Vanilla Half Moon Cookies

Angela (Grammy) Derby


These delicious cake-like cookie have been around for more than a century. I don't know how they got started, but they are a staple at restaurants, coffee shops, delis, and bakeries all over New York, New Jersey and beyond. The name says it all, these large, sweet and buttery, dome shaped cookies, are iced with two flavors of frosting. One half of the cookie is covered with a white frosting, the other half with a chocolate frosting. My recipe is handed down from my mother and I haven't met anyone yet who doesn't love these magical cookies!


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Yields: 2-3 dozen
30 Min
40 Min


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3/4 c
1 1/2 c
1 tsp
vanilla extract
1 c
sour milk (1 tbsp. white vinegar, then add milk to make 1 cup)
3 c
1 tsp
baking powder
1 tsp
baking soda
1/2 tsp


1/2 c
butter, softened
4 1/2 c
confectioners' sugar
1 1/2 tsp
vanilla extract
5-6 Tbsp

How to Make Vanilla Half Moon Cookies


  • 1Preheat oven to 375'F.
  • 2Cream shortening, sugar, eggs and vanilla. Add sour milk, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix well.
  • 3Drop by 1/4 cupfuls onto a greased baking sheet, rounding off the tops to make a thick-like looking pancake.
  • 4Bake for about 12-15 minutes or until edges are bottoms are just beginning to brown. DO NOT OVERBAKE, you don't want them to be dry.
  • 5Cool them on a wire rack. Once cooled completely, it's time to frost them. Remember to turn them upside down and frost the bottom.
  • 6Frosting:
    In a large bowl, beat butter until creamy. Beat in the confectioners' sugar, vanilla and enough milk to achieve desired consistency. Yield: About 3 cups.
  • 7Frost the cookies on half of the bottom side with the vanilla frosting. Then add 1 oz. of unsweetened melted chocolate or Hershey's Unsweetened Baking Cocoa and mix well. (You may have to add a little more milk to this.) Now, frost the other half and there you have it...Half Moons!

Printable Recipe Card

About Vanilla Half Moon Cookies

Course/Dish: Cookies
Main Ingredient: Flour
Regional Style: American

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