When I was a little girl, one of the Christmas traditions I would look forward to the most every year was when my mom returned home from her best friend’s annual glühwein Christmas party (glühwein is a type of German/Austrian spiced mulled wine, which is drunk at Christmas). She would always bring home with her a beautifully packed box of cookies, all different types, baked by her friend as a gift to our family. These cookies were always amazing, and each of us family members had our favourite type we would look forward to each year. Almond crescent moon cookies, meringues with chocolate ganache filling, whipped shortbread, chocolate-dipped walnut cookies. I can still imagine how each and every one of those tasted, and the fact that they were made by someone we care alot about made them even more special.
Now, as an adult, I love giving the gift of Christmas baking. There is something very personal about curating a box of baking to give to another person, especially when you choose the recipes and bake the treats yourself. I won’t deny that it’s a lot of work, but it is a labour of love, and your recipient will in turn undoubtedly feel that love when they receive it from you. Making Christmas baking also (hopefully) leaves you with leftover goodies to store for when guests come by ( or for a midnight snack!), so it’s nice to have a variety of different treats baked and kept in the fridge or freezer during the holiday season.
To help you craft your own Christmas baking assortment this year, I’ve combed through countless cookie, candy and baked good recipes on many amazing baking blogs to find the yummiest, most flavourful set of Christmas baking recipes that will satisfy every taste.
Swedish Raspberry Kiss Cookies
These gorgeous buttery and fruity gems by Stacy at www.NotJustAHousewife.net are the perfect version of a classic thumbprint cookie! I don’t know why I always think of thumbprint cookies as a Christmas cookie staple. Maybe it’s the deep red colour and the richness of the butter being an ultimate holiday treat, but I love ’em and there are always a few of these little jam filled cookies in each box of holiday goodies I gift each year. Find the recipe by clicking on the photo or going here: http://www.notjustahousewife.net/2014/09/swedish-raspberry-kiss-cookies.html
Peppermint Mocha Cookies
This recipe combines 2 of the things I just can’t seem to live without: chocolate and coffee! It’s then brought up a whole ‘nother level with the addition of being bathed in white chocolate and sprinkled with peppermint candy pieces. Chocolate, coffee, and peppermint? Mind. Just. Exploded. And they’re so pretty! These festive little cookies are the brainchild of Sally over at www.sallysbakingaddiction.com, and I know they’ll delight guests young and old alike at your Christmas get togethers. Find the recipe by clicking the photo above, or follow the link: http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2015/12/07/peppermint-mocha-cookies/
Chewy Lemon Snowdrop Cookies
Oh my goodness, what’s not to love about these cookies? Light, airy, lemony and just a breath of fresh air! I find most of the Christmas baking that I gravitate towards making is usually is a bit heavier, containing chocolate, caramel or nuts, so I liked the idea of including a bright little surprise of lemon in my baked goods this year! They’re so delicate looking and pretty. And I have to say, I absolutely love how Cassie at www.Wholefully.com has styled her shots of them: they definitely personify (cookify?) their “Snowdrop” name with the dusting of snowy icing sugar, nestled among those lovely jeweled snowflakes. Check out the recipe by clicking on the photo, or click here: http://wholefully.com/2014/12/06/chewy-lemon-snowdrop-cookies/
Insanely Delicious Turtle Cookies
For some reason, there is only one time of year that I eat Sweet Georgia Browns or Turtles candies: Christmas! The chocolate, the pecans, the way your teeth just sink into that gooey caramel… let’s just say you’re going to want to include these cookies in your Christmas baking this year. Just be ready to watch your guest’s eyes roll back in their sockets in happy disbelief as they bite into one of these cookies. You can find the easy-to-follow recipe by Tracey at www.thekitchenismyplayground.com by clicking the photo above, or by following this link: http://www.thekitchenismyplayground.com/2012/09/insanely-delicious-turtle-cookies.html
Simply Perfect Chocolate Sugar Cookies
These cookies really are exactly as their name describes: simply perfect! I actually used this recipe a few years back as my cookie dough for a batch of Star Wars cookies (made with cookie cutters shaped like an X-Wing, Death Star, and the Millenium Falcon!). They were the first Christmas gift that I had ever given to my boyfriend (who, if you haven’t gathered from my other posts by now, is a huge Star Wars fan) and I was so nervous they wouldn’t turn out as well as my perfectionist self wanted them to. But they did! They held their shape perfectly, and had a lovely deeply chocolately flavour without being too rich. The recipe was created by Allie at www.bakingamoment.com, and you can find the recipe by clicking the image above, or by following this link: http://bakingamoment.com/simply-perfect-chocolate-sugar-cookies/
Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti
I love biscotti all year ’round, but for some reason I only seem to bake them at Christmas time! They’re a bit of a labour of love, since they need to be sliced and double baked, then dipped, but they make the perfect little gift if you pop a chocolate dipped biscotti (biscotto?) and a yummy packet of tea into a cute mug – wrap it up with a piece of cellophane and ribbon, and you’ve got a lovely present for the girl who sits next to you at the office! This crunchy, sweet recipe is by Aimee at www.shugarysweets.com. You can find the recipe by clicking the image for the cookies, or by clicking the link here: http://www.shugarysweets.com/2013/11/cranberry-pistachio-biscotti
Mini Caramel Pecan Tarts (Grain-free, gluten free)
I just had to include these gorgeous sweet and nutty little Caramel Pecan tarts in this list, especially since they’re both gluten and grain free! I was gluten-free for almost 4 years due to health reasons (this’ll mark my first gluten-ous Christmas in a long time… but that’s a story for another day.) While I was eating gluten-free, www.TexanErin.com was one of my favourite recipe blogs throughout (although also does non-gluten free and paleo recipes as well!). Having a yummy gluten-free treat in your Christmas Baking arsenal is perfect for making sure you’ve got something on hand for when someone with a gluten sensitivity comes over for a cup of Christmas tea. Check out the recipe by clicking on the photo, or click here: http://www.texanerin.com/mini-caramel-pecan-tarts/#_a5y_p=3021044
Easy Shortbread Cookies (Cookie Press)
If you were just about to scroll past this recipe because you don’t have a cookie press, stop! These yummy buttery delights can totally be made without a cookie press, and Holly at www.SpendWithPennies.com goes over both ways to make this recipe (cute little pressed shapes or not) in super easy-to-follow steps! Whipped shortbread like this always reminds me of the little argument my mom and I would have every year when I was little over which shortbread is better: the dense, rich hand-pressed version typical of Scottish shortbread (her fave) or the light, fluffy and buttery whipped morsels that melt in your mouth, like these (aka my fave). I’ve since grown to love both, but still hold a soft spot for whipped shortbread made with a cookie press! To find the recipe for these little delights, click the image above, or follow the link here: http://www.spendwithpennies.com/grandmas-shortbread-cookies-cookie-press/
Organic Dark Chocolate Trail Mix Energy Bites
If you’re giving your baking away as gifts like I usually do, it’s always a great addition to include some Christmas candy! Including little delectables like these just ups the delight-factor, because the recipient won’t be able to believe the variety of goodies they’ve been given! I love this recipe for Two Ingredient Organic Dark Chocolate Trail Mix Energy Bites all year round, as a delicious yet anti-oxidant rich treat for when you need that little bit of sweetness in your day. When I was looking through my favourite recipes, I realized this recipe from Taralynn at www.SimplyTaralynn.com would also work wonderfully as a Christmas treat, what with the vibrant reds and greens from the nuts and seeds, and the delicious chocolatey nutty flavour. And you can feel good about eating them too! Find the recipe by clicking the photo above, or follow the link: http://simplytaralynn.com/2013/04/28/2-ingredient-organic-dark-chocolate-trail-mix-energy/
Frosted Cranberry Cookies
These little fruity beauties remind me of sugared violets and dainty tea cakes – there’s something very Victorian tea party about them to me (which, if you know me, is one of the highest praises – I love tea parties!). They use both dried and canned cranberries, and are such a great way to use the extra cans of cranberry sauce you have in your pantry that you didn’t open at Thanksgiving. One of the coolest things about this recipe is that Jessica at www.thenovicechefblog.com has a DIY recipe video on how to make them, along with a traditional recipe, which makes it so so simple to follow along and make these lovely little cookies! Find the recipe (and video!) by clicking the photo above, or by following this link: http://www.thenovicechefblog.com/2016/11/frosted-cranberry-cookies/.
I hope you found at least a few recipes in here that get you running to the baking aisle at the supermarket! I know I’m going to be trying to fit all of them into my Christmas goodie gifts this year (I guess I’ve spoiled the surprise for any of you friends or family members who usually receive a box of baking from me! Oops!) Even if these recipes don’t get you excited, check out some of the amazing blogs they originate from, because I know you’ll be able to find something among all those innovative recipes. Happy Christmas baking!
Urbanista At Home