, a few drops at a time, until the dough starts to come away from the side of the bowl.
  3. Roll out dough to 1/8-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface. Cut out chile pepper shapes, using a cookie cutter or freehand. Transfer shapes to greased or nonstick cookie sheets.
  4. Using a few drops of food coloring at a time, color the egg yolk in each cup, as desired. Using a small, clean paint brush, paint the chile pepper red and its stem green.
  5. Bake 8 to 12 minutes or until the cookies begin to brown around the edges. Dust with red or green sprinkles if desired.