17 Best Christmas Cookie Recipes

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One of the best parts of the holidays is the food.  From the turkey to the candy canes, it’s definitely a time to indulge the appetite.

The biggest temptations of the season aren’t the large foods; it’s the small ones, the times where you can’t stop at one.  That’s right, I’m talking about the cookies.

Cookies might be bad for us, but they taste so good!  Here is a list of seventeen of the best cookie recipes for the holidays.  Just make sure you’ve eaten before reading this because these recipes are mouth-watering!


17 Best Christmas Cookie Recipes

1. Thumbprint Cookies

These cookies are a huge part of Christmas get-togethers in my family.  I always wind up taking a few cookies home every year to enjoy later.

Thumbprint cookies are flat cookies that have been pressed by the thumb so there’s a small dip in them.  The dip is filled in by jam or chocolate, making a sweet treat.


2. Chocolate Chip Cookies

These cookies are the number one Christmas cookie according to a YouGov poll.  Not only are they delicious, but they’re also the kind of cookie to leave out for Santa.

The best chocolate chip cookies are the ones fresh out of the oven, with the chips melted into goo.  But if they aren’t freshly made, I think the cookies go best with vanilla ice cream.


3. Sugar Cookies

You can’t go wrong with a classic.  Sugar cookies are the simplest cookies, but they’re easy to make and create holiday shapes using cookie cutters.

Sugar cookies are also famous for being easy to decorate.  Frosting, sprinkles, pieces of candy, and other decoration foods go very well with these cookies.


4. Snickerdoodles

Another classic cookie, snickerdoodles are sugar and cinnamon goodness wrapped up in a soft crust.  In the Christmas season, they are often made with red and green colored sugar.

When you’re done making the snickerdoodles, it’s possible to freeze them.  This way you could make them days in advance of any parties and not have to worry about cooking time.


5. Oatmeal Cookies

Oatmeal cookies are a quick, simple, choice for your holidays.  They taste the best when fresh out of the oven, and you can liven them up with chocolate chips or raisins.

For a holiday spin on this dish, try sprinkling powdered sugar on top. Or you can use dried or candied fruit in the recipe if chocolate chips and raisins don’t work for your family.


6. Gingerbread Cookies

This cookie technically includes gingerbread men and gingerbread houses.  Gingerbread itself has been around for centuries, although making it into cookies and other shapes came later.

The kind of gingerbread used to make cookies combines molasses, sugar, eggs, and spices.  It’s an easy-to-bake cookie that gives many happy moments of decorating it.


7. Candy Cane Cookies

Nothing says “holidays” like candy canes, and there are candy cane cookies, too.  And they can have the same mint flavor with peppermint extract or even crushed candy canes.

Some recipes use red food coloring to get the look just right, but this is more of a personal choice.  You don’t even have to make them cane-shaped to enjoy the peppermint flavor.


8. Shortbread

Shortbread cookies are a Christmas tradition in Scotland.  They’re a bit like sugar cookies, but stiffer and crumblier.  Shortbread is also commonly sold in stores during the holidays.

Making shortbread cookies might take more time than just buying them, but it’s more satisfying in the end.  Especially since the cookies are done in under an hour.


9. Gingersnaps

Gingersnaps are, of course, ginger-flavored cookies with sugar, cinnamon, and molasses.  They’re delicious and easy to make. They’re also ready to eat in under a half-hour.

It’s easy to decorate gingersnaps, too.  Dipping them in white chocolate or frosting makes a nice little contrast, for example.  It helps to create a winter theme for a holiday party.


10. Brownies

Do brownies count as cookies?  I think so since they’re made in the same way.  Brownies come in many flavors and textures, and they’re popular as holiday gifts for friends or co-workers.

Because brownies have so many different recipes, there is at least one kind for every taste and diet out there.  Which one is your favorite?


11. Snowball Cookies

A combination of ground nuts, flour, butter, and sugar makes snowball cookies a guilty pleasure.  These cookies are very delicate, in fact, they melt in your mouth.

Snowball cookies fit the winter theme of the holidays very well.  They’re easy to make and ready in under a half-hour.  The only downside is that they’re too rich for eating every day.


12. Cathedral Cookies

Also known as church window cookies, cathedral cookies look like a stained-glass window or a chocolatey mosaic.  It’s made with mini marshmallows and walnuts combined in chocolate, then wrapped in coconut flakes or powdered sugar.

Cathedral cookies don’t need baking, only enough heat to melt the chocolate.  And once you’re done making them, they can be stored in the fridge or frozen for another time.


13. Macaroons

Macaroons are sometimes confused with the similar macarons.  There’s a lot of fuzziness, spelling changes, and name swapping so I’m not completely sure.  One difference I’ve seen is that macaroons are made with coconut, while macarons are supposedly made with almond paste

If you want your macaroons to taste sweeter, dip their bottoms in chocolate.  These fluffy cookies are one of my favorite treats, especially for Christmas!


14. Fruitcake Cookies

Fruitcake is another holiday tradition, even if it’s become kind of a running gag nowadays.  But did you know there are fruitcake cookies out there?

The cookies are made with candied fruits, such as cherries and pineapple.  The process of making them only takes around a half-hour, and just to warn you, they taste delicious!


15. Biscotti

Not all cookies have to be soft or round; biscotti is famous as a companion to coffee and other hot drinks.  It comes in many flavors, too.

Biscotti is the perfect cookie for an office party or a family reunion without kids.  Its crunchiness melts into your hot drink, flavoring it subtly.


16. Butter Cookies

One of the best-known and easiest holiday cookies, butter cookies are famous for their shapes and swirls.  You can make those shapes at home with a piping bag.

Butter cookies finish cooking quickly, and the recipe will be finished in twenty minutes.  Some ways to decorate them include dipping them in chocolate once they’ve cooled down, frosting, and sprinkles.


17. Cake Pops

This might not quite count as a cookie, but they’re close enough.  If you haven’t seen the trend, cake pops, also known as truffles, are small spheres of cake covered in frosting.  They come with a stick to hold them.

Cake pops are easy to make and decorate for the holidays.  They make excellent finger food, and the sticks can easily be found in a specialty craft or baking store.


Wrap Up

And there we go!  I recommend making these cookies for a big party, especially one with a lot of kids in it, but kids aren’t the only ones who enjoy cookies.

One thing to remember is that these recipes aren’t the only ones.  There are different flavors and substitutions for ingredients.  Feel free to experiment!

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