Christmas Cookie Magic: Creating Beautiful (and Delicious) Gifts

Christmas cookies in a box next to a decorated tree.
Photo Credit: JW Brown Photography

Last year, we decided to take a break from the typical office holiday gifts and get a little creative (and sweet) with regard to gifts for my husband’s colleagues. After all, who needs another mug?

So we went old school and baked Christmas cookies to use as gifts. Once we decided to go in that direction for work-related gifts, we thought we’d extend the baking extravaganza and create cookie assortments for family and friends as well. What’s another couple hundred cookies, anyway?

Christmas cookies in a gift box.
Photo Credit: JW Brown Photography

We had SO much fun. Baking Christmas cookies wasn’t just about the delicious treats; it was a creative and heartfelt gesture, a labor of love that was well received by colleagues, family, and friends alike. As the festive season approaches, there’s no better way to spread joy than by sharing homemade cookies with colleagues and friends.

Here’s how to turn your kitchen into a cookie-making workshop and spread the cheer.

Select Your Favorite Recipes & Grab Supplies

Let’s start with the obvious. Begin by choosing 5-6 of your most cherished cookie recipes. Build the grocery list, add massive amounts of butter, sugar, and flour to the cart, and don’t forget the parchment paper. Get more than you think you need. Our favorite cookie recipes include Iced Shortbread Thumbprints, Snickerdoodles, Monster Cookies, Andes Mint Cookies, and Classic Sugar Cookies (with icing and holiday sprinkles!).

Star-shaped sugar cookies.
Photo Credit: JW Brown Photography

Don’t Forget the Presentation

Apart from the ingredients for the cookies, ensure you have a variety of boxes, ribbons, and other decorative items ready. Presentation matters! Adorn your cookies in festive packaging—think colorful ribbons, cute boxes, or personalized tags. We grabbed these from Amazon, along with some dollar store bells and sprigs of holly from our own front yard. Then we tied them all up with string. These touches added a personal and charming element to our homemade goodies, making them look extra “gift-worthy.”

Gift box of cookies.
Photo Credit: JW Brown Photography

Nail the Timing

Think about when you’ll want to deliver the cookies, then work backward to plan your baking days. You would hate to bring a load of cookies into an office when your colleagues have already left for the year, so be thoughtful about the best day to drop them off.

If the office holiday party is on a Tuesday, you’ll want to clear the Sunday and Monday before the baking is done and deliver fresh treats on a day your colleagues will be there in person. If you plan to drive around and deliver cookies on a Friday evening when your family is available, try to set aside the Wednesday and Thursday before baking. No one wants a stale cookie!

Organizing holiday cookies into a gift.
Photo Credit: JW Brown Photography

Involve the Whole Family

At our house, it’s very much a group effort, and every spare surface, mixing bowl, cookie sheet, and family member is put to good use. We blast music, mix, stir, scoop, and decorate as a group. And, of course, we enjoy the taste testing! Our kids (elementary and middle school) are old enough to help bake, but they also helped us with grocery lists, dishes, packaging, and (the most fun part) delivery! We drove around our town last year, and at each friend’s house, the kids jumped out and rang the door.

Delivering holiday cookies as gifts.
Photo Credit: JW Brown Photography

We LOVED making Christmas cookies last year, as labor-intensive as they are! It was a great way for our family of five to connect over a shared project and a creative and special way to provide gifts for family, friends, and colleagues alike. If you don’t care to bake with your family, you could invite a friend and join forces, making it a party. Either way, embracing (or re-embrace) this classic tradition can be really fun.


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