Cookie Recipes You Need to Try this Holiday Season
As the temperature continues to drop, it is the perfect time of year to put your oven to good use! In honor of the holiday season, here are 8 must-try, tested and TRUE-ly delicious, recipes. These cookies are perfect for satisfying your sweet tooth, or a great way to change up your holiday cookie spread!
Christmas Butter Cookies
These buttery, delicious cookies are perfect for holiday cutouts! Sprinkle sugar on the dough before baking or decorate with your favorite frosting.
- 1 cup – 2 sticks of butter
- un-buttered cookie sheet
- 1 ½ cups sifted confection sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 ½ cups sifted flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees
Cream butter then add sugar gradually. Cream until fluffy, add egg and vanilla, and beat well. Sift together all dry ingredients into another bowl (flour, baking soda, and salt). Blend into wet mixture. Divide dough into ½ and refidgerate. After dough has chilled, roll dough our to ¼ of an inch thick and use cookie cutters to create cookies. Bake at 400 degrees until very lightly golden brown.
Hot Chocolate Cookies – Averie Cooks
What is more seasonal than holiday cookies and hot chocolate? Hot chocolate cookies!
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- one 12-ounce bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 1/4 cups light brown sugar, packed
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- about 8 ounces dark chocolate, diced into 1/2-inch pieces (I used a Trader Joe’s Pound Plus Dark Chocolate Bar)
- about 12 large marshmallows, cut in half
- To a medium, microwave-safe bowl, add the butter, chocolate chips, and heat on high power to melt for 1 minute. Stop to check and stir. Heat in 15-second bursts, stopping to stir after each burst, until chocolate has melted and can be stirred smooth (You’ll likely only need 1 or 2 bursts). Alternatively, melt the chocolate chips and butter in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly until just melted. Allow melted chocolate mixture to stand for 5 minutes to cool slightly.
- To a separate large bowl, add the brown sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Beat with a handheld electric mixer on medium speed just until blended, about 1 minute.
- Add the cooled chocolate mixture and beat on medium speed until just until combined, about 1 minute. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, and salt. Beat on low speed just until combined, about 1 minute. Stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Cover bowl with plasticwrap and refrigerate for 2 hours, or until dough has firmed up significantly. If you accidentally over-chill it and it becomes too firm, allow bowl to rest on counter until you can scoop it.
- Preheat oven to 325F. Line a baking sheet with a Silpat or spray with cooking spray. Using a 2-tablespoon cookie scoop form dough mounds and place them on the baking sheet, spaced at least 2 inches apart (I bake 8 cookies per sheet). Flatten slightly and bake for 10 minutes, or until edges and tops have just set, even if slightly undercooked and glossy in the center.
- Remove baking sheet from oven, add 1 piece of dark chocolate to the center of each cookie, pushing down very slightly just so it breaks the surface and sinks down.
- Place one marshmallow half on the top of each piece of chocolate on all the cookies, pushing down very slightly so the marshmallow adheres.
- Return baking sheet to oven and bake for about 5 minutes, or just until marshmallows have puffed; don’t let them brown and don’t overbake. Cookies firm up as they cool. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for about 10 minutes before serving. I let them cool on the baking sheet and don’t use a rack.
Cookies will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week. Alternatively, unbaked cookie dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or in the freezer for up to 4 months, so consider baking only as many cookies as desired and save the remaining dough to be baked in the future when desired.
Chewy Ginger Cookies – Taste of Home
Soft, chewy, and the seasonal spices make this the perfect holiday cookie.
- 3/4 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Additional sugar
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and molasses. Combine the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt; gradually add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Roll into 1-1/2-in. balls, then roll in sugar. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Bake at 350° for 10-12 minutes or until puffy and lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool.
Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookie n’ Oreo Fudge Brownie Bar – Kevin and Amanda
Can’t decide what to make for dessert? These are the perfect problem-solving treats to satisfy any taste!
- 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups (12 ounces) milk chocolate chips
- 1 pkg Double Stuffed Oreos
- 1 Family Size (9×13) Brownie mix + eggs and oil as called for on the back of the box
- ¼ cup hot fudge topping
Cream the butter and both sugars in a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed for 3-5 minutes. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix well to thoroughly combine. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt, then slowly incorporate into the mixer until the flour is just combined. Stir in chocolate chips.Spread the cookie dough in the bottom of prepared pan. Top with a layer of Oreos. Mix together brownie mix according to directions, adding an optional ¼ cup of hot fudge topping to the mix. Pour the brownie batter over the cookie dough and Oreos. Bake at 350 degrees F for 45-55 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting. Brownies may still be gooey in the middle when still warm, but will set up perfectly once cooled.
Homemade Peppermint Patties (Healthy Version) – The Prairie Homestead
TRUE Model Claire’s favorite “nice” cookie recipe is Homemade Peppermint Patties from The Prairie Homestead. Claire notes, “This healthy recipe uses coconut oil, so you must keep them cold. Which highlights another great thing about the holidays, your fire escape can double as a refrigerator! :)”
Ingredients (makes 12 patties)
- 1/2 cup coconut oil (where to buy)
- 3-4 tablespoons honey (where to buy)
- 1/2 t. vanilla (how to make vanilla extract)
- 6-10 drops peppermint essential oil OR 1 teaspoon peppermint extract (*see note below)
- 2/3-3/4 cups chocolate chips, melted (where to buy)
- With a stand mixer or hand mixer, beat the coconut oil, honey, and vanilla until very smooth.
- Drip in the peppermint essential oil or extract. Taste as you go to make sure you are satisfied with the level of mintiness.
- Place this mixture in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to allow it to slightly harden (It will be far too sticky to handle at this point.)
- Once the mixture is firm enough to handle, divide the coconut oil mixture into 12 portions, and roll them into small balls.
- Place the balls on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Gently flatten them to form a disc. (I found using a flat-bottomed glass periodically dipped in warm water worked the best)
- Place the cookie sheet back in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to allow them to firm up once more.
- While the discs are chilling, melt the chocolate chips.
- Remove the discs from the freezer and dip them into the melted chocolate. Place them back onto the parchment paper and allow to set.
- Store your homemade peppermint patties in the fridge to prevent them from getting sticky and melting.
California Avocado Chocolate Chip Cookies – California Avocados
Avocado is a great substitute for butter when baking cookies. Another excellent version of the recipe is to use rolled oats and cinnamon to make a delicious batch of oatmeal raisin or chocolate chip cookies!
- 1 cup all-purpose flour (you can also use 2 1/2 cups of white whole wheat flour instead).
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 cup finely mashed avocado from 1 large, ripe California Avocado
- 4 oz. butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1 pkg 12-ounce semi-sweet chocolate ships
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 2 egg yolks, from 2 large eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium-size bowl. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the mashed avocado and butter until smooth and creamy, about 30 seconds. Add the brown and white sugar and mix on medium speed until fluffy and well combined.
- Add egg yolks, one a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla
- With mixer on low speed. slowly add flour mixture. Beat just until all flour is incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips.
- Using a small ice cream scoop, scoop up dough into rounded mounds on prepared sheet pans, spacing mounds two inches apart. Flatten slightly with your fingertips.
- Bake for 14-16 minutes or until golden brown.
- Cool on baking sheet for 2-3 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.
Grain Free Sugar Cookies – Chocolate Covered Katie
This recipe makes for the perfect grain-free holiday cutout cookies! There is even a paleo option.
- 1 cup finely-ground almond meal (also known as almond flour. For substitutions, see nutrition link at the end of this recipe.) (75g)
- a little over 1/8 tsp salt (1/8 plus 1/16 tsp)
- 1/8 tsp baking soda
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup, or stevia to taste (For substitutions, see nutrition link below.) (30g)
- 1 1/2 tbsp coconut or vegetable oil (15g)
- For maple syrup version: up to 2 level teaspoons milk of choice or extra oil, as needed (5-10g). For stevia version: 1 tbsp milk of choice, added with the liquid ingredients. (15g)
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- optional: pure almond extract
Grain Free Sugar Cookies Recipe: Combine all liquid ingredients (except milk of choice if using maple syrup version). In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients and stir very well. Now mix wet into dry and keep stirring, breaking up clumps as you mix—it may seem dry at first, and you can add the extra 2 tsp milk or oil (I did add this when I made the maple syrup version), but do not add any more liquid than the recipe calls for. It will eventually form something that can either be squished into a ball with your hands or put into a plastic bag and smushed from inside the bag (the less-messy option). Roll out dough to cut-out-cookie width, either between sheets of parchment paper or from inside the bag, then cut into shapes. Freeze dough at least 20 minutes before cooking 10-13 minutes (depending on desired crispiness) at 325 F on a greased cookie sheet. Let cool another 10 minutes before even attempting to remove cookies from the sheet. They should firm up nicely. For troubleshooting, see nutrition link below. I store these in a glass container, not fully covered, as I like them crispier.
Peppermint Meringues – Joy the Baker
Joy the Baker’s meringues, adapted from Martha Stewart’s recipe, exude holiday cheer with their festive red stripes. These airy treats are Nice in moderation, but they can quickly become Naughty, as they are hard to resist!
- 3 large egg whites
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
- Red gel-paste food coloring
- Preheat oven to 175 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; secure corners with masking tape. Fit a pastry bag with a small open-star tip (such as Ateco #22). Set aside.
- Make meringues: Put egg whites and sugar in the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer. Set bowl over a pan of simmering water, and stir gently until sugar has dissolved and mixture is warm to the touch, 2 to 3 minutes.
- Transfer bowl to an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Mix on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Mix in peppermint extract.
- Using a new small paintbrush, paint 2 or 3 stripes of red food coloring inside the pastry bag. Fill bag with 1 to 2 cups meringue. Pipe small (3/4-inch-high) star shapes onto prepared baking sheets. Refill bag as necessary, adding food coloring each time.
- Bake cookies until crisp but not brown, about 1 hour 40 minutes. Let cool completely on sheets on wire racks.