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
On a bake sale table or alone at home, these feline treats won't last nine lives! The cute candy faces will catch attention fast...and the tasty orange-coconut cake from Doris Barb if El Dorado, Kansas will have folks snatching seconds.
This rich treat is a hit every time I serve it. The chilled filling, brimming with bananas, is refreshing, and the cookie crust provides a chocolaty crunch. Even a small slice will satisfy the biggest sweet tooth. —Taylor Carroll, Parkesburg, Pennsylvania
Sometimes that “missing ingredient” idea comes to me in my sleep, and I have to jot it down. The surprising filling in these cookies make them fun to bake and even more fun to eat! —Angela Sheridan, Opdyke, Illinois
Just like Darlene Brenden's Caramel Apple Bites (see recipe finder), Pat Carter shares a sweet treat children can help create. "My daughters and I form an assembly line to put these 'sandwich' cookies together," she reveals from Clearwater, Florida. "We have lots of fun, and the cookies taste great."
Meet the Cook: Thanks to this dessert, our house is a popular place in summertime. I make it for family get-togethers, picnics and potlucks, too. It's a treat on a breakfast or brunch buffet also. We like it best with whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. We're the parents of a grown son.
-Linda Forrest, Belleville, Ontario