Photo: Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas; Food Styling: Torie Cox
Active Time
30 Mins
Total Time
3 Hours 5 Mins
Yield
2 dozen

If you have a neighborhood cookie swap or church social on your calendar this season, these sandwich cookies are sure to be a hit. Cookies and bars are always crowd-pleasers—and make great handmade gifts for friends and family during the holidays. Choose a gingersnap or linzer from this lineup of Christmas treats if you want to include some of the classic holiday cookies on your dessert tray as well.

How to Make It

Step 1

Prepare the Chocolate Sugar Cookie Dough:  Beat butter and sugar with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat on medium until combined, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Melt chocolate chips according to package directions, and cool. Add to butter-sugar mixture; beat on low until blended.

Step 2

Stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. With mixer running on low speed, add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating until just incorporated. Cover dough; chill 1 hour.

Step 3

Prepare the Cookies: Preheat oven to 350°F. Shape dough into 48 (1-inch) balls. Place sparkling sugar in a shallow bowl. Roll each ball in sparkling sugar; place 2 inches apart onto 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Gently flatten dough balls to 1/2-inch thickness. Bake in preheated oven until cookies are dry to the touch, about 8 minutes. Cool on baking sheets 2 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely, about 30 minutes.

Step 4

Prepare the Filling: While cookies cool, beat unsalted butter and cream cheese with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer on medium speed until creamy, 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low, and, with mixer running, gradually add powdered sugar, beating until smooth. Beat in heavy cream, vanilla extract and peppermint extract.

Step 5

Using a small food-safe paint brush, paint 3 lengthwise stripes of red food coloring gel on the inside of a piping bag fitted with a large star tip. Fill bag with frosting. Pipe frosting onto half of cookies, and sandwich with remaining cookies. Refrigerate 15 minutes before serving to firm up frosting.