All-Star Holiday Cookie Recipes

Your favorite chefs from Cooking Channel shows present and past created unique holiday cookie recipes for you to rock the swap, all sweet season long.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Emmer Schmidt

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2013, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Giada de Laurentiis ©2012, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Tara Donne ©Tara Donne

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Tara Donne ©Tara Donne

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Kathryn Cooper

©2012, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

Photo By: Tara Donne ©Tara Donne

Photo By: Giada de Laurentiis ©2012, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved.

White Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

If you crushed up Christmastime and baked it into –– and sprinkled it on top of –– a cookie, this would be it. G. Garvin combines snow-white white chocolate chips and crushed peppermint candies in these uber-soft cookies, then decorates them with a flurry of extra candy for a festive red-and-white snow.

Get the Recipe: White Chocolate Peppermint Cookies

Spiced Ginger Rum Balls

Chrissy Teigen's colored-sugar-flecked chocolate balls are as spicy as she is sassy, and with 1/4 cup of dark rum, they're delightfully boozy –– perfect for holiday parties.

Get the Recipe: Spiced Ginger Rum Balls

S'Mores Cookies

Chuck Hughes suggests surprising Santa –– and your cookie benefactors –– with a wintry one-bite take on the s'more. The thin, crunchy graham rounds are topped with gooey chocolate ganache and a spiraling pillow of browned marshmallow.

Get the Recipe: S'Mores Cookies

Rainbow Cookies    

These colorful confections are believed to have originated in the early 1900s, created by Italian immigrant communities in the United States in homage to the Italian flag. Debi Mazar and Gabriele Corcos' chocolate-covered almond sponge cake cookies with cherry and apricot preserves nail the classic layered creations on their Old World-New York head.

Get the Recipe: Rainbow Cookies

Almond Butter Shortbread Cookies "Mandelmusslor"

In her shortbread recipe, Kelsey Nixon substitutes almond extract for the usual vanilla flavoring and adds ground almonds to the dough, giving the classic holiday cookies the flavor of Mandelmusslor — a sweet almond Swedish delicacy.

Get the Recipe: Almond Butter Shortbread Cookies "Mandelmusslor"

Pistachio and Sour Cherry Linzer Cookies

In fond remembrance of his grandmother Lola and her holiday cookie traditions, Gabriele Corcos updates a seasonal classic –– linzer cookies –– for his own daughters to enjoy with generations of loved ones. He subs pistachios for the traditional hazelnuts, amping up nutty flavor, and fills the sandwich with sour cherry jam to balance the sweetness.

Get the Recipe: Pistachio and Sour Cherry Linzer Cookies


There's a reason Kelsey Nixon's Carmelitas have more than 35 five-star reviews: The recipe, which incorporates her homemade caramel sauce, yields the chewy, salty, crumble-topped bars that dreams are made of.

Get the Recipe: Carmelitas

G's Spicy Tequila Balls

Nadia G packs her usual punch into these boozy vanilla wafer, walnut and cocoa powder balls. The recipe contains a whopping 1/2 cup of tequila and is dusted with both chipotle and cayenne powders, so it's not for the faint of stomach. They're perfect for a carousing holiday celebration, gifting or bringing to a cookie swap (the recipe makes 42 balls).

Get the Recipe: G's Spicy Tequila Balls

Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Chuck Hughes admits to loving shortbread cookies all holiday season long, but sometimes he wants to shake things up. Here he fuses shortbread cookies with lemon bars –– creating a gooey, lemony top half supported by a tender-but-solid shortbread cookie foundation –– and speckles them with bright, tart cranberries.

Get the Recipe: Lemon Shortbread Cookies

Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Oatmeal raisin (and many) cookies fall into two distinct camps: the crunchy and crumbly or, as in this recipe from Kelsey Nixon, fall-apart-in-your-hands soft and gooey. In a clever twist, she pulses the raisins in a food processor along with all the other ingredients, creating the sort of raisin swirl you might find in a cinnamon-raisin bagel. Old-fashioned oats give the cookies just enough heft and chewiness to let you linger over each bite a little longer.

Get the Recipe: Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Whoopie Pies

Pillowy chocolate cake halves, marshmallow cream filling: What’s not to love about Chuck Hughes’ amazing whoopie pies recipe?

Get the Recipe: Whoopie Pies

Homemade Fudge Brownies

Kelsey Nixon suggests serving these brownies like tiny tiered cakes, using a range of biscuit cutter sizes to form each fudgy layer. Dusting them with powdered sugar and topping each with a cherry adds a fancy flourish.

Get the Recipe: Homemade Fudge Brownies

Peanut-Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Sometimes all you need is a classic pairing like peanut butter and chocolate. Roger Mooking's peanut butter cookies are filled with giant chocolate chip chunks and salty roasted peanuts, so they've got that perfect salty-sweet, chewy-soft balance. Dust them with either cocoa powder or confectioners' sugar (or half and half) to give them a festive snowy finish (and an extra hint of flavor).

Get the Recipe: Peanut-Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Holiday Biscotti

Giada De Laurentiis gives her light-and-airy biscotti cookies a holiday makeover with the addition of red cranberries and green pistachios to the dough. Dipped halfway in white chocolate and covered with red and green sprinkles, they are extra indulgent (and celebratory).

Get the Recipe: Holiday Biscotti

Pecan Jewel Cookies With Spicy Jam Filling

Never one to take the mild route, Nadia G kicks up these thumbprint-style cookies by spiking her jam with cayenne pepper. But the most prominent flavor in the Pecan Jewels is the pecans themselves — coarsely chopped, roasted and studding the dough.

Get the Recipe: Pecan Jewel Cookies with Spicy Jam Filling

Biscotti al Rosmarino e Pinoli (Rosemary and Pine Nut Cookies)

For the holiday season, Extra Virgin’s Debi & Gabriele updated the classic Italian cookie (Biscotti al Pinoli) with the addition of our favorite fragrant herb: rosemary. The sweet and deeply nutty cookies would already have been a hit (perfect for dunking in coffee or cocoa), but the added savory touch makes them a true delicacy.

Get the Recipe: Biscotti al Rosmarino e Pinoli (Rosemary and Pignoli Cookies)

Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze

Lemon lovers will appreciate Giada's light, bright ricotta cookies. The best part about these sweets? They travel well, making them a great holiday gift for friends and family.

Get the Recipe: Lemon Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze

Maple and Pecan Shortbreads

Love shortbread? Love impossibly sweet maple candies? Then you’ll love Chuck Hughes’ cookie, which combines a classic shortbread with iconic Canadian maple butter. The tender, buttery shortbread base is perfectly balanced by a thick, hardened maple and pecan topping. (Make sure to use an 8-inch baking pan; any larger and the shortbread won’t be able to stand up to the maple’s weight.)

Get the Recipe: Maple and Pecan Shortbreads

Peppermint Meltaways

Kelsey Nixon describes her cookies as just what the holiday season ordered: "A meltaway cookie does just what it sounds like it should do ... it melts in your mouth! Coating the warm cookies in powdered sugar and crushed peppermints drives home that classic holiday flavor. The chocolate hidden on the inside pairs great with the peppermint and ends up being a great bonus!"

Get the Recipe: Peppermint Meltaways

Cherry and Coconut Whoopie Pies

Chuck Hughes offers a tropical, fruity take on his popular red velvet whoopie pies by swapping out that cream cheese frosting for a coconut cream and adding a hint of cherry flavor to the cookie halves. Dotted with syrup-drenched cherries and rolled in toasted coconut slivers, these cookie sandwiches are far from holiday traditional.

Get the Recipe: Cherry and Coconut Whoopie Pies

Lemon Curd and Stem Ginger White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ching-He Huang never disappoints with her creative Asian-inspired twists on traditional cookies. Here, she adds stem ginger (young ginger that's been preserved in a sugar syrup and canned) and lemon curd to cookie batter to add spicy, citrus notes. White chocolate chips keep these cookies sweet and holiday appropriate.

Get the Recipe: Lemon Curd and Stem Ginger White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Giada's dense treats are like a cross between a biscotti and a classic cookie. Serve them with tea or coffee so you can dip them if they're a bit too crunchy for your taste.

Get the Recipe: Hazelnut Chocolate Chip Cookies

S'mores Bars

It's hard to improve on the classically simple s'more, but Kelsey might have done just that with her thick and gooey cookie bar stacks.

Get the Recipe: S'mores Bars

Fire Roasted Chestnut Caramel Cookies

Inspired by Nat King Cole's "Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire," Roger Mooking concocted a cookie that captures that sweet, deeply nutty flavor of fire-roasted chestnuts and dressed it up for the holidays with a caramel coating and snowflake-sized sea salt crystals.

Get the Recipe: Fire Roasted Chestnut Caramel Cookies

Sugar Cookies

Alton Brown's favorite sugar cookies can be stored for up to one week, so they're a great make-ahead option for your holiday party.

Get the Recipe: Sugar Cookies

Pistachio Macarons

Bring a bit of Parisian flair to your holiday celebration with Julia Baker's pistachio macarons. The cookies themselves are tinted this festive shade of green and are filled with (and flavored by) a homemade caramelized pistachio cream –– the kind ever present throughout France during the Christmas season.

Get the Recipe: Pistachio Macarons

Boozy Marmalade Shortbread Cookies

Alie Ward and Georgia Hardstark's shortbread sandwich cookies bring all the elements of a seasonal cocktail into cookie form. The sandwich filling is made out of orange marmalade, orange liqueur and a dash of bitters, so you can have your cocktail and eat it too.

Get the Recipe: Boozy Marmalade Shortbread Cookies

Green Tea and Orange Chocolate Chip "Crownie"

Part brownie, part chocolate chip cookie, Ching-He Huang’s bite-size Crownies are more cake-y than cookie-like, which makes them even more irresistible. Matcha green tea powder and orange zest infuse this recipe with Asian-inspired citrus flavors and a hint of color, which will make these powder-dusted cookies stand out on any holiday party table.

Get the Recipe: Green Tea and Orange Chocolate Chip "Crownie"

Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

Kelsey adds moisture and an extra layer of flavor by adding mashed banana to her chocolate chip cookie recipe. Oatmeal gives them additional heartiness, so they're great as an afternoon snack or a breakfast on the go.

Get the Recipe: Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

Red Velvet Gems

Confection creator Julia Baker combines three of our favorite things: red velvet cookies, whoopie pies and all-things-miniature. Good thing this recipe makes 27 gems — the pillowy red velvet cookie and cream cheese frosting sandwiches will disappear quickly.

Get the Recipe: Red Velvet Gems

Chocolate Dipped Coconut Rocher

Kelsey Nixon loves coconut macaroons, with their crispy golden exterior and soft chewy center. For the holidays, she likes making the traditional French coconut rocher –– a variation on the macaroon, shaped like a pyramid and dipped in chocolate. The best part? These cookies are easy to prepare in little more than an hour.

Get the Recipe: Chocolate Dipped Coconut Rocher

Milk Chocolate Chip Maple Syrup Glazed Bacon Cookies

Bacon may be the not-so-secret ingredient in these smoky cookies from Nadia G, but it's the maple syrup that adds just the right amount of sweetness that really takes them to the next level. Sprinkle sea salt over each one to take these treats over the top.

Get the Recipe: Milk Chocolate Chip Maple Syrup Glazed Bacon Cookies

Almond Shortbread Cookies

Ching-He Huang's shortbread cookies may not look like the most-exciting pick of the dessert spread, but ground almonds and lemon zest add welcome nutty flavor and citrusy brightness.

Get the Recipe: Almond Shortbread Cookies

The Oatiest Oatmeal Cookies Ever

Not one to shy away from extremes, Alton Brown proclaims these cookies to be the Oatiest Oatmeal Cookies Ever. And you know what? They are. Rich with the flavor of nutty, caramelized oats — and the perfect amount of cinnamon and raisins — these crispy cookies might just become your new favorite.

Get the Recipe: The Oatiest Oatmeal Cookies Ever

K and C Thumbprint Cookies

What do you get when Cooking Channel chef Kelsey Nixon teams up with supermodel and baker Chrissy Teigen? A savory-sweet cookie that’s unlike anything you’ve ever tasted. The black pepper and Parmesan cookies have a slightly spicy flavor, which is complemented by the orange, cranberry and thyme marmalade filling the cookie’s thumbprint.

Get the Recipe: K and C Thumbprint Cookies

Warm Chewy Macadamia White Chocolate Cookies

Chuck Hughes swears by this classic cookie. Why? "Substituting white chocolate and adding macadamia nuts upgrades these cookies from coach to first class. Even your grandmother will be impressed."

Get the Recipe: Warm Chewy Macadamia White Chocolate Cookies

Chocolate Coconut Balls

Alton Brown’s easy, no-bake cookies are a foolproof holiday cookie win: Simply roll coconut, nuts, condensed milk and almond extract into balls, refrigerate and then dip into melted chocolate.

Get the Recipe: Chocolate Coconut Balls

Eggnog Cookies

Jeffrey Saad loves this nostalgic cookie: "I remember grinding my own nutmeg on top of eggnog and smelling the baking spice perfume. The rich texture of egg combined with the baking spices is like liquid holiday cookies. The spike of brandy combined with the baking spices and rich flavor of the egg yolk makes these cookies a hand-held liquid-free eggnog."

Get the Recipe: Eggnog Cookies

Chocolate Espresso Cookies

A powdery coating of confectioners' sugar makes these dark, fudgy espresso-chocolate cookies from David Rocco look like they've been dusted in just-fallen snow.

Get the Recipe: David Rocco's Chocolate Espresso Cookies


Michael Symon loves his family recipe that's a unique take on the traditional Greek cookie: "These cookies are melt-in-your-mouth delicious. This is my mother's recipe, and I cannot think of a time when we didn't have these cookies for the holidays. The holidays just wouldn't be the same without them; I love them!"

Get the Recipe: Kourambiethes

Lemon Madeleines

Chuck Hughes taps into his French-Canadian roots to prepare these delicate madeleines, given dots of color and extra lemon flavor thanks to zest shavings in the dough.

Get the Recipe: Lemon Madeleines

Cranberry Pecan Oat Cookies With Bourbon Glaze

Zac Young loves a good oatmeal raisin cookie: "There is something totally comforting about them. Not to mention, I pretend they are health food! The soft oat cookie holds the tart chew of the cranberries, the crunchy nuttiness of the pecans, and the subtle citrus from the orange zest and ground coriander. These cookies are just like the holidays at my house, fruity, nutty and a little tipsy."

Get the Recipe: Cranberry Pecan Oat Cookies with Bourbon Glaze

Triple Chocolate Cookies

These are the ultimate chocolate cookie, from Bobby Flay: bittersweet chocolate, unsweetened chocolate, semisweet chocolate and white chocolate all coming together in one bite.

Get the Recipe: Triple Chocolate Cookies

Chocolate-Hazelnut Smooches

Giada's sugar-studded chocolate-hazelnut cookies are topped with a chocolate kiss: perfect for your favorite cocoa lover.

Get the Recipe: Chocolate-Hazelnut Smooches

Madras Coconut Cookies

Press almonds into Yigit Pura's coconut cookies for extra crunch.

Get the Recipe: Madras Coconut Cookies

Honey Fleur de Lys

Laura Calder cuts her sweet honey-flavored cookies into the shape of the French fleur-de-lys symbol, but they’ll taste just as delicious cut classically round, or in some other cookie-cutter-carved shape.

Get the Recipe: Honey Fleur de Lys