‘Tis the season for these fun, festive cookie recipes to spread holiday cheer


Grace Bent / Hilltop Views

Peppermint and chocolate is one of the most popular holiday combinations, being used in desserts, snacks and drinks. The most pinned holiday dessert in 2016 was thumbprint cookies.

When it’s 2020, it’s never too early to start celebrating Christmas. One of the best things about the holidays is the treats. Cookies are easy to make and fill up the home with their warm, delicious aroma. So grab your apron, preheat the oven and get ready to bake with these four types of festive cookies. And feel free to swap a few of the ingredients for vegan or gluten free options.

Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

Peppermint and chocolate are the power couple of the season. These cookies have just the right amount of peppermint flavor to not feel overpowering and plenty of chocolate for sweetness.


1 ¼ cup flour

⅓ cup cocoa powder

¾ cup sugar

½ teaspoon baking soda

¼ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

1 egg

¼ teaspoon peppermint extract

⅓ cup crushed candy cane or peppermint candy


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, salt, cocoa powder, baking soda and baking powder. In a separate bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Beat in egg and  peppermint extract until fluffy. Gradually stir in sifted ingredients until dough is formed. Form into small balls and bake for 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle crushed peppermint while still warm. Let cool for five minutes and then enjoy!

Rainbow Neapolitan Cookies

While these are not as popular in the South, they were my favorite growing up. I would wait all year for the Italian bakeries to finally start selling them, until I learned to make them on my own. While not the easiest to make, these soft, sweet cookies are a delight with their festive coloring and unique flavor. 


1 cup flour

½ cup white sugar

4 oz. almond paste

2 eggs, separated

½ cup butter

3 drops red gel food coloring

3 drops green gel food coloring

¼ cup seedless raspberry jam

½ cup melted chocolate chips


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cream together butter, sugar, egg yolks and almond paste. When the mixture is fluffy, stir in flour to form a dough. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites and then fold them into the dough. Divide dough into three equal portions. Mix one portion with the red food coloring, one with green and leave the last untouched. Spread each portion into separate pans and maintain an equal thickness for each portion. Bake each portion for 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool, and then place the green layer on a piece of plastic wrap that is large enough to wrap all three layers. Spread with the jam, then add the uncolored layer. Add jam and add the red layer. Wrap up the layers and place something heavy to compress them. Place in the refrigerator for eight hours. Then, spread melted chocolate on the top red layer and refrigerate for an additional hour. Cut into squares and enjoy!

Confetti Sugar Cookies

These cookies are simple yet delicious. They can be decorated however you like, and the “confetti” are sprinkles of your choice – maybe red and green? Silver and gold? These cookies are also another chance to use your cookie cutters if you so please!


2 ¾ cup flour

½ teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 egg

1 cup butter

1 ½ cups white sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ cup sprinkles of your color choice


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Stir together flour, baking soda and baking powder. In a separate bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla. Gradually stir in dry ingredients until dough is formed. Fold in sprinkles. Roll dough into balls or roll out one inch thick and cut with cookie cutters. Bake eight to 10 minutes until golden on the bottom. 

Ginger Cookies

A classic that will leave your kitchen smelling just like Christmas. These cookies are easy to make and can be cut into fun shapes with your favorite cookie cutters and decorated as you please. They are soft and chewy and have the perfect amount of spice.

Grace Bent / Hilltop Views


2 ¼ cups flour

1 cup white sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons ground ginger

¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground cloves

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ cup molasses

1 egg

¾ cup butter or margarine

1 tablespoon water


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Sift together flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves and salt. In a separate bowl, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat egg into mixture and then stir in water and molasses. Gradually stir sifted ingredients into the mix until dough is formed. Roll into balls or shape with cookie cutters by rolling dough out about one inch thick. Sprinkle sugar over each cookie. Bake for eight to 10 minutes.