Christmas Icebox Cookies Recipe

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Icebox Cookies
Christmas Icebox Cookies

Christmas Icebox Cookies are a tradition in my household.  There are many varieties of cookies that beg to be made, shared, and eaten over the holiday period and these are always a perennial favorite.

The richness of the butter and sugar combined with the slight chewiness of the mixed glazed fruit and currants results in a tasty and flavorful cookie. Use finely chopped fruit and the small currants for these delicate cookies.

Christmas Cookies
Christmas Icebox Cookies

Icebox cookies are very easy to make and don’t take any unusual or difficult-to-find ingredients. The dough gets divided into thirds and then each third is formed into a round log shape, wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or waxed paper and refrigerated for at least 3-4 hours before slicing and baking. This is because the dough needs time to firm up enough to be able to cut clean-edge slices.

Plan ahead and save three empty paper towel cardboard cylinders.  Slit up the length of the cylinders, these make great “sleeves” for the cookie logs and help to keep the shape of the logs round, or reasonably so. Secure the cylinders closed with tape.

Make sure to rotate the cylinders every hour or so during the 3-4 hours of dough chilling as this will help to distribute the weight of the dough and aid in keeping the cookie log round. When ready to bake the cookies, simply unwrap the chilled logs and, with a sharp flat-bladed knife, cut the logs into 1/4″ slices, place on parchment-lined baking sheets, and bake for 8-10 minutes. These cookie logs can be made two to three days in advance of baking and kept in the refrigerator so they are a great make-ahead cookie dough.

Icebox Cookies
Christmas Cookies

One of the great things about icebox cookies is that they can be made ahead and frozen, either before or after baking. Store the unbaked cookie logs in sealed bags in the freezer until they are needed. Simply let the dough sit at room temperature for approximately 30 minutes or so before slicing and baking.  They’re also great to have on hand if unexpected guests drop by – you can pop a pan of the cookies in the oven and have your house smell tantalizing while your guests await fresh-from-the-oven cookies!

These make great host/hostess gifts, too, either baked or unbaked. A festive tin filled with these delectable cookies will be a sure hit with anyone.

Icebox Cookies
Christmas Tin of Icebox Cookies

They’re also fun to package in cute little bags. Who doesn’t love to get a bag with homemade cookies inside!

If you wish to let the host/hostess bake the cookies when they so desire, simply wrap a chilled or frozen cookie log decoratively and include the baking instructions.

Christmas Cookies

Sometimes, I’ll enclose a small log of unbaked cookies in a little decorative bag and add a few of the baked cookies just to whet the recipient’s appetite!

Christmas Cookies
Icebox Cookies

These are easy-to-make, flavorful cookies that are very versatile – they look great on sweet trays, are easy to package in boxes, tins, or bags for gifts, and they are also wonderful treats in lunch bags, too!

[Printable recipe follows at end of posting.]

Christmas Icebox Cookies

Ingredients:

1 cup butter, softened at room temperature
1 2/3 cups brown sugar, lightly packed
2 extra large eggs
1 tsp vanilla

3¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt

1 cup mixed glazed fruit
½ cup currants

Method:

Cream butter and sugar until smooth.  Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Stir in vanilla.

Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together.  Beat into creamed mixture until dry ingredients are combined.  Stir in cherries and currants until blended into dough.

Divide dough into thirds and shape each portion of dough into three separate logs, each approximately 2” in diameter.  Wrap tightly in wax paper or plastic wrap. Slit open 3 empty paper towel cardboard cylinders and place one cookie log in each cylinder.  Draw cylinder sides together and secure the cylinders with masking tape.  Refrigerate cookie logs for 3-4 hours, turning rolls every hour or so to distribute the weight of the logs and to keep the shape round. (Unbaked cookie logs may be stored for 2-3 days in the refrigerator before baking, provided they are stored in sealed plastic bags or airtight containers.)

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. With a sharp knife, slice cookie logs into ¼” thick slices.  Place cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1½” apart.  Bake for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned.  Let cookies cool on sheets for 3-4 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling completely.

Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for longer storage.

Unbaked cookie logs may be frozen in tightly sealed bags or containers for up to 2 months.  Remove logs from freezer and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes or so before slicing and baking as above.

Yield:  Approximately 5½ dozen cookies

Christmas Icebox Cookies Recipe

Yield: Apx. 5 1/2 dozen

Traditional buttery-rich Christmas icebox cookies filled with mixed glazed fruit and currants.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter, softened at room temperature
  • 1 2/3 cups brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 2 extra large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 3¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup mixed glazed fruit
  • ½ cup currants

Instructions

  1. Cream butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla.
  2. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Beat into creamed mixture until dry ingredients are combined. Stir in cherries and currants until blended into dough.
  3. Divide dough into thirds and shape each portion of dough into three separate logs, each approximately 2” in diameter. Wrap tightly in wax paper or plastic wrap. Slit open 3 empty paper towel cardboard cylinders and place one cookie log in each cylinder. Draw cylinder sides together and secure the cylinders with masking tape. Refrigerate cookie logs for 3-4 hours, turning rolls every hour or so to distribute the weight of the logs and to keep the shape round. (Unbaked cookie logs may be stored for 2-3 days in the refrigerator before baking, provided they are stored in sealed plastic bags or airtight containers.)
  4. Preheat oven to 375°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. With a sharp knife, slice cookie logs into ¼” thick slices. Place cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 1½” apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned. Let cookies cool on sheets for 3-4 minutes and then transfer to wire rack to finish cooling completely.
  5. Store in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or freeze for longer storage.
  6. Unbaked cookie logs may be frozen in tightly sealed bags or containers for up to 2 months. Remove logs from freezer and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes or so before slicing and baking as above.
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For more great Christmas cookie recipes, click on the links below:

Marvelous Melting Moments
Molasses Spice Cookies

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Icebox Cookies
Christmas Icebox Cookies
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