Holiday Cookies Yule Love

The holidays are all about family, and what better way to spend time together than baking cookies?

We all have our favorite recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation. And while we can’t wait to dig in to our traditional favorites, it’s always fun to try something new each season.

These recipes are perfect for cookie exchanges, gifts, holiday parties, or just good old-fashioned family time. Submitted by both our editors and readers (including the winner from last year’s cookie contest!), these are some of our very favorite holiday cookie recipes that are sure to fill your home with joy, warmth and good smells!

Anise Seed Holiday Cookies
This year, think outside of the sugar-cookie cutter and throw an unexpected ingredient into the mix: anise seeds.

Apricot Shortbread Bars
This recipe, from reader Char Podolsky of Highland Park, is surprisingly easy and gourmet all at the same time.

Does it get any better than chocolate and peanut butter? This easy and decadent recipe was a holiday cookie contest winner! 

Banana-Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies
Take your chocolate-chip cookies to the next level by adding banana and oatmeal. These are also packed with good-for-you ingredients—but don’t tell the kids.  

Cherry Almond Biscotti
If you can slice a loaf of bread, you can bake biscotti. Impress your guests with this simple recipe, another holiday cookie contest winner. 

Chocolate-Chip and Snickerdoodle Cookies
These are so good, reader Gina Deutsche says her friends think she should stop selling pharmaceuticals and start selling cookies. 

Ginger Cookies Recipe 
If you love ginger, then this is the cookie for you. And the best part? It’s made with canola oil, not butter. (No one will ever know.)

Nana’s Magic Cookie Brownies

The holidays are a busy time, and you won’t always be able to spend hours in the kitchen baking treats for your next party. This recipe only calls for four ingredients that will go from pantry to party in no time. 

Pine Nut and Fig Cookie
If you REALLY want to impress at this year’s cookie exchange, this recipe is a total winner.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
This recipe, winner of the 2012 Cookie Contest, is delicious, easy, and as reader Amy Lowry Collis says, “You can feel pretty good about a recipe that has a whole cup of pumpkin in it!” 

Spice Balls
Bring a little kick to the dessert table with this delicious reader-submitted recipe.