Taking out the Trash on a Snow Day

I was going to blog this very healthy and delicious stew, but it will have to wait. Today is a snow day and that means cookies. The challenge is to use what you have and see what you can invent. In my house, we call that Snow Day Trash Cookies – maybe not the best name – but the cookies make up for it.

The first step is to checkout remaining Halloween and Christmas candy and see what looks yummy. Next – where’s the salt? Pretzels, chips, nuts – all three? Finally, a delicious cookie batter is necessary. Brown sugar and white sugar combined with butter is the real trick and after that add an egg, vanilla and dry ingredients and you are almost there.

Our candy stash yielded Reese’s Pieces in an unfortunate Halloween color scheme, plus pretzels, two kinds of nuts leftover from holiday parties, and some white chocolate chips. The hope had also been for a Heath bar or two, but that was not the case and ultimately not missed. Now there is one more tiny new trick we experimented with that turned out to be a winner – remember we are not creating health food – just fun food – and that was a small grind of the salt over the top of the cookies before they bake. I don’t exactly know why, but somehow, it’s just the perfect touch.

About those surprise ingredients, over time we have discovered that practically any candy will do. Some combinations are better than others (just say no to Junior Mints) but almost anything you like will work. You need about three fourths of a cup of some kind of candy, preferably some of it chocolate, either chopped up or already in pieces, one third of a cup of pretzels or potato chips, and a half cup of nuts. There are no rules, these are basically lawless cookies so dried fruit, coconut, granola, or any exotic candy you have might be a perfect addition. That’s the fun of a Snow Day Trash Cookie, which incidentally can double as a Rainy Day, Windy Day, Summer Day cookie as well – just make it work for you. And please, make these cookies – the snow just might stick around a day or two. Enjoy!

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Snow Day Trash Cookies (Printable Recipe)


½ cup brown sugar

½ cup white sugar

¾ cup butter

1 egg

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp salt

2¼ cups flourMix ins:  ¾ cups candy pieces, ¼ – ½ cup pretzels or potato chips, ½ cup nuts – any kind and any other ingredients you like – dried fruit, coconut etc.

Sea salt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray.

With an electric mixer combine sugars and butter until creamy.

Add egg and vanilla to combine.

Add soda, salt, and flour and mix to combine.

Add in your choice of mix in ingredients (the trash) and mix to just combine.

Drop by tablespoons full on to baking sheet, flatten only slightly, and sprinkle with a tiny amount of sea salt or kosher salt.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until lightly brown on the bottom.

Cool and enjoy.

Make about 36 cookies.

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