Festive Christmas Desserts to Sweeten the Season

Festive Christmas Desserts to Sweeten the Season

Publish Date October 19, 2023 3 Minute Read

Candies, cakes, cookies and cocoa…with the holidays so close, we can almost taste them. If you’re looking for Christmas baking inspiration, get your recipe cards ready, because we’re sharing our collection of classic Christmas dessert recipes. From easy Christmas cookies to gorgeous holiday cakes, there’s no shortage of seasonal sweets to choose from.

Christmas Cookie Recipes

We all know these sweet baked treats aren’t just for Santa. Whether you’re looking for quick and easy Christmas cookies or more challenging recipes to show off your sweet skills, you’ll find plenty of tasty inspiration in our cookie hall of fame, from classic sugar cookies and timeless gingerbread to eye-catching citrus wreath cookies and more.

Starting simple? Whether you’re a beginner baker or just need a refresher course, our guide to baking classic sugar cookies is packed with everything you “knead” to know about this staple Christmas cookie.

More Christmas Dessert Recipes

While festive Christmas cookies are a delicious addition to any dessert display, there are so many ways to experience the joy of baking this season. From elegant trifles to classic hot cocoa fudge, here are some of our favorite Christmas dessert ideas:

If you want to wow your guests with a more formal final course, try making this beautiful chocolate yule log cake. Don’t let its show stopping presentation fool you. Thanks to the magic of boxed cake mix, this decadent centerpiece is as easy to make as it is to enjoy.

Tips for Baking the Best Christmas Desserts

Ready for some more classic Christmas baking? Use these tips to bake delicious desserts and cookies worth caroling about:

Pick the Right Flour

All-purpose flour is a great go-to for most baking, but delicate desserts are often the exception. When making cakes, for example, it’s best to use cake flour for its lower protein content. Low-protein flours like cake flour yield a softer, more tender final texture. For everything you need to know about choosing the right flour, check out our guide to flour.

Christmas Cookies? Perfect Timing.

Don’t settle for crummy cookies. Over baking your dough will give you a dry, crumbly batch. Instead of waiting for the oven to ding, try to take your cookies out of the oven while they’re still slightly underbaked. Once they’re out of the oven, they’ll continue to bake on the sheet, resulting in tender and perfectly chewy cookies.

Shortening vs. Butter

Some recipes call for butter, and some call for shortening. Some bakers swear by one or the other, while some use them interchangeably. So, what’s the difference?

In cookies, butter brings flavor and richness but increases the likelihood of the dough spreading in the oven. Shortening makes for a more structurally sound cookie but doesn’t pack the same flavor. Here’s the shortened story for butter results: For a rich and flavorful cookie that can handle the heat of your oven, use a combination of butter and shortening.

When it comes to cake, it’s a similar story. When beaten into your other ingredients, shortening will trap air bubbles, resulting in a light and fluffy final texture. However, the flavor of your cake will be much more subtle when using shortening. On the other hand, butter offers moisture, richness and flavor, even in the most basic cake recipes. Baking is all about creativity, so feel free to experiment with different ratios to find the best texture and flavor.

Shop Holiday Baking Essentials

Looking for More Sweet Ideas?

Check out our blog for recipes, meal planning and even more sweet inspiration, like how to host a cookie exchange and more. Don’t forget to visit our holiday baking shop for all your Christmas baking essentials.