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12 Days of Christmas Holiday Cookies

The holiday season is the perfect time to express gratitude and appreciation to your family and friends. And my preferred kind of appreciation comes in a big box of homemade holiday cookies. Bake it, pack it, mail it, it will put a big smile on their faces and complete their year!

A collage of holiday cookie photos

Holiday cookies require a little elbow grease, some flour, a lot of butter, and an enormous pinch of LOVE. But I can guarantee kids of all ages will love them no matter what! An added bonus is that it will take away the holiday season shopping stress as well.

#1. Brown Butter Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

We all love the classic chocolate chip cookies, but I’m telling you these Brown Butter Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies can rival those beloved classic cookies. They are thicker and they have a note of toffee from the brown butter which really takes them to the next level.

A stack of two peanut butter chocolate chip cookies on a baking sheet

#2. Linzer Cookies with Peppermint Chocolate Ganache

Linzer cookies are another one of those classic Christmas cookies, the tender cookies themselves are made with almond flour, a little spice, and citrus zest. But these are not filled with the typical jam filling, they’re filled with a creamy peppermint chocolate ganache!

A stack of chocolate ganache linzer cookies

#3. Pumpkin Snickerdoodles

Okay, get ready for another classic with a twist! Who doesn’t love snickerdoodle cookies right? Well, these are made with real pumpkin puree in the cookie dough, then rolled in pumpkin pie spiced sugar before baking.

A stack of pumpkin snickerdoodle cookies

#4. Pistachio Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies

These are no boring oatmeal cookies, these festive Pistachio Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies are studded with red from the dried cranberries and green from the pistachio. They’re chewy, nutty, and buttery.

Pistachio Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies close up

#5. Almond Rugelach

These Almond Rugelach are one of our absolute favorites, as is anything filled with almond paste! The dough is tender and flaky, you can use either homemade or store bought almond paste for the filling.

Marzipan Filled Rugelach | wildwildwhisk.com

#6. Guava Thumbprint Cookies

These guava cookies are not your typical jam thumbprint cookies. They’re made with guava jam and the cookies are rolled in coconut flakes for the ultimate tropical flavor. Mele Kalikimaka!

#7. Red Velvet Cookie Cups

If you want red velvet cupcakes for Christmas but you’re tasked to bring cookies, make these Red Velvet Cookies Cups. The cookies are chewy and they’re filled with a tangy cream cheese frosting. Be warned, they’re highly addictive!

#8. Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies

Peanut Butter and Jelly are an everyday essential. But when transformed into little pie-like sandwich cookies, they are just as Christmas worthy as any others on this list.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Cookies | wildwildwhisk.com

#9. Ginger Molasses Cookies

These soft and spicy Ginger Molasses Cookies are filled with surprise pieces of candied ginger. Each bite is full of warm spices that will transport you from Fall right into the Christmas season and beyond.

A stack of Ginger Molasses Cookies

#10. Red Velvet Cookies with White Chocolate Chips

If you love the chocolate chip cookie varieties, these are totally holiday appropriate. They have a hint of cocoa and loaded with creamy white chocolate chips.

Red Velvet White Chocolate Chip Cookies | wildwildwhisk.com

#11. Chocolate Spritz Cookies

Spritz cookies are super easy to make and are also a holiday classic. You can easily change their flavor using different flavor extracts, or make this chocolate version by adding a little bit of cocoa powder.

A plate full of Chocolate Spritz Cookies

#12. Caramelized Sugar Shortbread Cookies

Another classic with a twist, buttery shortbread cookies made with caramelized sugar! If you’re gonna make cookies, might as well have a little fun doing it. They’re unusual and unusually delicious.

A stack of caramelized sugar shortbread cookies

Bonus: Gingerbread Dog Treats

Last but not least, we can’t forget the puppers. These guys are family to us, so whip up a batch of Gingerbread Dog Treats for them to enjoy and appreciate the festivities of the holiday season with you.

Gingerbread Dog Treats in a dog bowl

How to choose holiday cookies for mailing

  • Harder cookies will keep their shape better in the mail than softer and more crumbly cookies. Shortbreads and Rugelach are great for mailing.
  • Avoid anything with frosting, glaze, and filling that can melt easily or get too messy. Jam thumbprints are okay to mail if you bake the jam into the cookies instead of adding it at the end.
  • Don’t choose cookies that are too thin or fragile like spritz cookies, they will not hold up to the rigor of the shipping process.

Tips for packing and shipping holiday cookies

How to pack different kinds of cookies

For large and flat cookies, like the chocolate chip cookie varieties:

  • It is most efficient to pack them in plastic treat bags instead of tupperwares to save room and reduce shipping costs.
  • Stack them up, sitting up right in plastic treat bags, then tie up the top tightly. 
  • When shipping, lay them on their side in the shipping container, wrap the treat bags in bubble wrap and/or wedge them in with newspaper to make sure they don’t roll around freely inside the container.

For smaller cookies like thumbprints and ones with irregular shape like rugelach

  • Pack in either treat bags or tupperwares. 
  • Tuck them in their container tightly so they cannot move freely.

Other tips

  • I love using plastic treat bags because you can pack a few different types of cookies separately.
  • Choose a shipping container 1 size larger than what you’re planning to ship and use bubble wrap, packing peanuts or newspaper to ensure your treats will keep their shape and avoid them from being crushed by other packages.
  • To keep cookies fresher longer, you could also wrap them in plastic individually. 
  • Always ship priority to ensure they get to your intended destination as quickly as possible.

A collage of Christmas cookie photos

If you make any of these holiday cookies, please let me know! Leave a comment, send me a photo, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!


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  1. December 20, 2017 /

    These cookies all look so awesome! I have to try making literally all of these, especially the pie crust cookies! I am that one person obsessed with pie crust!

    • Trang
      December 20, 2017 /

      Hahaha, I love it! I knew someone will appreciate them 😉

  2. December 20, 2017 /

    What a great round-up! I sent cookies years ago and they all crumbled. I so wish I had these tips then, but they make me bold enough to try again!

    • Trang
      December 20, 2017 /

      Awesome Kristen! I hope you try again next year 😉

  3. December 15, 2017 /

    What a great selection of recipes. Now to decide which one first. I must say I’ve been eyeing off your rugelach recipe for a while now.

  4. December 14, 2017 /

    I love this post.You should do more about a cookie exchange.That is a cool idea!

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