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A Definitive Ranking of the 5 Best Holiday Cookies

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

When I think of the holiday season, one of the first things that comes to mind is baking cookies. Now that Thanksgiving is over, it’s time to shift gears towards the winter holidays. Personally, after living in a college dorm without a kitchen for a semester, I’m super excited to get back to baking. Here are some of my favorite cookies that I always bake around the holidays. 

Classic Chocolate Chip Cookie

You can’t go wrong with a chocolate chip cookie. They are tasty, easy to make, and a staple of any cookie jar. I typically follow the recipe on the back of the chocolate chip package, but I always add a little extra salt and vanilla extract –– it really enhances the chocolate flavor. Once you nail the classic version, you can try adding sprinkles, different types of chocolate, and different flavors to your batter to create variations. These were the first cookies that I learned to bake on my own, and they are still my favorite to make.

Molasses Cookie

Molasses cookies are so underrated. They are slightly different from the typical gingerbread cookie, and have a really nice, rich flavor. What’s fun about them is that, depending on the recipe, they can bake differently. With one recipe, you might get a crisp, thin cookie, and with another, you end up with something soft and chewy. After experimenting, you can find what you prefer and keep making them that way for years to come. If you haven’t tried these before, make them this holiday season!

Sugar Cookie

Another classic on the list, sugar cookies are super fun to make because you can add all sorts of decorations to them. Depending on your preference, you can ice them with royal icing, bedazzle them with sprinkles, or leave them plain. I’ve flavored them with everything from vanilla to lemon, so you really can customize these to your liking.

Magic Bar Cookies

Magic bar cookies are a little less well known. My family has our own special recipe, but there are plenty online that are similar. The layers of graham crackers, coconut, condensed milk, and chocolate chips create gooey deliciousness, making them my favorite cookies to eat every year. What’s nice about these is that they don’t need to be rolled out or shaped like some others on the list. Instead, they bake almost like brownies. They’re seriously amazing, and I highly recommend trying them.

Lemon Butter Cookies

These were a new find for me last year, but they’ve quickly become a staple treat. Butter cookies alone are delicious, but the addition of the citrus flavor makes them irresistible. They are soft and melt in your mouth. My one tip is that instead of using lemon zest, try using clementine zest. I know it sounds kind of odd, but it completely changes and enhances the flavor.

Baking and sharing your creations is an amazing way to spread holiday cheer! Have fun with it and experiment––you never know what amazing treats you’ll whip up!


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Sarah is a freshman at Boston University studying Film and Television in the College of Communication. She is originally from just outside Baltimore, Maryland. She enjoys working on craft projects and watching TV, and she is so excited to be writing for Her Campus BU!
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