Last-Minute Holiday Cookies to Impress Your Guests


Nick Vasquez

While they may not appear impressive at first glance, chocolate chunk marshmallow cookies will appeal to a variety of party-goers.

Festive cookie making and tasting are perfect for the holiday season. Something about homemade, oven-baked cookies never fails to bring joy to children and adults alike. Holidays are true smile makers, and cookies are just another form of spreading happiness all around. 

Buying cookies is easy; just go to any local grocery store or bakery and sift through the sea of packages and brands. But if you are craving for a fresh batch straight from the oven, then here are two recipes to try.

With that in mind, I set out to create some unique holiday cookies, searching until I finally found two recipes to put to the test. I tested the difficulty  for a beginner baker like me, the overall look, and the most important part: the taste! 

It’s important to note that when baking these cookies, you can add your own holiday spin and flavors, but to guarantee the best results follow the recipe exactly. 

The first cookie recipe is from “Mama Needs Cake.” These chocolate chunk marshmallow cookies combine a delicious firemade desert with a humble cookie. Firstly, the recipe was easy to follow and make and the mixture was very easy to bake with as well. The process was neat, and the total time it took was only 37 minutes — great for a last minute bake before a holiday party. 

The only addition I would make to the recipe is more detailed instruction on the spacing of the cookie dough when going into the oven. For a beginner who might not be aware, the cookies expanded quite a bit in the oven. 

The chocolate and marshmallows made a nice warm cookie that reminded me of the comfort of hot chocolate on a cold winter’s night. Overall, these cookies would surely make anyone’s holiday gathering a great event.

Chocolate Chunk Marshmallow Cookies


  1. 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  2. 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
  3. 1/4 cup sugar
  4. 1 egg, large
  5. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  6. 1 1/2 cups flour
  7. 1 tsp baking soda
  8. 1/2 tsp baking powder
  9. 1/2 tsp salt
  10. 1 ½ cup chocolate chunks, plus extra for topping
  11. 1 ½ cup mini marshmallows, plus extra for topping


  1. Preheat oven to 350° and spray cookie sheet with non-stick spray.
  2. Beat together softened butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until smooth.
  3. Add in egg and vanilla extract and mix.
  4. Slowly add in flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  5. Gently blend ingredients together without over mixing.
  6. Using a spoon, gently stir in chocolate chunks and mini marshmallows.
  7. Using a cookie scoop, drop onto greased cookie sheet.
  8. Bake for about 11 minutes or until tops and edges of cookies are golden.
  9. Let cookies cool before moving to wire racks to cool completely.

The next recipe, sugar cookie trees from “Good Housekeeping,”  is much more difficult to make, but when done right, ends up looking impressive. Sugar cookies are an iconic staple of the holiday season, and this creative recipe claims a fluffy mixture to create a yummy cookie. After baking, these sugar cookies can also be stacked to form a nice sugar cookie tree. 

Upon looking at the recipie, it seems very simple. However, it is quite the opposite as this recipe took almost twice as long to make, with a total start to finish time of 1 hour and 10 minutes. 

The final product was a sweet, flat cookie with a bland taste. The cookie did not look anything like the picture, and the taste was a bit disappointing. Overall this recipe was very difficult to make and did not turn out as intended. I would not recommend this recipe to a beginner, and while the pictured cookie may look visually appealing, the end result for me, was nothing like a tree.

Sugar Cookie Trees


  1. 2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  2. ½ tsp baking powder
  3. ¼ tsp kosher salt
  4. 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temp
  5. ¾ cup sugar
  6. 1 egg, large
  7. 1 ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  8. green gel food coloring
  9. cookie cutters, graduated, round
  10. star cookie cutter, small
  11. royal icing
  12. Rolo chocolate covered caramels
  13. confectioners’ sugar for dusting


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
  2. In another large bowl, using an electric mixer on high speed, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Beat in egg and then vanilla.
  3. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add flour mixture, mixing just until incorporated. Divide dough into 4 portions. Keep portions wrapped in plastic while coloring.
  4. Working with 1 portion at a time, add a couple of drops of green food coloring to dough and mix until fully incorporated. (Tip: Tint slightly darker than you desire; cookies will bake up lighter.) Roll between 2 sheets of parchment paper to 1/8 inch thick. Chill until firm, 30 minutes in the refrigerator or 15 minutes in the freezer. Repeat with remaining dough.
  5. Heat oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Using floured cookie cutters, cut out cookies. Place on prepared sheets. Reroll, chill and cut scraps.
  6. Bake, rotating positions of baking sheets halfway through, until cookies are light golden brown around edges, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool on sheets 5 minutes before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.
  7. Use royal icing to “glue” cookies together in tree shapes with stars at top and chocolate caramels as trunks. Dust with confectioners’ sugar if desired.