Dec 18, 2020

12 Days of the Best Christmas Cookie Recipes

I'm sharing my favorite Christmas cookie recipes. These are my family-favorite recipes perfect for gifting friends and neighbors every year.
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12 Days of the Best Christmas Cookie Recipes

I love the holiday season and everything about it. From the decorations and movies to the sugar highs and snowy days. While 2020 has thrown some wrenches in my typical holiday traditions (like seeing my immediate family!) I refuse to let it take away my holiday spirit. My mom is the baker of the family. Every year we made an absurd amount of Christmas cookies to give to family and friends. I’m sharing my favorite holiday cookie recipes in the cookie guide below.

This year we are doing our baking over FaceTime, and I’ve realized she pulled the weight when it came to making the cookies every year. I spent 3 days making and decorating 12 different types of cookies myself. I have since realized mom did way more of the work while I photographed and provided the general entertainment.

In my sugar high (of course I had to test the cookies) I came up with my own variation on the Twelve Days of Christmas. It is as follows:

On the 12 days of cookies my true love gave to me: 12 kitchen timers, 11 sticks of butter, 10 bags of chocolate, 9 candy canes, 8 colors of icing, 7 cookie cutters, 6 cooling racks, 5 bags of sugar, 4 dozen eggs, 3 sacks of flour, 2 jars of jam and 1 overworked oven.

Grandma Mary’s Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies on baking sheet parchment paper

Grandma Mary’s Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies

There’s nothing like the smell of fresh baked chocolate chip cookies wafting though the house.

Meringue Cookies

These light and airy cookies literally melt in your mouth.

crisp meringue cookies with chocolate chips
Chocolate Peppermint Crinkle Cookies

Chocolate Peppermint Crinkle Cookies

In this recipe, the chocolate cookies contain chopped up candy cane pieces rolled in confectioners sugar producing a tasty combination of chocolate and peppermint, a combination which also satisfies my candy cane cravings which are in full effect during the holidays.

Miso Brown Butter Cookies with White Chocolate Chips

The miso adds this savory quality and nutty flavor that combined with the brown butter will make these your new favorite cookies

Miso Brown Butter Cookies with White Chocolate Chips stacked with milk christmas cookies
Oatmeal Cookies with Chocolate Covered Raisins on cooling rack

Oatmeal Cookies with Chocolate Covered Raisins 

My mom always makes this variation on classic oatmeal raisin cookies made with chocolate covered raisins and shredded coconut.

Cream Cheese Cookies

The holidays aren’t complete without these cookies. They are at the top of my “must make” list and among my best Christmas cookie recipes!

Cream Cheese Cookies best christmas cookie recipes
linzer cookies with star cutout in the middle

Linzer Cookies

These buttery shortbread cookies are traditionally filled with raspberry jam and dusted with powdered sugar though they can be filled with your favorite jam of choice.

Gingerbread Men

Gingerbread men are classic Christmas cookies plus they make the house smell amazing. With crisp edges, a chewy center spiced with ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg, I always think they round out a box of assorted cookies.

gingerbread men cookies with white icing decor best christmas cookie recipes
Pistachio Crusted Chocolate Shortbread Slice and Bake Cookies stacked

Pistachio Crusted Chocolate Shortbread Slice and Bake Cookies 

These chocolate shortbread cookies are the perfect combination of chocolatey flavor, with crisp and buttery texture and just a hint of orange and a pistachio exterior.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Thumbprint Cookies 

The chopped peanuts on top add just the right crunch and saltiness to offset the sweetness of the peanut butter and jam.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Thumbprint Cookies 
Gingersnaps piled onto a white plate


This recipe has been tried, tested, and tweaked many times until I came up with the perfect, soft but not too soft, crinkled but not cracked gingersnap cookie with that perfect ratio of sugar and spice.

Classic Sugar Cookies

These buttery sugar cookies are meant to be rolled out and decorated as desired. They make a great addition to a holiday cookie lineup or as a decorating activity for kids.

Classic Sugar Cookies snowflake cookie cutter with gold and silver sprinkles decoration best christmas cookie recipes
12 days of christmas cookies arranged on baking sheet

For holiday menu ideas check out my post here and for all things winter holiday entertaining see my guide here.

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