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Best Christmas Cookie Recipes

Best Christmas Cookie Recipes

Posted on: October 12th 2021

Christmas and cookies are practically synonymous. After all, Santa needs enough fuel to get through his long night of present-giving. Moms and dads can also use a pick-me-up amid the hustle and bustle of present buying and wrapping. Luckily, kids of all ages love baking and decorating cookies.

Whether you’re baking for your family, sharing cookies with friends, or attending a cookie exchange, these Christmas cookie recipe ideas are sure to delight and satisfy everyone.

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42 Christmas Cookie Recipes

Most families have their favorite Christmas cookies that they make every year  — for some, these are traditional cookies whose recipes have been passed down through generations. In addition to your holiday staples, why not add a few other recipes to the mix? A great cookie tray is one with a variety of textures, flavors, and colors, so try out this collection of the best Christmas cookie recipes to refresh your holiday baking.

1. Sugar Cookies

These cookies are quintessential on Christmas. Sugar cookies get their name and flavor from the main ingredients — sugar, butter, eggs, and flour. They’re the blank canvas of the cookie world, serving as a wonderful base for all different kinds of icing, sprinkles, and other toppings. Create Christmas sugar cookies using cookie cutters in whatever shape you want.

2. Gingerbread

Nothing says Christmas quite like gingerbread cookies. Their warm, spiced flavor is scrumptious right out of the oven or a day later, but they don’t last much longer than that. Gingerbread cookies can be soft or crisp, but the molasses, allspice, and clove in almost all variations give them their characteristic flavor. Make classic gingerbread men and women, or break out your architectural skills and make a gingerbread house.

3. Chocolate Chip

These cookies are good all year round, but fresh-out-of-the-oven, gooey cookies are sure to get you in the Christmas mood. You can choose how much and what kind of chocolate to use. Go traditional with semi-sweet chips, or choose from chunks, flavored chocolate, or extra ingredients with the chocolate to elevate these classic cookies.

4. Cranberry White Chocolate

Cranberries and white chocolate are a perfect festive combination. The tartness of the cranberries pairs so well with the smooth sweetness of the white chocolate chips.  These cookies are easy to whip together — just throw the ingredients in a bowl and drop by the spoonful onto a baking sheet. Drizzle them with melted white chocolate and red sugar sprinkles for an extra festive flair.

5. Chocolate Peppermint

Chocolate and peppermint are the perfect Christmas combination. You can make chocolate peppermint cookies in a variety of ways. Try adding crushed-up candy canes to your regular chocolate chip cookie recipe for extra freshness and crunch. Or, get a punch of peppermint by adding peppermint extract and crushed candy canes to a yummy chocolate cookie batter.

6. Thumbprint Cookies

Thumbprint cookies are one of the best Christmas cookies of all time. All you need for this cookie is a great recipe, some good jam, and your thumb. The batter for this cookie gets a nice chill-down before baking so the cookies retain their characteristic rounded shape. You can choose whatever jam you like or use various flavors to create a beautiful jewel-toned cookie collection.

7. Spritz Cookies

If you want to make cookies more fun than they already are, try out a spritz cookie recipe this holiday season. To make these wonderfully shaped cookies, all you need is a cookie press with additional attachments. Kids will love to operate the press and decorate the cookies with sprinkles and icing— it’s just like making playdough cookies, except you can actually eat these.

8. Peanut Butter Blossoms

Another great combo for all year round, peanut butter and chocolate cookies are always a crowd-pleaser. Choose from a variety of Hershey Kiss flavors, from classic milk chocolate to dark chocolate to caramel-filled. The trick to making these cookies is to press on the chocolate while the cookies are fresh out of the oven so they stick.

9. Creme Brulee Sugar Cookies

These unique cookies transform a classic dessert into a wonderful cookie. This cookie is best left to the adults, as it involves the use of an open flame. Just like with regular creme brulee, the sugar on top of these cookies is caramelized with a kitchen torch to create a tasty, crunchy crust.

10. Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies

These sweet, chewy cookies are the perfect pop of color to add to any holiday cookie plate. But you won’t just like these for their festive red and white appearance — the delectable red velvet cake mix in this cookie recipe adds a beautiful soft texture and moisture. To create the beautiful crinkle look, roll the cookie dough in powdered sugar and as they bake, they’ll expand and the powdered sugar will appear cracked.

11. Linzer Cookies

These cookies have a long history, and they’re the perfect Christmas cookie recipe to take to a party or share with the family. Linzer cookies give you twice the cookie, as they’re a type of sandwich cookie with jam in the middle. Classic Linzer cookies are round with a crinkled edge, and the top cookie has a cutout where you can see the jam in the middle. However, you can make a festive version of these cookies using a star or tree-shaped cookie cutter.

12. Anisette Cookies

A favorite Christmas cookie recipe in Italy, anisette cookies have the perfect hint of anise. These small, bite-sized cookies are great to pair with a strong coffee or as part of an after-dinner cookie tray. While many people don’t like the taste of licorice, the subtle notes of anise in these cookies will appeal to almost anyone.

13. Jeweled Coconut Cookies

Take a coconut macaroon and make it festive with these jeweled coconut cookies. The sweet, nutty taste of the cookie pairs well with a dollop of jam or preserves. Choose your favorite fruit jam to pair with these cookies and enjoy with a cup of tea or coffee.

14. Peanut Butter Cookies

For the peanut butter purists out there, a crisp peanut butter cookie is the ideal complement to any holiday festivities. Out of all Christmas desserts, these peanut butter cookies might be the most popular. With the characteristic fork indention on the top, you’ll be able to spot these on any cookie tray. Try on their own, or add festive colored chocolate candies to decorate.

15. Oatmeal Craisin

Raisins, step aside — there’s a new favorite dried fruit in town. Oatmeal raisin cookies get a tart and festive dress-up with dried cranberries. With a more pronounced flavor, cranberries are the perfect addition to make these traditional cookies Christmas-ready. What’s better, you can have them for breakfast or dessert.

16. Snickerdoodle

Another classic cookie, the Snickerdoodle is everyone’s favorite. These cookies are best when they’re right out of the oven, but you can’t go wrong eating them anytime — or at least as long as they last. Dress these up for the holidays with some green and red sugar on top, or use Christmas cookie cutters to make them into cute shapes. Dunk in a glass of milk or hot cocoa for the perfect bedtime treat.

17. Molasses Chewies

If you like your cookies crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside, you’ll love these molasses chewies. The robust, sweet flavor of molasses matched with pumpkin pie spices creates a warm and inviting taste that will melt in your mouth. Roll the dough in turbinado sugar before baking to enhance the crunchy texture of these cookies.

18. Coconut Macaroons

While the taste of coconut might bring you to a tropical state of mind, that doesn’t mean you have to exclude them from your Christmas baking. Coconut’s sweet, nutty flavor and great texture make these cookies a perfect complement to the sweet, crisp, and warm flavors on the rest of your cookie tray. Take a few for a quick snack or make a whole batch to share with family and friends.

19. Chocolate Orange Cookies

Bright citrus notes of orange bring out the richness of chocolate in this classic flavor combination. You can find orange chocolates in the sweets aisle, but why not add these to your cookie recipe list? These cookies are best with fresh orange zest and semi-sweet chocolate chips. For double the chocolate orange, sub out the chips for crushed-up pieces of your favorite chocolate orange candy.

20. Candy Cane Cookies

If you want a colorful, festive addition to your cookie tray, don’t miss out on these striped candy cane cookies. With peppermint extract and red food coloring, these cookies are fun to make and even more fun to eat. You get the candy-cane look by twisting the two different-colored doughs together and shaping them into a hook.

21. Cran-Pistachio Cookies

Naturally green and red, these cookies have a unique flavor profile and wonderful texture. The slightly sweet yet earthy flavor of pistachios is a compliment to countless desserts, from cakes to ice cream. In these cookies, the understated pistachio flavor is brightened by dried cranberries, which offer a tart complement and a pop of red to these sweets.

22. Spiced Almond-Chocolate Crinkles

A distinctive dessert, these spiced chocolate crinkles include chopped almonds to add taste and texture. The chocolate in these cookies has an element of warmth due to the addition of ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Rolling the dough in powdered sugar before baking gives these cookies the characteristic crinkles they’re named after. Have them warm with a glass of milk, or enjoy the still-soft texture long after they’ve left the oven.

23. Lemon Cookies

Take a break from the chocolates and candy with a subtle lemon cookie. With a slight sweetness that doesn’t overpower the citrus notes, these cookies are the perfect holiday refresher. Add more zest for a tarter flavor, or add poppyseeds as a nod to the original lemon poppyseed combo. Serve them with a glaze made from fresh-squeezed lemon juice and top with powdered sugar.

24. Chocolate Pretzel Cookies

Take a chocolate pretzel, add a cookie, and you’ve got the perfectly balanced dessert. The sweet chocolate is a perfect pairing to the crunchy, salty pretzel. Crush up pretzels and add them to your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, or use actual chocolate-covered pretzels and skip the chips altogether. As a crowd-pleaser cookie, these are great for bake sales, cookie gift baskets, or just to have around the house.

25. Eggnog Meltaways

Eggnog goes fast during the holiday season as it’s a favorite for many families. Since there’s little chance you’ll have extra eggnog lying around, be sure to buy or make some specifically for this delicious cookie recipe. Like eggnog in cookie form, these will melt in your mouth and leave you wanting more. Top with a rum, eggnog-flavored icing, and a sprinkle of freshly grated nutmeg.

26. Santa’s Trash

The best thing about these cookies? You can put practically whatever you want in them. They’re called “Santa’s trash”  not because they have garbage in them, but because you can put whatever leftover toppings and additions from other holiday baking you do into these cookies. Have leftover pretzels, candies, or even potato chips? Throw them into this dough and create something tasty from your leftover baking ingredients.

27. Fruitcake Cookies

Don’t think of fruitcake when you see this recipe — think of delicious cookies with dried fruit. These are jam-packed with dried and candied fruits, nuts, and festive flavorings. What’s better is that these are the perfect freeze-and-bake cookies. Make a batch or two of dough and keep in the freezer until you’re ready to bake. Just cut off slices of dough and pop them in the oven for a quick treat.

28. Triple Chocolate Cookies

The only thing better than two chocolates is three. These triple chocolate cookies add an extra punch and will satisfy your chocolate cravings this Christmas. To a chocolate cookie dough, add your favorite chocolate chips, whether milk, dark, or white. You can even add different flavors like cookies and cream or caramel chocolate to change things up.

29. Cherry and Almond Cookies

The combination of cherry and almond is a classic Christmas flavor. Including almond extract, chopped toasted almonds, and chopped dried cherries, these cookies have great texture with a strong almond flavor. To make them extra special, you can toast the almonds yourself in the oven. If you’re not a huge almond fan, you can substitute apricots and pine nuts.

30. Cookie Cups

These cookie cups are the perfect festive sleepover treat. They’re great to serve with milk or ice cream, and they make clean-up easy since there are no bowls or cups to wash. To shape, press dough on an upsidedown muffin pan and bake. If you want to use these as bowls for ice cream or milk, coat the inside of the cup with melted chocolate and allow it to harden to prevent leaks.

31. Icebox Cookies

Icebox cookies are the best treats for the busy holiday season. With parties and events and surprise guests, having cookie dough on hand whenever you need to whip up a batch of yummy treats is a huge plus. You can fill your icebox cookies with whatever toppings you like — if you prefer a tart flavor, try lemon icebox cookies with dried cranberries. Otherwise, go with a classic chocolate chip. Just roll the dough in a log and cut off pieces as you need.

32. Pignoli Cookies

These cookies, made with ingredients on the pricier side, are a holiday delicacy. Pignoli is the Italian word for pine nuts, and this recipe calls for a lot of them. Additionally, you’ll need almond paste, egg whites, sugar, and orange zest. These simple cookies have a chewy texture perfect to compliment any cookie tray.

33. Chocolate Hazelnut Cookies with Nutella

An original holiday flavor combination, chocolate and hazelnut has grown in popularity all year round. The crunchy hazelnuts in these cookies add texture to the chewy chocolate cookie base. Add a drizzle of Nutella over the top and enjoy these cookies while they’re still warm. Add a tall glass of milk for the perfect Christmas treat.

34. Flourless Fudge Cookies

You won’t miss the flour in these scrumptious cookies. The crisp outer shell perfectly complements the gooey, fudgy texture of these cookies. If you love chocolate, these cookies are for you. Add in your favorite chocolate chips to complete these double chocolate cookies.

35. French Macarons

Notoriously finicky, french macarons are definitely worth the effort it takes to get them just right. These fancy French cookies will elevate any event, and you can choose practically any flavor combination. From peppermint to chocolate to pistachio, among so many other flavors, you can choose your favorites and make a unique treat for the holidays.

36. Salted Caramel Cookies

If you’re a fan of caramel, you’ll love these delicious, gooey salted caramel cookies. The sweet caramel pairs perfectly with flaked sea salt. Eat them warm right out of the oven or heat them up and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a caramel drizzle.

37. Lemon Rosemary Trees

The fresh taste of rosemary and lemon in these cookies goes perfectly with a cup of Earl Grey tea. These not-too-sweet cookies are perfect for those days when you want a treat but don’t want a decadent or rich dessert. Traditionally paired with savory dishes, rosemary adds a herby lift to this lemon cookie that’s absolutely delectable.

38. Holiday Meringue

Christmas is the perfect excuse to make meringue. The sugary, melt-in-your-mouth texture of these cookies is sure to delight everyone. You can make vanilla, almond, peppermint, or even chocolate meringues. Divide the batter in two and add food coloring to make them extra festive. You’ll want to employ a mixer for this recipe, as the batter can take up to 10 minutes of whisking to reach the desired consistency.

39. Cardamom Sugar Cookie

Spice up your sugar cookies — literally — with this recipe for cardamom sugar cookies. Cardomom is a complex spice with notes of pine, fruit, and even menthol. In small doses, such as in this recipe, it adds warmth and aromatic flavors. Using cardamom brightens up these sugar cookies and makes them the perfect match for a warm chai latte.

40. Almond Ginger Cookies

These traditional Chinese cookies are sure to be a new favorite Christmas cookie recipe. The warmth from the crystallized ginger in this cookie pairs well with the nutty almond flavor. These are the perfect crisp, simple cookie to pair with tea, coffee, or milk.

41. Sandwich Cookies

Get twice the cookie in one bite with sandwich cookies. Using your favorite Christmas cookie recipe, add a bit of icing, caramel, chocolate, or jam in between two and enjoy. Be sure to use complementary flavors, however. For example, a chocolate peppermint cookie goes well with mint icing, or use jam in between two cardamom sugar cookies.

42. Biscotti

Biscotti are the perfect cookie for dunking in coffee, hot cocoa, and milk. They’re long and crisp so they won’t fall apart in the hot liquid. You can make biscotti in practically any flavor you use to make cookies. For the holidays, try chocolate peppermint, almond cherry, or cranberry pistachio.


Choose Sauder’s Eggs for Your Holiday Baking

A cookie is the sum of its parts, so make all the ingredients shine by using the best quality eggs. Eggs play a vital role in baking, giving dough structure, enriching flavor, and helping you get the desired texture. Egg use during the holiday season skyrockets — in fact, between November and December, Americans use approximately 7.9 billion eggs.

Grab an extra dozen or two of Sauder’s Eggs at your local store to stock up for all your Christmas cookie baking and enjoy the holiday cookie season.

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