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Homemade Cookie Dough Recipes: Baking Cookies for the Holidays -- And for Everyday!

Updated on September 25, 2014

Baking Christmas Cookies: A Family Tradition

When we were growing up, coming home from school in early December often meant walking into a kitchen filled with the wonderful aroma of freshly baked cookies. My mom spent the last couple of weeks before Christmas baking many different types of cookies, and then she carefully stored each variety in an airtight tin. She collected various decorator tins just for this purpose, mostly round in shape, which she stacked up in a corner of our dining room. Once the cookies were placed safely in their little tin storage bin, it was "Hands off!" until Christmas Eve.

One of the best parts of our annual holiday baking ritual was The Cookie Testing. As each batch was cooling, Mom invited us to be her Official Cookie Testers. Armed with a glass of cold milk and a napkin to catch any wayward crumbs, Mom gave two sample cookies to each of us, still warm off the cooling rack for us to taste test before the rest of cookies were locked away in a storage tin until the holidays. I still remember sitting around the kitchen table with my brother and sister, dunking the warm homemade cookies into a glass of milk and wondering which of her favorite homemade cookie recipes Mom would bake next.

Mom kept all of her favorite homemade cookie recipes on 3x5 index cards, neatly handwritten and carefully arranged in a little porcelain box with a wooden lid. Mom is gone now, but we carry the Holiday Baking Traditions forward today with our own family of Cookie Testers. And I hope that my kids will carry the homemade cookie baking tradition forward when it's time for them to prepare for the holidays with their own families.

To be truthful, we do not know the origins of all of Mom's Favorite Homemade Cookie Recipes, but we clearly understand their meanings: share the memories as you create your own holiday traditions for you and your family.

Happy Holidays, and Peace for us all.

Grandmom's Peanut Butter Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup peanut butter (we like super chunky)
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups of flour
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, stir the baking soda into the flour.
  2. In a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar and brown sugars until smooth and fluffy. Add the eggs one at time, fully incorporating the first before adding the second. Then, add the peanut butter and mix thoroughly.
  3. Add the flour mixture a little at a time, allowing the flour to combine into the cookie dough before adding more.
  4. Roll the cookie dough into small balls, about an inch in diameter. Lay out the cookie dough balls onto a silicone mat covered baking sheet, and press flat with the tines of a fork. Turn the cookie sheet 90 degrees, and press the fork into the flattened cookies again to create a cross-patch pattern. Dipping the fork into a glass of water between cookies will help to prevent the cookie dough from sticking to the tines.
  5. Bake the peanut butter cookies for 10 to 12 minutes in a 375 degree oven.
  6. For a little variety, melt chocolate chips over a double boiler or in a microwave. Dip a peanut butter cookie about halfway into the melted chocolate, and then allow the chocolate-coated cookie to cool on parchment page or a silicon mat.
Cast your vote for Grandmom's Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe

Essential Baking Equipment: Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat

The Perfect Baking Mat for Making Cookies: Used daily by professionals, these silicon baking mats are great for baking cookies as well as preparing and heating up other foods.

Silpat AE420295-07 Premium Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat, Half Sheet Size, 11-5/8" x 16-1/2"
Silpat AE420295-07 Premium Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat, Half Sheet Size, 11-5/8" x 16-1/2"

The silicone baking mat makes any baking sheet nonstick: simply place the baking mat on top of a baking sheet --no greasing necessary. The silicon mats are also easy to clean--simply wipe them off using hot water and dish soap. Store them by either rolling them up or keeping them flat. Silpat baking mats replace parchment paper, and are heat-resistant up to 480 degrees F. The baking mats are made in France.

 

M&M Cookies

M&M Cookie Recipe

This is one of our favorite Christmas cookie recipes, and we make two batches every year.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups of flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups of M&M Chocolate Candies

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, stir the baking soda and salt into the flour.
  2. In a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar and brown sugars until smooth and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and then add the eggs one at time, fully incorporating the first before adding the second.
  3. Add the flour mixture a little at a time, incorporating the flour into the dough before adding more flour to the mixing bowl.
  4. Stir about 1 cup of the M&M candies into the cookie dough, using a strong handled spatula or wooden spoon and taking care not to crack the candy shells.
  5. Spoon the cookie dough onto a baking sheet, preferably covered with a non-stick silicone baking mat. To decorate the cookies, press a few more M&M candies into the top surface of the cookies before placing the cookies into the oven.
  6. Bake the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes in a 375 degree oven.

Life Is Short. Eat Cookies!

Chocolate Kiss Surprise Cookies

Chocolate Kiss Surprise Cookie Recipe

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups of flour
  • 1/4 cocoa powder
  • 1 cup pecans (chopped fine)
  • 1 bag of Hershey's Kisses
  • Powdered sugar (optional)

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, stir the cocoa powder into the flour.
  2. In a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until smooth and fluffy. Add the eggs one at time, fully incorporating the first before adding the second.
  3. Add the flour mixture a little at a time, incorporating the flour into the dough before adding more flour to the mixing bowl.
  4. Move the mixing bowl of cookie dough into the refrigerator to chill (about an hour).
  5. Unwrap the Hershey's Kiss candies.
  6. Form a spoonful of chilled cookie dough around an unwrapped Hershey's Kiss candy, using just enough cookie dough to completely cover the candy. Roll the cookie dough into a little ball.
  7. Lay out the cookie dough balls onto a baking sheet, preferably covered with a non-stick silicone baking mat. . Bake in a 375 degree oven for 10 to 12 minutes.
  8. When fully cooled, roll the Chocolate Kiss Surprise cookies into the powder sugar.

A Balanced Diet Is A Cookie In Each Hand

Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe - The Original Nestle Toll House Recipe

Mom had this recipe in her recipe file box. In all of those years growing up, we never realized that her famous chocolate chip recipe actually came from the back of a little yellow package. But these cookies are so great and such a part of our family baking tradition, that I'm including the cookie recipe here. Thank you, Nestle.

Ingredients

  • 2 1/4 cups of flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup butter softened (2 sticks)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 - 12oz package of Nestle Semi-Sweet Chocolate Morsels

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, stir the baking soda and salt into the flour.
  2. In a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until smooth and fluffy. Add the and then add the eggs one at time, fully incorporating the first before adding the second.
  3. Add the flour mixture a little at a time, incorporating the flour into the dough before adding more flour to the mixing bowl.
  4. Stir in the chocolate morsels into the cookie dough, using a strong handled spatula or wooden spoon.
  5. Spoon the cookie dough onto a baking sheet, preferably covered with a non-stick silicone baking mat. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes in a 375 degree oven.

Crispy Oatmeal Cookies

Crispy Oatmeal Cookie Recipe

  • 3 sticks of unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups of old-fashion rolled oats (do not use instant oats)
  • 1 1/2 cups of flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 1/2 tsp. baking soda

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, stir the oats, baking soda and salt into the flour.
  2. In a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract until smooth and fluffy. Add the egg and mix well.
  3. Add the oat and flour mixture a little at a time, with the mixer on low speed. Mix just enough to combine the ingredients into the cookie dough.
  4. Spoon the oatmeal cookie dough onto a baking sheet, preferably covered with a non-stick silicone baking mat. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in a 350 degree oven, until browned and crispy around the edges.
  5. Make each of the oatmeal cookies small -- they spread!

Peanut Butter Blossoms

Peanut Butter Blossom Recipe

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbsp. milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups of flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 bag of Hershey's Kisses

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, stir the baking soda and salt into the flour.
  2. In a stand mixer, cream the butter, peanut butter, sugar, brown sugar, milk and vanilla extract until smooth and fluffy. Add the egg and mix to combine.
  3. Add the flour mixture a little at a time, incorporating the flour into the dough before adding more flour to the mixing bowl.
  4. Move the mixing bowl of cookie dough into the refrigerator to chill (about 5 minutes). Then, roll the cookie dough into little balls, about 1" in diameter. Roll the cookie dough balls in sugar to coat the outside, all of the way around.
  5. Place the cookie dough balls onto a baking sheet, preferably covered with a non-stick silicone baking mat. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes in a 375 degree oven.
  6. Unwrap the Hershey's Kiss candies.
  7. As soon as the cookies are removed from the oven, press a Hershey's Kiss candy into each of the cookie balls. The cookies will flatten slightly, and will "cup" around the base of the Hershey's Kiss candy.
  8. After pressing the chocolate candy into the warm cookie, do not touch the Hershey's Kiss! The candy will begin to melt but if it is left untouched, the chocolate will retain it's Kiss shape. Carefully move the cookies with a spatula to a wire rack to cool.

Your kids will never remember the hours your spent putting bread on the table.

But they will remember the time your spent with them baking cookies.

Tips for Baking Homemade Cookie Recipes

  • Read the recipe all of the way through, and gather all of your ingredients and supplies before beginning to make a batch of cookies.
  • Pre-heat your oven at least 10 to 15 minutes before placing any cookies into the heat. This allows your oven to reach full temperature before beginning to bake.
  • Use fresh, quality ingredients and carefully measure the quantities. Unless the recipe states differently, allow all of the ingredients to acclimate to room temperature before mixing up a batch of cookie dough.
  • Butter should be at room temperature to cream properly with the sugars. Remove the butter from the frig about an hour before beginning to bake.
  • If using salted butter rather than the unsalted type, reduce the amount of salt in the recipe by half.
  • Make all of the cookies in a batch as close to the same size as possible to promote even baking, and leave enough room between the unbaked cookies to give them room to spread. About a 2" spread between cookies is a good rule for most cookies.
  • If baking two sheets of cookies together in the oven at the same time, switch and rotate the racks halfway through the baking time. Move the top sheet to the lower rack, and rotate the baking trays for even baking.
  • Allow the baking sheets to cool completely between baking batches of cookies. If placed on warm baking sheets, the cookie dough will begin to melt and spread.
  • After baking, remove the cookies from the baking sheet with a spatula and move the cookies to a wire cooling rack. Cookies left on a hot baking tray will continue to cook, and become more difficult to remove as they cool.
  • When fully cooled, store the cookies in airtight containers.

The Ultimate Cookie Expert

Do You Bake Homemade Cookie Recipes for the Holidays?

Do You Bake Homemade Cookie Recipes for the Holidays?

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Every Cookie Baker Needs a Good Mixer - KitchenAid Ultra Power Stand Mixer

Great performance and a variety of attachments makes this a flexible and quality mixer that delivers years of reliable service.


KitchenAid 4-1/2-Quart Ultra Power Stand Mixer, Empire Red
KitchenAid 4-1/2-Quart Ultra Power Stand Mixer, Empire Red

The tilt-head feature and generous 4-1/2-quart capacity make the KitchenAid Stand Mixer the ultimate in user-friendly design. Features 10 speeds and KitchenAid's unique planetary mixing action, driven by a powerful 300-watt motor. Rugged all-metal construction ensures long life and quiet operation, and rubber feet anchor it securely while in use. Th KitchenAid Ultra Power Stand Mixe has a 4-1/2-quart stainless steel bowl.

 

Bite Off More Than You Can Chew!

Which Homemade Cookie Recipe Is Your Favorite?

Which Homemade Cookie Recipe Is Your Favorite?

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Tell Us About Your Favorite Homemade Cookie Recipes

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    • chezchazz profile image

      Chazz 5 years ago from New York

      Great recipes. I'm sitting here with some homemade Christmas cookies and you still made me want my own Nana's pizzelles more than anything. I'm saving your recipe to try making them myself - maybe for New Year's. Blessed and featured on Still Wing-ing it on Squidoo. Have a wonderful Christmas!

    • Margaret Schindel profile image

      Margaret Schindel 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      I love making our own family's favorite Christmas cookie recipes, and yours sound delicious. Blessed!

    • Lady Lorelei profile image

      Lorelei Cohen 5 years ago from Canada

      I actually have a note from my grandson sitting on my desk right now. It reads, "the penot butr cukes". He put the note there so I would not forget to make him peanut butter cookies lol. You could say that cookies are that wonderful item that just oozes out love when somebody that loves you makes em'.

    • Deadicated LM profile image

      Deadicated LM 6 years ago

      Your Welcome, thanks for having me over :)

    • profile image

      ccorrig 6 years ago

      A very comprehensive recipe lens! I didn't expect to see so many recipes on one lens. Appreciate the tips.

    • LaraineRoses profile image

      Laraine Sims 6 years ago from Lake Country, B.C.

      I'm visit others who finished the cookie quest. I love cookies and this reads like a very good recipe. Blessings.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      What, no Aunt Joanne's famous gingerbread cookies this year...you tantalize us to return! My Mom still has that 3x5" recipe box...they store a lot of delicious memories and I thank you for sharing yours hear along with you're always excellent tips. I have brought the perfect, little known ingredient for the perfect cookies...mixing in some secret angel dust.....

    • KimGiancaterino profile image

      KimGiancaterino 6 years ago

      Thanks for sharing your holiday cookie recipes. It's almost time to start baking. Merry Christmas to you.

    • sarahrk lm profile image

      sarahrk lm 6 years ago

      I will definitely try peanut butter cookies and crispy oatmeal. I love them both, I may add these to my baking routine.

    • lbrummer profile image

      Loraine Brummer 6 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      Nice lens and great looking cookies.

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