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Pour the ‘nog: 11 super-simple recipes for your Christmas cookie exchange

best christmas cookies
Reading Time: 4 minutes

‘Tis the season to eat, drink, and be merry. If you’re not making cookies, you may not feel like it’s Christmas yet. There’s only one problem: For most of us, the holidays are also the most stressful time of the year, where we find ourselves stretching our limits to balance work, fun, and family. Who has time to bake?

11 creative Christmas cookies that are easier than they look

These simplified recipes are ideal for those days when your child’s class party totally slips your mind, or you forget to pick up something for the office cookie exchange. Or maybe you don’t fancy yourself a baker, but you want to try your hand at mixing up a few tasty ingredients this year.

With no more than half a dozen ingredients per recipe, one of these treats will fit the bill for a last-minute Christmas cookie that is fun to prep, fast to bake, and even easier to eat:

1. Almond Joy cookies

best christmas cookies
Mom on Timeout

Sweetened coconut flakes, chocolate chips, and salted almonds, oh my! These salty-sweet cookies will be gone in seconds.

2. Caramel-stuffed snickerdoodles

best christmas cookies
Tablespoon

Cleverly cutting corners with a cookie mix to save time, this recipe brings the beloved snickerdoodle to the next level by hiding a melted caramel square inside.

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3. Cranberry white chocolate cake mix cookies

best christmas cookies
Lovin’ from the Oven

As we learned with the caramel-stuffed snickerdoodles, using a prepared mix isn’t cheating if you’re using it to improve upon a favorite holiday cookie. This tasty treat can also be made “deconstructed” and gifted as a mason jar holiday cookie kit.

4. Easy reindeer sugar cookies

best christmas cookies
One Little Project

Enlist your kids to help decorate these cute goodies — and consider using pre-made refrigerated sugar cookie dough in a pinch.

5. Funfetti shortbread bites

best christmas cookies
Cooking Classy

Funfetti wins all, even amidst the fanfare of Christmas foods. Try these funfetti shortbread bites, cut into squares, when you don’t feel like rolling out dough and cutting Christmas cookies.

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6. Grinch cookies

best christmas cookies
Tasty Kitchen

Green, grinchly cookies are always a hit with the kids. And these treats take only nine minutes to bake.

7. Hot cocoa truffles

best christmas cookies
Living Well Spending Less

Hot cocoa in the cookie form? Yes, please! This genius recipe, made with addicting Hot Cocoa-flavored Chips Ahoy cookies, requires only four ingredients.

8. Lemon fudge

best christmas cookies
Little Dairy on the Prairie

Knowing that this fancy-looking lemon fudge recipe takes only five minutes may be enough to put you in the holiday spirit. Serve this treat to tantalize guests looking for a little zest among the many Christmas chocolates.

9. Nutella cookies

best christmas cookies
Wanna Bite

Like hot cocoa truffles, Nutella as a cookie is almost impossible to resist. Don’t expect a tempting treat made with Nutella and three other ingredients to last long on Christmas morning.

10. Protein peanut butter cups

best christmas cookies
Happy Healthy Mama

Believe it or not, there are healthy, delicious, and easy treats you can sneak in at the dessert table. These high-protein peanut butter cups taste as good as the real thing, but they’re made with unsweetened cocoa powder, maple syrup, and coconut oil.

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11. Vegan German marzipan balls

best christmas cookies
Elephantastic Vegan

Vegans, we haven’t forgotten about you. Described as the “easiest Christmas cookies ever,” these two-ingredient German marzipan balls are yummy, vegan, and gluten-free.

Baking Christmas cookies doesn’t have to be hard, and neither does getting a mortgage. Download our free LoanFly app, and you’ll get instant access to mortgage “as you like it.” Get prequalified in minutes, stay in touch with your loan officer from anywhere, and check in on your loan status while you’re waiting for your cookies to cool.

For educational purposes only. Please contact your qualified professional for specific guidance.

Sources are deemed reliable but not guaranteed.