Celebrate the holiday season with these easy Christmas cookies! Find recipes for gingerbread cookies, sugar cookies, shortbread, and more.

Let’s make Christmas cookies! The holiday season is here, and I’m ready to bake.

Every year, I make Christmas cookies to share with friends and family. These sweet treats are my favorite way to spread holiday cheer. They look so festive—cut into seasonal shapes, decorated with icing, or dusted with powdered sugar—and they taste delicious. If you want to make someone smile this season, gift them a Christmas cookie tray. Just be sure to save some cookies for yourself too!

I’ve rounded up my best Christmas cookie recipes below. They range from classics like gingerbread and sugar cookies to unique treats like tahini cookies with pomegranates. They’re all easy and fun to make. I hope you find some you love!

Classic Christmas Cookies

No holiday cookie plate is complete without one or more of these Christmas classics.

Christmas gingerbread cookies

Gingerbread Cookies

Warmly spiced with cinnamon, ginger, and cloves, these gingerbread cookies will make your house smell amazing as they bake. Once they cool, have fun decorating them with icing, sprinkles, and/or seasonal candy!

Mexican wedding cookies

Mexican Wedding Cookies

This recipe makes a big batch—we’re talking 40 cookies!—but trust me, it goes fast. With their rich pecan flavor and melt-in-your-mouth texture, Mexican wedding cookies (also called snowball cookies) are impossible to resist.

Jam thumbprints

Thumbprint Cookies

One of my favorite Christmas cookie recipes! These treats are tender, buttery, and filled with vibrant pools of apricot and raspberry jam.

Chewy molasses cookies

Chewy Molasses Cookies

Set out these cookies for Santa on Christmas Eve, and they’ll all be gone the next morning! They’re soft, chewy, and packed with ginger-molasses flavor.

Christmas sugar cookie recipe

Easy Sugar Cookies

These thick, soft sugar cookies are perfect for decorating with frosting, royal icing, and/or colorful sprinkles. Kids and adults will love making them!

Peanut butter blossoms

Peanut Butter Blossoms

Peanut butter blossoms are some of the most popular Christmas cookies. It’s not hard to see why. Who doesn’t love chocolate and peanut butter together?!


I make shortbread cookies all year round, but they feel especially perfect for Christmas. What better treat to enjoy with a mug of hot chocolate?

Christmas shortbread recipe

Shortbread Cookies

This classic shortbread is easy to make with 5 ingredients! For a festive twist, add a few drops of almond extract to the cookie dough.

Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Lemon juice, lemon zest, and fresh thyme leaves add bright, unexpected flavor to these cookies. Drizzle them with my quick and easy lemon glaze to take them over the top!

orange shortbread cookies

Orange Shortbread Cookies

We always have fresh oranges around the house at Christmastime. If you do too, use their juice and zest to add a citrusy kick to these cut-out shortbread cookies!

Quick and Easy Christmas Cookies

Need a cookie NOW? These no-chill Christmas cookie recipes are quick and easy to make.



You can whip up these holiday cookies in less than 30 minutes! With a crisp cinnamon-sugar coating and soft, chewy middles, they’re sure to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Peanut butter cookies

Best Peanut Butter Cookies

They taste like the inside of a peanut butter cup!

Lemon Cookies

Lemon Cookies

Love lemon poppy seed muffins? You’ll go crazy for these lemon cookies too. With a perfect chewy texture and delicate citrus flavor, they taste like a gourmet bakery treat.

Christmas cranberry cookies

Cranberry Cookies

Dried cranberries and pistachios give these chocolate chip cookies holiday flair. To make them even more festive, use white chocolate chips!

Oatmeal Cookies for Christmas

I can never resist an oatmeal cookie on a holiday cookie plate!

Oatmeal cookies

Perfect Oatmeal Cookies

This classic oatmeal cookie recipe calls for raisins and walnuts, but don’t hesitate to change up the mix-ins for the holidays. Dried cranberries, pecans, macadamia nuts, or chocolate chips (any kind!) would be great too.

No Bake Cookies

No Bake Cookies

Give your oven a break, and whip up these chewy chocolate cookies on the stovetop!

Vegan Christmas Cookie Recipes

You don’t need dairy or eggs to make these delicious Christmas cookie recipes.

Vegan Gingerbread

Vegan Gingerbread Cookies

A plant-based twist on the traditional dessert! Almond butter keeps these cookies perfectly soft and chewy.

Vegan Sugar Cookies

Vegan Sugar Cookies

Ever had a cream cheese cookie? These cookies have a similar tangy taste and soft texture, but they’re totally vegan. No cream cheese here! I’m happy devouring them plain, but they look super-cute with frosting and sprinkles on top.

Tahini Cookies

Tahini Cookies

These holiday cookies are made with almond flour, so they’re totally gluten-free! I love to top them with pomegranate arils for a bold pop of color, but dried cranberries and chocolate chips are yummy here too.

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies

These cookies taste like Nutter Butters in the best possible way. They’re bursting with sweet peanut butter flavor!

Almond butter cookies recipe

Almond Butter Cookies

Like peanut butter cookies, but made with almond butter. Take one bite, and you’ll wonder why you didn’t try them sooner!

Vegan chocolate chip cookies

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

The only chocolate chip cookie recipe you need! Tahini, vanilla extract, and brown sugar make them SUPER flavorful. A heaping cup of dark chocolate chips doesn’t hurt either.

Tips for Baking Success

  • Spoon and level your flour. Measuring flour is surprisingly tricky. You might think you’re using the right amount for a recipe but accidentally add too much. That’s because flour can easily become compacted. To avoid packing it down in your measuring cup, use the spoon-and-level method for measuring flour. Find step-by-step photos in this blog post!
  • Bake one sheet at a time. Temperatures can vary throughout an oven, so for the most even baking, I recommend baking one sheet of cookies at a time. If the oven is too crowded, some cookies may over-bake before others are ready.
  • Decorate the cookies once they’ve cooled. If they’re still warm, the frosting will melt! I often bake gingerbread cookies and sugar cookies a few days in advance and freeze them until I’m ready to decorate.

How long will Christmas cookies stay fresh?

Most Christmas cookies keep well in an airtight container at room temperature for about a week. Refer to each recipe for specific storage instructions.

Can you freeze Christmas cookies?

Yes! All of these Christmas cookie recipes freeze well. Store the cookies in an airtight container or bag in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow them to thaw at room temperature before enjoying!

best christmas cookies recipe

Best Christmas Cookies: Easy Sugar Cookies

Prep Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Serves 20

We love this cut-out sugar cookie recipe! These easy sugar cookies have crisp edges and thick, soft middles. They’re perfect for decorating.

Prevent your screen from going dark

  • In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt.

  • Cream the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the sugar and beat until fluffy, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the egg and beat well, then add the vanilla extract, almond extract, and lemon zest and mix again. Add the dry ingredients, one-third at a time, mixing until well combined. Divide the dough into two balls and flatten into disks. Wrap in plastic wrap and transfer to the fridge to chill for 2 hours.

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

  • Roll the dough on a lightly floured surface to ¼-inch thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut out desired shapes. Transfer to the baking sheets and bake, one sheet at a time, for 10 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheet for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to continue cooling. Cool completely before icing.

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