It’s cookie baking season! The holidays are coming. December’s whirl of office parties, school events, family gatherings, friendly visits is nearly upon us. These are some of my favorite holiday cookie recipes–the treats that I love to share with friends and family and coworkers (back when I worked in an office). They go beyond the ordinary, and I think you’ll find there’s something for everyone in this mix.
Before you get started, I’m going to offer some cookie-baking advice. Get a scale! It makes measuring easier and more accurate. But if you don’t have a scale (or all your recipes are in cups), whisk your flour in the container before measuring, spoon it into your measuring cup and sweep the top level with a knife or straight edge of some kind. That will help prevent you from adding too much flour, which is likely to make your cookies heavy and dry. Use heavy baking sheets. They don’t need to be fancy. Line your baking sheets with parchment paper! It’s nonstick and will make releasing the cookies and cleaning up so much easier. If you’re making drop cookies, use a cookie scoop! It’s so much easier than using spoons and it will make it easier to keep your cookies the same size which will make them bake more evenly. If you have the chance, make your cookie dough the night before–it’ll improve the flavor of your cookies.
Onto the the cookies!
1. White Chocolate Raspberry Cookies. Delicate thumbprint-style cookies with white chocolate in the dough, raspberry jam in the center, and an elegant drizzle of white chocolate over the top. (Dan’s favorite Christmas cookie.)
2. Butterscotch-Glazed Espresso Shortbread Cookies. These shortbread bar cookies are have a rich coffee flavor that gets balanced with a sweet butterscotch glaze.
3. Lime Meltaways. Buttery, met-in-your-mouth slice-and-bake cookies with bright lime citrus zest. I first shared these cookies in the summer, but they’re right at home on a holiday cookie plate.
4. Salted Chocolate Rye Cookies. Rich chocolatey cookies with hint of malt flavor from the rye flour and a truffle-like interior all topped with flaky sea salt.
5. Rosemary Pine Nut Cookies. Herby, nutty, buttery Italian cookies.
6. Compost Cookies. For fans of sweet and salty, these cookies from Momofuku Milk Bar are loaded with all of your favorite snacks. Not for minimalists.
7. Chewy Citrus Molasses Spice Cookies. These cookies taste like Christmas and make your kitchen smell incredible. Soft and chewy and comforting.
8. Orange Cardamom Snowflake Cookies. These crisp, delicate cookies are scented with orange zest and cardamom. You can cut them into any shape you like. They’re the most fussy of the bunch, but they’re worth it.
9. Soft Gingerbread Cookies. These soft, cakey cookies are loaded with classic gingerbread flavor and have a dough that rolls out like a dream.