To add bushels of fall flavor to your birthday bash, try baking up this cookie scarecrow shaped and decorated by the Crafting Traditions kitchen crew. It starts with Vickie's sugar cookies. "The recipe is a winner with my family and friends," Vickie says. "I am always asked to bring it—or even make it—for people." The scarecrow's easily adapted for other themes besides. For example, try a clown with bouncing balls or an athlete with baseballs instead.—Vickie Wade, Bourbo
A bit thicker than the norm, this sugar cookie is just like one you might find at a good bakery. My children often request these sweet treats for their birthdays and are always happy to help me decorate. —Heather Biedler, Martinsburg, West Virginia
The holidays just wouldn't be the same without cutout cookies. This easy recipe yields cookies so soft they'll melt in your mouth. Have fun baking them in your favorite holiday shapes! —Cathy Hall, Phoenix, Arizona
I make these cookies for my family and our neighbors every Valentine’s Day. The heart-shaped treats stay soft for at least a week, and they look so pretty frosted bright pink and then piped with lacy frosting.—Carolyn Walton, Smoot, Wyoming
I have been delighting my children and grandchildren for years with this special recipe. The cookies can suit any holiday or occasion throughout the year. The dough is very nice to work with.—Judith Scholovich, Waukesha, Wisconsin
"Christmas cutouts signal the season for our family," relates field editor Dawn Fagerstrom of Warren, Minnesota. "Usually I 'paint' these with colorful icing - or if time's short, I simply sprinkle them with colored sugar."
"Sour Cream keeps my favorite sugar cookies extra moist," notes Lisa MacLean of Winslow, Arizona. Dress them up with a drizzle of tinted white chocolate or dip them in white chocolate, then sprinkle with crushed candy canes.
I must have over 100 different cookie cutters and have had fun putting them to use with this recipe over the years. Each Christmas, my brother, sister and I would eagerly wait for Grandpa and Grandma to arrive with these cookies in tow.
—Elizabeth Walters, Waterloo, Iowa