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Our Top 20 Most Cherished Holiday Cookies

Sponsored by McCormick

Christmas Cookies

Photo by Meredith

Way back in the mists of internet time, Allrecipes began as a scrappy little start-up created just so people could share their favorite cookie recipes. (And here's the cookie that started it all.) More than two decades and tens of thousands of recipes later,  we share just about every kind of recipe you can think of. But we never lost sight of our cookie recipe roots.

As we celebrate the peak season for cookie baking, we want to honor the top 20 holiday cookies you've told us you love to bake and share again and again. Some are simple, some are fancy—all of them are baked with a lot of heart. Check them out and maybe you'll find new favorites to add to your holiday cookie trays.

And to ensure the best flavor, start with the best baking ingredients, including spices and extracts from McCormick.

1. Best Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie

"Amazing, amazing, amazing cookies! I made a batch for the first time last night and shared them with the neighbors. The whole batch was devoured in no time and everyone raved about them. Fabulous!" -- SAREMCA

Tip: Use real, pure vanilla extract when you can—the flavor is worth it.

 

Best Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie

Best Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie | Photo by cherryberry:)

More: Get 20 Delightful Ways to Upgrade Your Chocolate Chip Cookies


2. The Best Rolled Sugar Cookies

"Thanks for sharing the recipe for the very best thick, tender, tasty & dependable rolled sugar cookies I have made in my nearly 40 years of baking experience." -- DARLENE1

 

The Best Rolled Sugar Cookies

The Best Rolled Sugar Cookies | Photo by Katherine Naomi

More: Learn How to Decorate Cookies


3. Easy Sugar Cookies

"YUMMY!!! I rolled these in sugar to give them a little color when I put them in Christmas cookie gifts. Everyone loved these! I made the dough about 2 weeks early and froze it before making them and the cookies came out just fine." -- Brandie Leann

More: Learn how to freeze cookies and cookie dough for a smart holiday time-saver.


4. Mrs. Sigg's Snickerdoodles

"If I were you I'd be in the kitchen right now making these absolutely wonderful cookies! Oh they are so delicious right out of the oven!" -- Pam

Tip: Don’t skip the cream of tarter in the recipe—it’s what helps give snickerdoodles their distinctive flavor and chew.

Mrs. Sigg's Snickerdoodles

Mrs. Sigg's Snickerdoodles | Photo by footballgrl16

5. Big Soft Ginger Cookies

These cookies get their warm and spicy flavor from ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and molasses. "I made these cookies for a cookie exchange. They were a big hit and people wouldn't stop eating them. My husband probably ate three dozen by himself." -- SKITTEN

 

Big Soft Ginger Cookies

Big Soft Ginger Cookies | Photo by Christina

6. Beth's Spicy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

"Without a doubt this is the best oatmeal cookie I have made. I have been baking and cooking for 50 years and no other recipe comes close to being as good and this one." -- Mary Ann Benzon

 

Beth's Spicy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Beth's Spicy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies | Photo by bd.weld

7. Linzer Tarts

"I never made linzer tarts before, but I've eaten plenty of them. These were exquisite. They are buttery and nutty and delicious. " -- TRISHICAT

Raspberry_Linzer_Stars

Linzer Tarts | Photo by Meredith

8. Raspberry and Almond Shortbread Thumbprints

"These are the BEST holiday cookie I have ever tasted. Easy to make and a joy to share. Many have asked for the recipe. Thanks for sharing it, Dee!" -- DXCST

 

Raspberry and Almond Shortbread Thumbprints

Raspberry and Almond Shortbread Thumbprints | Photo by footballgrl16

9. Chocolate Crinkles II

"These are fantastic and are now a standard Christmas recipe in my box. I had to make an extra batch because my daughter and I kept eating them and there weren't enough left for my gift boxes and platters." -- happycamper26

Tip: A touch of almond extract enhances the flavor and aroma of these popular Christmas cookies.

 

Chocolate Crinkles II

Chocolate Crinkles II | Photo by Dianne

10. Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

"This recipe is every bit as good as it sounds. I made them for the holidays and not only did they look beautiful on my cookie trays, but they were a hit with everyone who tried them." -- BONOZ3612

 

Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti | Photo by Rob Tanner

11. Eileen's Spicy Gingerbread Men

Cinnamon, cloves, ginger, nutmeg, and molasses make these cookies taste like the best of Christmas baking. "Very good! I made a gingerbread house out of this recipe (tripled), and it's the first year the kids ate the house instead of just the candy that was decorating it!" -- JESSICA

 

Eileen's Spicy Gingerbread Men

Eileen's Spicy Gingerbread Men | Photo by MrsLora

12. Coconut Macaroons III

"These are easy and very good. For Christmas I add red and green candied cherries." -- Bernice Dray

 

Coconut Macaroons III

Coconut Macaroons III | Photo by Lily

13. Russian Tea Cakes I

"I made these to include in cookie gift tins that I'm making and am sorry that I didn't double the recipe so that I could have more for myself!" -- FOODGU1

 

Russian Tea Cakes I

Photo by Philly Ry

14. Cranberry Orange Cookies

"These cookies were amazing! They were very quick and easy to prepare, and turned out beautifully. I did a cookie exchange with these cookies and they were GONE before any other cookie." -- Emily C.

 

Cranberry Orange Cookies

Cranberry Orange Cookies | Photo by Kimberly Kahmann Harvey

15. Shortbread Cookies II

"This is THE BEST shortbread cookie recipe ever! I made it with raspberry preserves in a thumbprint cookie and for Christmas, I rolled balls in red and green sugar. They were very pretty and easy for a nice spot of color on a cookie tray." -- KADYKEL

 

Shortbread Cookies II

Shortbread Cookies II | Photo by Grumpy's Honeybunch

16. Buckeye Balls II

"These are really wonderful. My fiancé can't get enough of these! I drizzle white chocolate on top to make them pretty for dessert trays during the holidays. Great recipe!" -- JAMIESGIRL

 

Buckeye Balls II

Photo by Dianne

17. Peppermint Meringues

"Everyone absolutely LOVED these cookies! I gave them to friends as pre-Christmas gifts with other cookies and these were by far the faves." -- 1TEXASLIZARD

Tip: Several reviewers added a drop or two of pure peppermint extract to the mix to enhance the peppermint flavor. Don’t add more than that, though, or else the meringue might fall flat.

 

Peppermint Meringues

Photo by Amy

18. Peanut Blossoms II

"Best recipe for one of our traditional Christmas favorites. This one actually stays moist and tender for days." -- SEWEZ

 

Peanut Blossoms II

Peanut Blossoms II | Kim's Cooking Now!

19. Chocolate Rum Balls I

"This has become a traditional Christmas recipe. I have people requesting these. I made a ton of them for a party I catered last week, and they were a hit. Always better the 3rd or 4th day!" -- AmyK

 

Chocolate Rum Balls I

Chocolate Rum Balls I | Photo by Paulie

20. Rugelach

"Absolutely the best rugelach recipe I have tried. Grew up buying all my cakes, etc. in Jewish bakeries and this recipe makes the best I have ever tasted." -- Katherine Lento

Rugelach

Rugelach | Photo by lili

You might also like...

* Upgrade your cookie-baking skills with tips for baking great cookies from scratch.
* Mailing cookies this year? Here are 10 cookie recipes that won't crumble in the mail.
* Browse our entire collection of Christmas cookie recipes.

 

About Vanessa Greaves

Good food, friends, and fun are always on the menu. Find me as foodelicious on Allrecipes and vanny.gee on Instagram (but only if you don't mind cat pics and cocktails).