Recipe Ideas




These favorites are sure to be best-sellers at any bake sale fundraiser! Featuring a collection of delicious recipes, as well as tips, photos and heart-warming stories, it's a great resource for inspiration and ideas!






Recipes from Fraya Berg

"I met Gretchen years ago when I was a Food Editor at Ladies Home Journal Magazine. We've been close friends ever since and have a special bond because we're both the kind of people who would do anything for a friend. Anything. I am a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, a former Chef at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, CA, and have been an editor and recipe developer for years."

Fraya's Famous Biscotti

I love making huge batches of cookies, but don't want to spend the entire day baking, so this is my go-to recipe. It takes about 10 minutes to make the dough, another 5 to shape the logs and get them in the oven, and then 25 to bake. While one batch is baking, I usually make another. Then I slice batch #1 while batch #2 bakes. In the end, I have piles and piles of biscotti. What, you may ask, do I do with them? Every time I go to Sloan Kettering to visit Liam I take biscotti to the nurses and hospital staff who are taking care of him.

Makes about 160 biscotti

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar (15 oz.)
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons anise seed
4 cups all-purpose flour (1 lb. 4 oz.)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 pound whole, raw almonds

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

  1. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and beat until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat to combine. Add the anise seed and beat 1 minute. With mixer on low, beat in flour, baking soda and salt until well combined. Add the almonds and mix.

  2. Using cold, wet hands, form the dough into 8 balls and then into 10 inch logs about 1 1/4 inches in diameter. Place on the prepared baking sheets about 3 inches apart. Transfer to the oven and bake until just golden, 25-30 minutes.

  3. Transfer the cooked logs to a cutting board. Using a very sharp, straight edged or serrated knife, slice the logs on a slight diagonal, about 1/3 inch thick. Place slices - cut side down- on unlined baking sheets and bake until just golden and dry to the touch, 15 to 20 minutes.

  4. Cool completely. Store in airtight containers at room temperature for 3 to 4 weeks or freeze for up to 3 months.

Variation: substitute 4 cups walnuts for the almonds and 1 heaping teaspoon grated fresh orange rind for the anise seed.

Seven Layer Bars

Makes 48 bars

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup Angel Flake Coconut (1/2 of a 7 ounces bag)
1 bag (6 ounces) chocolate chips
1 bag (6 ounces) butterscotch chips
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Pour butter into a 9" x 13" baking pan. Add each ingredient, in order, to the pan, patting down after each addition, to make 7 layers. Transfer to the oven and bake until set, 40 to 50 minutes. Set aside to cool completely on a cooling rack, then cut into 1 1/2 inch bars, about 6 x 8. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 to 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Recipes from Marge Perry and David Bonom (aka Uncle Ebo and Aunt Margie)

We met Gretchen and Larry through work, but we fell in love with Liam via email. It was love at first sight when his sonogram arrived in our in-box: even his pre-infancy shadows foretold that this world was about to become a better place-- and every day he proves it.

Perhaps Liam loves to cook because so many of us who love him cook professionally. "Uncle Ebo", a former restaurant chef, and "Aunt Margie", a writer, make their living writing articles and cookbooks and developing recipes for Cooking Light, Better Homes and Gardens, Health, Weight Watchers, Newsday, Self, and many other magazines and newspapers.

Prince Liam's Peanut Butter Cookies

Makes 3 dozen cookies

1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup sugar, plus additional for sprinkling
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup natural style peanut butter, at room temperature
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, preferably unbleached
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup dry roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 3 cookie sheets with parchment paper.

  1. Place the shortening, both sugars, peanut butter, egg, and vanilla in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and beat on medium speed, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides of the bowl, until well combined, about 3 minutes. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the peanut butter mixture and beat on low speed until well combined, 1-2 minutes. Add the peanuts and beat 30 seconds longer.

  2. Drop batter by tablespoons on the prepared cookie sheets, about 1 1/2-inches apart. Roll each tablespoon of batter into a ball. Working one at a time, dip the tines of a fork in sugar and press down a ball of batter, forming a crosshatch on top, into a 1 1/2-1 3/4-inch round.

  3. Transfer to the oven and bake until the edges of the cookies are lightly browned, 12-14 minutes. Cool cookies on cookie sheet on a rack 5 minutes. Transfer cookies to the rack and cool completely.

Recipes from Sally Sampson

Gretchen and I met over the phone and yakked and yakked so much I thought I had known her forever. When we finally met, I loved her immediately. It was never an option for me to not to get involved in this fight. As a cookbook writer I am so thrilled to contribute recipes. I live outside Boston with my two teenage children, with whom I bake an endless supply of cookies.

Ginger Snaps

Ginger snaps are among the most beloved cookies; the subtle but real heat of the ginger, here both fresh and ground, makes this cookie more sophisticated than most.

Makes 3- 4 dozen cookies

1/2 cup (1/4 pound/1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
3 tablespoons dark molasses
1 tablespoon peeled and finely chopped fresh ginger root
2 cups all-purpose white flour
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
For the ginger sugar:
3 tablespoons white sugar
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

  1. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg and molasses, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the remaining ingredients and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again.

  2. To make the ginger sugar: Place the sugar and ginger on a plate and mix until well incorporated. Set aside.

  3. To form the cookies: Break off small pieces and roll into 1-inch balls. Roll the balls in the ginger sugar and place 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Using your hand or the bottom of a water glass, press down until flattened. Alternatively, you can roll the dough into a log. Transfer to the oven and bake until the cookies begin to brown at the edges, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool on the cookie sheet. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining dough.

White Chocolate and Dried Cranberry Cookies

In recent years, white chocolate and dried cranberries have become a trendy combination that will no doubt eventually be considered a classic one.

Makes 3 to 4 dozen

1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats, pulsed well in a food processor
2 cups all-purpose white flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
12 ounces white chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup dried cranberries

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

  1. Place the butter and sugars in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the chocolate and cranberries and mix again.

  2. Drop the dough by heaping teaspoons about 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Alternatively, you can roll the dough into a log. Transfer to the oven and bake until the cookies begin to brown at the edges, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool on the cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining dough.

Jenny deBell's Snickerdoodles

It's hard not to like a cookie with a name like this, if even just to say it out loud. Some say its roots are from New England, while others claim Pennsylvania Dutch and still others say Germany. Whatever its origin, this classic sugar cookie is all about the cinnamon sugar!

Makes 3 to 4 dozen

For the cookies:
1 cup (1/2 pound/2 sticks) unsalted butter, margarine or shortening or a combination, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups white sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 3/4 cups all-purpose white flour
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

For rolling:
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

  1. To make the cookies: Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the remaining ingredients and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again.

  2. To make the cinnamon sugar: Place the sugar and cinnamon on a plate and mix until well combined.

  3. To form the cookies: break off small pieces and roll into 1-inch balls. Roll the balls in the cinnamon sugar and place 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Using your hand or the bottom of a water glass, press down until flattened. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to overnight.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

  1. Transfer to the oven and bake until the cookies begin to brown at the edges, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool on the cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining dough.

Mexican Wedding Cookies

Nutty, crumbly, airy and yet dense, these melt-in-your-mouth cookies are almost impossible to stop eating. They can most easily be distinguished by the obligatory coating of confectioners' sugar on top; if you don't pop these tiny cookies in your mouth you will surely have lips and shirt full of powdered sugar.

Makes 5 dozen

1 cup (1/2 pound/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar, plus additional for rolling
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose white flour
2 cups walnut halves, lightly toasted, cooled and finely ground

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

  1. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the vanilla and mix again. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the remaining ingredients and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again.

  2. Form the dough into 1-inch balls and place 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Transfer to the oven and bake until the cookies are just beginning to brown on the edges, about 15 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack, cool and then roll in confectioners' sugar. Let the cookie sheet cool completely between batches and repeat with the remaining dough.

Paige's Banana Bread

There is not one unusual or special ingredient in this banana bread created by Boston famed pastry chef, Paige Retus, but it is, hands down, the absolute best.

Makes 12 slices or 8 slabs

4 over- ripe bananas
1 pound/1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1-teaspoon vanilla extract
1½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1½ teaspoons baking soda
½ cup chopped toasted walnuts (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter a loaf pan.

  1. Place the bananas and sugar in the bowl of a mixer and whip until smooth, about 2- 3 minutes.

  2. Add the butter, eggs and vanilla extract, whipping well and scraping down the sides of the bowl before each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl; add the flour, salt, baking soda and nuts and mix to combine.

  3. Pour into the prepared pan and transfer to the oven. Bake until golden brown and firm in the center, about one hour.

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

The original Cookies for Kids' Cancer cookie. . .

Makes 3 to 4 dozen

1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup white sugar
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats, pulsed well in a food processor
2 cups all-purpose white flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 cups semi-sweet chocolate morsels or 1 pound semi-sweet chocolate, chunked or roughly grated

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

  1. Place the butter and sugars in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the chocolate and mix again.

  2. Drop the dough by heaping teaspoons about 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Transfer to the oven and bake until the cookies begin to brown at the edges, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool on the cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining dough.

German Chocolate Cookies

The original Cookies for Kids' Cancer cookie. . .

Makes 3 to 4 dozen

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose white flour
1/2 cup unsweetened Dutch process cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups sweetened coconut flakes
1 cup lightly toasted and cooled pecans, coarsely chopped
4 ounces German's sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

  1. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the egg and vanilla, one at a time, mixing well between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the coconut, pecans and chocolate and mix again.

  2. Drop the dough by heaping teaspoons about 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Alternatively, you can roll the dough into a log (see boxed copy, page 00). Transfer to the oven and bake until the underside of the cookie begins to firm up, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool on the cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining dough.

Chocolate Raisin Walnut Oatmeal Cookies

Makes 3 to 4 dozen

1 cup (1/2 pound/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup white sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats, pulsed well in a food processor
2 cups all-purpose white flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups dark raisins or dried cranberries
2 cups lightly toasted walnuts
2 cups (12 ounces) semi-sweet chocolate chips or butterscotch chips

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

  1. Place the butter and sugars in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and mix until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the eggs, one at a time, and vanilla, mixing well between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt and mix until everything is well incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the raisins, walnuts and chips and mix again.

  2. Drop the dough by heaping tablespoons about 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheet. Transfer to the oven and bake until the cookies begin to brown at the edges and are still soft in the middle, about 12 minutes. Cool on the cookie sheet. Transfer to a wire rack and repeat with the remaining dough.

Recipes from Jackie Plant

Liam's diagnosis was a wake-up call for me. Cancer can happen to anyone but it's especially cruel when it strikes a child. I'm not the type of person who takes being a parent for granted. I thank God, Budda, Allah and anyone else listening for giving me each and every day with my daughter. She is the air in my lungs. Knowing that Gretchen and Larry feel the same way about Liam is why I so wanted to be a part of this. The idea of bake sales is so small and simple, but it's small steps taken together that will construct a path to a cure. I am currently the Food and Nutrition Director at Woman's Day magazine and previously was the senior food editor at Parents Magazine. I live in Cranford, New Jersey with my husband, daughter and two puppies.

Two-Tone Treats

Your local school colors work perfectly with this cookie concept.

Makes 18 cookies

1 package (18 oz) refrigerated sugar-cookie dough
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
For the icing:
1 box (1 pound) confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons powdered egg whites
9 tablespoons water, divided
Food coloring

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare cookies according to package directions for cut out cookies, adding the 2/3 cup extra flour. Roll out to 1/4-inch thickness, using additional flour as needed to prevent sticking. With a round 3 1/2-inch cookie cutter, cut out as many circles as possible. Place cookies 1-inch apart on a baking sheet, and bake until golden brown, about 12 minutes. Cool 1 minute. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and cool completely.

To make the icing: Place the confectioners' sugar and 3 tablespoons water in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle and beat until combined. Increase the speed to high, and beat until stiff peaks form. Add the remaining water, thinning to the consistency of heavy cream. Divide the icing into two bowls, and tint each batch the desired color. Using a small knife, spread the icing over half of cookie. Let dry 5 minutes. Spread other half with other color, and let dry completely.

Moya's Oatmeal Cookies

Makes about 4 dozen

1 cup (1/2 pound/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup firmly-packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups quick cooking oats
1 cup raisins
1 cup chopped lightly toasted walnuts

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

Place the butter and sugars in the bowl of mixer fitted with a paddle and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, and vanilla, beat to combine. Add the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt and beat until mixed well. Stir in the raisins and walnuts.

Drop dough by tablespoons onto baking sheets. Transfer to the oven and bake until golden brown, about 12 minutes. Cool 1 minute. Transfer the cookies to wire rack and cool completely.

Gluten Free Cookie Recipe from Jennifer Baki

I have been baking for over ten years in Oregon and Alaska specializing in allergy friendly baked goods. Satisfying a sweet tooth and putting a smile on my customer's faces makes my job worth doing. However, I have never felt more motivated to sell a cookie before hearing about Cookies For Kids' Cancer. Learning about the Witt family's battle with cancer has touched my family and fueled us to join the fight against pediatric cancer. This gluten free macadamia nut cookie is a top seller at Middle Way Cafe in Anchorage, Alaska and it is my hope that this cookie works its way through bake sales around the country to raise money for research!

Gluten free white chocolate macadamia butter cookies with craisins

Makes 5 ½ dozen 3 inch cookies

½ cup unsalted butter at room temperature
3 cups macadamia nut butter
1¼ cups brown sugar
1¼ cups sugar (granulated)
4 eggs
1 T vanilla
5½ cups gluten free flour mix, such as Bob's Red Mill All
Purpose Gluten Free Baking Flour
2 t gluten free baking powder
2 t baking soda
½ tablespoon salt
1, 12 oz bag white chocolate chips
1, 6 oz bag craisins

  1. Grind 4 cups of nuts to yield about 3 cups of nut butter.

  2. In a medium size bowl, mix together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

  3. Add the butter and the macadamia nut butter to a mixer bowl and cream together on medium speed, do not whip.

  4. Add both sugars to the butters and mix on medium low to incorporate.

  5. Slowly mix in the eggs, one at a time, and then add in the vanilla into the bowl to bring together.

  6. Add the dry ingredients to the large bowl and mix to bring together, gently mix in the white chocolate chips and cranberries. Spoon into a bowl of granulated sugar and roll to coat, place onto a parchment lined baking sheet (for easy clean up) and bake in preheated 325° oven for 15 minutes or until cracks have developed on top of the cookies. (BAKED 1 BATCH AT A TIME; SOME NEEDED A HAIR LONGER)

  7. Remove from oven and let cool.

Recipe from Michelle Sohn

This recipe makes everyone from the choc-o-holics to the most disciplined dieters swoon. Whenever they arrive at the OXO offices, people cannot get to the tray of goodies fast enough. They bring a smile to everyone's face, just like Liam always did whenever he stopped by with his mom and dad.

Fluffernutter Crunch Brownies

One box of brownie mix
One container of marshmallow fluff
12 oz bag of chocolate chips
1 cup of peanut butter
1 cup Rice Krispies

  1. Bake brownies according to the recipe in a 9 x 13 pan. Let cool.

  2. Spread layer of marshmallow fluff on the cooled brownies.

  3. Melt 12 oz of chocolate chips, then stir in cup of peanut butter and Rice Krispies. Pour mixture over fluff.

  4. Cover and refrigerate until firm. Cut into squares and serve the ooey-gooey treats as bars. Be warned: they will go FAST!