These cookies are so much fun for Halloween, not to mention, delicious! Cater them to your holiday of choice with different colors.
As much as I prepared before launching Keep It Sweet Desserts, there is so much learning that I’ve done on the job over the last few months. Countless lessons learned, mistakes made, products changed and instances of thinking on my feet. I’ve been mentally making a list but I thought I’d share a few of the more important highlights*.
1) When you do anything for the first time, you won’t get it 100% right. Learn from the challenges and mistakes to do it better next time.
2) There is no one right way. Talk to people and get advice but figure out what is best for you and your business, one strategy does not fit all.
3) But still, talk to people. Take what pieces of advice you can and implement them when and how you can. I talked to someone in marketing a few weeks ago and was overwhelmed by all of the ideas she had because there is no way that I can do everything. However, I picked a few elements that I could act on right away and did that.
4) And along with that, there is ALWAYS more work to do; prioritize, prioritize, prioritize.
5) There is always more work to do, force yourself to take breaks (for me that is out of the kitchen and away from the computer). I spend a lot of my time working from home so whenever I am home I feel like I need to be productive. If I never take a break, I’ll burn myself out and that won’t get my business anywhere.
6) Be patient. Don’t hire people, build kitchens and buy equipment until you are over capacity. I actually learned this in my last job but constantly am reminded of how important it is to be conservative with my growth expectations.
7) Think long term and invest in the future, whether through time, money or people. Find a way to balance this with being patient.
8) Put yourself out there. Send emails, make phone calls, go to networking events. This is something I still need to work on. I’m always afraid of being too pushy, but no one made money waiting for business to show up at their door.
9) Give. The other day I was talking to the CIO of a major company. He is one of the most successful people I know, yet he is also one of the most generous. He is generous with his family, friends, community and colleagues in a way I constantly admire. He said to me, “the more you give, the more you get back.”
10) Stay months ahead of the holidays. Believe it or not, I’m already behind on Valentine’s Day. For someone who is a notorious procrastinator, It is almost a miracle that I’m getting you a Halloween recipe a few weeks in advance.
These cookies are easy and fun to make. I took a simple sugar cookie base and sandwiched it with one of my favorite buttercreams. Plus, I made them mini, which is always fun.
- 13⅞ ounces (3 cups) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon table salt
- 13⅛ ounces (1¾ cups) granulated sugar
- 2⅛ ounces (1/4 cup packed) light-brown sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
- 1 extra-large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅔ cups Halloween colored sprinkles
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 sticks) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
- 2 ounces regular or light cream cheese
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 26 drops yellow food coloring
- 13 drops red food coloring
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees; line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda and salt; set aside
- In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat together butter and sugars on high speed for several minutes or until mixture is light and fluffy; scrape sides of the bowl with a spatula
- Add egg and vanilla and beat on medium speed for a 2 minutes; scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula
- With mixer on low, slowly and carefully add the flour mixture; add the sprinkles and mix just until combined; use a spatula to fold the sprinkles completely into the batter
- Use a small cookie dough scoop (about 1 tablespoon) to scoop the cookie dough onto prepared baking sheets with each cookie about an inch apart
- Bake for 7-9 minutes or until cookies feel slightly firm to the touch
- Set cookies aside to cool and prepare filling
- Beat butter and cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer on high speed or until light and creamy
- Add ½ cup of powdered sugar and mix on low speed for one minute; add remaining sugar, vanilla and food coloring
- Mix on low speed for one minute and then scrape the sides of the bowl; beat on high speed for several minutes or until buttercream is light and fluffy
- Match cookies in pairs so that each side is about the same size
- Spread about 1 teaspoon of frosting on the bottom of one cookie from each pair
- Top other cookie and press down lightly
- Store cookies in an airtight container up to three days; may be frozen for up to one month
*In no specific order.
OMG these look so good!!
So cute, Lauren! I love sandwich cookies, and even more that these are halloween themed!
Seems like you’re doing pretty awesome to me. :) These sandwiches are so cute!
First off, this is awesome advice. I particularly love number 8. Secondly, the photos in this post are absolutely stunning! You’re just the most ridiculously talented person!
Many great take aways in your business advice Lauren!
However I was super distracted by the cookies. Anything in “mini” form is my favorite.
I wish you continued success and I look forward to hearing about other things you have learned now that you are self employed :)
Great advice! I’m so impressed with the way you’ve built your business in a short time. The cookies are adorable, so perfect for the season!
Excellent points! I agree with all of them and I love, love, love the cookies. So festive and in-season. :)
Great advice, Lauren! Number 1 especially…I think we tend to beat ourselves up too soon if things don’t fall in line with what we were expecting.
I love these cookies! The colours are perfect for fall (and I adore anything that’s filled with buttercream)! :D
These are so festive!! Love it!
I LOVE these tips and how REAL they are…if I ever decide to start my own business I’m picking your brain for advice. Also…cookies…swoon. I was always convinced that the halloween oreos tasted better because of the orange buttercream…and I’m sure it gives these some oomph also. :P
These are so adorable and festive! I’ll definitely be making them for the Halloween season!
Yay, I hope you like them!
Excellent points! And these cookie sandwiches look delicious! Thank you for sharing another lovely recipe. A much needed jump start to a slow and dreary morning. I hope you have a beautiful day!
These are beautiful and so, so perfect for Halloween! Great photos!
And wonderful advice :)
Great advice. And gorgeous little cookies. You’re so talented Lauren :-)
I agree! Lauren is so talented :)
Love these and love your photos! They make me want to curl up with a big mug of tea and a whole stack of these :)
Thank you for this post. I was actually thinking about blogging and everything I have to do and organize and your post was very helpful.
I’m so glad to hear that!
These are darling, Lauren! Perfect for kids! …or 26-year-olds :)
I absolutely LOVE hearing how this has been going for you! I imagine you have come A LONG way since this was just a dream in your head- give yourself credit for all you have learned and accomplished so far!…including this amazing dessert!
Excellent advice which i’ll be taking on board with me now that my caramels are for sale (finally) Not quite on the scale you are doing but so many tips you gave can be likened to myself :) I hope your doing awesome, and so right about the holidays. When I worked with Whole Foods, no sooner had we stripped the shelves of one holiday product, the next one would be getting unpacked!
That is so exciting, Gerry! Good luck with your caramels!!
Perfect cookies for the season. The photo’s are outstanding. blessings dear. Catherine
These are too cute!
Love these cookies! Confetti anything is so much fun, and love it in the form of sandwich cookies!
glad to see you featured on foodbuzz today!