Sponsored by McCormick
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.
"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.
"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
"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.
"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.
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
"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
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
"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
"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.
"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
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
"These are easy and very good. For Christmas I add red and green candied cherries." -- Bernice Dray
"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
"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.
"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
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
"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.
"Best recipe for one of our traditional Christmas favorites. This one actually stays moist and tender for days." -- SEWEZ
"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
"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
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