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Spice Bee Cookies

Cinnamon and ginger help add the spice to our bee cookies.

  • Yield: Makes about 8 dozen cookies
Spice Bee Cookies

Source: Martha Stewart Living, May 2007


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup packed dark-brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Sanding sugar, for sprinkling
  • Yellow Royal Icing


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Whisk together flour, spices, baking soda, and salt.

  2. With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, and vanilla until smooth. Beat in egg. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture, and beat until just combined. Turn out dough, and shape into a disk. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate until cold but not hard, about 30 minutes.

  3. Divide dough in half. Roll out each half between 2 sheets of lightly floured parchment to 1/4 inch thick. Chill in freezer until firm, about 15 minutes. Using a 3-inch bee cutter, cut out shapes. Gather together scraps; reroll, and cut out. Space 1 inch apart on baking sheets lined with parchment.

  4. Bake cookies until firm and pale golden brown, 16 to 18 minutes. Let cool.

  5. Brush water on wings of bees, and immediately sprinkle with sanding sugar, shaking off excess. Decorate bodies with royal icing, and immediately sprinkle icing with sanding sugar, shaking off excess. Let cookies set, at least 2 hours. Cookies can be stored in airtight containers up to 1 week.

Reviews (24)

  • Juliacr 5 Oct, 2011

    These cookies are delicious! I didn't have a bee cutter (who has one, anyway?) so I used the cutters I had on hand and they turned out just fine. Be sure to grease your baking sheets or line them with parchment because they stick even to nonstick sheets. I found these cookies best when rolled out thin and baked until they were light brown around the edges and crisp. I'm making another batch tonight!

  • AnnByrd 4 Apr, 2011

    Where can I get Bee cookie cutters?

  • myke43 4 Apr, 2011

    Once again the early preheating of the oven even when
    you will have at least 30 minutes of chill time in the
    frig. I know I harp on this direction but I do not
    preheat my oven whenever I enter my kitchen as the
    MS staff must do. It will usually be on for at least
    one hour before you put the first batch in to bake.
    Not much energy saving there. Mykele

  • TracyLH 26 May, 2010

    Oops! I looked again at the original article as the photo is larger and my mistake! The top left cookie is darker because it is made with a darker dough, the Cocoa Bee Cookies recipe I mentioned below. Sorry about that!

  • TracyLH 26 May, 2010

    The cookies are next to Honey-Lemon Panna Cottas.
    The top left cookie looks darker due to the royal icing being colored black. The article also had a recipe for Cocoa Bee Cookies.

  • revidini 21 Apr, 2010

    the bee cookie cutter is sold on amazon for $1.25!!

  • ouhog 17 Apr, 2010

    where do you get a bee cutter?

  • mswtb 13 Apr, 2010

    16 comments and not one person saying how the cookie tastes? Has anyone made them, would love to know how they taste before I try to make them! Thanks!

  • debbersk 9 Apr, 2010

    The yellow thing in the dishes look like a flan,which is like a custard

  • debbersk 9 Apr, 2010

    The yellow thing in the dishes look like a flan

  • lady_godiva 9 Apr, 2010

    LyndaBill: I always substitute Agave nectar for corn syrup. It doesn't change the taste like honey does, unless you want that flavor.

  • cerine 8 Apr, 2010

    what is the yellow thing centered beside the cookies? is it pudding or what?

  • skinnynrich 7 Apr, 2010

    Who ever heard of 3 inch bees anyway. These look good, though

  • NancyMadeline 7 Apr, 2010

    How come the top left bee looks darker ??

  • LyndaBill 7 Apr, 2010

    Could I get away with honey instead of corn syrup?

  • DanaLynn 7 Apr, 2010

    lady godiva, it looks like flan/custard in the center of each dish, the cookies are kind of a garnish.

  • lady_godiva 7 Apr, 2010

    What's in the center of these dishes?

  • lady_godiva 7 Apr, 2010

    What's in the center of these dishes?

  • beverson 7 Apr, 2010

    yeah, with this size recipe, I don't think 8 doz and a 3" cutter will work out. But I think these would be much cuter with a smaller cutter anyway - like around 1". Those don't look like 3" cookies in the photo. I bet that 3" thing is a leftover from another cookie recipe.

  • caryl gentile 7 Apr, 2010

    Seriously? You can get 8 dozen cookies using a 3" cookie cutter?

  • 1950cookielady 7 Apr, 2010

    You can find the bee cookie cutter on the Sur La Table website - for $1.00

  • caryl gentile 7 Apr, 2010

    Seriously? You can get 8 dozen cookies using a 3" cookie cutter?

  • lukezmom 13 May, 2009 can get any kind of cookie cutter imaginable!

  • Marie123 8 Feb, 2009

    wonder where you can get a bee cookie cutter????

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