Valentine’s Day Slice and Bake Cookies

4.85 from 13 votes

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These Valentine’s Day Slice and Bake Cookies are the cutest little treats for Valentine’s Day! Perfectly sweet with a red heart in the middle of each cookie! Move over store bought, your friends and family will swoon over these cookies and will be so impressed you made them homemade! Don’t be intimidated…I have tested and re-tested this method and have all your tips and tricks to the perfect heart cookie.

white cookies with red hearts in the middle spread out on parchment paper and cooling rack

If you want to try an amazing traditional sugar cookie, I have a great Sugar Cookies with Icing recipe as well. It’s an amazing fail-proof cookie that is literally one of my favorite go-to recipes.

These Valentine’s Day Slice and Bake Cookies are a fun variation to traditional sugar cookies! I’m sure you’ve seen the pre-made slice and bake dough with holiday images at the store. While store bought dough is great when you are short on time, nothing is better than a homemade slice and bake sugar cookie. I promise these are easier than they look, but you can totally take all the compliments when your friends gush over how fancy these are. 😉

valentine's cookies loaded on a plate

The fun thing about this recipe is that you can make it for nearly any holiday! Here are a couple of fun Slice and Bake Cookie variations:

  • St. Patricks Day – dye some dough green and find a shamrock cookie cutter for a cute Irish cookie!
  • Easter – add less drops of food coloring for pastel pink dough and find a bunny or egg shaped cookie cutter.
  • Christmas – skip the middle part and instead roll the edges of the dough in red, green and white sprinkles for a simple Christmas cookie.
  • Fourth of July – taking some notes from the Christmas sections, use red, white and blue sprinkles!
  • Halloween – dye the outside dough purple, black or orange and keep the inside dough plain for some spooky contrast!
  • Use different Extracts– customize the flavor of your cookies using almond extract. For a Christmas slice and bake cookie use peppermint extract.
valentines day cookies 1

Ingredients Needed for Slice and Bake Cookies

  • all-purpose flour- unbleached, fills out the cookies
  • granulated sugar– white sugar used to sweeten
  • pure vanilla extract– for flavoring. Use pure vanilla, not imitation for best flavoring.
  • red food coloring– liquid or gel food coloring.
  • pantry staples– butter, baking powder, large egg

How to Make Slice and Bake Cookies

For full recipe details including ingredient measurements, see the printable recipe card down below. Here are step-by-step instructions for making these fun Valentine’s Day Slice and Bake Cookies:

In a small bowl, stir flour and baking powder together. Set aside. Cream butter and sugar together. Stir in egg and vanilla extract. Slowly incorporate the dry ingredients.

Add Red Fooding Coloring to Smaller Portion of Dough

Once dough has come together, remove 2/3 of dough to a separate bowl. Stir in the red food coloring to the smaller portion of dough until uniform in color.

Roll Out Red Dough

Next, roll the red dough out pretty thick, about 1 inch thick, and start cutting out hearts with a small heart-shaped cookie cutter. Once you have them all cut, line them all up and do your best to stick them together without ruining their shape. I ended up with 3 stacks of hearts.

Pro Tip: I have found that freezing the stacks for 30 minutes or so makes them easier to work with and not loose their shape. Lightly cover stacks with plastic wrap on a baking sheet and place into the freezer. The regular dough is actually better to be softer (at room temp) so it can stick well to the hearts, otherwise there are going to be some holes between the two colors. 

Roll Remaining Dough Out

Divide your remaining uncolored dough into 3 (since I have 3 stacks of red hearts) and cover each heart stack, being careful to keep them together.

Pro Tip: I found that rolling out snakes of dough and sticking them down the sides was the easiest and fastest way to get them covered.

Wrap + Refrigerate 1 Hour

Once the heart slice stacks are covered completely, give each a gently roll to create a smooth, round edge. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 1 hour to overnight.

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350° F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, or use an ungreased cookie sheet. Set aside.

Remove the dough logs from fridge and with a very sharp knife, cut thick slices (1/2 inch rounds) . Place onto the prepared baking sheet leaving 1 inch around each cookie.

Bake Heart Cookies

Bake sugar cookies for 8-10 minutes or until cookie is barely (and I mean barely) golden brown on the bottoms, if brown at all and is no longer shiny. Remove from oven and cool 2 minutes before cooling completely on a wire rack.

Pro Tip: Wanna know the trick to having perfectly round cookies? Before removing from the baking sheet, take a large round cookie cutter and swirl the cookies around it immediately after they come out of the oven and are still hot. This is called “cookie scooting”. This will fix some of the edges and give them a rounder shape.

stacked Valentine's Day cookies

Storage + Make Ahead Directions

Store cookies in an airtight container, at room temperature for up to 3 days.

To Freeze + Bake Later– prepare dough as the recipe instructs up until placing the dough in the fridge. At this point you can place wrapped dough cylinders into a freezer safe bag and into the freezer until ready to bake. When ready to bake, allow the dough to thaw overnight in the fridge before baking.

stacked valentines cookies, top cookie has a bite missing

Love Sugar Cookies? Give These Recipes a Try!

More Valentine’s Day Treats

Be sure to make these soon for the ones you love! The printable recipe card is below. Enjoy! 🙂

If you make this recipe, I would really appreciate it if you would give it a star rating and leave your review in the comments! If you have a picture of your finished dish, post it on Instagram using the hashtag #laurenslatest and tagging me @laurens_latest.

white cookies with red hearts in the middle spread out on a board
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4.85 from 13 votes

Valentine’s Day Slice and Bake Cookies

These Homemade Slice and Bake Cookies are the cutest cookies for Valentine's Day! Perfectly sweet with a red heart in the middle of each cookie!
servings 24 cookies
Prep Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 2 hours

Ingredients

Instructions

  • In a small bowl stir flour and baking powder together. Set aside. Cream butter and sugar together.
    sugar cookie dough in a ball in a bowl
  • Stir in egg, extracts, and vanilla. Slowly incorporate dry ingredients. Once the dough has come together, remove 2/3 of it to a separate bowl.
  • Stir in the red food coloring to the remaining 1/3 of the dough until uniform in color.
    sugar cookie dough divided in bowls.
  • Roll red dough out into a 1 inch slab. Cut out heart shapes and stack them together.
    stacked cookie dough hearts
  • Roll remaining regular colored dough out and cover each row of stacked hearts being careful to keep them together. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 1 hour to overnight.
    front view of dough snakes being applied to red heart stacks
  • When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350° F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat and set aside.
    unbaked Valentine's Day cookies on baking sheet
  • Remove cookie dough logs from fridge and slice into 1/2 inch rounds. Place onto prepared baking sheet leaving 1 inch around each cookie.
  • Bake 8-10 minutes or until cookie is barely golden brown on the bottom and isn't shiny.
  • Remove from oven and cool 2 minutes before cooling completely on wire rack.
  • Serve immediately or store in airtight containers for up to 3 days.
    stacked Valentine's Day cookies

Video

Notes

Note: I have found that freezing the stacks for 30 minutes or so makes them easier to work with and not loose their shape. Lightly cover stacks with plastic wrap on a baking sheet and place into the freezer. The regular dough is actually better to be softer (at room temp) so it can stick well to the hearts, otherwise there are going to be some holes between the two colors. 
Want know the trick to having perfectly round cookies? Before removing from the baking sheet, take a large round cookie cutter and swirl the cookies around it immediately after they come out of the oven and are still hot. This is called “cookie scooting”. This will fix some of the edges and give them a rounder shape.

Nutrition

Calories: 161kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 28mg | Sodium: 71mg | Potassium: 56mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 248IU | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: slice and bake cookies

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110 Responses
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  4. Deanna

    I found the dough to be crumbly and I followed the exact recipe. I added two more eggs and 1 tsp of flour on top of it before it seemed to be the correct consistency.

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  6. Heather

    I just took these out of the oven. SQUEAL! These are going to be a huge hit with my boys. My daughter and I had a blast making them together! Thanks for the adorable and delicious recipe! I can’t wait to try different shapes for different holidays!

  7. Jennifer

    could you freeze the read hearts to firm them up before putting the uncolored cookie dough around it? Or would that ruin the dough?

  8. Lisa D

    I loved the idea of this but it just didn’t go right! I had a couple of problems… The red dough was more of a maroon than a blood red but that wasn’t too much of a problem.

    My main problem was the formation of the dough – wrapped hearts. They just wouldn’t stay on and there was no chance of being able to roll them to a round log without it all falling apart. The dough was quite sticky when made but, in order to roll out both colours of dough and to press the hearts out, I had to flour the side as usual. I just have no idea after all the dough has been floured, how I could form the log, completely stuck together. Please can you help me as to how I could have gone wrong and how you managed to roll out without it falling apart?

    I’m gutted this appears to have worked for many people but not me!

    Thanks

  9. Melanie

    Cute! I always thought it would be impossible to make cookies like this. I’ll have to give it a try.

    You are just like my mom! We would always beg her to buy Oreo’s and she would refuse because she made us all kinds of yummy cookies from scratch. She never did make any copycat recipes like this though so props to you!

  10. Marianna

    Hi,
    I made these last night and i have one question, my love hearts came out great! but then i had issues trying to roll the remaining dough out into strips so that i could cover the love hearts. It just kept breaking into pieces. Any ideas??

    I ended up rolling the dough out on baking paper, placed the hearts in the middle and covered it that way and continued with the recipe. I cut a couple of slices from the log this morning (as im going to bake them tonight) and the heart shape was still intact sort of : /

    Otherwise taste is amazing! cant wait to bake them.

    1. Lauren

      The only thing I could think of was maybe there was a little too much flour added. You want the dough to be pliable and not crumbly. Sorry it was a bust!

      1. Marianna

        No it wasn’t a bust! they still taste amazing 🙂 its just my cookies look more like pacman rather than love hearts.

        I will makes these again and use less flour and see how i go.

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  15. Bre

    Super cute! I’m going to make these. Just wondering though can you use the Slice ‘n Bake Chewy Sugar Cookies recipe you mentioned for this also? Or is that too soft for the heart technique? Thank you!

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  17. Carla

    You. Are. A. GENIUS. I can’t get over that these are homemade. I’ve been tempted by buying those rolls of cookie dough and I am all about homemade!

  18. Shannon

    Absolutely adorable!!! My 4 1/2 year old daughter will definitely love these and she is always wanting to get in the kitchen with me, so these cookies will be perfect.

  19. Hannah

    These are so adorable! My kids always want to buy these in the store too and I rarely let them because of all the dyes. I wonder if there is something else I could use besides the red dye for the hearts that wouldn’t harm the taste? I will have to do some shopping around! My kids are sensitive to dyes. Thanks for sharing these, so pretty!

    1. Penny

      I followed this recipe and made some red dye out of beetroot which worked pretty well although I had to add a lot of flour back in because it made it so wet.

      1. Monica

        Neat, I was thinking of doing the same. Maybe doing a mix of boiled beet juice (concentrated for color= less liquid) and beet root powder?

  20. Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe

    These cookies are genius! I actually love the taste of slice and bake cookies, but hate that I can’t control what’s in them.

  21. Leigh Anne Wilkes @YourHomebasedMom

    One of my secret pleasures is buying those slice and bake holiday sugar cookies. Now I can make them at home- love it!

  22. Taylor @ FoodFaithFitness

    OH MY GOSH! These cookies are my favorite…but I have never made them. I didn’t even know it was possible to make ’em by hand! SO SO in love with this post. These are just too cute. But not too cute to eat!
    Pinned!

  23. Regina

    I have a Pampered Chef heart shaped bread tube. I think I will try to fill and chill then wrap the outer dough around it.
    Thanks for the idea.

  24. Amanda

    Adorable! My kids love the picture cookies too and I refuse to buy them because homemade is so much better. P.S. Lilia, I am pretty certain the cup of vanilla is really a cup of sugar. They would taste rather unpleasant without sugar 😉

  25. Lilia Beltran

    These look amazing! One question: Do these seriously call for a cup of vanilla? I may need to special order to try this recipe!!

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