12 timelessly lovely vintage Christmas cookie recipes (2024)

'Twas three mornings before Christmas and all through the house, every creature was actually stirring - a mixing bowl, that is. That's right, my lovelies, Christmas is just half a week away and I'm happily up to my eyebrows in holiday feast preparations. I don't mind in the least. Yes, it's taxing on me from a health standpoint, but this whole chunk of the year is, and it's a small price to pay to get to enjoy the magic, wonder and togetherness of Christmastime with my darling husband and our loved ones.

Like many families, cookies and bars have always been an integral part of our holiday season feast. Growing up, my mom often baked upwards of ten or more different types of Christmas cookies, bars and similar goodies for our family, as well as to take some of to when we went places such as my grandparent's house or to give as gifts to treasured neighbours.

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Of course our family isn't alone in this delicious tradition by any means. Christmas baking has been a part of the season since pretty much the very get-go, and most of us who celebrate on December 25th enjoy indulging in at least one special treat on the big day - which often means reaching for the plate of cookies.

Over the years here, I've posted a handful of terrific vintage Christmas cookie recipes, some of which hail from my own family's recipe book, whereas others were online finds that really caught my eye. These include:

-Cherry Nut Shortbread Cookies


Cherry Snowball Cookies


Christmas Trees


Chocolate Mint Brownies


Gingerbread Men


Swedish Crisps

Today - always a day devoted largely to Christmas baking at my house - I wanted to share 12 more really charming looking vintage Christmas cookie recipes from the 1940s and 50s (one each to represent the twelve days of Christmas), all of which I've tucked away over the past year as I've come across them.

Any one of the following recipes could be altered a bit here or there, as desired, but I'll leave it up to you and your imagination, if you feel inclined to alter them. I think they each sound mighty yummy just as they are right now! :)

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12 timelessly lovely vintage Christmas cookie recipes (6)

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All of my holiday baking is gluten and egg-free (as well as devoid of other ingredients that I'm not able to eat due to medical reasons), and this has meant the rejigging of most of my favourite recipes, as well as those I've found online, over the years. Happily however, about 90% of my experiments have turned out well (Ener-G egg replacer is a huge help you also need to forgo the real deal in any kind of baking), and my repertoire of tasty holiday desserts continues to grow with each passing Christmas season.

My very favourites from my family's classic recipes will always be the Mint Chocolate Brownies and Cherry Snowballs mentioned above, but I whip up several others most years as well, and am always game to try any new recipe that I can safely eat.

There's a reason why we leave cookies and milk out for Santa. These homemade, fantastic little treats are an integral part of the holiday season for most people and it's hard to image December without them ready and waiting, whenever the craving for something sugary hits, to give as gifts, and to sneak down and enjoy late at night in the beautiful glow of the Christmas tree. Each one is a special gift for your taste buds, a nostalgic reminder of holidays past, traditions handed down in the kitchen, and a symbol of the inherent sweetness of this amazing season.

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I hope that you find a new vintage Christmas cookie recipe or two (or 12!) to try amongst those listed here today that sparks your interest, and who knows, perhaps becomes an instant classic at your house. Have fun baking and enjoying these awesome early winter days that lead up to the 25th, Christmas cookies never far from hand throughout the whole majestic season.

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12 timelessly lovely vintage Christmas cookie recipes (2024)


What is the least popular Christmas cookie? ›

On the naughty list of cookies, Americans gave the lowest win records to anise cookies, which only won 29% of its matchups.

How long before Christmas should you make Christmas cookies? ›

As for the cookies—made for cookie swaps, church potlucks, household snacking, and Santa's plate—there is one little cheat: make now, freeze for later. You'll find that most of your favorite Christmas cookie recipes can be made anywhere from a month to six months before the 25th of December.

What was the first Christmas cookie? ›

History. Modern Christmas cookies can trace their history to recipes from Medieval Europe biscuits, when many modern ingredients such as cinnamon, ginger, black pepper, almonds and dried fruit were introduced into the west.

What is the 1 cookie in the world? ›

Oreo is the best-selling cookie in the world. It is now sold in over 100 countries. Oreo was first produced in 1912 by the National Biscuit Company, now known as Na-Bis-Co.

What is the #1 cookie in the United States? ›

The chocolate chip cookie is far and away America's favorite cookie This should come as no surprise to anyone who enjoys the tasty treat. More than 53% of American adults prefer the cookies over the next most popular kind, peanut butter.

What is the most eaten cookie in the world? ›

Fun Facts News: What is the best-selling cookie in the world? Oreo cookies. Since the brand's inception in 1912, more than 450 billion Oreo cookies have been sold around the world, and are now available in more than 100 countries.

Which Christmas cookies last the longest? ›

Shortbread cookies and spritz cookies are real holiday troopers, lasting a bit longer than the rest. These buttery and crumbly cookies are a great option for a holiday cookie. Shortbread is known for its rich flavor, while spritz cookies are often made with a cookie press.

What is Santa Claus's favorite cookie? ›

Chocolate Chip cookies

You can never go wrong with these classic, delicious cookies. Santa himself lists these as his favorites, and he prefers them soft and gooey with lots of chocolate chips. If you decide to leave these out for him, make sure there's a glass of cold milk nearby!

Which cookies last the longest? ›

Dry cookies, like shortbread cookies, gingersnaps, and Danish butter cookies, will stay fresher for longer because they have very little moisture. Dry cookies become stale when they suck up moisture from the air - causing them to become soft and lose their snap.

Can you leave Christmas cookies out overnight? ›

Cookies left out overnight are at risk of microbial contamination, especially if they contain perishable ingredients like eggs or dairy. Harmful bacteria, such as Salmonella, can multiply rapidly in these conditions, potentially causing foodborne illness if consumed.

Why are my Christmas cookies hard? ›

Hard cookies: you are over mixing, baking too long, baking at too high a temperature, or some combination of these. Cakey cookies: not enough brown sugar, too much or too little egg, too much flour, maybe you used baking powder instead of baking soda?

What Hallmark movie was the cookie recipe stolen? ›

Annie faces her first obstacle as CEO of Cooper's Cookies when grandma's secret recipe is stolen. While investigating the theft, she works with local baker Sam to recreate the beloved recipe.

What is the cookie in White Christmas? ›

In "White Christmas," tech was used in a harrowing manner, firstly forging a system of digital enslavement. It came with Jon Hamm's Matt who worked with a device called the Cookie. This egg stored copies of people's minds, which Matt would then torture by giving them a "human form" inside a digital construct.

What cookie was not invented until 1938? ›

It wasn't until very recently, around 1938, that chocolate chip cookies were first invented. Unlike a lot of other things, the chocolate chip cookie was not invented by accident. During the 1930s, a chef named Ruth Graves Wakefield decided to give something different to her customers.

What is the least favorite Girl Scout cookie? ›


These cookies lack everything: flavor, looks, sweetness, texture, ect. They're even boring to look at. The cookie is described by The Girl Scouts of the USA as “rich, buttery cookies with sweet, crunchy toffee bits”, however I disagree with their description.

What is Santa's second favorite cookie? ›

2. Holiday Candy Cookie Bites – Number two on the list of Santa's favorite cookies is Holiday Candy Cookie Bites, which is a holiday version of the year-round favorite, Chocolate Chip Cookies. Instead of traditional chocolate chips, these cookies are studded with red and green candies and white baking chips.

What is the most Googled Christmas cookie? ›

Italian Christmas Cookies grow as top cookie

Zoom in: Italian Christmas Cookies were the top cookie in 13 states, more than double the six states from 2022, Google Trends curator Katie Seaton told Axios. Seaton said the Italian cookies dominated the East Coast both this year and last year.

What cookie does Santa prefer? ›

Chocolate Chip cookies

You can never go wrong with these classic, delicious cookies. Santa himself lists these as his favorites, and he prefers them soft and gooey with lots of chocolate chips. If you decide to leave these out for him, make sure there's a glass of cold milk nearby!

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