Let me show you how to make a beautiful and festive Heart Tree for Valentines Day! This Heart Tree Cut Out Cookie Recipe makes up to three marvelous edible trees to use as centerpieces or give as gifts.
I’ve got a fun cut out cookie recipe and heart tree tutorial for you today. Eeeek!
Sorry for the momentary lapse of composure… but I’m really excited about my Valentine Heart Tree craft.
You see, I love doing crafty things, but rarely find time to create anything outside of the kitchen. So this heart tree project brought two passions together, cooking and crafting. It’s a pretty craft you can eat!
I started with my very best cut out cookie recipe, a sturdier version of my favorite sugar cookie recipe that stands up to rolling and cutting.
You don’t want your cut out cookies falling off the heart tree.
It’s best to use small heart shaped cookie cutters that are 1-2 inches wide, so the cookies can easily overlap as they are fastened around the heart tree.
Once I cut the cookies out, I used a straw to cut a hole in the tip of each heart to make them easier to hang.
After baking, I dipped each cookie into a thin strawberry glaze and covered them with Valentine sprinkles.
Stop right there and just think of all the things you could make with these: heart cookie garland, heart cookie necklaces, heart cookie earrings…
Once the cut out cookies are dipped, sprinkled, and dried, it’s time to start making your first heart tree.
Eeeeek! Sorry, again.
I used a styrofoam craft cone as the base of each heart tree. You can use any size of cone, but I found this cut out cookie recipe makes enough heart cookies for 3 8-12 inch cones.
Start at the bottom. Secure the cookies, point up, to the base of the cone by pressing a pin or toothpick through the hole in each heart. The edges should overlap a little for good coverage.
(If you plan to allow little ones to remove the cookies later, use toothpicks.)
Then continue attaching cut out cookies to the cone. Overlap the intersections to create volume and offer the best coverage.
Before you reach the top, insert a heart cookie pop (directions on making those below) into the top of the cone. Then finish covering the cone completely.
Wasn’t that easy? And FUN??
Our Heart Tree Cut Out Cookie Recipe/Project is a winner on many levels. This is not only a fabulous family project; the heart trees make gorgeous gifts and centerpieces as well.
Oh… and the cut out cookies taste amazing. Just so you know.
Heart Tree Cut Out Cookie Recipe
Yield: 3 trees
Prep Time: 60 minutes (active time)
Cook Time: 8 minutes
For the Cut Out Cookie Recipe:
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened (3 sticks)
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs + 1 egg yolk
- 3 3/4 cups all purpose flour + extra for rolling
For the Strawberry Glaze:
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon strawberry extract
- 4 cups powdered sugar
Heart Tree Supplies:
- Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy—5 minutes. Then add the salt, vanilla extract, and eggs with the extra yolk. Beat to combine. With the mixer running, slowly add the flour until the dough is smooth. Then separate the dough and wrap it in 4 separate pieces. Place in the fridge and chill for at least one hour. (This dough could be made weeks in advance.)
- When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line several cookie sheets with parchment paper. Remove one disk from the refrigerator at a time to keep the dough cold as long as possible. Flour a work surface and roll the disk out to 1/8 inch thick. Using 1-2 inch heart cookie cutters cut out the cookies. (You can use multiple sizes if desired.) Work fast and cut the cookies as close together as possible. The more times you roll out the dough, the tougher it gets. Then use a straw to cut out a hole close to the bottom point of each heart. With a thin spatula, transfer the cookies onto the baking sheets 1 inch apart. Repeat with remaining dough. For the toppers: Insert lollipop sticks into 3-5 of the largest cookies. Press down a little to insure the cookies adhere to the sticks while baking. (I like to make extras just in case one breaks.) Bake the cut out cookies for 6-9 minutes, until just cooked through. Cool completely on the cookie sheets before moving.
- For the Strawberry Glaze: Whisk the milk, strawberry extract, and powdered sugar together until smooth. Dip and face of each cookie into the glaze. Allow the excess to drip off the tip, then scatter sprinkles over the top. Place the cut out cookies back on the parchment paper to dry.
- Once all the cookies are dipped, sprinkled and dried, start building your heart tree(s). Pin the largest hearts at the base of the cone with the point up. Push the pin (or toothpick) through the hole you cut in each cookie, and press firmly into the styrofoam cone. It’s best if the edges of each cookie overlap just a little. Then start the next row with the center of each heart lined up with the overlap. Continue moving up the cone, using the smallest cut out cookies at the top. Before you cover the top of the cone, press one of the heart cookie pops down in the center as a decorative topper. Then finish covering the top of the styrofoam. Repeat with the remaining cookies and cones. If you roll your dough thin, then cut the cookies out very closely together, you should have enough for 3 – 12 inch heart trees. **If you plan to allow children to remove cookies from the heart tree later, it’s best to use toothpicks instead of pins.
Making this recipe? Why not take a quick shot and share it on Instagram! Make sure to tag it #ASpicyPerspective so we can see what you're cooking!
More Edible Valentine Projects:
Heart Linzer Cookies – Cooking Classy
Strawberry Jello Hearts – Weelicious