Christmas Cookie Ideas

Hey there! Can you believe we are less than a week away from Christmas?! Does time ever slow down? I am sad because I love the month of December but it seems to go by so fast!

I have so many favorite things about this holiday, but one of them is a newer tradition that my mom, sister and I started a few years ago…a Christmas cookie baking day! We each come prepared with several fun dessert recipes, along with extra ingredients for anything we want to whip up on the spot, and just spend the day baking together! This year, the blizzard in NC got in the way of my mom coming down to my house to bake with my sister and me…BOO…but Lauren and I still whipped up some STELLAR cookies and I wanted to share them with you! Does that sound good?? Trust me…you’ll thank me once you try these.

We found most of these recipes on Pinterest, so I can’t take credit for coming up with them all on my own (like you thought I did in the first place…), so I will give you the link to the recipe page as well as the ingredients needed!

1. Snickerdoodle

OH EM GEE. These turned out SO delish. You can find the full recipe here.

Dough

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (for the love, who has actually heard of this stuff??)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste

For Rolling

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Dough – To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or large mixing bowl and electric mixer) combine the butter, sugars, and beat on medium-high speed until creamed and well combined, about 3 minutes.
  2. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the egg, vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until well combined, light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  3. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the add the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, optional salt, and beat on low speed until just combined, about 1 minute.
  4. Using a medium 2-inch cookie scoop or your hands, form approximately 14 equal-sized mounds of dough (2 heaping tablespoons each), roll into balls, and flatten slightly.
  5. Place mounds on a large plate or tray, cover with plasticwrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, up to 5 days. Do not bake with unchilled dough because cookies will bake thinner, flatter, and be more prone to spreading.
  6. Preheat oven to 350F, line a baking sheet with a Silpat or spray with cooking spray.
  7. For Rolling – In a small bowl, combine sugar, cinnamon, and stir to combine.
  8. Dredge each mound of dough through cinnamon-sugar.
  9. Place dough mounds on baking sheet, spaced at least 2 inches apart (I bake 8 cookies per sheet) and bake for about 9 minutes, or until edges have set and tops are just set, even if slightly undercooked, pale, and glossy in the center; don’t overbake for soft, pillowy cookies. For firmer cookies, bake a minute or two longer. 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.
  10. Cookies will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 6 months. 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.

2. Gingersnaps

I don’t know about you guys, but gingersnaps are one of my FAVORITE cookies. I love the crunchy ones, but these are soft and chewy and even better. My sister and I put several little boxes of assorted cookies together to hand out and my husband went through all of the boxes and ate the gingersnap cookies out of them…basically we’re meant to be. Here is the recipe for these scrumptious things…and since they were a last minute add for us, we didn’t have molasses (another one of those words I have no idea how to spell…) so we subbed with Karo syrup and honey.

  • ½ C.(1 stick) Butter, melted and cooled
  • ½ C. Brown Sugar, packed
  • ⅓ C. Dark Molasses (we subbed half Karo syrup/half honey)
  • 2 C. Flour
  • 2 t. Baking Soda
  • 1½ t. Ground Ginger
  • 1 t. Ground Cinnamon
  • ½ t. Ground Cloves
  • ¼ t. Salt
  • 1 Egg
  • ¼ C. Sugar

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease two baking sheets.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, and molasses. Add the egg and mix well.
  3. In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and salt.
  4. Add the flour mixture to the molasses mixture and mix until well combined. Dough will be soft.
  5. Divide the dough into 36 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball and roll in the sugar until coated. Place the dough balls, 2 inches apart, on the prepared baking sheets. Do not flatten.
  6. Bake the cookies 8-10 minutes on the middle to upper rack. Tops should just be crackling, but not browned at all. I prefer to bake them for no more than 8 minutes. They will seem a little underdone at first, but will firm up as they sit.

3. Andes Mint

Y’all. Do you have a love for chocolate and mint?? If so, (and even if not) these cookies are for you. They tasted a lot like Girl Scouts Thin Mint Cookies (can I get an amen??). You’re welcome. Here is the recipe.

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon mint extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ cup cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup Andes mint baking pieces
  • 24 Andes mints (we didn’t use these, just added the baking pieces to the top)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a large bowl, beat the softened butter until light colored. Cream in white and brown sugar. Beat in the vanilla and mint extract and the egg.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa. Stir into the wet ingredients. Stir in the Andes mint pieces.
  3. Roll the dough into 1 inch balls and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Place the balls on a cookie sheet and bake in a preheated oven for 9-11 minutes. Do not overbake or they will be crunchy.
  5. Remove them from the oven and immediately place 1 and ½ Andes mints (or the baking pieces) on the top of the cookie. Let them sit for a minute until the mint has melted and then gently spread on the cookie with a knife. Let them cool completely before storing, Or enjoy them warm.

4. Chocolate Chip

I am a sucker for a good chocolate chip cookie…and these did not disappoint. I like my chocolate chip cookies full of chocolate chips and not super thin. These are divine. And the more chocolate chips, the merrier. You can find the recipe here.

  • 14 tablespoons unsalted butter softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  •  cups all-purpose flour + a few extra tablespoons
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or sea salt
  • 3 cups chocolate chips (any variation of chocolate chips or chocolate chunks)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 and line a few trays with baking paper or spray with non-stick spray.
  2. In a metal bowl, place the butter inside the bowl and place in the preheating oven (we did not do this…the microwave worked just fine).
  3. Leave it just for a few minutes, until the butter starts to melt around the outside (approx 1/2 of the butter melted). Take out of oven to cool.
  4. Once the butter has cooled, add both sugars and beat with a mixer until light and fluffy.
  5. Add the vanilla and eggs, beating between each addition just until mixed.
  6. Add the flour, baking soda and salt or sea salt and beat on a low speed, just until combined.
  7. **If needed, add more flour, a tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together in a ball and not sticking to the sides of the bowl.
  8. Fold in the chocolate chips until just incorporated.
  9. Use an ice cream or cookie scoop (or your hands) (1/4 cup for large, 1.5 tablespoons for medium) and drop the dough onto the prepared baking sheets, allowing room for spreading. Pat down cookies just a little and press additional chocolate chips on top of cookie dough if desired.
  10. Bake one tray of cookies at a time, for 10-12 minutes for large, 8-9 for small. Don’t over-bake and allow to cool on wire rack (we cooked ours about 9 minutes and they were perfect).
  11. Makes 1 dozen large or 2 dozen small cookies.
  12. Store cookies in air-tight container.

5. Puppy Chow AKA Reindeer Chow AKA Crack

I needed to get this stuff out of my house ASAP. I would sit down and just munch through a whole bag…my poor waistline. But for real, this stuff is SO easy and yummy. It’s a great treat to take to a party…or just to keep around the house if you are in the market for some bigger hips. Here is the recipe we used.

  • 9 cups Chex Cereal any variety will do
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup seasonal M&Ms

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Pour cereal in a large mixing bowl. Next, prep a cookie sheet with parchment or wax paper, set aside.

  2. Place chocolate chips, peanut butter, and butter in a large microwave safe bowl.  Cook for 1 minute and stir. If it’s not completely melted put it back in for up to 30 seconds more.  Once it’s melted, add vanilla and mix.  Pour it over your Chex Cereal and mix with a spatula until well coated.

  3. Take a large plastic Ziploc bag and place powdered sugar inside, then add chocolatey cereal.  Close and begin to shake it up so that all the squares are evenly covered with sugar.  Place the Reindeer Chow on the baking sheet and let it cool. Once you’re ready to serve, add holiday M&MS or other seasonal candy and chow down!!

And there you go!! I know your mouth is watering. Check out the full recipes I tagged with each cookie.

IMG_8104

I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas!

Until next time!

Lindsey

One thought on “Christmas Cookie Ideas

Leave a Reply to Melissa Dickson Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s