Holiday Cookie Exchange

Yesterday I went to my first ever cookie exchange party! I actually hadn’t heard of them until recently, but they’re a pretty neat idea. Almost like a Tupperware party, but with baked goods you get to take home, with recipes to try them yourself!

One of my good friends at work invited me to her sister’s cookie exchange, which immediately made me nervous; what type of cookie was I going to bring?! What if they didn’t turn out good? What if I picked something someone was allergic to or didn’t like? All that aside, I was looking online earlier in the week for some inspiration, and found one of Betty Crocker’s Holiday cookie recipes. This particular recipe was actually from a contest, so I figured they would be good.

The cookies were Choco-Hazelnut Latte Cookies. And let me tell you, you can taste the chocolate, the hazelnut and the latte without a doubt! Since I’m an absolute chocolate and coffee fanatic, I knew these would definitely be delicious. To top off the appeal, they used sugar cookie mix, which cut down about half of my prep time, making it much easier to make Sunday morning for the party later that afternoon.

After getting all of the ingredients, I set to work. I think the hardest part was mixing all of the ingredients together, and then getting them onto the pan without breaking. They were super soft and mushy, which for me is a favorite quality of cookies. After the mixing, I really just had to wait… and wait. It was worth it though! They are so rich and delicious, that I definitely think more than one or two would be way too much. But I recommend them to everyone! You can find the recipe below 🙂

As for everyone else’s treats, there were some really interesting and delicious cookies. There were lemon zest sugar cookies, lemon bars (made with tofu!), cream cheese cookies, Snickers cookies, peanut butter blossoms, Chinese chews, peanut butter chocolate balls, and more! The best part was that I got to bring a sampling of each home in cute little goodie bags. My boyfriend definitely liked that part!

Below you’ll find some pictures, as well as my recipe and some of my favorites from the event!

Choco-Hazelnut Latte Cookies (courtesy of Betty Crocker):


1      pouch (1 lb 1.5 oz) Betty Crocker® sugar cookie mix
1/3   cup unsweetened baking cocoa
3      tablespoons instant coffee granules or crystals
1/2   cup butter or margarine, softened
3      tablespoons hazelnut-flavored syrup for beverages (from 12.7-oz bottle)
1  egg
1 1/2   cups toasted hazelnuts, chopped*
1  cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
2/3   cup Betty Crocker® Rich & Creamy chocolate frosting (from 1-lb container)
4 1/2  teaspoons hazelnut-flavored syrup for beverages (from 12.7-oz bottle)

1.     Heat oven to 350°F. In large bowl, stir together cookie mix, cocoa and instant coffee. Add butter, 3 tablespoons syrup and the egg; stir until soft dough forms. Stir in 1 cup of the nuts and the chocolate chips.
2.     On ungreased cookie sheets, drop dough with rounded 1 1/2 tablespoon-size cookie scoop or by rounded tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart. Press each mound to flatten slightly.
3.     Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set. Cool 3 minutes; remove from cookie sheets to cooling racks. Cool completely, about 15 minutes.
4.     In small bowl, stir frosting and 4 1/2 teaspoons syrup. Spread about 1 teaspoon frosting on each cookie. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup nuts.

*To toast hazelnuts, heat oven to 350°F. Spread nuts in ungreased shallow pan. Bake uncovered 6 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until light brown

The results:

My other two favorite super simple cookie recipes (though they were all good!) are below:

Chinese Chews:

2 cups Butterscotch bits
1 cup chocolate bits
1 can Chinese noodles

In double boiler, combine the butterscotch & chocolate bits till melted. Remove from heat & add Chinese noodles. Drop 1/2 teaspoon of mixture onto waxed paper, cool 2 hours.

Cream Cheese Cookies:

1/4 cup of butter
8 oz. package of cream cheese
1/4 tablespoon of vanilla extract
1 egg
1 package of cake mix (yellow)

Cream together cream cheese and butter, followed by all other ingredients
Bake at 375 for 8-1 minutes

Happy Holiday baking everyone!

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