These are miniature, one-bite cookies that are made with Christmas M&M candy centers. Santa’s Suit Buttons are a wonderful gift idea, a great baking project with the kids, or bake them alone and save them all for yourself!
When it comes to baking with sprinkles or candies, I’m a big kid at heart! It certainly doesn’t help that I have the likes of John.e and McKenna cheering me on! You see, Dear Reader, once the photographs are done, they get to eat – and who wouldn’t like to chow down on a few of Santa’s Suit Buttons?
Before we get too into it, it might come as no surprise to my readers that I’m back with a third installment of Lord Byron’s 24 Cookies of Christmas. Should you be new here, let me tell you a bit about how this works. This is my third annual Christmas cookie extravaganza. Like the previous two years, I will post a brand new Christmas cookie recipe for 24 consecutive days. Yes, that means Saturdays and Sundays too! For your reference, you can find links to the first two years further down the page.
Fresh off of my 12 Biscotti of Christmas series, I’m excited to get this new series started. Last year, I also did 12 Bundt Cakes of Christmas. Now, who’s ready to get started on this journey with me? Do you have someone in the kitchen to help you? Do you have your sanding sugar and your candy nearby? Are your baking sheets prepared and is your oven preheated? Good! Let’s get to it!
Just before Christmas, I was searching for red and green M&Ms on Amazon, where I was able to find them. The candy you see in the photographs came in a package of red, white, and green. They are mint flavoured. Of course, I removed the green and used only the red and white.
I found a lot of different flavours and colours of M&Ms on Amazon. And, truth be told, you can use any of them. If you prefer to use the peanut M&Ms or the plain ones, you can certainly do that too.
If you are unable to find these particular M&Ms, you can use your favourite brand of candy coated chocolate. I would consider using Smarties (if you’re in Canada; they are not the same in the United States!) They don’t even need to be red and white! I used M&Ms, because they are readily available almost anywhere and they’re inexpensive too.
TO SHARE OR TO KEEP – THAT IS THE QUESTION!
It’s really no secret that I love to bake cookies. Seriously, I bake a lot of cookies! You can see a complete list of them here. Honestly, 90% of all the cookies I prepare for Lord Byron’s Kitchen, do not stay in our home. McKenna takes them to school, or John.e takes them to work. If they don’t go with them, I just give them to our neighbours.
Because there are so many cookies, John.e will often suggest making them smaller. I think that he thinks if they are smaller he would be eating less sugar. But, let’s face it, he would just eat two or three of the smaller cookies in place of one regular sized cookie!
This time, I decided to give it a go. I’m so glad I did, because I was able to keep these Santa’s Suit Buttons small. They are the perfect one-bite size! All of these cookies ended up going into our boxes of cookies that we package up and share with neighbours. I may have eaten one or two!
SANDING VS GRANULATED SUGAR
I’ve been using coarse sanding sugar quite a bit in this 24 Cookies of Christmas series. I hope it hasn’t been too difficult for you to find. Sanding sugar is sometimes referred to as baking sugar, and there are some substitutes.
You can use other sugars – which are basically the same, but named something differently – there’s pearl sugar and coarse sugar. You cannot, however, use granulated sugar. Let me explain why.
Whereas an individual granule of sanding sugar is large and hard, a single granule of granulated sugar is quite small. Sanding sugar will hold up to the heat in your oven without melting; granulated sugar will hold up, but not as well as sanding sugar. And, your version of Santa’s Suit Buttons will most certainly not look as festive.
If you can only find granulated sugar, you can either skip the coating in sugar step, or you can use turbinado sugar. Turbinado sugar is a golden brown though, so it will throw off the colour of your finished cookie. I used white sanding sugar and I also used some red just to add a little bit of contrast and interest to the overall presentation.
STORING, PACKAGING, AND FREEZING
If you plan to freeze Santa’s Suit Buttons, you certainly can! Once they are completely cooled, pile them into a clean, food-safe container. The container must be freezer friendly! You’ll want to ensure a very tight fitting lid too. (I use these quite often when freezing baked goods.) I like to place a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of the container before pushing the lid on. This helps to create a better seal. The goal is to keep all of that cookie freshness locked in! You can freeze these cookies for up to three months.
As I said, every day I will be posting a new recipe. If you miss one, don’t fret. You can find my entire collection of Christmas Recipes right here! There are over 100 Christmas recipes and counting. There’s something for everyone! Cheers!
Santa’s Suit Buttons
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 1/3 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup sanding sugar
- 1/2 cup chocolate M&M candy
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, use a hand-held mixer to beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add in the egg yolks and vanilla extract. Beat to combine.
- Add the flour and mix into the butter mixture until just combined. Don't over mix.
- Portion into one teaspoon and roll into balls. Roll each ball into the sanding sugar and place on the prepared baking sheet.
- Push a M&M candy into the center of the cookie.
- Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow cookie to cool on the baking sheet for 3-5 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a wire cooling rack to finish cooling.