45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (2024)

45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (1)

If you're like us, you've got a few Christmas cookie classics you make every year: Our sugar cookies, gingerbread people, snowball cookies, or candy cane cookies are in our cookie jars and on our dessert plates all season long. The trouble with that is they’re so good, everyone else is making them too! While no one’s complaining about a plethora of the standards, sometimes you might want a break from the same-old. Stand out from the crowd this holiday season with these 45 unique Christmas cookies—you might just find a new favorite you’ll make again year after year.

We’re pulling inspiration from the classics, but with a twist, as well as from holiday cookies around the world that deserve more of a universal spotlight. Craving sugar cookies but want to go beyond basic? Ensure your sugar cookies will be the most beloved of any bunch with our creme brûlée sugar cookies, our Grinch cookies, our stained glass cookies, or our ugly sweater cookies. Love a thumbprint cookie or blossom cookie, but want to switch things up? Try our chocolate hazelnut thumbprint cookies, our British-inspired cherry bakewell cookies, our Polish kolaczki cream cheese cookies, or our cookies 'n' cream blossom cookies. More of a crinkle cookie fan? Try swapping in fruitier flavors for a creative colorful spin, like in our ube crinkle cookies or our lemon butter cookies.

Speaking of fruit flavors, they sometimes get overlooked around the holidays for more flashy options, but no more! Try our coconut cookies, our banoffee cookies, our cherry chocolate chip cookies, or our Italian lemon cookies for ideas. Those, along with our sesame cookies, our panettone cookies, and our tahini cookies, aren’t as over-the-top sweet, which is always a welcome addition to a Christmas cookie spread.

Want more sweet Christmas ideas? Try our favorite Christmas cakes, our best easy/no-bake holiday desserts, and our top holiday co*cktails too.

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1

Cake Mix Cookies

45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (3)

Short for time on baking all of your holiday cookies this year? Think of these cake mix cookies as your magical helpers, here to save the day. These sprinkled cookies use vanilla cake mix to create the softest, fluffiest cookie you've ever had.

Get the Cake Mix Cookies recipe.

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2

Peppermint Snowball Cookies

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This holiday season, we challenge you to a snowball fight! Not with the actual cold stuff, of course, but with these pretty snow white cookies. Better eaten than thrown, these peppermint snowball cookies are similar to polvorones (AKA Mexican wedding cookies), but made Christmas-ready with a hit of peppermint extract.

Get the Peppermint Snowball Cookies recipe.

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3

Panettone Cookies

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To think a fluffy, enriched bread like panettone can somehow translate into a buttery cookie might seem preposterous. But don’t stop reading! These cookie are the perfect base for the orange peel, currants, dried apricots, chocolate, and almonds you love about the original, with half the work.

Get the Panettone Cookies recipe.

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4

Pfeffernüsse

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Barely crunchy on the outside and soft and almost-fudgy on the inside, our version of this German cookie also has a cardamom-flavored glaze. The addition of fresh ginger, orange zest, and rum gives these little bites a warm sweetness that blends well with the dark notes of molasses and black pepper.

Get the Pfeffernüsse recipe.

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5

Santa's Trash Cookies

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Even Santa has a snacky side. These cookies are loaded with chocolate chips, sprinkles, pretzels, and potato chips for the salty-sweet dessert of your (and his!) dreams.

Get the Santa's Trash Cookies recipe.

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6

Strawberry Love Notes

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Sending sweet cards to loved ones shouldn't just be for Valentine's Day! These strawberry "love notes" are the perfect twist on letters to Santa, and will be a fun, unexpected treat in your holiday cookie exchange. Feel free to change up the jam if you like!

Get the Strawberry Love Notes recipe.

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7

Potato Chip Cookies

45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (15)

Love chocolate chip cookies? Prepare to meet your new obsession. Sweet and salty, crunchy on the outside and chewy in the center, these potato chip cookies take everything we love about the classic chocolate chip cookie and crank up the volume—big time.

Get the Potato Chip Cookies recipe.

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8

Cookie Brittle

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Cookie brittle is a particularly great hack for the holidays or any time you’re entertaining when you don’t have time or the oven space to bake multiple trays too. Think of it like a faster, easier way to make a big batch of chocolate chip cookies. 😍

Get the Cookie Brittle recipe.

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9

Kolaczki Cream Cheese Cookies

45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (19)

Kolaczki cookies are Polish in origin, often made and eaten during the holidays. Some recipes use canned pie filling, though we opted for jam in this version. Use your favorite flavor; just make sure to dilute it with cornstarch and water so it doesn't turn into hard candy during the bake.

Get the Kolaczki Cream Cheese Cookies recipe.

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10

Tiramisu Cookie Cups

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Tiramisu is one of our favorite desserts, but the process of making it the traditional way requires a lot of work. This version takes out all the extra work without sacrificing flavor. Another perk: These cup-shaped cookies make it even easier to share and eat.

Get the Tiramisu Cookie Cups recipe.

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11

Sequilhos

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Delicate, buttery, and oh-so-easy-to-make, sequilhos are a household staple across Brazil. Made with a handful of ingredients like butter, cornstarch, and condensed milk, these meltaway cookies also come together in just one bowl.

Get the Sequilhos recipe.

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12

Chocolate Hazelnut Thumbprint Cookies

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Move over peanut butter blossoms, there's a new thumbprint cookie in town. You’ll fall in love with hazelnut flour once you realize how nutty it makes these gianduja-inspired cookies. Melted chocolate adds extra cocoa punch to the dough, while rich and creamy Nutella tops them off.

Get the Chocolate Hazelnut Thumbprint Cookies recipe.

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13

Lace Cookies

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These delicate little lace cookies—also known as Italian Florentine cookies—are so easy to make and a fun addition to your holiday cookie spread. They are shatteringly crispy and caramel-y with just enough flour and almonds to barely hold the cookies together.

Get the Lace Cookies recipe.

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14

Cannoli Cookies

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If you love cannoli, but making them from scratch seems daunting, let us introduce you to these cookies. They all of the flavors you love in a cannoli, like ricotta, orange zest, mini chocolate chips, and pistachios, yet they require just a fraction of the effort (perfect for a busy holiday season!).

Get the Cannoli Cookies recipe.

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15

Ube Crinkle Cookies

45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (31)

With its striking color and a unique nutty vanilla flavor profile, ube has taken over the world. Upgrade your average crinkle cookie this Christmas with ube extract and ube halaya, a popular Filipino pudding made with ube and condensed milk. Your guests won't know what hit 'em!

Get the Ube Crinkle Cookies recipe.

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16

Sesame Cookies

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Sesame’s nutty flavors can pack a bitter undertone, which is why these sesame cookies use licorice-like anise and bright citrus zest to neutralize the earthiness for a more balanced flavor. These not-too-sweet treats are great for adding variety to your holiday cookie boxes.

Get the Sesame Cookies recipe.

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17

Cuccidati

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If Fig Newtons had a grown-up, glamorous sister, she would be cuccidati. Packed with a sticky-sweet, spiced fig filling and showered in rainbow sprinkles, these bite-sized Italian cookies are more than ready for a Christmas party.

Get the Cuccidati recipe.

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18

Brown Butter Snickerdoodle Cookies

45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (37)

Snickerdoodles are a classic anytime of year, so this Christmas, we're adding brown butter to make them extra special. Everyone will be clamoring for the recipe, trust us.

Get the Brown Butter Snickerdoodle Cookies recipe.

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19

Inside Out Red Velvet Cookies

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We’ll forever love a good stuffed dessert moment (shout out to our Nutella-stuffed cookies), and we’re obviously obsessed with all things red velvet, so it only made sense to combine the two!

Get the Inside Out Red Velvet Cookies recipe.

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20

Grinch Cookies

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Not everyone's all about the Christmas cheer, and that's okay! These adorable sugar cookies will warm hearts even if they're 10 sizes too small this holiday season.

Get the Grinch Cookies recipe.

45 Unique Cookie Recipes That Will Impress Your Friends This Holiday Season (2024)

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