It’s that magical time of year again when the air smells like cinnamon, jingles play in every store, and we’re all on a mission to impress the big guy in the red suit. Let’s face it, Santa’s probably had his fill of the same old milk and chocolate chip cookies. So why not spice things up? This year, I’m hosting a holiday cookie exchange party that’s all about creativity, sharing, and, most importantly, indulging in some seriously unique cookies.🍪So let’s talk about how to host your own cookie exchange party, and after that, I’ll provide you with some of my favorite cookie recipes.


Host your very own cookie exchange party! 

What is a Cookie Exchange Party?

Have you ever been to a cookie exchange party? It’s like a casual get-together, but with a delicious twist. Everyone bakes their favorite cookies and brings them over. You spend the evening chatting, munching on a variety of cookies, and at the end, everyone swaps what they’ve brought. So, you walk in with a batch of your signature cookies, and leave with a little bit of everything. It’s a fun, laid-back way to try out new cookie recipes, enjoy some laughs, and of course, load up on enough sweet treats to last through the holiday season.


Festive cookies for your cookie exchange party

Tips for Hosting Your Own Cookie Exchange Party

Hosting a cookie exchange party is the perfect way to celebrate the holiday spirit with friends and family, while also scoring a variety of delicious treats! Here’s how you can throw an unforgettable cookie swap that’ll have everyone buzzing with holiday excitement.

Planning Your Cookie Exchange Party:

  1. Set the Date: Choose a date that works for most of your friends and family. Weekends or evenings a few weeks before Christmas are usually ideal. Remember, you’ll need time to bake your cookies too!
  2. Send Out Invitations: Whether it’s a cute e-invite or a handcrafted card, make sure your invitations reflect the festive and fun nature of the event. Mention the date, time, and any specific theme you’ve chosen for the party.
  3. The Cookie Guidelines: In your invite, specify that cookies should be homemade (it’s all about that personal touch!). Ask guests to avoid common store-bought varieties. Encourage creativity – maybe even suggest a theme, like ‘Holiday Delights’ or ‘Santa’s Favorites’.
  4. Diverse Selection: To ensure a good variety, ask your guests to briefly describe what they plan to bake. This way, you can avoid duplicate cookies and have a spread that’s as diverse as it is delicious.
  5. Baking and Bringing: Suggest that each guest brings about four dozen cookies. This number allows a hearty selection for tasting at the party and plenty for guests to take home.

Setting Up the Cookie Exchange:

  1. The Cookie Display: Arrange a large table where guests can lay out their cookies. If space allows, set up the table in the center of the room so it’s easily accessible from all sides. Provide small cards or tags for guests to label their cookie type and name.
  2. Tasting and Voting: Consider having a tasting segment where everyone gets to sample and vote for their favorite cookie. You could even have small prizes for the most creative, the tastiest, and the prettiest cookies.
  3. Packaging Station: Set up a corner with boxes, bags, and ribbons for guests to pack a variety of cookies to take home. This adds a fun and interactive element to your party.
  4. Refreshments: While cookies are the stars of the show, don’t forget to provide other refreshments. Tea, coffee, and milk are classic choices. You could also have some savory snacks to balance the sweetness.
  5. Recipe Exchange: Encourage guests to bring copies of their cookie recipes. This way, everyone can share not only cookies but also the joy of baking them.


For Your Consideration: Some Amazing Cookie Recipes

Nutella Chip Cookies

Cripsy cookies with melty nutella chips

First up are these dreamy Nutella Chip Cookies, a little piece of heaven from my pal, The Ivory Hut. Imagine the creamy richness of Nutella meeting the classic charm of chocolate chips – it’s a combo that’ll have Santa doing a double-take. Trust me, these cookies are a game-changer!

Chocolate Cake S’mores Cookies

S'mores AND cookies? Who says you can't have the best of both worlds?

This recipe is from my friend Jenny Flake’s The Picky Palate Cookbook, and it’s called Chocolate Cake S’mores Cookies

You might be wondering, why is the word “cake” in the title if they’re cookies? Well, Chocolate Cake S’mores Cookies are made with cake mix. Yup, boxed devil’s food cake mix, whisked with eggs, brown sugar and butter. The batter is thick, just like cookie batter. Then you get to decorate the cookies with bits of graham cracker, mini marshmallows and a mini bar of chocolate. Bon appetit!

Mimi’s Shortbread Cookies

There's nothing quite like Mimi's Shortbread Cookies

Do you ever find yourself craving that warm and fuzzy feeling of nostalgia? The kind that comes from the scent of freshly baked cookies, just like the ones grandma used to make? Well, you’re in for a treat because we’re diving headfirst into a classic: Mimi’s Shortbread Cookies.

These buttery, crumbly delights are a sweet journey back in time, evoking memories of cozy kitchens and cherished moments. So, grab your apron, channel your inner Mimi, and let’s whip up a batch of these timeless treats… “for Santa”, of course. 😉

Shortbread Cookies with Nutella, Banana, and Almonds

Easy and quick to whip us, these shortbread cookies are delicious!

(This one is just for you.)

You did it. You conquered the Christmas chaos. You rocked the cookie exchange, and channeled your inner chef for what feels like an eternity. Now, it’s time to let your apron rest and treat yourself—no baking required! Picture this: store-bought shortbread cookies (because, let’s be real, who’s got time for from-scratch right now?), a generous dollop of Nutella, some banana slices for a hint of virtuousness, and a sprinkle of almonds for that “I deserve this” touch. Assemble these Shortbread Cookies with Nutella, Banana, and Almonds in a mere 10 minutes, or hoard them all for yourself. We won’t judge!


This is a cookie lineup that’s sure to bring smiles and maybe even a few extra points on the ‘Nice’ list. But let’s not forget the real joy of this season: sharing these moments with friends, family, and, of course, a certain someone with a penchant for chimney travel. Happy baking and here’s to a festive, fun, and cookie-filled holiday season! 🎅🍪🎉