Do you hear what I hear? Santa Claus is coming to town! And he’s hungry for your holiday cookies.
Many families have Christmas cookie-baking traditions. Some make the same tried-and-true recipes year after year, and yet others look forward to trying different recipes annually to discover new favorites. Cookie platters and cookie swaps are all the rage, so there’s no time like the present to plan yours. If you’re a cookie fanatic like Santa (admittedly we are too!) then check out these Christmas cookie recipes to bulk up your wintertime cookie repertoire.
Let’s start with three creative variations on Christmas classics:
A seasonal twist on the classic Italian double-baked cookie, these biscotti are enhanced with peppermint flavor both in the dough (with peppermint extract and crushed peppermint candies) as well as in the decoration (dipped in chocolate and crushed peppermint candies). Served with a cup of coffee, or better yet hot chocolate, Santa may never want to leave your house once he tries these cookies! If you’re a peppermint lover, click here for the recipe.
Eggnog Linzer Cookies
Linzer cookies are traditional Austrian sandwich cookies featuring almond cookie dough, a small cutout with a layer of raspberry jam peeking through, and a powdered sugar finish. Although these are beautiful cookies perfect for Christmas, consider taking them up a notch by transforming the flavors with the addition of eggnog! Buttery almond cookies laced with eggnog are sandwiched around pale yellow eggnog icing. These festive cookies are finished with holiday decorations in the form of colorful sprinkles! These are not only über Christmassy, but they are delicious too! Find the recipe here.
Holiday Pinwheel Cookies
These slice-and-bake pinwheel cookies are perfect for the holidays! There is a bit of time involved in rolling and chilling the dough, but the results speak for themselves. Contrasting red and white layers are finished with a generous roll in red, white, and green sprinkles. If you’re looking for a classic concept with a whimsical spin, these pinwheels will be sure to impress.
Next we’ll take a look at three classic International holiday favorites:
Vanillekipferl (Austrian Vanilla Crescent Cookies)
Another Austrian Christmas cookie, but we’re keeping things classic with this one. These buttery melt-in-your-mouth almond cookies are laced with vanilla, formed into crescents, and then baked and rolled in vanilla powdered sugar while still hot, essentially sealing the powdered sugar coating to the cookie. These crescents may be simple in appearance, but the flavors are WOW.
Pfeffernüsse (German Iced Spice Cookies)
We’re sticking around Central Europe for our next Christmas cookie. Many countries offer variations on gingerbread cookies or spice cookies, and Germany provides multiple contributions to the arena. These iced spiced nuggets called Pfeffernüsse (try saying that five times fast) are a glorious addition to the Christmas cookie tray. The name means “peppernuts” and refers to the addition of ground pepper to the cookie dough, and the small, round nut-like shape. If you’re as intrigued as we are, check out the recipe.
Italian Ricotta Cookies
We’re heading due south to Italy for another international Christmas classic. Italian ricotta cookies have a soft, cakey texture, and a shiny white icing topped with sprinkles. Stick with Christmas colors if you wish or taste the rainbow. Whichever way you decorate these, they are sure to be winners at Christmastime! Click here for the instructions.