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Candy cane cookies on a wire rack

Candy cane cookies

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  • Preparation and cooking time
    • Prep:
    • Cook:
  • Easy
  • Makes 12 large cookies

Keep the kids busy during the Christmas holidays by making these festive candy cane cookies using a mixture of red and green food colourings

  • Vegetarian
Nutrition: Per serving


  • 170g unsalted butter
  • 115g caster sugar
  • 300g plain flour
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • green and red gel food colourings


  • STEP 1

    Heat the oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5 and line two large baking trays with non-stick baking parchment. Beat the butter and sugar together in a large bowl using a wooden spoon or in a stand mixer until soft, pale and fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go.

  • STEP 2

    Tip in the flour, milk, vanilla bean paste and a pinch of salt, and mix everything together using a wooden spoon until you have a dough. Divide the dough into two pieces, and set one half aside. Divide that piece in half again. Colour one half with red food colouring gel and the other with green. They must be a dark, intense shade because they will lighten slightly as they bake.

  • STEP 3

    Roll golf-ball-sized pieces of the plain dough into 15 x 1cm sausages between your palms, then repeat with the red and green doughs. On a work surface, lay a plain dough sausage parallel to a red or green one. Join the bottoms together, then lightly twist along the length. Do this gently – don’t be tempted to press them together or the colours may meld. One by one, carefully lift each twist of dough, place on one of the prepared trays and curl at the top to form a hooked candy cane. Repeat until all the dough is used (you should have about 12 canes), spacing them apart by about 5cm.

  • STEP 4

    Bake for 12-14 mins until set and slightly golden. Leave to cool slightly on the trays before transferring to wire racks to cool completely. Will keep in an airtight container for up to three days.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, November 2021

Goes well with


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