Animal Cookies

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Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: about 5 dozen cookies

Recipe photo

Remember the good old days of playing zookeeper with your own individual box of animal crackers? This is our version of the treat. They're not overly sweet, but do taste more like cookies than crackers.

Animal Cookies

star rating (28) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: about 5 dozen cookies
Published: 12/26/2012


Tips from our bakers

  • Freezing the cookies on the baking sheet for 15 minutes will help them retain their shape and imprint.
  • For the most authentic animal cracker flavor, use Princess Cake and Cookie Flavor — it makes a difference.


1) Beat together the butter, sugar, honey, salt, baking soda, and flavor until well combined.

2) Add the flour and oat flour, mixing to combine.

3) Divide the dough in half, flattening each half slightly to make a disk, then wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

4) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease several baking sheets, or line them with parchment.

5) Take one piece of dough out of the refrigerator, and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough 1/4" thick.

6) Dip animal cookie cutters in flour, then use them to cut the dough. Transfer the cookies to the prepared baking sheets.

7) Bake the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes, until lightly browned around the edges.

8) Remove the cookies from the oven, and let them cool on the baking sheet for several minutes, or until set.

9) Transfer the cookies on parchment to a rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Yield: about 5 dozen cookies.

Nutrition information

Serving Size: 1 cookie (9g) Servings Per Batch: 60 Amount Per Serving: Calories: 45 Calories from Fat: 20 Total Fat: 2.5g Saturated Fat: 1.5g Trans Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 5mg Sodium: 30mg Total Carbohydrate: 5g Dietary Fiber: 0g Sugars: 2g Protein: 1g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.


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  • star rating 03/18/2015
  • Nancy from Cranston,RI
  • These came out wonderful and taste great! I didn't know what Princess Cake flavor was (and still don't, to some degree), but these cookies definitely have that familiar smell of the animal crackers we are used to from childhood. It takes patience to use small cookie cutters, but you do end up with a lot of cookies! I'm sure I'll be making these again!
  • star rating 11/14/2014
  • Suza from Oregon
  • These cookies were easy to make and the cutters worked wonderfully, as long as I floured them each time. However, my cookies did not resemble store-bought animal crackers as much as I had anticipated. They were too "buttery" tasting and left greasy spots on the parchment after cooling. I am going to try again, but this time weigh all the ingredients. I did weigh the flour, but not the butter. Also, the flavor (I used the recommended Princess Cake Flavor) was overpowered by a browned butter taste. I might have cooked them a bit long, thus browning them too much. After 7 minutes, they seemed soft, so I cooked them 2 min more. Maybe 1 minute would have been better (total of 8 minutes). I wonder if using shortening would remove the buttery taste, although I try to avoid using hydrogenated fats in my baking. I'm going to do some experimenting and hope to get a product more like the original Animal Crackers.
  • star rating 10/22/2014
  • D from Vermont
  • very bad aftertaste. I am surprised with this KAF usually they are so good.
    This leaves us with a bad aftertaste as well. We wonder if the princess flavor was used or if it just doesn't please your flavor profile. Other culprits in the taste may be flour or oat flour that's past date or rancid. Irene@KAF
  • star rating 08/05/2014
  • Kathy from Braintree, MA
  • Wow... I made these last night. Followed the recipe exactly. Used the Princess cake and cookie flavoring, A must for the perfect flavoring. I ground the rolled oats in my blender, worked perfectly and gave the cookie a great texture. I cooked them for ten minutes, took them out and dropped the temperature in the oven to 200 degrees put them back in for about 8 min then left the oven door open for anther 10 minutes. Then cooled them on a rack. Gave them that crispness I was looking for.
  • star rating 04/05/2014
  • Patti from Princeton, NJ
  • I used the Princess Flavor and King Arthur coolie cutters. They were easy, delicious, and so stinkin' cute!
  • star rating 03/31/2014
  • from London
  • I added one egg For the flavor I added cinnamon
  • star rating 02/21/2014
  • nichael from KAF Community
  • Great recipe. Two questions: #1: The recipe mentions "other flavors". Do you (or other readers) have any suggestions? #2: I have the "plunger" cookie-cutters that KAF sells and they too are great. But I'm wondering about other shapes. I've tried googling for cutters, but all I can find are simple "outlining" cutters, typically quite cheap (in the bad sense). Do you know if the source where KAF gets their cutters have other shapes available (or could you possibly recommend a good source)? Specifically I've had requests for "dinosaurs" and "dragons". ;-)
    Try searching online for some of your favorites.~Jaydl@KAF
  • star rating 02/03/2014
  • Renee from Michigan
  • Do you suppose that this recipe would work with the stone cookie stamps and molds for cut apart cookies? I have quite a collection, and I am always looking for a good cookie to show a lot of detail and taste good!
    I think it would work well, let us know how it goes. MJ @ KAF
  • star rating 01/20/2014
  • Virginia from Maryland
  • Just made these for my grandson's 2 year old birthday party. They were a great hit with the babies and parents who all wanted the recipe. KAF will have lots of new fans. The first batch I made too thin and baked a little too long for my taste. The second batch I made thicker and baked to the minimum suggested time & they were perfect. Followed the recipe exactly and they taste 100% better than the store bought ones. They are not dry or hard unless you roll too thin and bake too long. The cutters are adorable and were amazingly easy to use. I refrigerated the dough overnight and had to let it sit out a while before I could roll it. Will be making these often for grandchildren. So Cute!
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