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Mrs. B's Christmas Bells

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 3 hr (includes chilling time)
  • Active: 25 min
  • Yield: about 4 1/2 dozen
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1 1/4 cups packed dark brown sugar

1 cup unsalted butter, softened 

1/4 cup dark corn syrup 

1 large egg 

1 tablespoon heavy cream 

1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest (from 1 large lemon)

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface

1 tablespoon instant espresso

1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger 

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon baking soda 

1/2 teaspoon table salt 


1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar

1 tablespoon maraschino cherry juice (from jar)

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened

1 1/2 cups finely chopped toasted pecans 

27 maraschino cherries without stems, halved (from two 10-ounce jars)


  1. Make the Dough: Beat the brown sugar and butter with an electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in the corn syrup, egg, cream, and lemon zest. Whisk together the flour, instant espresso, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl; gradually add to the butter mixture, and beat at low speed until combined. Shape the dough into a flat disk; wrap with plastic wrap. Chill the dough until firm, at least 2 hours.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Make the Filling: Stir together the brown sugar, maraschino cherry juice and butter until blended; stir in the pecans.
  4. Roll the dough to 1/8-inch thickness on a lightly floured surface. Cut with a 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter. Place the dough circles 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheets.
  5. Place 1/2 teaspoon of the filling in the center of each dough circle. Shape into a cone by folding the edges of the dough to meet over the filling; pinch the edges together. Place 1 cherry half at the opening end of each bell for the clapper.
  6. Bake until golden brown, about 12 minutes. Cool on the pans for 5 minutes; remove to a wire rack to cool completely.