Holiday cookie swap parties bring together so many great aspects of the holidays, but mostly, they bring together a lot of homemade cookies. A good cookie swap depends on a couple handfuls of attendees for optimal cookie variety.
As you read through your swap invitation, the stars begin to align—until you get to the end of the invite, which instructs you to bring 10 dozen cookies to the event. Suddenly, your excitement turns to dread as you contemplate the task. FEAR NOT! I have the perfect holiday cookie exchange recipe! It’s an adapted version of the sugar cookie recipe that my husband’s mother sent to me. The cookies are festive, taste great, and are relatively simple to make. I use locally sourced butter, eggs, oil, and flour to make them even more “home” made.
Almond sugar cookies. Photo by Marie Flanagan
The Ultimate Cookie Swap Almond Sugar Cookies
Makes 4-5 dozen
- 1 cup oil
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp. almond extract (can substitute with vanilla extract)
- 1 fresh vanilla bean
- 4 cups flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. cream of tartar
1. Cream together your sugars, butter, and oil.
2. Add the eggs one at a time.
3. Add the almond extract and fresh vanilla.
4. Let the mixture mix until it becomes slightly fluffy/whipped.
5. Mix together your dry ingredients.
6. Add the dry ingredients one cup at a time.
7. Mix well.
8. Chill the dough for at least one hour. It can also stay chilled overnight.
9. Place parchment paper over your cookie sheets to make cleanup easier.
10. Roll the dough into small balls (the size of a walnut) and place on your cookie sheet. I used one of those tbsp.-sized dough scoops to save time.
11. Gently flatten the dough balls with a glass dipped in sugar.
12. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes (17 minutes if you’re using insulated cookie sheets) until slightly brown on the edges.
These cookies are light, crispy, and buttery with an unexpected almond twist. Colorful sugar adds just the right amount of festive decoration without any messy frosting, and they stack and transport with ease.