Christmas is the time for friends, family, magic, wonder, lights, and cookie swaps. Now whether you’re actually attending any cookie swaps or you’re just the designated baker in someone’s life (don’t forget that cookie tax), we’ve put together a few of our go-to Christmas cookie recipes.
Raspberry Cheesecake Thumbprint Cookies
We love a cookie that melts in our mouth and as long as you use a red jam, we consider these cookies festive. Not only are thumbprint cookies delicious, but they’re nostalgic for a lot of people so make sure to nab a vintage tin from a local thrift shop to transport your cookies. Check out this recipe from Baker by Nature.
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 8 tablespoons salted butter, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 cup raspberry preserves
- In the body of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy, scraping down the sides as needed.
- Add the sugar and beat well.
- Add in flour, a small bit at a time, beating in on low speed, just until incorporated.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes, and up to 2 hours.
- 30 minutes prior to baking, preheat oven to 375 degrees (F).
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Using a cookie scoop, scoop out 1 tablespoon-sized balls of dough, roll them into rounds, and place them on the cookie sheet. Lightly press your thumb in the center of each round. Fill each indentation with a 1/2 teaspoon of jam.
- Place pan in the oven to bake for 11 to 12 minutes, or until just golden at the edges. They will still be very soft when you remove them from the oven – that’s a good thing!
- Cool on the baking sheet for 10 full minutes, then very carefully transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Sea Salt Butterscotch Pretzel Cookies
We don’t know about you, but we can’t turn down a sweet and salty baked good of any kind. The brown butter in these cookies makes them extra robust, then when you combine that depth with salty pretzels, sweet chocolate chips, and rich butterscotch? We’ll be surprised if these bad boys even make it to the cookie swap. Check out this recipe from Cookies and Cups!
- 1 cup butter
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
- 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 3/4 cup butterscotch chips
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup coarsely chopped pretzels
- optional – flaked sea salt
- In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat, then bring it to a boil. Once the butter starts boiling, swirl the pan constantly until the butter passes the foamy phase and becomes a deep amber color. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the butter to cool for 20 minutes.
- While the butter is cooling, preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda, and sea salt. Set aside.
- Add the brown sugar, eggs and vanilla into the cooled butter in the saucepan and stir to combine. Pour this mixture into the bowl with the flour mixture. Stir using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon until the dough comes together.
- Stir in the butterscotch chips, chocolate chips and pretzels.
- Using a medium (2-tablespoon) cookie scoop, drop the dough 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the edges are lightly golden.
- Allow the cookies to cool for 2-3 minutes on the baking sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- If desired sprinkle with a tiny pinch of flaked sea salt on top of the cookies while cooling.
Cappucino Swirl Cookies
This last recipe is for lovers of both coffee and chocolate making it the ultimate holiday season cookie. While this recipe may sound difficult, we promise you it’s not, making this deal all the more sweeter. Check out this recipe from Happy Life Blogspot!
- 1 cup butter-flavor shortening
- 1-1/2 cups sugar, divided
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 1 Tablespoon coffee-flavor liqueur (or coffee-flavored creamer or milk)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 Tablespoons instant coffee crystals
- 48 Hershey’s hugs (chocolate kisses with stripes)
- Add shortening to a large bowl and beat with a hand mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds. Mix in one cup of sugar, the baking powder, and salt until light and fluffy.
Beat in the egg, coffee-flavored liqueur (you can substitute milk or coffee-flavored creamer), and vanilla and mix until well combined.
- Beat in the flour a cup at a time with a hand mixer. Knead in the final 1/4 cup by hand. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour or until firm.
- Once the dough is firm, remove from the fridge and shape into 1-inch balls. Combine 1/2 cup of sugar and 2 tablespoons of instant coffee granules in a small bowl. Lightly roll each ball into the sugar mixture.
- Place balls 2 inches apart on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake cookies in a 350-degree preheated oven for 9-11 minutes or until the cookie tops start to crack and the sides are almost set.
- Remove the cookies from the oven and immediately press a Hershey’s hug into the center of each cookie. Let cookies sit for about 5 minutes to allow the Hershey’s hug to melt. Using the tip of a knife (or the back of a spoon) slowly run your utensil through the melted hug to swirl. Cool completely on wire baking racks.