My 10 Best Christmas Cookie Recipes

Gingerbread cookies.

My 10 Best Christmas Cookie Recipes ~ from tried and true classics to unique originals, these are my absolute favorite holiday cookie recipes to fill out your cookie box, or win you the next cookie swap!

Best Christmas Cookies pin



Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies ~

These gorgeous gingerbread cookies bake up nice and soft, and happen to be my most popular cookie this season. The beautiful designs are made with cookie stamps. I love cookie stamps so much that I made a chocolate gingerbread stamped cookie this year ~ check it out! The recipe is from Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbook, Sweet.  If you don’t have it, get it!

Soft Glazed Gingerbread Cookies on waxed paper



Toasted Almond Russian Tea Cakes ~

These classic cookies (you might know them as snowball cookies) are bite sized and made extra delicious with toasted almonds. It’s a good thing these guys are small, because they’re hard to resist.

Toasted Almond Russian Tea Cakes on a cooling rack



Swedish Pepparkakor ~

These spiced Nordic cookies are similar to gingerbread cookies, but without the molasses. They have a lighter color and flavor that is just different enough to bring some interest to your cookie repertoire without straying too far from the classic flavors of the season. Don’t be afraid of decorating cut-out cookies, I’ll inspire you with super simple designs anybody can master.

Decorated pepparkakor cookies on a baking sheet.



Peppermint Melting Moments ~

I love these festive frosting-topped cookies ~ they’re comforting, a little retro, (my mom made them in the 70s) and are synonymous with the holidays for me. I have lots of other variations on the blog, too, so check out my Clementine Melting Moments, and of course the original Melting Moments!

Peppermint melting moments on a baking rack.



Chocolate Dipped Churro Cookies ~

If you need to spice up your holiday baking this year, these cinnamon-y, sugar-y shortbread cookies are just the thing. With all the flavors of a fresh churro dipped in a dark chocolate sauce (who doesn’t love that?) these unique cookies will earn you brownie points for originality at the holiday party.

chocolate dipped shortbread cookies on a plate



Sprinkle Sugar Cookies ~

Holiday baking should, above all, be fun. That’s why I love cookies like these, with a simple dough, and decoration that doesn’t require any artistic skill. These cookies will make you feel better about hoarding all those sprinkles.

Hands holding a stack of sprinkle sugar cookies.



Pfeffernüsse (German spice cookies) ~

If you’re a traditionalist, these German Christmas cookies are a great choice. The Old World spices are perfect and I swear these cookies get better with age!

pfeffernusse cookies in a small glass bowl



Gingerbread Cookies with Royal Icing ~

Everyone needs a classic, go-to gingerbread recipe, and this is mine. It’s got a dark, deeply spiced flavor with plenty of molasses, and the dough is easy to handle and roll out, so it works great for cut-out cookies. Try these once and you’ll be making them every year, I promise.

A basket of gingerbread cookies.



Maple Glazed Oatmeal Cookies ~

No one can resist these sweet, homey oatmeal cookies with that perfectly crackly icing, I think it brings us all back to our childhood. A quick dunk in a maple glaze transforms a chewy oatmeal cookie into a holiday worthy treat.

Maple Glazed Oatmeal Cookies on a wooden table



New Fallen Snow Shortbread Cookies ~

These sparkly cookies are proof that sometimes simple is best. A simple shortbread cookie, flavored with vanilla bean, is iced with an equally simple peppermint glaze, and topped with sparkling sugar to mimic the look of freshly fallen snow. What could be more perfect?

sparkly shortbread cookies



Spritz Cookies ~

Spritz cookies were new to me this year, and I am in love! Making the shapes using a cookie press is super fun and easy, if you’ve never done it before. Unearth grandma’s cookie press or grab one on Amazon Prime, there’s still plenty of time! (I’ve just ordered the Christmas disk set for my next batch.)

a large platter of spritz cookies

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    Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    Alice Gatto s
    January 7, 2021 at 2:45 pm

    Hi Sue,
    I’m a tad late with my Christmas and New Year baking this year. I had all the time in the world due to the Covid quarantine, but no ambition… My family was not able to gat her together for Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year’s Day. I usually spend time baking with my daughter-in-law and granddaughter starting early in November. Finally, my granddaughter’s need for special gingerbread cookies has gotten me off the couch and into the kitchen. I think your lovely soft glazed gingerbread cookies have given me back my mojo. Thank you for your wonderful recipes. This batch of cookies will be a big sweet hug from me to my granddaughter tomorrow. I’ll have to wave from the car, but she will get the message,

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      January 7, 2021 at 3:15 pm

      Thanks so much for this sweet message Alice, hopefully 2021 will have us all baking together again!

  • Reply
    December 5, 2020 at 6:15 am

    Hi Sue
    Thank you for all your delicious recipes! I just made your cranberry orange bread and everyone loved it. I would like to mail cookies to my parents. When you make several
    Kinds of cookies do you find it best to make all the dough one day and bake them the next? Or do you think freezing them would be best? I haven’t frozen cookies before and am concerned about how they would taste after defrosting then mailing. Thank you.

    • Reply
      December 5, 2020 at 6:25 am

      Well, if you have the time and bandwidth, I’d make the doughs ahead and bake them all as close to mailing as possible. But freezing and defrosting works well, too, so you can do either. If you limit the different types of cookies you’re baking to send, it’s easier.

  • Reply
    December 21, 2019 at 1:22 pm

    I cannot find the recipe you used for Spritz cookies

  • Reply
    December 15, 2019 at 8:29 pm

    Hi Sue you are amazing,if I want to make the cream cheese cookies with non dairy cheese(it’s made from coconut oil) would I lower the amount of butter???

    • Reply
      December 16, 2019 at 7:09 am

      Hi Rolene, and thanks so much 🙂 I haven’t made the spritz with non dairy cheese so I can’t really say, but I would think you could use the same amount of butter.

  • Reply
    Marrilyn Reineman
    December 15, 2019 at 2:56 pm

    Sue- I used to make a type of the Russian Teacake, but put either drained maraschino cherries, or chocolate kisses in the center. My stepson loved the ones with cherriy centers, and studied the cookies in the bowl before he selected one to eat. It amazes me that he did NOT want the chocolate centered ones. When he was in his mid-thirties, I finally told him the secret to getting the cookies with cherries in the center: They are actually smaller than the ones with chocolate! Now he uses that knowledge with his daughter who also loves cherries in things. It is funny how such a small thing can mean so much to people!

    • Reply
      December 15, 2019 at 5:17 pm

      I’m with your son, that cherry center sounds amazing!

  • Reply
    December 15, 2019 at 11:05 am

    Are the Chocolate-Dipped Churro Cookies the ONLY ONE without the recipe!!!!!! I would really like it!!!!!

    • Reply
      December 15, 2019 at 12:43 pm

      That link works now Maggie!

  • Reply
    December 15, 2019 at 9:03 am

    Thank you, these are fabulous.
    Seasons Greeting!

  • Reply
    Julie Pelletier
    December 15, 2019 at 8:35 am

    Sue, have I told you lately that I love you?!!!???
    I have to smile through my drooling whenever I see a new recipe(s) from you in my inbox ; ) This is a great collection and I also just searched for and printed (again) your truly decadent-looking Death by Chocolate Pumpkin Bread. With 7 grandkids and lots of friends and family, I’m always looking for something irresistible but easy to make in between knitting and crocheting their gifts! THANK YOU, SUE!!! And God bless you for sharing so much love!
    Julie in the beautiful Berkshires of Massachusetts

    • Reply
      December 15, 2019 at 8:38 am

      Oh man, love to start my day with this comment, thanks Julie! I’m jealous of your beautiful Berkshires, what a special place 🙂 Happy holidays <3

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