This season brings many treats to look forward to. One holiday tradition that conjures feelings of warmth, delicious aromas, bonding in the kitchen with loved ones, and drawing on all of our child-like creativity is baking cookies. Cookies add a dash of cheer and joy to almost any holiday gathering.
If you are a basic baker and need something sweet for any event it is never a problem to stick with tried and true recipes like chocolate chip or oatmeal raisin. Whether you are baking for a cookie swap, an office party, or cocktail hour, we have you covered with few ideas.
Traditional Holiday Cookies
The basic sugar cookie recipe is a baker’s best friend during holiday season. If you are looking for a new twist or something just a little different, try adding orange or lemon zest to make the flavor a little more interesting. A dash of cardamom or nutmeg is also a good flavor enhancer for the sometimes-bland basic sugar cookie. Thumbprint cookies are another holiday favorite. The great thing about these is they need no decoration and can be filled with many different fillings from jellies, nuts or, chocolate. Gingerbread cookies are another nostalgic holiday treat. Versatile spiced dough and the holidays go hand in hand. Gingerbread can be simply pressed with festive cookie cutters or decorated with detail. For chocolate lovers, the basic snowballs or shortbread dipped in chocolate are holiday staples.
Holiday cookies are known for elaborate decorations, colors, shapes, and sprinkles. If you are the type of person who enjoys decorating, great! If not, there are easy ways to get away with making your cookies shine without the often painstaking work. When baking any cookie, measure them out with a small ice cream scoop for a uniform size and even baking. If you are making cookies like chocolate chip, thumbprints, or shortbread you won’t need to do any decorating at all! Simply place completely cooled cookies in a Mason jar and tie a colorful ribbon around the top for a cute presentation. For sugar cookies and gingerbread, you don’t need more than a sprinkles, powdered sugar, or decorative candies. For an easy no-icing look, brush with egg whites and add sparkles before baking. Another no-brainer for gingerbread is to use mini cutouts of Christmas trees or snowman and simply sprinkle powdered sugar over the tops for a rustic look.
Other Holiday Sweet Treats
There are many other portable sweet treats that can be enjoyed this season! The pie has been making a big appearance on menus everywhere recently. Make mini pies or pie pops with seasonal flavors like apple and pecan. For a chocolate-loving crowd, try the fun-to-make whoopie pie! These are great because the cream filling can be colored and flavored almost any way! Fudge, bark, and truffles are charming additions as well. Holiday meringues are also beautiful on any dessert plate.
Most importantly, enjoy baking with your loved ones!