By Vicky McDonald

A dozen good reasons to stock up.

Oreos are not just a cookie—they're a versatile ingredient that will take your baking to the next level. I always try keep a pack or two stashed in the cupboard for those times when you need a little extra flavor and cuteness. Here are 12 genius ways that Oreo cookies can help make homemade treats even better.

1. Give bark some extra bite.

Chocolate bark is such an easy holiday treat, and a few smashed Oreo cookies will add just the right amount of crunchiness. This 2-ingredient bark is the easiest treat you'll ever make. Wrap it up in a cellophane bag with a big red ribbon, and you've got a simple and impressive holiday gift.

Oreo Cookie Bark

Photo by Melissa Goff

2. Make the tastiest pie crust.

Sure, graham cracker crust is nice, but if you really want to push the boat out, try a chocolate Oreo crust—it will make your cheesecake taste phenomenal.

Chocolate Cookie Cheesecake

3. Put the fun in the fudge.

Oreo cookies give an extra boost flavor to these adorable fudge confections.

World's Best Oreo Fudge

Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

4. Two words: Oreo. Frosting.

Make a vanilla buttercream frosting extra special with some crushed Oreo crumbs mixed in. Or, if you're stuck for a cupcake topper, perch a mini Oreo on top of your frosting for instant cuteness.

Mini OREO Surprise Cupcakes

Photo by sweetserenade

5. They're a no-bake hero.

No time to bake, no problem. This cool whip and chocolate dessert is topped with crunchy Oreos, and has a tasty Oreo crust base. No baking required -- just a little cookie crushing and freezing.

Oreo Cookie Cake

Photo by Christy Cooks

6. It's a crafty ingredient.

It takes only three ingredients to turn Oreo cookies into adorable Halloween bats for your little ghosts and goblins.

Haunted Oreos

Photo by Allrecipes Magazine

7. Make mighty milkshakes.

"This recipe is super kid-friendly, easy to make, and delicious," says Annette Wegrzyn. A favorite for kids to enjoy on a hot day."

Oreo Milkshake

Photo by Louis Friend

8. Make for a sweet surprise inside.

Oreo-Stuffed Oatmeal Scotchies

Making cookies or browies -- sneak an Oreo cookie inside, and you've got an even better treat. These Oreo-stuffed brownies are heavenly.

9. Make tempting truffles.

Can you believe these gift-worthy beauties take only four ingredients to make? "I just love the rich delicious taste of these incredibly easy truffles," says Alicial Browers Eakins. "I will be making them for all special occasions."

Cookies-and-Cream Truffles

Photo by Kim's Cooking Now!

10. Make them into fair food.

Oreo cookies are so sturdy they can be baked into cakes, and even deep-fried. Make this fair food at home for a delicious, crispy treat.

Deep Fried Oreos

11. Turn a simple loaf cake into a whole lotta love.

Oreo Loaf Cake

"An easy one-bowl sour cream loaf cake with a soft crumb and bursting with Oreos," says The Sweet and sour Baker. We say yes, please!

Photo by The Sweet and Sour Baker

12. Make ice cream worth screaming for.

Thai Tea Oreo Ice Cream

Spicy Thai tea mix and crushed Oreos go into this rich custard-based ice cream. "Will make this again," says MariaTheSoaper. "Big hit with the family!"

Photo by MariaTheSoaper
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