9 Christmas cookies to bake and give

There’s something about Christmas that compels even the most adamant non-baker amongst us to preheat the oven, tie on an apron and give a batch of biscuits a whirl. And even if we do this only once a year, we optimistically believe that THESE biscuits are going to be fancy enough to gift to loved ones.

So for one moment, we’ll indulge this fantasy with you and share the tastiest Christmas cookie recipes around so even if the final product looks a little … ummmm … handmade by toddlers, they will taste completely yum!

Spicy gingerbread cookie

Spicy gingerbread cookies

Gingerbread is excellent any time of the year – but there is something about Christmas gingerbread that makes it even better than usual. Just imagining what this gingerbread recipe from Smitten Kitchen that’s full of yummo Christmas spices – ginger, cinnamon, cloves, pepper and salt – is going to smell like as it comes out of the oven, is enough to have us all singing “Deck the Halls” in an instant.

 

Christmas cut-out cookies

Christmas cut-out cookies

Oh, that Martha Stewart is one clever cookie, isn’t she? Want to bake cookies but don’t want the bother of having to come back later to ice them? No worries! Colour this simple cookie dough recipe and then cut out shapes using cookie cutters, bake and voila! Gorgeous Christmas cookies with (almost) zero effort.

 Zimtsterne (Cinnamon stars) Zimtsterne (Cinnamon stars)

Zimtsterne (cinnamon stars)

Don’t be fooled by appearances – this is no fancy-cut shortbread biscuit. Instead, this traditional German biscuit recipe is a crisp, nutty treasure that’s similar to an almond macaroon. Sounds good, right?!

Chocolate Christmas cookies

Chocolate Christmas biscuits

When it comes to cooking with chocolate, Nigella Lawson is not a woman to be trifled with. She loves her chocolate and she loves to bake – so when she gives the world a chocolate biscuit recipe she guarantees is delicious and ‘a doddle to make’, you need to sit up and take note. This recipe is officially on our list of must-bakes. Yes, ANOTHER one! No judgement please.

lemon_wreaths1

Lemon and almond cookie wreaths

Christmas wreath biscuits are so pretty and when they are infused with delicious lemon and baked into a crisp cookie, they are almost Christmas perfection. This simple cookie recipe from Cook Republic is totally sublime. You could hang them on your Christmas tree once they’re cool but good luck with that – we doubt there’ll be many left to hang once everyone has had a go at ‘taste-testing’ them.

Dried fruit biscotti

Dried fruit biscotti

If you’re a fan of Christmas mince pies, you are going to love these little babies! This easy biscotti recipe has all the fruity flavour of the pie in a crunchy finger of biscuity yum that’s just perfect for dipping in a hot cuppa.

traditional-shortbread-20130_l

Traditional shortbread

There’s no way we could leave shortbread off this list of must-make Christmas baking.  Using just five ingredients, this is one buttery, light and very moreish shortbread recipe. And your elderly aunts will be properly impressed when you hand out tins of homemade shortbread to the clan on Christmas Day.

white-chocolate-and-cranberry-cookies

Cranberry and white chocolate cookies

There is something so utterly divine about the cranberry/white chocolate combo that makes it perfect for Christmas. I mean, we already have cranberries on the table to go with the turkey, so why not keep going with the flavour theme? This recipe makes a lovely soft cookie that will just melt in your mouth.

Boozy cookies

Boozy dried fruit and pistachio cookies

Christmas really isn’t Christmas without a surprise boozy hit in a batch of baking just for the grown-ups. This cookie recipe is reminiscent of a pumpkin scone but with a good slug of brandy in the glaze that makes it very delicious indeed.

Find more great ideas for Christmas cooking in our Christmas section.

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