Did you know exchanging cookies as gifts dates all the way back to the Middle Ages? During this time, families would splurge on expensive ingredients to make cookies, like sugar, lard and butter. Cookies were easier to share than pies and cakes, due to their size and ability to travel. Early Europeans enjoyed making cookies with “traditional” spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and even black pepper in their cookies, along with dried fruits for sweetness. Sound like a recipe you might now? Yep, it’s reminiscent of Easy Gingerbread Cookies, which is a classic Christmas cookie recipe still. (Fun fact: Queen Elizabeth I of England is rumored to be the first person to try making gingerbread men when she had her cookies molded into the shapes of her favorite courtiers.)
Want to get a jumpstart on holiday baking early this year? You can freeze many of our cookie recipes to save you time during the busy month of December. Place unfrosted, baked cookies in containers with tight-fitting lids and freeze for up to a whole year. For frosted cookies, first freeze them uncovered on a baking sheet. This method will prevent the frosted cookies from sticking together. Once frozen, package the frosted cookies between layers of waxed paper in a container for up to 2 months.
To spread even more holiday cheer, browse all our easy Christmas cookie recipes.