Vegetarian Christmas Cookies
Iced Whole-Wheat Sugar Cookies
Whole-wheat flour adds a layer of complexity to these cookies that all-purpose flour can't achieve; the wheat in the whole grain actually enhances the flavors of butter and vanilla. Unlike classic royal icing, which starts with a pound of powdered sugar, we use just 1/2 cup and thicken it with Greek yogurt. Looking for festive colors without the chemicals? Try naturally colored sparkling sugars (such as those from India Tree), which use colorants derived from plants.
Truffle-Iced Sugar Cookies
You might find it hard to believe that these impressive cookies taste even better than they look. If you're searching for a pretty Christmas cookie to round out your holiday dessert table, look no further.
Iced Gingerbread Biscotti
Be sure to let the cookie logs cool after the first bake so they slice cleanly and don't crumble.
The secret to these rich chocolate cookies is not to overbake them. For a gooey, creamy cookie center, pull them out of the oven when they are still a bit glossy.
Iced Sugar Cookies
Add water to icing a drop at a time for thinner spreading consistency. To make these even more festive, decorate with dragée (sometimes called sugar pearls), gold or silver dust, and coarse or sparkling sugar, and tint the frosting with food color paste. All are available at coppergifts.com. Make the cookie dough up to a month in advance, wrap it tightly, and freeze. Thaw dough completely by placing it in the refrigerator overnight.
Chocolate-Dipped Whole-Wheat Matcha Shortbread
Yes, whole-wheat shortbread, every bit as buttery and flaky-short as traditional versions, but with way less saturated fat and all healthy whole-grain flour—plus a wonderfully earthy hit of matcha goodness. We do use some butter, but also replace half of it with low-sat-fat canola oil. If you’d like to get the look we created in this photo, gather up all the cookie crumbs after cutting the cookies, and sprinkle those crumbs onto still-wet chocolate.
Get a head start by baking cookies up to four days ahead and storing in an airtight container. Frost one day before serving; after frosting is set, pack cookies in airtight containers between layers of wax paper. This dough also makes fine slice-and-bake cookies. Form the dough in two (8-inch) round logs, and chill; slice the chilled logs into 1/8-inch rounds, and bake at 350° for 8 minutes or just until set and golden.
Chewy Molasses Cookies
Perfectly spiced and wonderfully tender, these molasses cookies were a staff fave at tasting.
HOW TO DOUBLE UP: Double the dough and bake these cookies without a hitch. To mail, wrap small stacks together using plastic wrap. Nestle the stacks in a box with plenty of padding, or stack in a wide-mouth canning jar with crumpled parchment or wax paper in the headspace under the lid. Place the jar in a box with padding for mailing overnight.
Iced Browned Butter Sugar Cookies
With nutty, caramel notes from browned butter and a fair bit of salt to balance the flavors, these cookies will become an instant favorite. You can roll out the dough right after combining all the ingredients—no chilling required. Look for pearlized sugar in gourmet markets or craft stores; the coarse crystals reflect light to give the cookies a sparkly, jewel-like appearance.
These mouthwatering ginger and spice cookies are as irresistible as the ones we loved as kids. For an easy, make-ahead cookie, shape the dough into 1 1/2-inch-diameter logs, wrap in plastic wrap, and freeze. When ready to bake, defrost the dough for 20 minutes, cut it into 1/2-inch-thick slices, and bake as directed.
Vanilla Bean Shortbread
Use pantry staples and a flavorful vanilla bean to create these delicate cookies. Make them up to five days in advance, and store in an airtight container.
A combination of cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, and black pepper gives these chai cookies a taste reminiscent of Indian spiced tea. The fine texture of powdered sugar helps them retain the characteristic shortbread crunch.
Your house will definitely be Santa's favorite if you leave a few of these Christmas treats out for the jolly fellow in red. But, don't stop there. Spread the holiday cheer by baking these gift-worthy cookies for everyone you know. Just be sure to keep a few for your family to enjoy too.
Fudgy Chocolate-Peppermint Cookies
When a soft, fudgy cookie meets crunchy candy cane shards, it's a match made in heaven. These rich cookies pack all the signature flavors of the holidays into one glorious, minty cookie. Clocking in at a shy 101 calories, this is a dessert that your holiday guests will love, and it's one that you can feel good about serving them.
Chocolate and Peppermint Cookies
Enjoy the classic combination of chocolate and peppermint all year long in this simple, yet oh-so-good cookie recipe. For just 103 calories, you can taste all the deliciousness of a rich, minty flavor, without all the extra calories and fat. Bake until slightly underdone and allow to cool on the baking sheet for irresistibly soft, gooey cookies.
With a double shot of chocolate and hazelnut flavors, kids and adults will rave over these filled cookies. The espresso powder is optional, but it intensifies the chocolate flavor.
For Christmas cookie fun, it's hard to top these classic Gingerbread People. If you want to dress up the cookies, use red hot candies for buttons and currants for eyes; press those into the dough cut-outs before they're baked. Kids will love decorating up these adorable little gingerbread people, and they're the perfect holiday dessert.
Christmas Sugar Wafers with Vanilla Frosting
Freezing the dough before baking makes for an extra-crunchy version of these holiday staples. The simple icing is a great way for your kids to show off their decorating creativity and spread holiday cheer.
This classic spice cookie is a delicious addition to your cookie collection.
Oatmeal, Chocolate, and Walnut Cookies
Chewy oatmeal and crunchy walnuts can completely transform the typical lunch box chocolate chip cookie, adding new flavors and texture while subtly increasing the cookie's nutritional value.