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60 Cookie Exchange Recipes Your Friends Will Love

Looking for cookie exchange recipes for this year's swap? We've got 'em! Your friends and family are going to love these so much, they'll be begging you for these Christmas cookie recipes.

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Basic Cookie Dough

Skip the store-bought cookie dough and learn how to make cookies from scratch—it’s easy! Thanks to this basic cookie dough recipe, you can turn everyday ingredients into five sensational sweets. Bake some right away, then pop the extra dough in the freezer for later. —Gloria McBride, Payson, Utah

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Holly WreathsTaste of Home

Holly Wreaths

I've never come across another spritz cookie like this - one calling for cream cheese as an ingredient. That helps to keep these wreaths moist a long time, while also adding a delicious flavor. —Dee Lein, Longmont, Colorado

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Peppermint Stick CookiesTaste of Home

Peppermint Stick Cookies

With cool mint flavor and a festive look, these whimsical creations will make you feel like you're in the North pole. The chilled dough is easy to shape, too. —Nancy Knapke, Fort Recovery, Ohio

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Chocolate Thumbprint CookiesTaste of Home

Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

My group of friends had a weekly "movie night" during winters on Martha's Vineyard, and we'd take turns making a chocolate treat to share. These terrific cookies were an instant success. Once they debuted, I had to make them many more times. —Laura Bryant German, W. Warren, Massachusetts

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Whipped ShortbreadTaste of Home

Whipped Shortbread

These whipped shortbread Christmas cookies melt in your mouth. Mostly I make them for the holidays, but I'll also prepare them year-round for wedding showers and afternoon teas. —Jane Ficiur, Bow Island, Alberta

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Rainbow CookiesTaste of Home

Rainbow Cookies

I always bake these cookies two weeks ahead. That allows enough time for mellowing, leaving them moist and full of almond flavor. —Mary Ann Lee, Clifton Park, New York

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Almond Raspberry StarsTaste of Home

Almond Raspberry Stars

The first Christmas that I baked these, I ended up quickly making a second batch! The whole family enjoyed them. —Darlene Weaver, Lebanon, Pennsylvania

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Hidden Mint MorselsTaste of Home

Hidden Mint Morsels

Is it a cookie or a candy? No matter which answer folks choose, they find these minty morsels yummy. The recipe makes so much that you can whip up tons of gifts at once. —Adina Skilbred, Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin

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Easy Gingerbread Cutouts

Easy Gingerbread Cutouts

"I rely on this tried-and-true recipe during the holidays," relates Sandy McKenzie of Braham, Minnesota. "The cream cheese frosting complements the cookies' gingery flavor and sets up nicely for easy packaging and stacking."

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Italian Chocolate Spice CookiesTaste of Home

Italian Chocolate Spice Cookies

I recently found this old family recipe in my mom’s kitchen. I made a few adjustments to streamline the process, and the cookies turned out wonderfully. —Shawn Barto, Winter Garden, Florida

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Grandma's Raspberry RugelachTaste of Home

Grandma's Raspberry Rugelach

I remember sitting on my great-grandmother's couch with a pad and pen in hand as she told me each ingredient and measurement for her special rugelach. Her recipe stands apart because it's a fun twist from typical versions. —Dalya Rubin, Boca Raton, Florida

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Dipped GingersnapsTaste of Home

Dipped Gingersnaps

I get tremendous satisfaction making and giving time-tested yuletide treats like these soft, chewy cookies. Dipping them in white chocolate makes much-loved gingersnaps even more special. —Laura Kimball, West Jordan, Utah

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Harveys Coconut Macaroons

Harveys Coconut Macaroons

As the executive chef at Harveys, a resort hotel in Lake Tahoe, I modified this classic recipe, which originated a century ago at a renowned pastry shop in Vienna, Austria.

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TorcettiTaste of Home

Torcetti

Our Sicilian grandmother often had my sister and me roll out the dough for these tasty torcetti. Their melt-in-your-mouth goodness is delicious without being overly sweet.—Joy Quici, Upland, California

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Chocolate-Tipped Butter CookiesTaste of Home

Chocolate-Tipped Butter Cookies

These wonderfully moist morsels are too tempting to resist. They melt right in your mouth. Rather than sprinkling the chocolate tips with nuts, you can roll them in red and green jimmies or leave them plain. —Charolette Westfall, Houston, Texas

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Cherry Snowballs

Cherry Snowballs

A juicy maraschino cherry is the secret center tucked inside these special cookies. My mom was inspired to create this by a recipe she clipped out of a newspaper more than 30 years ago. —Evy Adams, West Seneca, New York

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Cherry Chocolate Chunk CookiesTaste of Home

Cherry Chocolate Chunk Cookies

These rich, fudgy cookies are chewy and studded with tangy dried cherries. It’s a good thing the recipe makes only a small batch, because we eat them all in one night! —Trisha Kruse, Eagle, Idaho

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Hazelnut Yule LogsTaste of Home

Hazelnut Yule Logs

Besides being irresistibly nutty, these travel well and are a snap to make! — Barbara Burge, Los Gatos, California

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Cathedral CookiesTaste of Home

Cathedral Cookies

Children love the colorful marshmallows in these festive confections, which look like stained glass when they're sliced. They practically light up the room from the serving platter at our holiday parties. —Carol Shaffer, Cape Girardeau, Missouri

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Shortbread Sandwich CookiesTaste of Home

Shortbread Sandwich Cookies

I layer a creamy, coffee-flavored filling between buttery shortbread, then dip the sandwiches in chocolate. Guests always love them.—Bertha Seyer, Oak Ridge, Missouri

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Chocolate Hazelnut ShortbreadTaste of Home

Chocolate Hazelnut Shortbread

We love hazelnut flavor and cookies that aren’t too sweet, so this recipe is perfect for us! If you like your cookies on the sweeter side, bake up these crisp beauties and slather some Nutella between two to create an extra-special sandwich cookie. —Karla Johnson, East Helena, Montana

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White Chocolate Raspberry ThumbprintsTaste of Home

White Chocolate Raspberry Thumbprints

When I pass around the cookie tray, all eyes land on these fancy thumbprints. The white chocolate filling and dab of jewel-toned jam will satisfy even the most discriminating sweet tooth. —Agnes Ward, Stratford, Ontario

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Chocolate Almond PizzellesTaste of Home

Chocolate Almond Pizzelles

If you love fun baking gadgets, you'll enjoy making these crispy, almond-flavored cookies, which get their unique waffle design from a pizzelle maker. They bake up golden brown in only a few minutes. Feel free to double the chocolate drizzle if you'd like to cover the cookies more generously. —Hannah Riley, Norwalk, Ohio

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Snowmen Butter CookiesTaste of Home

Snowmen Butter Cookies

They're buttery sweets that birthday guests of any age will make disappear fast...thanks to the melt-in-your-mouth cookie recipe Suzanne shared.

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Chocolate Caramel Kiss Cookies

Chocolate Caramel Kiss Cookies

I make this cookie every Christmas with my family. It’s a fun twist on a classic peanut butter blossom because of the cinnamon in the batter and the caramel kiss on top. We love the cinnamon-caramel combination, but you could switch out the kiss with a different festive flavor. —Kristen Heigl, Staten Island, New York

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Date-Nut PinwheelsTaste of Home

Date-Nut Pinwheels

Pinwheel cookies with dates and walnuts are a family treasure. There are a few steps when prepping, so I sometimes freeze the dough and bake later. —Frieda Whiteley, Lisbon, Connecticut

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Christmas Candy Cane CookiesTaste of Home

Christmas Candy Cane Cookies

These cookies were a holiday tradition in my family since I was a young child. Now my own family requests them before any others at Christmas. —Pat Schmeling, Germantown, Wisconsin

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Chocolate Gingersnaps

Chocolate Gingersnaps

When my daughter, Jennifer, was 15 years old, she created this recipe as a way to combine two of her favorite flavors. They're great with a glass of milk. —Paula Zsiray, Logan, Utah

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Mint Chocolate WafersTaste of Home

Mint Chocolate Wafers

My grandmother gave me a cookbook stuffed with recipes. This is a slight twist on one of the first—and best—recipes I made from the book. It's best to store these in the refrigerator. —Mary Murphy, Evansville, Indiana

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Cherry Chocolate Nut CookiesTaste of Home

Cherry Chocolate Nut Cookies

Each Christmas, I make about 600 cookies to share with family and friends. The holidays wouldn't be the same without several batches of these colorful goodies. —Sybil Brown, Highland, California

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Frozen Snowflake Gingerbread CookiesTaste of Home

Frozen Snowflake Gingerbread Cookies

These snowflake cookies will melt in your mouth as soon as they hit your tongue. Experiment with your favorite colors and give your cookie trays an unexpected twist. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Baklava Thumbprint Cookies

Baklava Thumbprint Cookies

The topping on my sister-in-law's peach cobbler was so delicious that I asked for the recipe, then decided to use that to top a cookie I developed with the flavors of baklava. My adult son tried one and immediately ate two more—which is unusual for him! It's a good recipe to mix up the night before and bake fresh the next day for company. —Sharon Eshelman, Harrington, Delaware

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Buttery Spritz CookiesTaste of Home

Buttery Spritz Cookies

This tender spritz cookie recipe is very eye-catching on my Christmas cookie tray. The dough is easy to work with, so it's fun to make these spritz cookies into a variety of festive shapes. This is hands down the best spritz cookie recipe ever. —Beverly Launius, Sandwich, Illinois

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Crinkle-Top Chocolate CookiesTaste of Home

Crinkle-Top Chocolate Cookies

When I baked these moist, fudgy cookies for the first time, my three preschool children went wild over them! But I like them because they're lower in fat and easy to mix and bake. —Maria Groff, Ephrata, Pennsylvania

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Cranberry Slices

Cranberry Slices

The holidays wouldn't be complete without a plateful of homemade cookies to give family and friends. Try these for gifts.—American Dairy Assoc, Stacy Duffy, Chicago, Illinois

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Red Velvet Spritz Cookies

Red Velvet Spritz Cookies

I had never come across a red velvet spritz recipe, so I decided to create one. The hint of cocoa makes these taste like red velvet cake. Add peppermint flavoring for a little extra kick. —Crystal Schlueter, Northglenn, Colorado

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Linzer Heart Cookies

Linzer Heart Cookies

This specialty cookie takes a little extra effort, but the delectable results are well-worth it. I bake the tender jam-filled hearts when I need something fancy to serve for Valentine's Day or other special occasions. —Jane Pearcy, Verona, Wisconsin

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Santa Star CookiesTaste of Home

Santa Star Cookies

Cookie baking can't get any more fun than when you are making—and decorating—these adorable Santa cookies. They are also really good to eat. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Candy Cane SnowballsTaste of Home

Candy Cane Snowballs

I bake dozens of kinds of Christmas cookies to give to family and friends. I came up with this recipe when I had leftover candy canes. We dip the snowballs into a white candy coating, then into crushed peppermint candy. —Debby Anderson, Stockbridge, Georgia

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Raspberry RibbonsTaste of Home

Raspberry Ribbons

I make these attractive, buttery cookies to serve at our remote guest lodge, and all the cooks in the kitchen are addicted to them! —Patsy Wolfenden, Golden, British Columbia

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Christmas Lights CookiesTaste of Home

Christmas Lights Cookies

What better way to brighten chilly winter days than with light-shaped cookies? My classic dough recipe has been a holiday tradition in our family for years. —Carolyn Moseley, Dayton, Ohio

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Pecan Roll-UpsTaste of Home

Pecan Roll-Ups

This recipe is so delicious and is sure to become a favorite of your family. The pecans make them so rich.—Lee B. Roberts, Racine, Wisconsin

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Cranberry Lime Macaroons

Cranberry Lime Macaroons

It wouldn’t be the holidays for my family and friends if I didn’t make these chewy lime-flavored macaroons. I usually make several batches a week during the season..—Alisa Costa, Chatham, New York

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Drizzled Gingerbread BiscottiTaste of Home

Drizzled Gingerbread Biscotti

After stumbling across a community recipe for gingerbread biscotti, I made several batches and tweaked it to our tastes. These became an instant obsession at our house.—Susan Board, Palmer, Alaska

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Scottish ShortbreadTaste of Home

Scottish Shortbread

Scottish settlers first came to this area over 150 years ago. My mother herself was Scottish, and—as with most of my favorite recipes—she passed this shortbread recipe on to me. I make a triple batch of it each year at Christmas, to enjoy and as gifts. —Rose Mabee, Selkirk, Manitoba

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Cherry Kiss CookiesTaste of Home

Cherry Kiss Cookies

Topped with a chocolate kiss, these cherry-flavored cookies look super cute on a dessert tray. Share them with family and friends. —Joy Yurk, Grafton, Wisconsin

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Chocolate Cutout CookiesTaste of Home

Chocolate Cutout Cookies

I love gingerbread cookies, but my grandchildren don't like the ginger flavor. Now I use chocolate and watch them smile as they take that first bite. —Nancy Murphy, Mount Dora, Florida

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Ice Cream KolachkesTaste of Home

Ice Cream Kolachkes

These sweet pastries have Polish and Czech roots and can also be spelled "kolaches." They are usually filled with poppy seeds, nuts, jam or a mashed fruit mixture. The ice cream is a unique twist on traditional kolachkes, and it's simplest to use a square cookie cutter to cut the dough. —Diane Turner, Brunswick, Ohio

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Peanut Butter Spritz FingersTaste of Home

Peanut Butter Spritz Fingers

My family loves this peanut butter fingers recipe because they satisfy the need for chocolate and for something crunchy, sweet and nutty, all in just one bite! —Irma Lowery, Reedsburg, Wisconsin

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Chocolate Macadamia MeltawaysTaste of Home

Chocolate Macadamia Meltaways

I came up with this recipe by accident one day when I wanted to make some cookies. I decided to use some ingredients already in my cupboard, and these were the delicious result. —Barbara Sepcich, Galt, California

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Gingerbread Yule Logs

I was never fond of gingerbread until I rolled it up with Nutella. These logs are a fabulous addition to any cookie platter. —Terri Gilson, Calgary, Alberta

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Candy Cane Blossom CookiesTaste of Home

Candy Cane Blossom Cookies

We like to stir different flavored candy canes into the dough for fun variety. —Joan Cossette, Colbert, Washington

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Mexican Wedding CakesTaste of Home

Mexican Wedding Cakes

As part of a Mexican tradition, I tucked these tender cookies into small gift boxes for the guests at my sister's wedding a few years ago. Most folks gobbled them up before they ever got home! —Sarita Johnston, San Antonio, Texas

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Holiday Cornflake CookiesTaste of Home

Holiday Cornflake Cookies

I can't seem to make enough of these cornflake wreaths around the holidays. The cookies firm up quickly, so you'll need to place the Red Hots right away. —Kathleen Hedger, Fairview Heights, Illinois

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Snowy Mountain CookiesTaste of Home

Snowy Mountain Cookies

I was so excited to bake these with my mom after coming home from studying abroad in Germany. They remind me of the Swabian Alps I could see from my room there. Be careful not to overheat your white chocolate; it’ll lose that attractive shine. —Stephanie Bouley, North Smithfield, Rhode Island

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Dipped Chocolate Logs

Dipped Chocolate Logs

When my sister and I were little, we used to beg my mother and grandmother to make these buttery chocolate cookies during the holidays. Now, as moms ourselves, we get together every year to make Christmas cookies, and the chocolate logs are always on the top of our list. —Deanna Markkos, Western Springs, Illinois

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Folded Hazelnut CookiesTaste of Home

Folded Hazelnut Cookies

We first made these cookies when my boys were small, and they would always end up covered in flour and with Nutella on their faces. Such good memories! —Paula Marchesi, Lenhartsville, Pennsylvania

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Raspberry Pistachio ThumbprintsTaste of Home

Raspberry Pistachio Thumbprints

Thumbprint cookies are a Christmas classic, and I especially like my updated version with pistachios. The rich, buttery bites are not only delicious, but they are also pretty enough to give for gifts—if you manage to share them! —Laura Murphy, Columbus, Mississippi

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Coffee Maple SpritzTaste of Home

Coffee Maple Spritz

I like spritz cookies because they're easier to make than rolled cutouts but I can still be creative with different shapes and sizes. Feel free to substitute vanilla or rum extract for the maple flavoring. —Dierdre Cox, Kansas City, Missouri

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Orange-Cranberry ShortbreadTaste of Home

Orange-Cranberry Shortbread

Holiday cookies should be extra-special, so I created this beautiful, delicious shortbread with cranberries, orange and holiday spices to both serve and give as gifts. Everyone loves them!—Lisa Speer, Palm Beach, Florida

Lisa Kaminski
Lisa is an associate editor at Taste of Home where she gets to embrace her passion for baking. She pours this love of all things sweet (and sometimes savory) into Bakeable, Taste of Home's baking club. At home, you'll find her working on embroidery and other crafts.