Not that you need an excuse to eat sweets any day of the year, but Dec. 4 is National Cookie Day, and I am here for it. The most obvious (and delicious) way to celebrate is by baking, which may get you searching for some unique cookie recipes. Because who says snickerdoodles are where cookie innovation has to end?
Every year, National Cookie Day reminds bakers around the country to preheat their ovens and enjoy some holiday baking. It's the perfect day to pop a few dozen dough balls onto their cookie sheets and prep for upcoming potlucks, cookie exchanges, and get-togethers. It's also a great day to head out in search of free goodies. Nationwide chains like Great American Cookie Company and Mrs. Fields are giving out free cookies with a small purchase or mobile app signup. Others, like Insomnia Cookies, are giving them away, no questions asked. In any case, it's worth a drive to your local mall's food court to see what your cookie dealer is offering.
Basic chocolate chip is a classic, of course, but these cookie recipes are living in 2030. Not only do they combine interesting flavors and multiple desserts into one handheld cookie, but they'll be fan favorites during the holidays and throughout the New Year.
1. Everything Cookies
If you can't decide what kind of cookies to make, don't! That's why everything cookies exist from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen. They take good old chocolate chip cookies to an entirely new level by layering on caramel, pretzels, marshmallows, and more.
2. Red Velvet & Cheesecake Thumbprint Cookies
If you mention these red velvet and cheesecake thumbprint cookies from DIY Candy around anyone, they'll expect you to take a batch. With a name like that, who could resist? Make them extra festive with holiday sprinkles, and prepare to lose them all to the office cookie exchange.
3. Cranberry Walnut Cookies With White Chocolate Chips
If you like your cookies a little less sweet-stacked, you may prefer a more subdued holiday cookie. The walnuts, cranberries, and white chocolate chips in this cookie recipe from DIY Candy are all yummy seasonal ingredients without being over the top. Plus, a little crunch from some walnuts never hurt.
4. Chocolate Candied Ginger Biscotti
Yes, biscotti are cookies too! Are you having guests over for the holidays? Homemade biscotti from Pastry Affair are a great accompaniment to evening tea, morning coffee, or anytime-of-day-because-it's-freezing hot chocolate. These are a little more unique than typical biscotti thanks to the candied ginger flavor.
5. Cherry Lemon Rosemary Shortbread Cookies
Chances are you have some fresh rosemary laying around after Thanksgiving, and it need not go to waste. Rosemary is the key ingredient in these cookies from Willowbird Baking, and combined with sweet and tart fruits, it makes possibly the most interesting shortbread cookies ever. Drizzle with white chocolate for some added sweetness and voila.
6. Pumpkin Pecan Polvorones
Mexican wedding cookies are powdery, sweet little delights, and they're excellent for passing around the table with espresso after a filling holiday meal. This pumpkin version from Cookie and Kate includes everyone's favorite holiday flavor, along with some pecans, too. It's a seasonal twist on a traditional treat your guests are sure to love.
7. Peppermint Bark Fudge Cookies
Chocolate and mint is just one of those flavor combos that never goes out of style. In any case, if your family loves candy cane everything this time of year, these fudgy cookies with a peppermint dusting from Your Cup of Cake is the perfect treat for them. If you're feeling nice, maybe save a few for Santa. Maybe.
8. Funfetti HiHat Cookies
Um, hello cutest cookies ever! These Funfetti cookies from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen are made from the beloved boxed cake mix, then piled high with frosting. This recipe resembles an ice cream sundae, making them a non-melting alternative for summer barbecues or theme parties.
9. Black Forest Cheesecake Cookies
Have you ever looked at something and could just tell it's a sin? That's how good these Black Forest cheesecake cookies from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen look. They're chocolately, cheesecake-y, topped with cherries, and surprisingly easy to make.
10. Fault Line Cookies
The earth will shake as cookie lovers in your office stampede toward the potluck table to grab one of your fault line cookies from The Simple Sweet Life before they're all gone. This recipe calls for standard sugar cookies and royal icing, but the colors and cookie cutter shapes are totally up to you. Deck them out however you like, but whatever you choose, you'll see them on all your coworkers' IG stories later.
11. Pecan Pie Cookies
Still holding onto some pecans from pie-making around Turkey Day? These pecan pie cookies from My Heart Beets will get them out of your pantry and put them to good use. More good news: they're paleo, and only need three ingredients.
12. Pimento Cheese Cookies
If you're looking for unique cookies you've never tried before, pimento cheese cookies from Willowbird Baking should do the trick. They're filled with a yummy mixture of strawberry and apple jelly, and with the savory flavors of the cheese and pecans, this cookie is sure to be remembered for years to come.