Darcy Lenz
Yield
Serves 16 (serving size: 9 cookies)

A giant bag of animal cracker cookies was consistently among my family's must-pack beach snacks during the summer, and while I didn't turn out to be much of a sun-n-surf kind of lady in my adult life, I treasure memories of plopping down soggy, sandy, and totally spent on a blanket loaded up with snacks after a long afternoon of having it out with the waves.

As it turns out, churning out a homemade rendition of this cookie jar classic isn't difficult at all—in fact, these animal cracker cookies would make a great recipe to tackle with little kitchen helpers. Swapping white flour for a blend of white whole-wheat and oat flours provides fiber and a delightfully nutty sweetness that you aren't going to find on the supermarket shelf. I used a set of mini animal-shaped cookie cutters from Wilton, but you can make them in whatever shapes you and your crew like best. Be sure to store the cookies in an airtight container once they've cooled to keep them fresh for up to 1 week.

How to Make It

Step 1

Combine first 5 ingredients in a bowl, stirring with a whisk until combined; set aside.

Step 2

Combine butter, sugar, and honey the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment; beat at medium speed 3 minutes or until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and egg; beat until just combined. Add flour mixture a little at a time, beating until combined. Press dough into a flat disc; wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Refrigerate 1 hour.

Step 3

Preheat oven to 350°F. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface; roll to 1/4-inch-thickness. Cut the dough into shapes using miniature animal-shaped cookie cutters. Transfer cookies to 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets.

Step 4

Bake cookies at 350°F for 7 to 8 minutes or until lightly golden brown, rotating pans halfway through baking. Cool 1 to 2 minutes on baking sheet; transfer cookies to wire wracks to cool completely. Repeat with remaining dough scraps. Transfer cooled cookies to an airtight container.

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