turkey hand print cookies

You will LOVE LOVE LOVE these adorable "Kids In The Kitchen" fun activities this month  They are some of my favorite family traditions and recipes.  They also make a nice food-craft for your students if you're looking for something fun to include for your Thanksgiving Feast Day Celebrations at school, or just a nice treat for your children the day before the big holiday weekend to wish them a Happy Thanksgiving.

gumdrop_turkey, cooking with kids, Kids Thanksgiving recipesGrama Karis’ Gum Drop Apple Turkeys 

  • 5 tooth picks
  • 1 apple (body)
  • 10 multi-colored gumdrops (1 has to be red for the wattle.) (feathers)
  • 1 raisin (eyes)
  • 1 Hershey kiss (head)

Background: Every Thanksgiving the guys would go deer hunting and the women would putz in the kitchen getting dinner ready. One of the things we’d do with the children while we were “watching” the turkey was make these adorable Gumdrop Apple Turkeys. Grama Flohr would bring all the supplies and each child would design their own gumdrop feathers so they could have a darling turkey sitting next to their plate.  At about the time we were getting finished with our creations the men would come home all red-faced, orange-clad and exuberant with tales of a near miss or a bull’s eye. After they’d shower it was time to eat, drink and be merry around a very thankful table.  I sure miss Grama K and those special memories. I hope you can make a gumdrop turkey and start some memory making of your own. It’s a wonderful family tradition.


  • Put two gumdrops on a tooth pick and put it in the back of the apple.
  • I put 4 feathers on the turkey, but 5 also looks nice.
  • You can make each feather have the same color gumdrops or you can have different colored gumdrops on each feather as shown in the picture.
  • Put one gumdrop on a tooth pick (neck) + a Hershey kiss (head) and put this tooth pick on the front of the apple.
  • Cut a red gumdrop in half and stick it tot eh kiss.
  • Cut a raisin in half, and then in half again and stick these to the kiss for eyes.

Tootie_Frootie_apple Turkey cooking with kids, Thanksgiving recipes for kidsTootie Frootie Turkey 

  • If you’d like to make this affordable to do with your class, as well as a cool math extension, do it with cereal. Children can sort the Tootie Frootie’s and make their feathers and neck all one color, like mine in the photo, or they can make all sorts of color patterns AB ABC or even ABCDEF as there are 6 different colors of Tootie Frooties! Tootie Frooties are made by Malto Meal. They are only $1.99 a bag as opposed to a more expensive box of Fruit Loops.  Send a note home asking parents to have their child bring in an apple. You could also ask 3 parents to donate a bag of Hershey kisses, Tootie Frooties, and candy corn.

Ingredients for ONE turkey.

  • 6 tooth picks
  • 34 Tootie Frooties  (feathers & neck) (6 for each feather.)
  • 1 apple (body)
  • 1 raisin (or yellow frosting) (eyes)
  • 1 red jelly bean or gum drop (wattle)
  • 5 pieces of candy corn (To hold feathers on toothpicks)
  • 1 Hershey kiss. (head)
  • Optional: Yellow frosting in a tube (For eyes.)


  • Stick 6 toothpicks in the back of the turkey a Tootie Frootie space apart from each other.
  • Slide Tootie Frooties on the toothpicks.
  • You can sort them and put one color on each toothpick, or choose to make a pattern.
  • Put a toothpick in the front of the apple in the center.
  • Put 4 Tootie Frooties on this toothpick.
  • Slide a Hershey kiss on top of the Tootie Frooties.
  • Cut a red gumdrop or red jelly bean in half and stick it to the kiss.
  • Cut a raisin in half, and then in half again and stick these to the kiss for eyes.
  • Or, using a toothpick, dot on two eyes with yellow frosting.

Pilgrim Hat CookiesPilgrim Hat Cookie, cooking with kids, Thanksgiving recipes for kids

  • 1 Round cookie  ( I use the kind that are chocolate on one side and vanilla on the other and have frosting in the middle.)
  • 1 Large marshmallow
  • Chocolate frosting
  • 1 Cheerio or 1 yellow Tootie Frootie (buckle)
  • Popsicle sticks.


  • Frost the chocolate side of the cookie with the chocolate frosting. I have my students use Popsicle sticks.
  • Put some frosting on the bottom of the marshmallow.
  • Press it down on the frosted cookie.
  • Frost the marshmallow so it is completely covered.
  • Press a Cheerio or Tootie Frootie into the bottom center of the Pilgrim hat, so it looks like a buckle.

Cornucopia Thanksgiving Snack Mix:  Buy sugar cones (The kind you put ice cream in, and fill them with this mix. They make nice party favors at your Thanksgiving table, or you could ask several room moms to make them as a treat for your students.) I tie my cones with a sheer fall colored ribbon. You can buy a bolt for a Dollar at Michaels or JoAnn Fabrics. I put the mix in a baggie then rubber band it shut and tie with curling ribbon.

  • Sugar Cones
  • Pretzels
  • Candy corn
  • Chex Mix
  • Raisins
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Goldfish Crackers  
  • Reese’s Pieces

Candy_Corn_CookieDiane’s Indian Corn Cookies (My very own invention)  If you want to do these as a class snack activity, ask parents to send in the ingredients.


  • Cookies that are oval shaped. I used Keebler’s new Vienna Fingers. They are $2.99 for a package of 30.
  • Yellow frosting. $1.69 a can
  • A bag of Reese’s Pieces or Fall-colored M&M’s  $2.59 a bag (on sale)
  • A can of LaChoy rice noodles. $1.35 a can


  • Students spread frosting on cookie with a Popsicle stick.
  • Children press candy pieces into the frosting.  Each child needs 10 pieces. (5 different colors).
  • Students press rice noodles in the top to look like corn husks.

Turkey TreatsHershey_Kiss_Turkey_Cookie, candy corn turkey cookie, cooking with kids, Thanksgiving kids recipes, November treats for kids


  • 2 round cookies (I use cookies that are chocolate on one side and vanilla on the other and have frosting in the middle.) (I’ve also seen these done with Oreo cookies where they take them apart and use this frosting or Nila Wafer cookies.)
  • 1 malted milk ball (head)
  • 1 Rolo (body)
  • 5 pieces of Candy Corn (feathers)
  • 1 red jelly bean (wattle)
  • chocolate frosting
  • 1 raisin (beak)
  • Yellow frosting in a tube
  • Toothpick


  • Frost the bottom cookie, chocolate side up.
  • Press the Rolo into the frosting so that it is towards the front of the cookie.
  • Put a dab of frosting on top of the Rolo.
  • Press the malted milk ball onto the frosting so that it sits on top of the Rolo.
  • Cut the jelly bean in half and stick it to the malted milk ball.
  • Cut the raisin (beak) in half and stick it above the jelly bean. (wattle)
  • Using a toothpick dab on two yellow frosting eyes.
  • Frost the bottom of the second cookie.
  • Press the 5 candy corns on the outside edge of the cookie in a fan shape.
  • The candy corn should have the pointed end pointing down.
  • Press this cookie up against the Rolo and down into the frosted bottom cookie.
  • An easier version of this is to skip the Rolo and the malted milk ball and use a Hershey Kiss instead.  The Kiss is the head of the turkey.  I like this version better.

Background: When I was an aide helping teach 2nd grade at Grand View school in Grandville, a room mom, Sheila, made these for tour students as a pre-Thanksgiving treat.  They LOVED them!

Chocolate Pumpkin Guts   Sounds awful tastes yummy!

Ingredients:Chocolate Thanksgiving pumpkin guts cupcake, cooking with kids, kids thanksgiving recipes Filling:
• 8 oz. cream cheese
• 1 egg
• 1/3 cup of sugar
• Orange food coloring
• 6 oz chocolate chips

• 3 cups of flour
• 2 cups of sugar
• 1/2 cup cocoa
• 2 tsp of baking soda
• 1/2 teasp salt
• 2 cups of water
• 1/2 cup +  2 tbs vegetable oil
• 2 teasp cider vinegar
• 2 teasp vanilla


Filling: Combine cream cheese, egg and sugar in a bowl.  Blend in orange food coloring.  Stir in choclate chips.  Set filling aside. 


Cupcakes: Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; set aside. I use a large bowl. Combine water, vegetable oil, vinegar and vanilla in another bowl.Combine both bowls and stir.Fill cupcake inner halves with batter, then place one teaspoon of the filling at center. As  the cupcakes bake the batter will rise to surround the filling..  Preheat the oven to 350º.Bake for about 25 minutes.The orange “pumpkin guts” should ooze from the center to the top of the cupcake making a nice orangey contrast against the brown chocolate. Mmmm mmm good. These colors look lovely on a fall table. Wilton has some great autumn cupcake papers with fall leaves on them, as well as Happy Thanksgiving picks to poke in the top. Too cute, and just the finishing touch!

Thanksgiving_treatsTurkey Hand Print Cookies

  • Pre-made sugar cookie dough ( I am not a baker so I need easy maintenance.)
  • Handprint cookie cutter
  • Chocolate frosting
  • 1 rolo for the head
  • 1 piece of candy corn for beak
  • 1 jelly bean or gumdrop cut in half for the wattle.
  • Raisin for eye or a dot of yellow frosting
  • Multi-colored sprinkles
  • raisins for tor the wing.


  • Roll sugar cookie dough out on floured surface.
  • Cut out cookies with the handprint cookie cutter.
  • Make sure you spread the fingers as they will rise and fuse together as mine did in the photo.
  • Place on greased cookie sheet.
  • Bake at 350º for 8-10 minutes.
  • Let cool.
  • Children decorate with chocolate frosting.
  • Add a rolo for the head, a candy corn beak, and red jelly bean or gum drop for a wattle and a raisin cut in half for an eye.
  • Use colored sprinkles, or candy corn for the feathers.
  • Add raisins to make a wing. 
Click here to see bigger pictures in pdf form of the above photographs.

Turkey Leftovers: And if you're looking for something not quite so sweet, like what to do with the turkey left overs, these are somethings I do: Make panini’s on your George Foreman with the turkey leftovers. Add a slice of swiss cheese and their favorite "fixin's".  My husband and I love them; or put the meat in a soft shell taco, spread on some cream cheese and sliced olives and mmm mmm you have a yummy turkey wrap.  Or shred the turkey, add some barbecue sauce and serve on a croissant.  I’ve also diced up the turkey and made it into a quiche.

Or how about something to go with your turkey:

Sweet Potato Casserole With Marshmallows

This is my husband Daniel’s favorite. My daughter Kelli also requests that Mom Henderson bring it as her something to pass dish when we get together for the holiday.
• 1 (40 ounce) yams, drained (I cut them up.)
• 1/2 cup brown sugar
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1 egg, beaten
• 4 tablespoons melted butter
• 1 (16 ounce) bag miniature marshmallows

  Directions:  .Heat oven to 350º Mash yams in a large bowl and add brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, egg, and melted butter. Mix well. Place 1/2 mixture in baking dish. Top with a layer of marshmallows, then add remaining mixture. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and top with remaining marshmallows. Bake for another 10 minutes or until marshmallows are lightly browned.   Yummy!

Whatever you're makin' or bakin' in the kitchen with your kids, I hope it's turkey-riffic and that these ideas will give you some wonderful memories to keep you warm through the holiday! 

Happy November!