Those fancy Halloween slice-and-bake cookies are a breeze to make at home thanks to a little food coloring. And trust us, these candy corn cookies are infinitely more delicious than the Halloween candy they’re inspired by (no offense if you like candy corn). Easy to make and absolutely adorable, these autumn-inspired treats are as perfect to send for the kids’ school Halloween party as they are to bring to your own fall festivities. You can even prep the dough a few days in advance and refrigerate, so that baking off the candy corn cookies is a breeze on the day you plan to eat them. Just follow the recipe through step 3, and be sure to wrap the loaf pan tightly with a few layers of plastic wrap.
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
Yellow food coloring
Red food coloring
How to Make It
Beat butter and sugar together at medium speed with an electric mixer 2 minutes. Beat in egg and vanilla extract. Combine flour, salt, and lemon zest; gradually stir into butter mixture.
Divide dough into 3 equal pieces (about 1 1/4 cups each); tint 1 piece with yellow food coloring. Tint another piece orange using red and yellow food coloring. (Add 1 to 2 teaspoons flour to orange dough if food coloring makes it softer than other colors.)
Place white, untinted dough in bottom of a 9- x 5-inch loaf pan, pressing down. Top with orange dough and then yellow, pressing down. Cover and chill 2 hours.
Turn dough out onto work surface. Cut slices 3/8-inch thick from dough; cut each slice into 6 triangles. Place cookies on parchment paper–or aluminum foil–lined baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 7 to 8 minutes, or until set but not browned. Cool on wire rack 1 minute; transfer to wire racks to cool completely.