6 Delicious Holiday Cookie Recipes to Up Your Baking Game

6 Delicious Holiday Cookie Recipes to Up Your Baking Game

Looking to up your cookie game in time for the holidays? Or maybe you’re looking for some new recipes to switch things up a bit? We asked members of our staff to share their favorite holiday cookie recipes….and they did NOT disappoint. Read on for our curated list of the best holiday cookie recipes, according to the staff of Designer Appliances.

America’s Test Kitchen: Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Eileen’s Kitchen Must Have

“Chocolate chip cookies are a classic! Even at Christmas, they are still my family’s most requested cookie! Since embracing a vegan diet a few years ago, I had been on the quest for the perfect chocolate chip cookie. I definitely found it in America’s Test Kitchen’s recipe. It is a classic chewy cookie, and the addition of almond butter gives it the magical flavor in the best of cookies. This recipe definitely rivals any recipe with butter and eggs!!” – Eileen, Sales


  • 2 cups 10 ounces all-purpose flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1⅓ cups packed 9⅓ ounces organic light brown sugar
  • ½ cup coconut oil melted and cooled
  • 6 tablespoons water room temperature
  • ⅓ cup unsalted creamy almond butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1¼ cups 7½ ounces semisweet chocolate chips or chunks


  • Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in bowl. Whisk sugar, melted oil, water, almond butter, and vanilla in large bowl until well combined and smooth. Using rubber spatula, stir flour mixture into oil mixture until just combined; fold in chocolate chips.
  • Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours. (Dough can be refrigerated for up to 24 hours; let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before portioning.)
  • Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Divide dough into 16 portions, each about 3 tablespoons, then arrange dough mounds 2 inches apart on prepared sheets.
  • Bake, 1 sheet at a time, until light golden and edges have begun to set but centers are still soft, 12 to 14 minutes, rotating sheet halfway through baking. Let cookies cool completely on sheet. Serve. (Cookies can be stored at room temperature for up to 3 days.)

PRO TIP – Eileen recommends using nonstick baking mats to ensure easy cleanup

Homemade Italian Knot Cookies

Peter’s Kitchen Must Have

“Every Christmas for the past 50 years my mother and her sisters would make 100’s of different cookies to be enjoyed on Christmas eve. After the traditional meal they would lay out a table full of cookies for all us to enjoy (cousins, aunts and uncles totalling 52 people) while my father made espressos in the Moka Pot. My favorite was always the Italian Knot cookie.” – Peter, Director of Business Development

Ingredients for the Cookies:

  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups oil
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 shots Sambuca

Ingredients for the Icing:

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 3/4 of the box of powdered sugar


  • Combine all dry ingredients in one bowl
  • Combine all wet ingredients in another bowl
  • slowly add wet ingredients into the dry
  • Drop by teaspoon on a lightly greased cookie sheet
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes
  • Once the cookies are cooled, ice and add some sprinkles.

PRO TIP – Don’t forget to pick up some nonpareils – a staple for authentic Italian knot cookies

Maida Heatter’s Brownie Cookies

Tracy’s Kitchen Must Have

“This recipe is for Brownie cookies that I’ve made for many years, from a favorite cookbook author Maida Heatter.” – Tracy, Director of Partner Experience


  • 2 oz. unsweetened chocolate
  • 4 oz. semisweet chocolate
  • 4 oz. (1 stick) butter
  • 1/2 t. salt
  • 1/2 t. vanilla
  • 1 scant cup (6.5 oz.) sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups (6 oz.) sifted flour
  • 6 oz. walnuts, in medium pieces (cut this down to about 4 if you want a less pronounced walnut presence)


  • Heat the oven to 375; line some cookie sheets with foil or parchment.
  • Melt the chocolate and butter either in a saucepan over low heat or in the microwave at 30-second intervals.
  • Add the salt and vanilla, then the sugar, eggs, flour, and walnuts, stirring after each addition. Scoop out the dough by teaspoonfuls onto the parchment or foil.
  • Get your hands wet and roll the dough into balls.
  • Use a fork to flatten the cookies a bit.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies look dry.
  • Cool on a rack and prepare to enjoy

PRO TIP – As an avid baker, Tracy swears by stackable cooling racks to keep all of your cookies together while they cool off

Christmas Butter Cookies

Linda’s Kitchen Must Have

“All my kids have great memories of making these butter cookies together, and they get to decorate them. It’s easy, even for small children to help, and they look so festive!” – Linda, Customer Service


  • 1 cup very soft butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg (room temperature)
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder


  • Mix the soft butter, sugar, and egg together
  • Stir in 3 tsp vanilla
  • In a bowl, whisk the flour and baking powder
  • Mix together
  • Press out with your cookie press.
  • Use colored sugar and sprinkles to decorate the cookies (before you bake them)
  • Bake at 400 degrees, for about 5-10 minutes
  • Cool on a wire rack

PRO TIP – You can’t make butter cookies without a good cookie press! Linda recommends using the Wilton Preferred Cookie Press to create effortlessly beautiful shapes. She also uses stainless steel wire racks to allow the cookies to cool evenly.

Sugar Cookies

Jennifer’s Kitchen Must Have

“The great thing about this recipe is that you can use them for all holidays! You can add food coloring to make the dough orange and use a pumpkin cutter for Halloween. Or red food coloring and a heart cutter for Valentine’s Day. The kids have fun decorating them too. I have been making these for years. I started baking at a young age to help my mom and she made a number of different cookies and would give them out to the neighbors. As she got older, I took over and I now make a large variety of cookies. This year my daughter actually helped me!” – Jennifer, Controller

Ingredients for the Cookies:

  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 2 1/2 cups flour

Ingredients for the Icing:

  • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2 tbs meringue powder
  • 5 tbs water


  • Beat butter, sugar and salt until combined.
  • Mix in egg and extract. Slowly add flour.
  • Roll out dough on a floured surface and use a variety of cookie cutters,
  • Bake on cookie sheets that are lined with parchment paper at 375 for 8-10 minutes.
  • For the icing, mix sugar and meringue powder together.
  • Slowly add water to a desired consistency – at first, to outline the cookies, your consistency will be a little thicker.
  • Pipe out an outline around the cookie.
  • Once outline is done, you can add more water for a thinner consistency so that it will spread within the outline easily

PRO TIP – For these sweet treats, you’ll need some fun cookie cutters and a piping bag.

Candy Cane Cookies

Jill’s Kitchen Must Have

“These cookies are so much fun to make. They take a bit of patience but the end result and taste makes it so worth it!” – Jill, Sales


  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup crushed peppermint candy


  • Heat oven to 375 degrees.
  • Mix shortening, sugar, egg and flavorings thoroughly.
  • Measure four by dipping method or by sifting.
  • Mix flour and salt; stir into shortening mixture.
  • Divide dough ball in half.
  • Blend food coloring into one half.
  • Roll a 4″ strip (using 1 tsp dough) from each color. For smooth, even strips, roll them back and forth on a lightly floured board.
  • Place stips side by side, press lightly together and twist like rope, curve gently to form the candy cane shape. Place on ungreased baking sheet.
  • Bake about 9 minutes, until lightly browned.
  • While still warm, remove from baking sheet with spatula and sprinkle with mixture of candy and sugar.

PRO TIP – To prevent breakage out of the oven, Jill recommends investing in a metal spatula

Now it’s time to satisfy that sweet tooth and get to work! What’s your go-to cookie recipe for the holidays? Let us know in the comments!

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SIDENOTE. This post was last modified on December 17, 2020. However, we regularly update our content as we test more products and new models are released. We also listen to the feedback of our customers and make changes to our product recommendations based on their experiences. So don’t be surprised if you see some old comments below! Since reader comments contribute to the topic, we have decided not to delete them.

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