Easy Good Recipe - Christmas Cookies from our neighbor Mrs. Tanner

Christmas Cookie Recipe


This Christmas Cookie Recipe came from our next door neighbor many years ago and has been utilized through the years with great success.

My Dad was a Realtor and also a home builder in McAllen, Texas. My mother helped him in his Real Estate office and also assisted my Dad in his home building business.

She was the one he could count upon to choose all the colors from the brick on the outside of the houses to the tiles, carpeting, wallpapers and any and all color choices inside the spec homes that he would have constructed and put on the market for sale.

They were a great pair...both as parents to me and my younger brothers...and also as partners in business.


Assorted Homemade Christmas Cookies

Assorted homemade Christmas cookies ready for giving as gifts.
Assorted homemade Christmas cookies ready for giving as gifts. | Source

Photos of my parents while living in McAllen, Texas

My Dad
My Dad | Source
My Mother
My Mother | Source

Moving expertise

Often during their first and only marriage that lasted until my Dad's death they moved frequently in McAllen. Why?


If a home built on speculation sat there for a while unsold, my mother was willing to put the homestead in which they lived on the market for sale. They would then move into the one that had not sold as quickly as they had hoped.


My father generally built three or more homes at a time all while operating his Realty company. Naturally the houses in which they resided showed well due to the window treatments, landscaping and the like. Also some people can better envision what a dwelling looks like with furniture in it verses looking at empty rooms.


The end result was very frequent in-town moves and my parents and we kids who still lived at home as well as some of their helpful friends became experts at moving. "Anything to get out of Spring Cleaning!" was one joke regarding the frequent moves. Another one was referring to not having to empty the ashtrays. Both of my parents smoked cigarettes at the time and both later gave it up.


We obviously liked some of the floor-plans of the houses better than others but one thing was certain. If it was built by my Dad...it was built to last! My Dad always put much more into the guts of the habitation...the things not readily seen by home buyers...and therefore did not make near the percentage of profit as many of the others who skimped on things...but he was proud of each and every residence and his reputation grew as time passed. Anyone purchasing one of his domiciles knew that they were getting something special.


He grew up in a home that his Dad had built and my father was also incidentally born in that abode. My grandmother lived there until her later years when she decided to scale back and not have to maintain a two story house with basement on the lake in Okauchee, Wisconsin. She still lived on a lake...just a different one in her condo that she purchased.

Location of McAllen, Texas

A markerMcAllen, Texas -
McAllen, TX, USA
[get directions]

So what does this have to do with a Christmas cookie recipe?


When my maternal grandmother died my Dad had a home specially constructed to house not only us, but my grandfather as well. We lived together for several years that way until many of his friends were settling into a retirement area limited to seniors and he decided that he would like to join them.

While living in that home (I was a teenager at the time) we became friends with our next door neighbors. The husband had worked in Mexico for some of his career and he and his wife had retired in McAllen.


While in Mexico they had collected some prized paintings which graced the walls in their home. One particular artist specialized in painting children with big soulful eyes and an occasional tear or two springing from their eyes.


When I painted the face of a Mexican girl wearing a sombrero, Mrs. Tanner admired it and I offered it to her. I was very proud when she hung it in their house. After gifting her with that painting she invited my mother and me over one day to show us where she had decided to hang it.


It was the time of year around Christmas and she had some Christmas cookies laid out on a platter and invited us to help ourselves to some of them. One in particular was delicious and I asked for the recipe. I am happy to be able to share it with you.

Picture of Mrs. Tanner

The lady from whom I got this recipe.
The lady from whom I got this recipe. | Source

The recipe...


Ingredients and Instructions:

Cream: 1 cup butter, 2 eggs & 1 1/2 cups brown sugar together

Add: 2 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon baking soda & 1 teaspoon cinnamon

Mix: 1 1/2 cups chopped nuts, 7 ounces of chopped dates, 1/2 cup dried cherries (or other fruit), 1/2 cup dried pineapple & 1/2 cup flour (mixed with the dried fruit and nuts)

Add the nut and dried fruit mixture to the creamed mixture and blend well. Drop by teaspoons onto greased cookie sheets and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 12 minutes.

Decorate if desired with colored sugar before baking.

Note...I just made some of these and have them readied in the freezer for Christmas gift giving. They will be combined with other favorites. Instead of the dried cherries this time I substituted dried cranberries and according to my official tasters...my mother and husband...they are delicious.

If you have a convection oven, it only takes about 9 minutes to bake these Christmas cookies.

Please let me know if you like this recipe of Christmas Cookies that originally came from our good next door neighbor. Enjoy!


5 stars from 3 ratings of Christmas Cookies Recipe

Rudolf's Christmas Cookies

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Comments are welcomed. 61 comments

Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 22 months ago from Houston, Texas Author

Hi Lady Guinevere,

So glad you liked the background history of my family and how I acquired this good recipe.


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 22 months ago from Houston, Texas Author

Hi Patricia,

When I make many batches of cookies I generally freeze them and thaw them when needed. It works well for most cookies including these. Your sister's recipe sounds similar. Glad that you have enjoyed hers in the past and thanks for your comment and pin. Sending best wishes your way!


Lady Guinevere profile image

Lady Guinevere 22 months ago from West Virginia

That was neat how you put your heritage in with your cookie recipes. These sound very yummy and thanks for writing this hub to share.


pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 22 months ago from sunny Florida

Peggy, I can smell these baking ....My sister used to bake some fruit and nut filled cookies years ago. They were tender and so full of flavor. She would bake many other kinds as well, store them in airtight containers, in the pantry which was not heated...The flavors grew with each passing day but they did not last long as well all found many reasons to go and sneak a few of them on a daily basis

I am bookmarking and sharing this Peggy. Pinning


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 22 months ago from Houston, Texas Author

Hi Prasetio,

So glad you like the sound of this recipe. Hope you give it a try!


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