Nothing says Christmas more than a tray of right-from-the-oven cookies! Every family has a few of their traditional favorites. (My family loves snowballs and chocolate chip cookie bars!) Whatever your family favorite, you can bet that the guests at your next Christmas party will expect a tray overflowing with cookies.
If you’re going to a Cookie Exchange or you want to impress your family and friends with a dessert table to die for, than make sure you decorate and serve your party trays with a little Christmas flair. I came up with ten ways to jazz up your presentation while still making sure you follow the Christmas tradition of serving everyone’s favorite cookies. I also included a recipe for one of my family classics: Peppermint Snowballs (see recipe below). After trying one or two of these ideas to make your cookies trays stand out, take a look at our other Christmas Party Ideas, too!
- Like the picture above, try lining the tray with holiday candy. Red, green, and white M&Ms are festive, but peppermint or holiday sprinkles work well too!
- If you’re using a tiered stand filled with cookies, finish off the top tier with an elaborately decorated gingerbread house. Guests can take a cookie without destroying your handiwork.
- Give your guests something to do by setting up a cookie decorating station. Have undecorated sugar cookies along with bowls of colored icing, sprinkles, and toppings ready to go (i.e. chocolate chips and mini-marshmallows). Family and friends can pile cookies high with their favorite treats and even take them home as favors! This activity is a great way to keep the kids occupied, too!
- On a white tray, pipe melted milk chocolate in swirling designs. Allow the chocolate to harden in the fridge before piling the tray with cookies. As guests take cookies from the tray, they reveal your design!
- If your guests enjoy drop cookies like chocolate chip or peanut butter, tray stacking them in groups of three and tying with baker’s twine. Cookie lovers can grab a stack instead of just one or two to enjoy with their coffee and hot chocolate.
- Make your dessert table vertical with tall clear vases filled with durable cookies (like chocolate chip) and chocolate covered pretzel rods. Have guests use tongs to remove the cookies from the vases.
- Fill large glass bowls with bite-size sugar cookies. Add a scoop to each bowl and make paper bags available, so family and friends can fill a bag with a dozen or two.
- Instead of having a tray of cookies on a table, hang them from your Christmas tree! Before baking, poke a hole in the top of each sugar cookie with a straw. After baking and decorating, string the cookies with baker’s twine and hang them among your evergreen branches. Family and friends can pick their dessert straight from your tree!
- Get your family and friends involved by hosting a Christmas Cookie Potluck! On your invitation, ask each guest to a bring few dozen of their favorite cookie. (Make sure beforehand that everyone isn’t bringing chocolate chip!) Set up a cookie bar with personalized Christmas favor bags, and family and friends can fill them up as favors. Yum!
- If you’re not the baking type, you can always order some custom Christmas cookies from Party411.com. Add your own holiday greeting for a personal touch!
Peppermint Snowball Recipe (makes about 2 dozen)
- 2 cups flour
- 1 cup butter or margarine melted
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup crushed peppermint
- ½ cup powdered sugar
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 ° F. Blend sugar and margarine until mixed well. Add flour and crushed peppermint. Form dough into 1 inch balls and roll in powdered sugar until completely covered. Cook for 10-12 minutes on an ungreased cookie tray.