20 sweet recipes to up your holiday baking game

Grab the kids and an apron and get started on your holiday baking with these great recipes.

By Today's Parent
20 sweet recipes to up your holiday baking game

Photo: Ryan Szulc

Mint Chocolate Truffles

Woo the chocolate lover in your life with these hard-to-resist mint chocolate morsels. They’re so easy to make, the hardest part is waiting for them to set. Get the recipe: Mint Chocolate Truffles

Two chocolate truffles with crushed candy cane in silver foil

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bar

You could plop down individual balls on a sheet or you could bake the batter in one pan and make these boss bars. Sprinkles and a chocolate drizzle puts you in a whole other league of baker. Get the recipe: Chocolate Chip Cookie Bar

Chocolate chip cookie bars arranged on a green backgroundPhoto: Erik Putz


Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

You probably have all the ingredients on hand for these sweet treats. Peanut butter, icing sugar, butter, sea salt, chocolate. Yup. Get the recipe: Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls

three chocolate-covered peanut butter balls with sprinkles and crushed nutsPhoto: Craig Boyko

Holiday Chip Cookie Cake

Forgo a traditional cake in favour of this festive cookie cake! Yep, that’s six extra-large cookies with creamy frosting in between. Get the recipe: Holiday Chip Cookie Cake

Large chocolate chip cookies stacked on a pedestal with vanilla icing in-between and green and red candy chips on topPhoto: Tony Lanz

Apple and Pear Superfood Crumble

Pumpkin seeds and flaxseeds give this fruity crumble a nutritious boost. You could probably even eat the leftovers for breakfast with a scoop of Greek yogurt. Get the recipe: Apple and Pear Superfood Crumble

bowl of apple crumble with ice creamPhoto: Roberto Caruso


Spicy Gingerbread Cake

This moist and delicious cake keeps well as long as it’s tightly wrapped, but that can mar the beauty of the glaze. Try carrying your cake to the party and glazing it there for a flawless finish. Get the recipe: Spicy Gingerbread Cake

Gingerbread bundt cake with white glaze and shaved citrus peelPhoto: Ryan Szulc

Cranberry Upside-Down Cake

Don’t fear the upsidedown factor! Place a serving plate over the pan and flip the cake before it cools completely. Replace any cranberries left behind on the parchment paper, and no one will know! Get the recipe: Cranberry Upside-Down Cake

Cake topped with candied cranberriesPhoto: Maya Visnyei

Mini ”Gingerbread” House

For the baking adverse, may we present this easy, no-bake ”gingerbread” house. Get the recipe: Mini ”Gingerbread” House

Gingerbread house made from graham crackers with gummy treesPhoto: Roberto Caruso


Melting Snowman Sugar Cookies

Enlist the help of your little pastry chefs to make these adorable sugar cookies. There are so many fun treats to decorate with, it’s better to make these on an empty stomach to optimize nibbling. Get the recipe: Melting Snowman Sugar Cookies

Sugar cookie with marshmallow on top made to look like a melting snowmanPhoto: Tony Lanz

Apple-Cinnamon Monkey Bread

Gather your little helpers and tighten your apron strings; this monkey bread is fun to make as a team. Get the recipe: Apple-Cinnamon Monkey Bread

plate of fresh monkey breadPhoto: Roberto Caruso

Sugar Cookie Lollipops

A sweet treat you can sink your teeth into, we’ve got two variations of this sugar cookie: a lollipop and a bonbon. Get the recipe: Sugar Cookie Lollipops

two edible lollipops made from sugar cookiePhoto: Tony Lanz


Chocolate Bark

Packed with pumpkin seeds, coconut and chili flakes, if you can melt chocolate, then you can make this gourmet treat. Get the recipe: Chocolate Bark

Chocolate bark piece with pipits and coconutPhoto: Tony Lanz

Mini Cheesecakes with Cherry Sauce

Who can resist these sweet little cheesecakes with a tart cherry sauce? We sure can’t. Get the recipe: Mini Cheesecakes with Cherry Sauce

cherry cheesecakePhoto: Jodi Pudge

Chocolate Crinkles

If food allergies are an issue, these soft cookies are nut, egg and dairy free! Get the recipe: Chocolate Crinkles

closeup of chocolate crinkle cookies in a boxPhoto: Andrew Grinton


Double Lemon Bars

Bring these to your baking exchange and watch them get snatched up. The tangy sweetness of these soft bars is 10/10. Get the recipe: Double Lemon Bars

squares of lemon bars on parchment paper with candied lemon on topPhoto: Ryan Szulc

Perfect Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

If you’re going to do a classic, do it right. These chewy choco chip cookies are tender in the middle and crispy along the edges, the way a good cookie should be. Get the recipe: Perfect Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

stack of homemade oatmeal chocolate chip cookiesPhoto: Andrew Grinton

Ginger Caramel Popcorn

Perfect for gifting, this popcorn is so simple, coat it, bake it, package it. Get the recipe: Ginger Caramel Popcorn

homemade cones of caramel popcorn


Peppermint Candy Meringues

Delicate meringues are a delicious (and fancy!) go-to cookie. Get the recipe: Peppermint Candy Meringues

homemade cookies in a cupPhoto: Tony Lanz

Hot Chocolate Whoopie Pies

A bit of work to make, these soft, cream-filled cookies are well worth the effort. They’re not too sweet, so go ahead and indulge. Get the recipe: Hot Chocolate Whoopie Pies

plate of homemade whoopee piesPhoto: Roberto Caruso

Salted Brown Butter Puffed Rice Treats

OK, so more melting than baking, but letting the melted butter get all nutty and brown then adding salt is a real game changer. Get the recipe: Salted Brown Butter Puffed Rice Treats

cutting board with marshmallow-y puffed rice squaresPhoto: Erik Putz

Read more:
The ultimate holiday meal: 60 mouthwatering recipes 10 tips for baking with kids 10 essential holiday cookie recipes

This article was originally published on Dec 12, 2018

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