Yeah…that’s how Zach feels about these cookies! I have always loved playing with my food, so making a cookie that I (I mean Zach) can actually play with before baking is perfect. On a play date a few months ago, a friend of mine made cookie batter for the kids to play with and it was so much fun. Parents and kids alike were decorating the colorful batter and scarfing down the delicious snickerdoodle cookies. For months, I have been meaning to bake these cookies with Zach and I just never had the time or patience to get to it. But, with school done and camp a week and a half away, I have been looking for anything I can do to keep us all busy. So the snickerdoodle recipe came out and the play-dough cookies were born again!
Play-Dough Cookie Ingredients
2 3/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup unsalted margarine, room temperature
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 tsp vanilla
food coloring, whatever colors you want
I just had to get Zach involved in the baking process since he would be the one playing with the dough. He LOVES to cook with me in the kitchen so this recipe was perfect for him. I gave him the task of whisking together the flour, salt and baking powder. Only a little mess was made.
Separately, I mixed the margarine and sugar and beat until smooth, around 2-3 minutes. I added the eggs, one at a time, beating well between each addition. Zach loved watching the ingredients mix together in the bowl! It was so cute.
The dough was pretty soft so at this point and I should have covered and refrigerated it for 1-2 hours. That is what you want to do in order to get a firm texture, which will bake in to a nice snickerdoodle cookie. But I was dealing with a very impatient 3-year-old and he wanted to play with the cookies right away. So I separated the batter in to three pans and mixed in some green, yellow and blue food coloring. Don’t forget to wear gloves so you don’t dye your hands!
If you have the time, wait until the batter is firm then add the dye because it will be easier to mix. Sticky dough is very hard to work with, but I made it happen for Zach!
Next came the fun part! I set up a plastic tablecloth in my dining room and Zach chose his seat. He picked out some animal cookie cutters and I gave him mini chocolate chips and star sprinkles, which he snacked on while I got the play-dough ready. Now remember, Zach’s dough was quite sticky since he didn’t have the patience to wait, but it was still so much fun to play with. I helped him make shapes and let him get to work on his cookies, although I think he ate more than he decorated.
I baked the cookies on parchment paper in the oven at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes. Since the dough did not have the time to firm up in the fridge, the cookies didn’t really keep their shape when baked, but Zach didn’t care. They were delicious! If you make this recipe the correct way, your shapes will hold and the dough will be soft and chewy! But good luck getting your kids to wait. In that case, you might have to hide in the kitchen and make the dough yourself earlier in the day on your own.
If you want to make these cookies for adults, you can follow the directions of a regular snickerdoodle recipe, but I think it is way more fun to play with your food!