Easy Christmas Cookies For the Whole Family

No holiday is complete without the whole family pitching and baking easy Christmas cookies! Pick out a half dozen recipes and make a party of it. The weather is nasty, wet and cold, but the kitchen is nice and warm. Time to round up those bored kids and drag out the mixing bowls and spoons for a day of festive baking!

The no bake kind of cookie is a perfect choice for little ones who seem to like eating dough better than cooking it. Peanut butter or corn syrup replaces eggs as a moistening ingredient, so sampling doesn't carry dangers like salmonella for little tykes! Mix them up and roll them into balls of different sizes and lumpy shapes, and have a bowl of powdered sugar standing by to keep down the stickiness factor.

The best part is all the stuff you can let them throw in. A two year old can kill a half hour carefully dropping in chocolate chips, chopped gumdrops or raisins one at a time. Sift a handful of dry milk powder in for a protein boost - they'll never know you just made cookies healthy! Feel free to nibble yourself; this is a guilt free day.

Of course, pure, white, calorie laden sugar is an absolute necessity for easy Christmas cookies that uphold tradition on every level. Simple sugar cookies can be dressed up with sprinkles, icing and broken ones are fair game. Make one batch a little overdone and poke holes in the top with a pencil while they are still warm. These can be decorated, dipped in a thin solution of Elmer's glue and water, and used as Christmas tree ornaments.

Christmas isn't Christmas without gingerbread men. Cut a ring from the end of a number ten can and bend it into a perfect gingerbread man shape. You can substitue the sweeter, smaller raisins for tart currants, and pipe on a vest and trousers in gaily colored icing. It's mandatory to recite the story at least once!

Sand tarts are shaped like crescent moons, and are a nice twist on the regular sugar cookie. Finely chopped nuts mixed in add a little flavor, and the warm cookies are coated in powdered sugar for an explosion of sweet goodness! These are great with a cup of hot chocolate.

Don't forget cookies for Santa! Rumor has it he likes oatmeal and chocolate chip equally well, so whip up a batch of either of these a day or two before the big night. You'll also need a sizable mug of milk, and some carrots for the reindeer.

No Christmas is complete without a batch of fancy dipped cookies. Simple shortbread gets a snap of razzle dazzle when you dunk one end in melted chocolate, white chocolate, or almond bark. These are perfect for dunking in coffee, milk or hot chocolate to add a swirl of flavor.

There are few memories as nostalgic as those of a cozy kitchen filled with the smell of baking. Everyone can make their favorite, and you'll have plenty to last the whole holiday season! Baking easy Christmas cookies should be a tradition in every household.

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