It all started with this.


My church was hosting a Valentines Day event. They asked if I could help with dessert, to which I said, “YES! Of COURSE!! I’d love to!”

See, one of my favorite things about baking is being able to share. To help. To give back in some small way. Plus its nice to make stuff that people will actually eat. (I try to avoid giving my kids sugar, and hubby and I can only eat so much… so sometimes we have to toss stuff in the ole trasher-oo)

They gave me this napkin and said go to it!

Allllllrighty. (channeling Ave Ventura)


I started sketching and planning weeks in advance… breaking down the cookies to exact numbers.


I did each design (there were eight designs) in phases to make it a little easier. Eight designs on twenty cookies each.






I think this one is my favorite. I have a thing for plaid. I want to see it everywhere.






Kinda like the napkin right?

ACV=Alliance Church of the Valley




Lots and lots and lots of cookies.





These were the biggest project, as I did twenty cookies of each color. So. Eighty total. And with an average of eight hearts on each cookie… thats like, uh, alot of hearts.

And dont even get me started on the number of lines.

(ok, so I had to figure it out. Its roughly 640 hearts, cause I know some cookies had more then eight hearts on them)


Do you have a favorite?


I have one more surprise for you… and its a doozie.

There was another beautiful lady helping out with the desserts that night… and I gotta tell you… she was the STAR of the show. I am in awe of her talent and creativity!

She made… get this… RED VELVET CHEESECAKE.

I never even knew such a thing existed!! Its like a Valentines Day miracle!


She made FIFTEEN of them.

I get tired just thinking about that.


Just look at this amazing dessert.



Just look at that thick, decadent, chocolate crust.


Sarah (the young lady who made all 15 of those suckers) is a baker by profession, and just started her first job decorating cakes for a local bakery. I would say they are lucky to have her!

(I dont have Sarahs recipe for the cheesecake, but she mentioned it is like a chocolate cheesecake with red food coloring.)


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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. TOUGH decision… asking for one favorite from a bunch of beautiful cookies. I’ll have to go with the lines with the little blue heart in the corner. The heart really did it for me!

  2. Your cookies are always amazing. OH THE CREATIVITY!
    And the cheesecake – that is outrageous. The crazy thing is that I’m sure the recipe itself is super simple, but the outcome is spectacular!! Thanks for sharing!

  3. your icing intrigues me, no meringue….hmmm. can you stack these when they are dry? They are gorgeous and I hate to admit that I understand that trasheroo thing, my friends are annoyed I would ever toss my cookies (hahaha) but they are dangerous hanging about the house!

  4. HOw do you do it? You must start days in advance baking and then frosting. My biggest pain when doing sugar cookies is the rolling and cutting. Any suggestions to make that part of the process go by quicker?
    Oh, and do not knock yourself for only make sugar cookies. Amanda, you must have forgotten that your cookies are oh-so amazing!

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