Ever since I was a little girl, I would always gather in the kitchen with the ladies of my family. Cooking together was a celebration of love and togetherness. Several Christmas Cookie recipes that I was taught over the years by my mom and my grandmother brought me so much joy. Biting into one of these cookies makes me feel the warmth of Christmas.
Here are a few of my favorite cookie recipes from my youth, plus a few of those failsafe ones I have found on my own.
Favorite Online Recipes
German Springerle Cookies
- 1 pound powdered sugar
- 4 cups flour
- ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 4 eggs, beaten
- Anise seeds
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Combine all ingredients but anise seeds and mix thoroughly.
Roll out on a lightly sugared (use excess powdered sugar) board to ¼ inch thickness. Cut out shapes (traditionally, we use an engraved springerle rolling pin).
Sprinkle ungreased baking sheets with anise seeds. Place cookies on seeds approximately 1 inch apart. Bake in oven 10-12 minutes, until puffy but not browned.
Cool and store in an air-tight container.
Latvian/Swedish Pepparkakor Cookies
- 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ teaspoon ginger
- 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon cloves
- ¼ teaspoon ground cardamon
- ½ cup butter
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup light molasses
- 2 teaspoons grated orange rind (I use dried)
To the sugar-butter mixture, add the eggs, molasses, and orange rind, mixing well. Stir in dry mixture gradually, blending well—cover and chill overnight (it can be stored for up to 1 week in the fridge).
Roll out (approximately 1/3 at a time, keeping the remainder in the refrigerator) on a well-floured surface to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut into desired shapes.
Bake at 375 degrees on an ungreased cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes. Makes 7-8 dozen.
- 1 stick butter, softened
- 1 pound powdered sugar
- 2 cups peanut butter (I like crunchy Jif)
- 3 cups Rice Krispies
- 1 package Semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/3 stick paraffin wax (optional)
Combine the first four ingredients (I like doing this with the kids, and I find using washed, greased hands works best – it is messy but fun). Roll peanut butter mixture into balls (about the diameter of a quarter is good, but you can pick the size).
In a double boiler, combine chocolate and wax (if you don’t use the wax, it will work just fine, but the final product will be a little more likely to melt on your fingers and be slightly less shiny, but just as tasty). Carefully roll balls in chocolate to cover using two spoons. Place chocolate peanut butter balls on wax paper to cool. Refrigerate or freeze until ready to serve.
Cream Cheese Cookie Cut-Outs
- 1 cup butter
- 1 8-ounce package cream cheese
- 1 ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- 3 ½ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
Beat together butter and cream cheese until well combined. Add sugar and beat until fluffy. Add egg, vanilla, and almond extract. Then beat well.
In a small bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Slowly add dry ingredients to the cream cheese mixture. Beat until well mixed.
Divide dough in half, wrap each half in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Roll dough to ¼ inch thickness. Cut into desired shapes and place on parchment-lined cookie sheets.
Note: if the dough is stickier than a typical sugar cookie, dip the cutter in the flour before cutting. Cookies will lose shape if they warm up too much before cooking.
Bake 8-10 minutes, or until edges start to brown (the cookies will remain very white; however, larger shapes may take longer to bake).