Ice Cream Kolacky Cookies
Use flour, butter, and ICE CREAM to make a pastry dough for a fun spin on traditional kolacky cookies. Top with sweet cream cheese or thick jam to make this holiday cookie irresistible!I’m happy to join The American Dairy Association Mideast for their annual Cooking Together to Give Gallons, a holiday recipe exchange to give the gift of milk through the Great American Milk Drive.
Our family comes from Czechoslovakia, and we’ve been making kolacky cookies in one form or another for generations! I can’t taste these cookies without thinking of my sweet grandmother. As a child, I never had the patience to learn to speak Slovak from her, but I did enjoy being in the kitchen with her while she churned out heaping piles of Christmas cookies.
A kolach (plural kolache, also spelled kolacky, from the Czech and Slovak plural) is a pastry that holds a dollop of fruit, rimmed by a puffy pillow of flaky dough.
Since the dough for these cookies only uses flour, butter, and ice cream, it is an easy recipe to make with children. There aren’t a lot of tough measurements, and the baking process is broken up over 2 days, so if kids only have a 15-minute attention span they will love this recipe!
Seriously, scoop ice cream right into the bowl with flour and butter, and *bam* you have a quick pastry dough. It’s pretty much Christmas magic.
This dough works best if you refrigerate overnight, so please keep that in mind.
After you cut the butter into the flour and then mix in the ice cream, you’re going to knead it smooth for 6-8 turns. There isn’t any yeast in here, so you’re not going to overwork it- don’t worry! Just get it looking semi-smooth, then separate it into three discs.
Wrap the discs in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, or overnight. Each disc will make 12 cookie rounds (using a 1.5-inch circle cutter).
You will see actual bits of butter and ice cream in the dough still; that’s what you want! These bits will create delicious, flaky air pockets when you bake up the cookies.
Top with sweet cream cheese or a thick jam filling, but be sure to use only a small dollop (about 1/2 teaspoon). I always bake these over parchment paper or a silicone baking mat (I’ll include links at the bottom) so that if any spills over, it’s a quick clean up.
Did you know that Milk is the No. 1 nutritious product requested by food bank clients, but it is rarely donated. The Great American Milk Drive is delivering thousands of gallons of milk to families who would otherwise go without. Going without milk, families miss out on high-quality protein and milk’s 9 essential nutrients that kids need to grow up healthy.
Can you freeze Ice Cream Kolacky Cookies?
The dough can be prepared and chilled up to 3 days in advance.
If freezing, roll out the dough and cut it into rounds, and dollop with jam or sweet cream cheese before freezing on a flat surface. Once frozen, the rounds can be transferred to an airtight container. When ready to bake, do not bring to room temperature. Bake straight from the freezer (you may need an additional minute in the oven, but watch carefully until cookies are golden).
It is not recommended to freeze kolacky cookies after they have been baked. The pastry may be soggy.
Store Ice Cream Kolacky Cookies in an airtight container for 2-3 days. Cookies will soften. Sprinkle with powdered sugar as needed.
Ice Cream Kolacky
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup butter, cold, cubed
- 1 cup vanilla ice cream, full fat
- 1/4 cup fruit preserves, apricot and blackberry
- 2 oz cream cheese
- 1 Tablespoon powdered sugar
- MEASURE out 1 cup of ice cream and set aside to soften on the counter while moving on to the next step.
- CUT butter into 8-10 small pieces. Use a pastry blender to MIX the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs (much like you would do while making pie crust).
- ADD ice cream in the same way, cutting into the flour mixture until a dough forms. You can use a stand mixer with a dough hook for this step if you have one.
- KNEAD dough 6-8 strokes or until smooth. CUT into 3 separate discs. Wrap discs in plastic wrap and REFRIGERATE until firm (or overnight, up to 3 days).
- When ready to bake, PREHEAT oven to 400 F. Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness between a floured surface on the bottom and the plastic wrap on top to keep the dough from sticking to the rolling pin. Use a circle cutter to cut out cookies. Each disc should yield 1 dozen cookies, for 36 cookies total.
- MIX cream cheese with powdered sugar.
- PLACE parchment paper or a silicone baking mat on top of your baking sheet. This will make any fruit preserve spillage easy to clean up. Transfer cookies to the baking sheet.
- Using your thumb, make an indent into each cookie and FILL with 1/2 teaspoon fruit preserves or cream cheese filling. Suggested to do 1 dozen of each filling.
- BAKE for 12 minutes. Cool for 5 minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. DUST with powdered sugar before serving.