25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats

Is your holiday baking well underway?

I love this time of year and my list of things I want to make is always longer than I could ever have time for. So, I’ve pulled together 25 Sweet Holiday treats for some great ideas to add to your list instead ;)

I’ll start with some classics that I make every year, and this year is no exception:

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-butter-cookiesItalian Biscotti– This is a long time family favorite. Soft Italian Biscotti dipped in a vanilla glaze and topped with festive sprinkles. This is truly the best Italian Biscotti I’ve ever tasted!
Classic Butter Spritz Cookies– This recipe is classic and unlike some recipes, is made only with butter, no shortening. You end up with a slightly crisp but very tender cookie that’s full of butter flavor. This is a perfect cookie for kids to decorate.

For those of you who love raspberry sweets…

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-raspberryRaspberry Rugelach– I love, love, love rugelach and this recipe doesn’t disappoint. It’s more hearty than flaky, with its cream cheese based dough and whole wheat pastry flour, but you’ll find yourself going back for seconds because they are so good!
Raspberry White Chocolate Almond Blondies– There might be a revolt if I didn’t make these EVERY year. They are a favorite of all and I can’t tell you how many people ask for the recipe. This is a must make if you are a raspberry almond lover.

Topping delicious cookies with chocolate is always a good idea!

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-chocolate-toppedFudge Topped Peanut Butter Cookie Tarts– A slightly sophisticated twist on peanut butter and chocolate cookies. This soft and tender cookie is swirled with a crown of dark chocolate ganache then topped with chopped peanuts and toffee.
Chocolate Toffee Biscotti– Impressive for a cookie tray and a great cookie to make all year ’round. Dunked in a cup of hot tea/coffee? The chocolate melts and the toffee flavor swirls around your mouth…they are delicious!

Minty flavors are in season and here’s three ways to get your minty “on.”

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-peppermintPeppermint Brownie Bark– This is a fun way to do brownies for the holidays. Brownie Bark is a thin, crispy, chewy, chocolatey treat that should please all of your brownie lovers. Perfect for gifting, this recipe includes free printable gift tags!
Andes Mint Chip Cookies– One of my very favorite minty treats, I just love the texture of these cookies. They are soft and chewy and full of creme de menthe flavor.
Minty Cocoa Fudge Sandwich Cookies– This one is my husband’s favorite minty cookie. It’s a chocolate cookie filled with mint chocolate ganache. You don’t often see sandwich cookies on a cookie tray and these are perfectly flavored for the season. I press a little design in the tops so that they look extra special!

These are favorites all year long, but they are definitely a must make this time of year. If you like thick, a little chewy and slightly soft chip cookies…you’re going to love these!

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-chocolate-chipChewy Chocolate Chip Cookies– This was the first chocolate chip cookie that I declared a favorite, thanks to an old roommate of mine that used to bake them all the time. It is a little crisp around the edges, but soft and chewy in the center. It is the mother of so many of my chip cookies. This is Michael Bauer’s famous chocolate chip cookie recipe. He doesn’t often get credit, but this recipe or close versions of it is often blogged about as the “best.”
Malted Chocolate Chip Cookies– This is based on Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies, but it is a little softer and chewier and has the addition of malted milk powder and some cocoa. I think this is my new my personal favorite…at least for now :)
Soft Chewy Peanut Butter Chip Cookies– This is another version of the Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie. This one is softer, a bit more dense because of the addition of corn starch. I think it’s the perfect texture for a peanut butter flavored cookie. It’s great plain, but for the holidays I like to either dip it in melted chocolate or drizzle it on top.

I love adding candy to my trays. While my oven is busy baking, I can get batches of candy done on the stove or in the microwave…yep, I said microwave. It works beautifully! Check out these fun choices:

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-chocolateOne Bowl Brittle Bark– If you need something quick for a gift or a tray, this is the perfect answer. It’s a mash up of nut brittle and candy bark and it’s a match made in heaven. You make it in the microwave and minutes later, you have the most delicious crunchy creamy confection. Be careful, you might be tempted to eat it all before you get a chance to share it!
Peanut Butter Cluster Cups– I like peanut butter cups, but I love Peanut Butter Cluster Cups more. Simply top your peanut butter cup with chocolate that’s chock full of peanuts and you have the best peanut butter cup ever!
Strawberry Chocolate Bark– I originally made this in February, but how fun are these colors for Christmas? The bright red of the freeze dried berries are a nice (and natural) pop of color for your trays or for tying up in little gift bags!
New Year’s Oreo Truffle Bombs– These classic truffles were originally made for a pirate themed party for my husband’s nephew, but I think they are a sweet way to bring in the new year. 10, 9, 8…

A couple of “cool” ideas for dessert, both make ahead:

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-dessertsEgg Nog Ice Cream with Hot Buttered Rum SauceThe perfect frozen treat for the holidays, this ice cream does not disappoint. It’s rich and creamy and you’ll love it with or without the rum sauce.
Ice Box Raspberry Chocolate Chip Cheesecake– This was a make ahead ice box dessert that I put together this summer, but just look at the festive colors! You only need to make the filling, then simply use store bought chocolate wafers as your base. This is a wonderful choice when you want something you can do in advance.

There’s nothing like holiday breakfasts and brunches. Here’s some great ideas to start your day with a sweet treat!

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-breakfastShort Cut StollenThis was just recently posted but if you missed it, you must take another look! Even those who are not fans of raisin bread love this rich loaf. It’s full of Christmas flavor and it is a much easier (quick bread) version than the yeast bread that inspired it.
Whole Wheat Gingerbread Pancakes with Lemon Curd Whipped Cream Full of holiday spice and molasses, these pancakes were made a bit healthier using whole wheat pastry flour. The Lemon Curd Whipped Cream probably cancels some of that out, but it is heavenly!
Berry Blintz SouffleLove cheese blintzes but don’t want to stand over the stove making them individually? This souffle is your answer. It has all the flavor of a blintz but you can cut it into squares for serving. Great choice for a brunch buffet….and, we’ve even eaten it as dessert!

One of the best breakfast categories, doughnuts, biscuits, and scones…oh my!

25-Sweet-Holiday-Treats-breakfast-2My Favorite Cinnamon SconesIf you have been searching for that perfect coffee house scone recipe, this is the scone for you. It’s rich, buttery and creamy. Two years of experimenting landed me on this oh so perfect recipe!
Buttermilk Biscuit Cinnamon RollsHere’s another shortcut for you. This one is for cinnamon rolls. No yeast, no waiting, but all the goodness of being made from scratch. Just whip up a batch of Fluffy Buttermilk Biscuit dough, and you’ll be ready to roll and go!
Sticky Maple Bacon BiscuitsHere’s another use for that biscuit dough…whip up a batch and and drop it into a pan of sticky maple syrup and bacon and make this addictive biscuit bake. You’ll be fighting over the last piece on this one. Sweet and salty lovers will go crazy for this!
Peppermint Candy Cane Doughnuts– I made these for a holiday breakfast for my son’s class last year. This is a super fast batter to mix up and makes a soft, cake like doughnut. Don’t worry if you don’t have a candy cane doughnut pan. Use a round one, or make them in a mini muffin pan.

I have one or two more recipes to share before Christmas, so stay tuned for more favorites. In the meantime, you’d better get baking!