Christmas cookies on a plate in Germany in December 2010. Getty

It’s the most wonderful time of the year: You get to settle back, munch on some sugary cookies and, depending on whether you adhere to the central tenet of Christmas that Coca-Cola is consumed by all, pop open a nice cold soda while watching made- for-TV holiday specials. But, before you get to that point of luxury and decadence, you’ll need to make those special treats (not the Coke, nobody knows that secret ingredient. We're talking about cookies). Read on for some great Christmas cookie recipes to fill your holidays with cheer.

Sugar Cookies (Thanks to

Get your favorite tree and ornament cookie cutters ready to make these classic cookies for all of your holiday party needs.

What you’ll need:

  • 3 cups flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • Powdered sugar for rolling the dough out

Here’s how you do it:

  • Put the salt, flour and baking powder together, sift and set aside.
  • Mix the butter and sugar in a large bowl and beat the two until they have a light color. Add the egg and milk to the mixture and beat again. Slowly add the remaining ingredients while beating on low intensity.
  • Divide the dough, wrap in wax paper and refrigerate for two hours.
  • While you preheat your oven to 375 degrees, sprinkle powdered sugar on the surface you plan on rolling out your dough.
  • Roll your dough out until it’s a quarter-inch thick.
  • Cut your shapes out, add to a greased baking pan about an inch apart and cook for 7 to 9 minutes.
  • Obviously, you have to take them out and let them cool afterward. You can then decorate the little guys with icing.

Gingerbread Girl And Boy Cookies (Thanks to

These are also a holiday favorite. They don’t have to be people, but if you want to make them human-like, you’ll want to grab your gingerbread boy and girl cutouts from storage. They’re the ones that look like little children.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup soft butter or margarine
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons water or milk
  • 3 ¼ all-purpose flower
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • Any candies you might want to garnish the cookies with

Here’s how you do it:

  • Beat together the sugar, butter and molasses in a large bowl on medium speed. Add the egg and water.
  • Stir in flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, salt cardamom and cloves.
  • Cover and refrigerate for one hour.
  • While you heat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, roll one-third of the dough onto a floured surface until the dough is one-eighth inch thick. You will do the same with the other two-thirds of the dough once you’re done with this portion.
  • Flour your gingerbread boy or girl cutouts and press against the dough. Add those figures to a greased baking pan, sprinkle some sugar or colored sugar on top and bake for 6 to 7 minutes.

Chocolate Rum Balls (Thanks to

Watch out – these are not last minute endeavors but they sure are delicious. They require a few days in the fridge before you can serve them.

What you’ll need:

  • 3 ¼ cups crushed vanilla wafers
  • ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 ½ cups chopped walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • ½ cup rum

Here’s how you do it:

  • Stir together the crushed vanilla wafers, ¾ cup confectioners’ sugar, cocoa and nuts in a large bowl. Blend in the corn syrup and rum.
  • Shape the dough into 1 inch balls and roll in the leftover sugar. Store in a refrigerated and sealed container for a few days to develop the flavor before rolling in more sugar and serving.