You don’t have to be a gourmet baker to have dazzling Christmas cookies. Sometimes all it takes is a little embellishment that anyone can do. Try these simple ways to add pizzazz to your cookies that you can also use for cakes, pies and squares.
A drizzle of white or dark chocolate or even caramel would liven any shortbread cookie. Melt chocolate chips in the microwave and then just use a spoon to drizzle it over the cookies. For the caramel you can use a sundae topping product which usually comes in a squeeze bottle, making it really easy.
Chocolate shavings add a nice touch on top of orange flavored cookies. Just take a square of chocolate and run it over your cheese grater.
You can dip most types of cookies in melted white or dark chocolate. Just dip a corner of the cookie, lay it on wax paper and then put the cookies in the fridge to harden. You could also add a drop of green food coloring and peppermint extract to the melted white chocolate.
A single chocolate covered coffee or espresso bean would add a kick to the top of a brownie.
Small pieces of crushed Oreo cookies will nicely top off a chocolate brownie cookie. Push them down into the warm cookie so they will stick.
A sprinkle or light dusting of cinnamon, nutmeg or pumpkin pie spice will liven up any sugar cookie.
Sugar comes in all different colors and it makes a beautiful decoration whether you sprinkle it over cookies or roll cookie balls in it. You can even make your own colors by adding a drop of food coloring to regular sugar.
Shaved or flaked coconut looks like snow. This would go nicely on a dark or white cookie, maybe on top of melted chocolate.
Put icing sugar in a shaker can and lightly dust a dark cookie. You could even lay down a stencil of a star first and then add the icing sugar so it takes the shape.
Silver dragees or balls and colored pearls will look like ornaments on Christmas tree shaped cookies. You could also add them to the tips on a star cookie.
Stores like Crate and Barrel sell holiday shapes to use on your baked goods such as green trees, mini candy canes, white snowflakes and gingerbread men.
A unwrapped Hershey’s kiss stuck in the center of a peanut butter cookie adds some fun. Place the Hershey’s kiss after you pull the cookies out of the oven and they are slightly warm, not hot.
Scatter a few crushed candy cane pieces on top of a chocolate cookie or square or mix it into your fudge or candy bark.
Replace the chocolate chips in your cookies with red and green M&Ms.
A chunk off of a Toblerone bar is a great topping for a toffee-flavored cookie or square.
Fruit and Nuts
Since raspberries are a festive red color, add a few to the top of cheesecake squares, lightly rolled in icing sugar.
Orange shavings are pretty to add to any vanilla or cranberry cookie. Again, just run the peel of the orange across your cheese grater.
Pecan halves or almonds slices look pretty inserted on top of any fruit flavored cookie.
Candied fruit – such as cherries, lemons, cranberries and apricots – is very festive on any holiday baking. You can find it at the grocery store or online at King Arthur Flour.
Place a small cranberry in the center of a three-leaf sprig of mint and it looks like a sprig of holly berries. Perfect on any iced square.