Slice and Bake Heart Sugar Cookies

These slice and bake heart cookies are the perfect Valentine’s Day treat. With adorable hearts baked right into the cookie, they’re almost as easy as their store-bought cousins, but way better tasting!

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While I’ve already posted Halloween and Christmas versions of these cookies (and been amazed at their popularity), these hearts are actually where it all began. I pinned this recipe from Lauren’s Latest eons ago.

I spotted the pin on one of my boards while searching for inspiration for a Halloween treat, and my pumpkin slice and bake cookies evolved from there. However, I didn’t actually look at Lauren’s post until I started thinking about Valentine’s Day cookies. She uses a cookie cutter to form the colored inside of the cookie, which is way simpler and more precise than what I’ve done previously. So consider these cookies Slice and Bake 2.0!

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Before we get into the cookies, I’m going off topic a little to tell you what I was up to last weekend! Last week’s post was a little late because I was off having a blast in the city.

Something that you may not know about me is that I am a huge figure skating fan. I was never a skater myself, but have loved watching the sport since I was a teen. The Canadian Figure Skating Championships were in Halifax this year, so of course I had to be there to watch. It was a great event, especially the ladies final. Gabrielle Daleman and Alaine Chartrand laid down two of the best skates I’ve ever seen back-to-back! I also enjoyed going to a few of the practices and getting to meet some of the skaters. Here’s where it gets a little silly: it’s become a tradition that when my friend and I go to a skating event, we get skaters to pose with a stuffed animal. Usually it’s a penguin, but since we were on the East Coast I went with a lobster this time around! Here he is hanging out with Patrick Chan!

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Ok, now back to the cookies!

Start with your favourite sugar cookie dough. My go-to recipe comes from Our Best Bites and can be found in this post.

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You’ll also need red or pink gel food coloring and a small heart cookie cutter (1 1/2 to 2 inches across.) I found a pack of different sized heart cutters for $2 at the grocery store and used the 2 inch cutter.

 

Divide the dough into thirds, covering and refrigerating ⅔ of the dough. I like to use my kitchen scale to be precise, but you’d be fine eyeballing it too.

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Tint the other third to the color of your choosing. I ended up with a really pretty dark pink.

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Roll the red/pink dough out between two sheets of waxed paper. The dough doesn’t need to be very thin – just bit thinner than the height of your cookie cutter.

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Transfer the dough to a baking sheet or cutting board and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes.

 

After chilling, cut as many hearts as you can out of the dough.

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Carefully stack the hearts into two equal towers, keeping the edges all aligned.

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Re-roll the scraps and cut more hearts. Stack them onto the towers, but be gentle as the re-rolled dough will be softer and more easily mangled.

Wrap the towers of hearts in plastic wrap, and freeze for about 30 minutes or until firm.

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Take the un-tinted dough out of the fridge a bit before you need it, so it softens enough to work with.

Now you need to surround the hearts with plain dough. You can accomplish this any way you like! Check out Lauren’s post for her suggestions, I took some shortcuts but found they worked fine. Here’s how I did it:

Divide the un-tinted dough in half.

From each half, take 3 small balls and roll them into “snakes”, as long as the stack of hearts. Press one snake into the top of heart, between the “bumps,” and flatten the other two against the sides of the heart. This helps to round the shape out a bit.

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Roll the rest of the dough into a rough rectangle and wrap it around the hearts. It doesn’t need to be perfect, just make sure it’s all covered. Squish the dough in to cover any gaps. I found that I had a bit more plain dough than I needed – but this will depend on how big your hearts are and how big you want the cookies to be. Scraps can be re-rolled and cut out as regular cookies.

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Roll the dough log gently to smooth it all out.

Chill the dough for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Slice the dough log into 1/4 inch slices, rotating it 1/4 turn each time to prevent flat spots.

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So cute! I love the moment when you cut into cookies like this and see that the shape turned out perfectly!

Place the cookies 2 inches apart on a lined baking sheet.

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Bake for 8 to 12 minutes, depending on the size of the cookie. They’re done when the edges are set and the bottoms are just starting to get golden.

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Cute and tasty!

Since there’s no icing involved, these cookies are perfect for a school Valentine’s Day party. Package a few up for your sweetheart!

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The recipe makes about 20 2 1/2 inch cookies.

Stay tuned for some really cute Valentine’s Day treats coming up!

 

 

 

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