Lady Locks – Christmas Cookie Exchange

If you’re one of my regular readers, then you know I’ve spent all five Saturdays in November baking Christmas treats. Well today, I have one last cookie recipe to share with you. It’s for the World Pittsburgh famous Lady Locks. Lady Locks are a staple at every Wedding Cookie Table. What is a Wedding Cookie Table you ask? Read all about it here!


I am SUPER excited to be participating in The Everyday Home’s 1st Annual Cookie Exchange. I’ll have all of the links at the bottom of this post for 29 other bloggers, so please be sure to stop in on them to see what they have baked for the cookie exchange.

If you have never heard of Lady Locks (sometimes called clothespin cookies), you’re in for quite a treat!

ladylocks by createandbabble-1

Lady Locks are little, bite-sized, delicate and flaky pastry shells filled with a sweet and creamy icing. Now I’m going to be honest: there is a time commitment if you decide to make these. However, I have found a shortcut that I’ll show you at the end of this recipe.

Now on to the recipe. For the dough:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 cup butter flavor crisco
  • 1/2 cup warm milk (not hot)
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 oz packet of yeast
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Cut crisco into flour until it gets crumbly.

ladylocks by createandbabble


Add remaining ingredients and mix at a low speed. Roll the dough to no more than 1/4″ thick on a floured board and cut into 1″ x 4″ strips (approximate).

ladylocks by createandbabble-3

Wrap the strips of dough around foiled wrapped dowel rods, slightly overlapping the edges.

ladylocks by createandbabble-5


Now you can see why some call these clothespin cookies. They used to wrap foil around old fashioned clothespins. The clothespins make a large ladylock. I used a dowel rod (I think it was 3/8″) and cut it down into 5″-6″ lengths. So my cookies are mini ladylocks.

I read somewhere recently to line your baking sheet with a brown paper bag cut to fit. I tried it and it really does work! I was worried about paper in the oven, so I kept a close eye on it, and it was fine. And none of the cookies stuck. I have to say that the last time I baked these was for my daughter’s wedding and I did lose about one out of every three cookies because they stuck to the cookie sheet and broke when I removed them.

ladylocks by createandbabble-3

Let the cookies rise for 30 minutes on the cookie sheet, then bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes (until dough looks firm and is slightly darkened in color).

ladylocks by createandbabble-6

To remove the shells from the rods, I hold one end with tongs and slide the shell off. Let shells cool.

ladylocks by createandbabble-7

For the filling:

  • 1 cup milk
  • 5 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

In a small saucepan over low to medium heat, cook milk and flour until mixture is thick, stirring constantly. Set aside to cool.

Beat shortening, sugar and vanilla until fluffy. Add the cooled milk mixture and continue beating until well blended and fluffy. Fill the shells with a pastry bag, pasty tube or a plastic bag with one corner cut off.

ladylock cookies by createandabble

Dust the cookies with powdered sugar. This recipe makes about five dozen cookies and they freeze well.

ladylock cookies by createandabble-2

Santa will love these, I promise!

Now for the short cut version that I promised. Skip the dough part of the recipe and buy a box of Pepperidge Farms frozen pastry dough. Thaw it according the directions on the box. Lay it out on a floured surface and cut into squares (whatever size you want) Mine are about an inch or so.

Bake at 400 degrees for about 12 minutes. As soon as they are cool enough to touch, open each little puffed square and pipe in the filling. Dust with powdered sugar.

mini ladylocks by createandbabble



Click on any picture or the link below it to see your favorite cookies!


Everyday Home Atta Girl Says

Everyday Home | Atta Girl Says


Southern Color Deja Vue Designs

Southern Color | Deja Vue Designs


Shabby Art Boutique All Things Heart and Home

Shabby Art Boutique | All Things Heart and Home


Town N Country Living Worthing Court Blog

Town and Country Living | Worthing Court


Lilacs and Longhorns Inspiration for Moms

Lilacs and Longhorns | Inspiration for Moms


Vintage News Junkie Marty's Musings

Vintage News Junkie | Marty’s Musings


Domestically Speaking My Soulful Home

Domestically Speaking | My Soulful Home


Virginia Sweet Pea Our Southern Home

Sweet Pea | Our Southern Home


A Delightsome Life Cottage at the Crossroads

A Delightsome Life | Cottage at the Crossroads


Penny Wise Major Hoff Takes a Wife

Pennywise | Major Hoff Takes a Wife


Country Design Style House on the Way

Country Design Style | House on the Way


Fresh Idea Studio Confessions of a Plate Addict

Fresh Idea Studio | Confesions of a Plate Addict


Stone Gable Create and Babble

Stone Gable | Create and Babble


So Much Better with Age Cupcakes and Crinoline

So Much Better with Age | Cupcakes and Crinoline


The Happier Homemaker

The Happier Homemaker


If you missed any of the recipes in My Family Favorites Series, I’ve provided the links below each photo.

Nut Rolls

Christmas Cookies-marshmallow fudge brownies

Marshmallow Fudge Brownies


Pecan Tassies


Apricot Pinwheels

christmas cookies toll house

Tollhouse Cupcakes

I link to these great parties:

Make It Pretty Monday / Project Inspired / In and Out of the Kitchen / The Scoop / Give Me the Goods / Tutorials & Tips /  Inspire Me Tuesday / From Dream to Reality / One Project at a Time / Twirl and Take a Bow / The Fun in Functional / Nifty Thrifty Tuesday / Power of Paint Party / Tuesday’s Treasures / Whimsy Wednesday / Throwback Thursday / Whatever Goes Wednesday / Inspire Me PleaseShow & Share / Wow Us Wednesdays / Weekly Creative / Grace at Home/ Ladies Only Blog Share / Freedom Fridays / Feathered Nest Friday / Link Party Palooza / The Party Bunch / Furniture Feature Friday / Party Junk / what’s shakin / Anything Blue Friday / Shabbilicious Friday/ Think Pink Sunday / Finding The Pretty & Delicious / Making Monday / Our Sunday Best / Get Your DIY On /  Make the Scene / That DIY Party / Bewitch Me & Titi / Inspiration Monday / nifty thrifty Sunday /


  1. 4

    Tina From Pa says

    Thank You Thank You for posting! I can not wait to try your recipe! Have you tried the nonstick foil to avoid the cookies from sitcking? I use parchment paper with great results. Your recipe looks much easier then the one I use, mine is one where you roll the dough several times & spread crisco on it and fold it, you do this 4 times , talk about work. I going to try your recipe next week, I’ll let you know how it worked for me. Thanks again, have a great weekend! Tina


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge