Holiday Cookie Recipes
December 11, 2015, 8:42 pm
Trying to come up with some tasty treats to bring to your holiday cookie exchange? These classic holiday cookie recipes are sure to impress Santa and turn any scrooge into a cheerful elf!
- 5 to 5 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 cup unsulfured molasses
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, and spices in a large bowl; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar, and egg on medium until smooth. Add the molasses and beat until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla. Stir in the flour mixture 1 cup at a time, blending until smooth. The dough should gather into a semi-firm mass. (If it's not firm, add another 1/4 to 1/2 cup flour, but not enough to make it crumbly.)
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide in half. Flatten into disks and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or up to 1 week.
- Preheat oven to 350° F. On a floured surface, roll each disk to 1/8 inch thick. Use gingerbread-man cutters to make shapes. Transfer them to a large, parchment-lined baking sheet, spacing them about 1 inch apart. Decorate, if desired. Bake until firm to the touch, about 12 minutes. Cool slightly before transferring to a rack.
Holiday Cut-Out Cookies
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled, plus more for shaping the cookies
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the egg and beat until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Beat in the vanilla.
- With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated (the dough will be stiff). Shape into a disk and (unless otherwise specified in an individual recipe) refrigerate, wrapped, for at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
- Divide the basic sugar cookie dough in half (do not substitute slice-and-bake dough). On a floured surface, roll each piece out ¼ inch thick.
- Cut into shapes with cookie cutters. Refrigerate on baking sheets until firm.
- Sprinkle with decorating sugar and bake at 350° F on parchment-lined baking sheets until just beginning to brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Cool slightly on baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.
Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
- 1teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 ¼ cups packed light brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2cups semisweet chocolate chips (12 ounces)
- 1cup chopped walnuts or pecans, coarsely chopped (optional)
- Heat oven to 350° F. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda.
- Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars on medium-high speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. One at a time, beat in the eggs, then the vanilla. Reduce speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until just combined (do not overmix). Mix in the chocolate chips and nuts (if desired) by hand.
- Drop heaping tablespoonfuls of the dough onto baking sheets, spacing them 2 inches apart.
- Bake, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until golden around the edges but still soft in the center, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool slightly on the baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely. Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.