Our top holiday cookies are gorgeous, delicious, and guaranteed show stoppers at any cookie swap or holiday party. Whip up a batch or two of these holiday cookies for teachers, hostess gifts, coworkers, or for your family to enjoy on a cozy night in. Drop cookies, meringues, traditional holiday cookies, cut outs, bars, balls, and bonbons all make their way into our top rated holiday cookie list, so browse, drool, and pick your favorite to bake this holiday season. Don't forget to pick a special one for Santa!
Iced Sugar CookiesDecorate with dragée (sometimes called sugar pearls), gold or silver dust, and coarse or sparkling sugar.
Maple-Walnut Spice CookiesSpices like cloves and cinnamon balance with maple syrup to make a cookie that tastes like the holidays. Spread on some maple frosting and top with walnuts for a very special cookie.
Chai Tea Eggnog CookiesRich eggnog and spicy chai make the perfect pairing for this cookie. Use a little eggnog, powdered sugar, and nutmeg to make a simple glaze.
Autumn Maple Cutout CookiesMaple syrup gives these cookies a subtle sweet flavor. Spice them up with cinnamon and nutmeg, and top with toasted walnuts.
Chocolate Chip MeringuesBite-sized frothy meringues studded with chocolate bits are a wonderful treat for this holiday season.
Raspberry Linzer CookiesCrunchy almond cookies make a beautiful frame for sweet raspberry preserves. Dust with powdered sugar for a snowy holiday look.
Orange-Walnut TassiesFlaky cream cheese dough makes the perfect nest for a sweet orange and walnut filling.
Christmas Cookies 4 WaysLove having choices? Then this recipe is for you. Stick with classic sugar cookies, or add spices, lemon zest, or cocoa for fun variations. Cut the dough into lovely holiday shapes and decorate with Royal Icing for a truly original cookie.
Peppermint Pinwheel CookiesRolling red and plain-colored dough gives these cookies their fun look. Sandwich them together with a layer of peppermint-cream cheese frosting.
Toffee-Chocolate Chip ShortbreadJazz up traditional shortbread with luscious bits of chocolate and salty toffee.
Rocky Road BrowniesMini marshmallows melt into this walnut-topped brownie during baking, giving it a gooey, fudgy texture.
Chocolate Peppermint Patty CookiesSlather on the peppermint frosting when you make these cookie sandwiches and then roll the edges in crushed peppermint candy.
Butterscotch BarsCondensed milk and butterscotch morsels melt together to make a gooey center for these streusel topped bars.
Cranberry-White Chocolate CookiesFans of classic cookies will love these simple confections accented with dried cranberries and gooey white chocolate.
Chocolate Chip BlondiesPut a twist on classic blondie bars by adding chocolate morsels and baking them in muffin tins.
Louisiana Pecan BallsThese cookies are simple to make and ready in less than an hour. Dust with a little cinnamon or cocoa powder for a pretty presentation.
Coconut-Cranberry ChewsWe love the mix of coconut, red cranberries and zesty orange in these chewy delights.
Hello Dolly BarsAlso called Seven Layer Bars, this treat combines coconut, chocolate morsels, pecans, butterscotch bits and graham crackers into a sticky-sweet delight.
Luscious Lemon BarsA crumbly, butter cookie bottom is the perfect partner to smooth lemon filling and powdered sugar.
Rudolph's Christmas Sugar CookiesThese reindeer come together in a snap when you use refrigerated cookie dough. Carefully break or cut pretzels for antlers and make Rudolph come to life with chocolate candies for eyes and a Red hot for his nose.
Peppermint Bonbon CookiesThis decadent holiday combination pairs a soft and chewy chocolate cookie with crunchy peppermint candy on top. These gems are great plain or try them with a double glaze.
Salted Caramel BrowniesWith their rich, indulgent flavors, these layered brownies are a definite crowd-pleaser.
Pumpkin Cream SandwichesThese moist pumpkin cookies are wonderful plain or sandwiched with cream cheese filling.
Christmas Sugar Wafers with Vanilla IcingTry a variety of cookie cutters for a beautifully festive presentation.
White Chocolate-Oatmeal-Raisin CookiesPut a twist on classic oatmeal raisin cookies by adding white chocolate morsels and a bit of orange extract.
Banana-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip CookiesMashed banana adds rich flavor and moistness to these cookies.
Cappuccino BlossomsThese coffee and almond cookies topped with chocolate kisses are easy enough to make that your children can help you prepare them.
Chocolate-Dipped Almond MeringuesCrispy, light almond meringues get a special touch when you dip them in semisweet chocolate.
Buttery Lemon SquaresBake up a dreamy lemon custard with a crumbly crust for a treat at your next holiday party.
Raspberry Shortbread SandwichesDiamond-shaped cutouts add elegance to these beautiful jam-filled cookies.
Hazelnut-Chocolate BiscottiThis crunchy cookie gets its rich flavor from two kinds of chocolate candy bars and hazelnut liqueur.
Brownie CookiesYou'll love how these scrumptious double-chocolate cookies are similar in texture to thick and fudgy brownies.
Maple-Date BarsTwo layers of crumbly oatmeal topping sandwich a layer of sweet dates in these super moist bars.
Peppermint-topped BrowniesGet ready to indulge! These brownies have three decadent layers: moist brownie, chocolate ganache, and a beautiful layer of peppermint candy. Several reviewers recommended using WalMart’s candies, as they melt the best. If you don’t love peppermint, try topping the ganache with nuts, marshmallows, or coconut.
Molasses-Spice CrinklesThe strong, sweet flavor of molasses balances well with a team of spices in these soft, chewy cookies crusted with sugar.
Mudslide CookiesGet your milk ready! A dash of coffe intensifies the luscious flavor of cocoa powder and three types of chocolate.
Sparkling Ginger StarsThese cookies almost seem to twinkle when you sprinkle heavy sugar on top before baking.
Two-Layer Caramel-Pecan BarsCaramel lovers rejoice! A crunchy brown sugar base holds a gooey layer of caramel topped with chopped pecans.
Classic Fudge-Walnut BrowniesLarge chocolate chunks create big, luxurious pockets of melty chocolate in these brownies.
Caramel Apple Oatmeal CookiesCaramel bits and chopped apple are the perfect autumn substitute to raisins in these crispy-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside oatmeal cookies.
Chocolate-Cherry CookiesThis recipe contrasts the tartness of the cherries with the cocoa and semisweet chocolate chips for an elegant, and delicious, addition to your holiday table.
Chocolate Malted CookiesMalted milk powder adds richness to these delectable chocolate chip cookies.
Chocolate-Cherry CookiesMix oats with bittersweet chocolate and sweet dried cherries for a sweet and satisfying cookie. Add your favorite nuts to make them extra special for your loved ones.
Death by Caramel BarsThese showy brownies are nice and tall with pockets of caramel goo. They are wicked enough on their own, but for an over-the-top dessert, add a scoop of vanilla ice cream and drizzle with caramel sauce.
Double-Chocolate BiscottiVanilla extract enhances the dusky mix of cocoa and mini-chips in these twice-baked slice cookies, which deliver deep chocolate taste.
Double-Ginger CookiesThese gingery rounds bake up moist thanks to a bit of applesauce and the sugar on top gives them a beautiful presentation.
Frosted Ginger CookiesWe love these moist cookies topped with a tart lemon glaze.
Peanut Butter-Butterscotch CookiesThese nutty cookies get a buttery, caramel-y touch when you add butterscotch bits to the dough.
Gluten-Free BrowniesFor cookie swaps or family get togethers, bake these brownies for guests with gluten allergies.
Wreath CookiesWith only a few ingredients, you can transform shredded wheat cereal into these whimsical holiday wreaths. Let the kids help shape and decorate them with cinnamon candies, M&Ms, or crushed peppermints.
Raspberry PinwheelsSweet cream cheese dough pairs well with the raspberry jam in these pretty pinwheels.
Raspberry Thumbprint CookiesAlmond paste lends an elegant flavor to these buttery cookies, and bright red raspberry jam will match perfectly with your holiday spread!
SnickerdoodlesJust hearing the word snickerdoodle makes us excited to take a bite of these chewy, buttery cookies dusted with cinnamon.
Spicy Oatmeal CrispsThese aren’t your typical oatmeal cookies! Cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, cloves and black pepper give these crispy cookies a wonderful kick. Line your pan with parchment paper to make it easier to remove the cookies.
Triple-threat Chocolate CookiesPrepare to abandon all restraint when you try one of these cookies, made with melted chocolate and chocolate chips in the batter and layered with a chocolate ganache filling.
Peppermint Layer CookiesFriends and family will ooh and aah over these fun treats. Dip the ends of these multicolored cookies into melted white chocolate and sprinkle with crushed peppermint candy.
Peanut Butter-Toffee Turtle CookiesMix toffee bits and chopped pecans right into the cookie dough and after baking, top with caramel and a chocolate drizzle.
Gingerbread CookiesThese little gingerbread men are almost too cute to eat! Give them personality with chocolate candies and colored icing.
Sugar Cookie PopsLet your kids get in on the action with these colorful cookie pops. They can roll cookie dough balls in their favorite sprinkles and colored sugar and help you stick each cookie on a craft stick to complete the look.
GingersnapsHear that? Your friends and family will gobble up these crispy, spicy gingersnaps straight off the cooling rack.
Vanilla Bean ShortbreadButtery, crumbly shortbread gets a flavor boost when you add vanilla bean.
Chocolate-Hazelnut ThumbprintsWith 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.
Crunchy Sesame CookiesThese sweet treats taste similar to peanut butter cookies, but they get their rich nutty flavor from sesame-seed paste and sesame oil instead.
Chocolate-Espresso ShortbreadEdges tipped with unsweetened chocolate and white chocolate enhance the coffee flavor in these cookies.
Easy Cheesecake BarsYour guests will never know how easy these bars were to make! If you like, use chocolate frosting to pipe holiday shapes on the top.
RugelachThis update of the traditional sweet uses flaky piecrust and a filling of apricot jam, cinnamon, and chopped walnuts.
Dutch Spice CookiesThese simple almond and spiced cookies can be made in less than an hour. Use cookie cutters to make fun shapes for a party or cookie swap.
Macadamia Butter Cookies with CranberriesWe love these thick, satisfying cookies. The lightly spiced batter and dried cranberries provide a great counterpoint to the macadamia nuts' richness.
Thick, Chewy Chocolate Chip CookiesIf you are of the school that thinks chocolate chip cookies should be soft and chewy, you'll love this recipe. Add 1 cup chopped pecans if you like a little crunch.
Royal Raspberry BarsYour friends and family will feel like kings and queens when you serve them this bar. A crumbly coconut-oatmeal base holds a layer of raspberry jam and meringue topping.
Amaretto Butter CookiesThese delicate, buttery cookies are flavored with bright orange peel and rich amaretto liqueur. Arrange slivered almonds in a star pattern for a striking presentation.
Peppermint Molasses CookiesSpicy molasses cookies studded with peppermint candy is an intriguing yet delicious flavor combo. Glazing the cookies with a peppermint frosting gives them a pretty pink glow.
Fig-Pecan MacaroonsThese light-as-air cookies are flavored with bright lemon, spices, and sweet dried figs.
Double Chocolate Chunk-Peanut CookiesPeanut butter cookies get a boost with lots of peanuts, chocolate chunks, and cinnamon.
Mocha-Chocolate ShortbreadMelt chocolate morsels on top of this simple coffee shortbread for an easy frosting.
Crunchy Frostbite CookiesDip one side of these crispy oatmeal cookies into melted white chocolate for a “frosted” effect. Sprinkle red or green sugar on top for a fun Christmas look.
Earl Grey Tea CookiesSet these simple cookies out with after-dinner coffee and tea and they’ll disappear in no time!
Swirled Pumpkin-Cream Cheese BarsIf you mixed cheesecake and pumpkin pie, this is the dessert you’d come up with. Perfect for any autumn get-together, you can store these bars up to 3 days before your party.
Lemon-Coconut SnowballsLemon and coconut add a new twist to the traditional wedding cookie. Don't be shy when rolling these in powdered sugar -- the more powdered sugar, the bigger the snowball!
Fudgy Mocha-Toffee BrowniesCoffee and toffee give these rich chocolate brownies a unique twist. If they haven't all been gobbled up, store leftover brownies in an airtight container for up to a week or wrap tightly in aluminum foil and freeze for up to four months.
Orange-Spice MadeleinesOrange peel and almond paste add richness to these delicate spiced cookies. If you like, when they’re still warm, dust the cookies with 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar mixed with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon.
Mexican Spiced Shortbread CookiesThese chocolate cookies get a little heat from cinnamon, chipotle chile powder, and ancho chile powder. Balance the heat with a sweet brown sugar icing and top with a salty pecan.
Moravian WafersThese thin crispy wafers really bring the heat! Six spices blend well with molasses and brown sugar.
Oatmeal, Chocolate Chip, and Pecan CookiesTwo of the most popular cookies combine forces to create these chewy cookies perfect for company or a holiday snack.
Oatmeal-Pecan Snack CookiesPecans and dried cherries add substance to these spiced oatmeal cookies.
Oatmeal Toffee CookiesBrown sugar and butter underscore the tawny sweetness of the almond toffee bits.
Peppermint Cheesecake BrowniesFudgy brownies get a decadent top layer of swirled cheesecake and brownie batter in these over the top bars. Raspberry extract also works well as a flavoring.
Toffee Blond BrowniesThese gooey brownies are buttery and taste slightly like caramel from the brown sugar. Toffee bits melt during baking to create a crunchy topping.
Gingerbread PeopleDecorate these delightful cookies with vanilla frosting and colored sugar. If you don’t have time to make gingerbread men, roll the dough into a log and cut round cookies instead.
Pistachio-Cranberry BiscottiPerfect for a gift, this biscotti has a beautiful orange flavor and the pistachios and cranberries add great holiday color.
Oatmeal and Pie Spice CookiesOatmeal cookies get a holiday boost when you add pumpkin pie spice or apple pie spice to the dough.
White Chocolate SnowballsRoll cookie dough in sweetened flaked coconut and sandwich them together with a white chocolate filling.
Pecan SnowballsToasted pecans blend with with almond extract and vanilla extract in these rich bite-sized cookies. Make sure to freeze the balls before baking so they retain their round shape.
Pecan SquaresWith less than 10 ingredients you can make a pan of gooey pecan bars. Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream for an over the top holiday dessert.
Chocolate-and-Almond MacaroonsSimple and elegant, these toasted coconut macaroons are perfect for a holiday gift. Top coconut macaroons with an almond and drizzle with chocolate.
White Christmas Dream DropsUnlike traditional meringues, which are crisp all the way through, these are still chewy on the inside, like mini pavlovasbut with white chocolate chips and plenty of peppermint.
Chocolate-Macadamia Nut ClustersPerfect for chocolate lovers, these drop cookies are enhanced with the rich flavors of macadamia nuts and coconut. You can also substitute the macadamias for hazelnuts.
Apricot ButtonsButtery walnut cookies serve as the perfect base for a dab of apricot jam.
Lemon Sugar CookiesThese beautiful cookies feature traditional sugar cookie dough dressed up with tart lemon juice and grated lemon peel.
Chocolate ThumbprintsFinally, a thumbprint cookie for all the chocolate lovers! Fill each cookie with a bit of thick and decadent ganache.
Cut-Out Butter Cookies
Cut-Out Butter Cookies are as pretty as they are yummy. A very simple recipe with all your major pantry ingredients, these cookies are easy and straightforward. Make sure you have enough time to let the dough chill for 1 hour. Make the holiday baking season memorable with fun cookie cutters. Starfish and seashells add a beachy, nautical flair to your holiday celebrations. Use sanding sugar, sprinkles, nonpariels, and candy beads for decorating.
Cute Snowman Cookies
Dress up refrigerated sugar cookie dough to make these super-cute snowmen.
Silver Bells Cookies
Ring in the holiday season with these sparkly and easy-to-make sugar cookies. Impress your guests with shimmery, show-stopping desserts that taste just as good as they look. Set aside your colored sprinkles and opt for small silver dragees. These little "silver bells" are the perfect way to add a holiday touch to any treat, and they're easy to find in your local party store. Use store bought dough to save time and dedicate all your time spent in the kitchen to fun, kid-friendly decorating.