Holiday Butter Cookies Three Ways

stack 2

Every year I make a ton of holiday cookies to pass out to friends and family.  I have been collecting recipes since 2000.  Here are some of the every year standards:

Hidden Surprise Snowball Cookies


Turtle Browniesturtle

Chocolate Crinkles


Brown Sugar Ginger Crisps


Pistachio Orange Lace Cookies

These are usually more tan, rather than green!

These are usually more tan, rather than green!

Stained Glass Trees



Our gingerbread castle

Our gingerbread castle

Favorites tend to appear over and over because people request them, but I also try to test a couple of news ones every season as well.

Jamie has been imploring me to bake cookies for a special “snack” for his class, so I decided to try out three variations on a theme in one pop!

This basic cookie dough recipe is from an old 2003 issue of Gourmet (he wasn’t even born yet!)  that I’ve used for cut-out cookie holiday cookies, which we then frost.  The cookie dough is versatile, and you can add different flavors to it, creating a whole new cookie.

I decided to try out three that are school-friendly (i.e. containing no nuts):  A lemon one, a chocolate one, and one drizzled with melted chocolate and white chocolate.


Lemon Butter Cookie

Chocolate Butter Cookies with sanding sugar

Chocolate Butter Cookies with sanding sugar

Butter Cookies Drizzled with Melted Chocolate and White Chocolate

Butter Cookies Drizzled with Melted Chocolate and White Chocolate

Instead of making three batches of dough, I made one batch, divided it into three parts, and then flavored one with lemon and one with chocolate.  I drizzled the last third with melted semi-sweet and white chocolate.

Here is the link to the original recipe, and here is my version of three different cookies in one batch. ๐Ÿ™‚

Packed for school!

Packed for school!

Holiday Butter Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened

1 cup sugar

1 large egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

For Lemon Cookie batch:

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon lemon zest

For Chocolate Cookie batch:

1/3 cup Dutch-process unsweetened cocoa powder

a little less than 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

3.5 oz. bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate, melted

Demerara sugar for sanding (optional)

For Chocolate Drizzle Batch:

1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted

1/4 cup white chocolate chips, melted

1.  Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl.

2.  Beat together butter and sugar in bowl of a standing mixer for 3 minutes until pale and fluffy.  Beat in egg and vanilla.  Reduce speed to low, then add flour mixture and mix until just combined.

3.  Divide dough into thirds and remove from bowl.  Wrap one of the thirds in saran in the shape of a 4-inch log.  Return one third back to mixing bowl and add lemon juice and zest.  Mix until combined.  Wrap this lemon dough in saran in the shape of a 4-inch log.

4. Return last third of dough back to mixing bowl and add cocoa powder, baking soda, and melted chocolate to dough.  Mix until combined.  Wrap chocolate dough in saran and shape into a 4-inch log.  Chill all logs for at least 4 hours or overnight.

5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and place oven racks in upper and lower thirds of oven.  Cut each chilled dough log into 1/4-inch slices and place on baking sheet 1 -inch apart.  For chocolate slices, roll in Demerara sugar if desired.  Bake for 10-12 minutes, rotating baking sheets halfway.  Cool cookies on sheets for 3 minutes.  Then remove to cool completely on racks.

6.  Decorate plain batch of butter cookies with melted chocolates by transferring melted chocolate to a sandwich bag and  snipping a small hole in one corner.  Squeeze bag and drizzle chocolate over cookies in a Jackson Pollack fashion. ๐Ÿ™‚  Repeat with white chocolate.  Chill to set chocolate for about an hour.

Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

in box


Filed under Cookies, Desserts

18 responses to “Holiday Butter Cookies Three Ways

  1. Kathy E.

    Once again, I love how creative you are in making a basic recipe so versatile! I would have a very hard time choosing which to try first (of the three made from the Holiday Butter Cookie recipe). Which turned out to be the favorite?

  2. Reblogged this on Cooking with Romi and commented:
    Check this out cookie monsters out there…

  3. Turtle brownies! What a fabulous name and it sure sounds scrumptious. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. joy

    The cookies look lovely.

  5. nutsfortreasure

    Reblogged this on Living and Lovin.

  6. All 3 types have me starving ๐Ÿ™‚

    Choc Chip Uru

  7. I like that idea–three kinds of cookies from one batter. Which is the tastiest? I’d have to taste them all–numerous times–to be certain. A definite winner.

  8. Mmm, those look good! I’m going to have to try some variations of these. ๐Ÿ˜€

  9. It’s got to be the lemon butter cookies for me! So delicious!

  10. Love your holiday cookie selection. I have had too many cookies. Already overdosed and holidays aren’t even here yet.

  11. We’re baking cookies today! FINALLY. I’m not sure what happened but long ago I used to bake tons of cookies, and now every year for the past 8+ yrs I’ve debated and ended up not making them. BUT, now that it’s very important that we leave cookies and milk out for Santa, and Bebe loves to decorate cookies – – – guess what’s on today’s agenda. ๐Ÿ™‚ Love versatility of your butter cookie variations. You’re so amazing baking all these cookies!!! One of these years maybe I’ll get back into the cookie groove. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Merry Christmas! Hope your Hanukkah was great too!

  12. Made the chocolate ones, and I have to say they are very nice! Will recommend to a friend!

  13. Pingback: Merry Christmas Eve Day | The Hungry Artist

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