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Red, White, and Blue Stars

Crisp sugared tops give way to tender, buttery cookies sandwiching sweet-tart berry jam. Assembled before baking, the stars' rich dough and fruity filling melt into each other.

  • Yield: Makes about 40 sandwich cookies
Red, White, and Blue Stars

Source: Martha Stewart Living, July 2008


  • 5 cups cake flour (not self-rising), plus more for surface
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 12 ounces (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream, plus more for brushing
  • 3/4 cup raspberry jam
  • 3/4 cup blueberry jam
  • 2 tablespoons sanding sugar


  1. Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Cream butter and granulated sugar, with a mixer on medium speed, until pale and fluffy. Beat in yolks and vanilla until well combined. Add flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with cream and beating well after each addition. Shape dough into 4 disks, wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate for at least 3 hours (or up to 3 days).

  2. On floured parchment, roll 1 disk of dough into a 1/8-inch-thick rectangle. Repeat with remaining disks. Stack sheets of dough and parchment, and refrigerate for 1 hour or freeze for 30 minutes.

  3. Spread raspberry jam on 1 sheet of dough, blueberry jam on another. Top each with a plain sheet of dough. Refrigerate for 1 hour or freeze for 30 minutes.

  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut out cookies using a 2 1/2-inch star-shaped cutter, and space 1 inch apart on parchment-lined baking sheets. Brush with cream, and sprinkle with sanding sugar. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or freeze for 15 minutes.

  5. Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until golden, 16 to 20 minutes. Transfer cookies to wire racks, and let cool completely. If desired, bake dough scraps.

Reviews (30)

  • kdroste 4 Jul, 2012

    I just made these for the 4th & they are pretty awesome. I don't think they are as complicated as other commenters suggest, it's really just chilling time & isn't all that long. I will definitely be making these again.

  • jcufan5 24 May, 2012

    These cookies turned out great, but were a lot of work as stated in previous comments. Also, I had a lot of scraps from making the stars that couldn't be reused, so I suggest either carefully planning the cutouts or choosing a less wasteful shape such as a square.

  • janjeffers 7 Jul, 2011

    These cookies were a lot of work for a very bland cookie. Disappointing after having spent that much time on them.

  • AmateurGourmet 4 Jul, 2011

    These cookies are marvelous looking and very tasty. They require a lot of patience and time, but the outcome is worth it. Follow the directions explicitly and it will become a favorite with one and all.

  • temp_1176504872741_327069636_1 4 Jul, 2011

    This is the second year I have tried this recipe. I own a B&B and want everything perfect for my guests but this is just too difficult: too many steps, too much waste, too much of a mess...I end up with 1 2/2 dozen delicious cookies but again too much!

  • SitkaRose 3 Jul, 2011

    Easy recipe, the cookie dough rolled out nicely. I rolled the dough out on parchment paper and stacked two of them together on cookie sheets and froze for the 30 minutes suggested. They stuck together and was difficult to get them apart. Next time I'd freeze them individually or put them in the fridge. They were fun to make and pretty tasty :)) HAPPY 4th!!

  • joanbaker22 4 Jul, 2010

    When working with dough that requires refrigeration, after making the dough, I divide it into 3 batches, roll each batch out between waxed paper, and then put them in the fridge to harden. Then when I'm ready to bake I just remove one batch at a time. No broken edges, no rock hard dough to try to roll to 1/8th" thickness.

  • Topaz6705 22 May, 2009

    I don't chill them at all and they turn out delicious. To minimize waste, I cut out all of the shapes first (stars) and then spread jam on half of them and cover them with another cookie. This part takes longer, but not chilling them more then makes up for it and I get more cookies.

  • Digigirl 21 Dec, 2008

    Time consuming due to chilling periods, but basically easy to make and very tasty. The only problem I had was that the jam squished out the sides when I cut out the shapes. I made snowflakes and gave these for Xmas. Blueberry jam was a very mild flavor, so next time I would do something stronger like raspberry. Very pretty and a great alternative to the usual boring cut out cookies!

  • tuckred 28 Sep, 2008

    These are delicious, and weren't hard or time-consuming at all! However, it was pretty messy and wasteful (though pretty) to make stars. Doing rectangles with a rotary cutter is a great idea! I will try that for my Christmas cookie baking.

  • anniequinn 16 Sep, 2008

    I definately will try these but instead of using a star-shaped cookie cutter, I will cut them into little squares using my rotary cutter. no scraps to worry about, everything will get used up and eaten I'm sure.

  • AnnieDanko 27 Aug, 2008

    These cookies taste pretty good, but are not worth the trouble and hours spent working on them! You could do the same thing with a basic sugar cookie recipe, which would probably make it a lot easier, taste better, and look just as great.

  • lilysnana55 13 Jul, 2008

    Well, I have saved this recipe in my collection and will try it just to see what happens. It was certainly interesting reading all the comments.

  • lilysnana55 13 Jul, 2008

    Well, I have saved this recipe in my collection and will try it just to see what happens. It was certainly interesting reading all the comments.

  • mnelsongj 6 Jul, 2008

    I just made these cookies and had alot of problems. My star cookie cutter wouldn't
    cut out and then the jam came out. It takes too long and too much work to make these cookies. I finally just cut them into squares and baked them. Thank you.

  • flyandeat 6 Jul, 2008

    I haven't tried these yet, but even after all the negative comments, I plan to try them on a day when I have plenty of time. I was thinking I would also bake the scraps and cut them into squares around each empty star and use them to serve fresh fruit inside the cutout star on dessert plates for a party. And maybe package the cookies for gifts.

  • llcourtney 5 Jul, 2008

    Making these cookies took pretty much all afternoon -- rolling dough, shuffling trays in and out of the refrigerator, cutting and then finally baking. My friends and I thought they tasted good but I'll have to really think about making them again. However, I could probably manage my time better the next time. I agree with one of the other reviewers who suggested cutting them in squares or diamonds instead of using the star shaped cutter. There seemed to be a lot of waste.

  • chmurag 4 Jul, 2008

    I am a very experienced baker and usually have no problem with dough, but I have to agree that it was very difficult to work with. It cracked and it was impossible to make two pieces the same size and place neatly on top of the jam layer. Maybe it was because it was a humid day and I didn't have the A/C on. Plus, I found that 3/4 cup jam was too much. It oozed out the sides and made a big mess. There were more scraps than cookies. Declicious but not worth the trouble.

  • JenniferLewis 3 Jul, 2008

    If you love to bake...and love to see your kids delighted faces...these cookies are far from difficult and turn out perfect! Yummy :)

  • mgiles 3 Jul, 2008

    These look way too fussy to make for such a simple looking cookie...whose recipe is this anyway?

  • Since1982 3 Jul, 2008

    But if you continue to experience difficulty, try rolling out the dough between two pieces of parchment or waxed paper. It will help keep the dough from tearing. Don't forget to rechill the cookies before baking! :)

  • Since1982 3 Jul, 2008

    Part of working with dough for rolled cookies is learning to create a balance in the dough so that it's chilled enough to keep the cookies tender but still "warm" enough that you are able to roll it. Dough that has been chilled overnight is going to be too hard to permit you to roll it to a desirable thickness for a cookie. Allow the dough to sit at room temperature just long enough that you are able to roll it. I'm confident that w/a little practice you'll quickly get the feel for it.

  • filobeco 3 Jul, 2008

    The picture is not very good... it's not a good thing. Some people really need to see a great picture... part of learning.... this doesn't do it.

  • Ellie63 3 Jul, 2008

    I made these cookies even after reading the some of the bad reviews. They were wonderful to make, tasted great and made some memories with my 16 year old daughter. Those of you that had problems are probably not very good cookie makers to begin with, it is an easy recipe. Try it again and follow directions!

  • Carvin 1 Jul, 2008

    We Are Canadian! And for our National Holiday - Canada Day - on July 1 my grandaughter jessica and I made your Red White and Blue stars into Maple Leaves. They were a big hit!. Thanks for the recipe. We will add it to our favourites.

    Carol Bryden and Jessica Cornelius

  • Marthaisgenius 27 Jun, 2008

    These are very tasty! I have always loved cookies that utilize jam/jelly, and these are classic! The dough does not get very brown overall, but the edges do, so keep an eye out for that. I did notice the dough cracking around the edges when I rolled them out, but it wasn't a disaster by any means. Otherwise, I am so pleased.

  • Dreamer124 25 Jun, 2008

    I had already made my dough and it was chillin in the fridge when I then read the comments below. It was dreadful! I was going to spend the afternoon in a nightmarish way, should I just throw it away? I decided to forge ahead and what do you know? I found them to be very wonderful. Both my family and the dinner party I took them to raved on and on about them! Don't be discouraged, they will be a hit, they are not easy to whip out, but so good and look great as well. It's a keeper for me!

  • lini41 24 Jun, 2008

    Don't you wonder how many people worked on these cookies to get enough to display in the recipe. I bet they weren't even made using this recipe. What a disaster...glad I wasn't the only one to have a problem. Did you pitch the cookies with the recipe. I have them in my freezer and will probably not eat them.

  • cdunleavy921 24 Jun, 2008

    These cookies were very difficult to make. The dough was rock hard after overnight refridgeration and rolling out the dough was almost impossible. I decided to roll out small pieces and cut the shapes out and put raspberry preserves between the peices. It was a tough long day in the kitchen making these. I threw out the recipe (with glee) when I was finally finished.

  • lini41 20 Jun, 2008

    I made these cookes and would not make them again. They are pretty much tasteless and a mess to make. I followed the directions exactly and had a terrible time cutting them out and finally gave up on the cookie cutter and just cut diamond shapes with a knife. And, blueberry jam does not taste good. I used apricot and raspberry jam. This is a cute idea, but would work better with a sugar cookie recipe. Don't waste your time and money making these. Yuk!

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