When hot weather hit the Fraser Valley a few weeks ago, I hit the freezer section of our grocery store looking for cold treats for my teenager to enjoy. The problem with having food allergies is that he couldn't eat even one kind of packaged ice cream sandwich, because every single on of them contained soy.
What's a mom to do? Make your own, of course! Now the real beauty of this is that you can, if you wish, make your own cookies, or you can buy some smallish-sized, chocolate chip packaged cookies that you enjoy. Sandwich them with some of your favourite ice cream, and you've got a delicious summer snack in under five minutes.
These cookies bake up soft with little M&Ms sprinkled throughout. I like them small so that they are great for little hands, but you can make them bigger if you wish. You can also add nuts, but since many schools want things nut-free, I left them out. If you can't find a bag of M&M mini baking bits in your baking aisle at the grocery store, mini chocolate chips make a good substitute. Filling the cookies within a day of making them is best, as the cookies become a little harder as they sit.
1 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1 package (1 1/2 cups) M&M baking minis
a carton of your favourite ice cream (chocolate, vanilla, or swirl works well here)
Pre-heat oven to 350 F
In a bowl with an electric mixer, cream the butter with the sugars until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix in the egg and vanilla until well blended.
Stir the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a separate bowl. Add to the butter mixture and mix until just combined. Stir in the mini M&Ms.
Spoon out the dough by heaping teaspoonfuls and roll the dough into 1 inch sized balls. Place them about 1 1/2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. With the heel of your hand, flatten the balls of dough slightly.
Bake the cookies about 10-12 minutes until the tops are just set and they are golden. Remove from the oven to a rack and let cool completely.
About 30 minutes before you want to serve ice cream sandwiches, spoon about 1 tbsp of ice cream in the middle of a cookie, bottom side up. Press another cookie, bottom side down, on top. Quickly roll it in the sprinkles. Place sandwich on a baking sheet or plate in the freezer immediately. You have to work quickly, because the ice cream tends to melt fairly fast. Make as many as you'll need and let them set up in the freezer for about 30 minutes. Wrap any leftovers ice cream sandwiches in cling wrap and keep them in the freezer for about another day or two.
Makes about 3 dozen cookies, or around 18 small ice cream sandwiches
Adapted from M&Ms