The 12 Cookies of Christmas! (with dietary options)

Well, kids, the holidays are almost here! I’ve been thinking of my own version of The 12 Days of Christmas:

On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

The 12 vegan cookies of Christmas! by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen


Yep, I’ll take 12 days of vegan cookies over maids-a-milking and lords-a-leaping! How about you?

I thought so. 😀

These are my 12 top vegan cookie selections for you – for gifting, cookie exchanges, or just for you to enjoy! I offer the dietary labels for each, to help you identify cookies that are gluten-free, raw, nut-free, oil-free/plant-strong, and soy-free.

So, let’s pull out our fancy holiday aprons and get baking!

1. “Snifferdoodles” Dietary: soy-free, nut-free

Lightly spiced, but not as spicy as gingerbreads, these snickerdoodle cookies are festive and loved by kids and adults alike. They have just the right amount of sweetness, and are very special for gifting. If you love the flavor of anise, try the Biscochitos variation.

Snifferdoodles (aka Snickerdoodles) from Let Them Eat Vegan by Dreena Burton, Plant

Snifferdoodles, photo credit:

2.  Creamed Cheese Brownies with Salted Dark Chocolate Topping Dietary: soy-free

These are brownies to make when you want to WOW friends or guests. The ‘cream cheese’ filling is not made with vegan cream cheese, but rather a cashew blend. You’ll just have to make ’em to believe how good they are! (p.s. Many of you have emailed me loving the Gingery Cookies that are also pictured here. If you have LTEV, add those to your baking list too!)

Creamed Cheese Brownies with Salted Dark Chocolate Topping - from LTEV by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

3. Award-Winning Frosted B-raw-nies Dietary: raw, oil-free, gluten-free, soy-free

I talk about these a lot. For good reason. They are yummy. Easy. Gluten-free and raw, and sweetened with only dates and pure maple syrup. I know many of you already love these. If you haven’t tried them, it’s really time. Really. If you’d like something chocolatey like these b-raw-nies, but cannot have nuts, try the nut-free modification in my Cocoa Cookie Dough Balls. You can press the mix into a pan rather than make balls – and yep, you can top them with the frosting used for the b-raw-nies!

Award-Winning Frosted B-raw-nies, from LTEV by Dreena Burton - Plant-Powered Kitchen

4. Sticky Almond Blondies. We have brownies, we must have blondies! I absolutely love these, they are so dense and satisfying, and yet made with whole-foods ingredients and also gluten-free. They are in my Plant-Powered 15 ebook, which many of you have. The Coconut Pillows are another to try – very easy to make!

Sticky Almond Blondies by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

5. Homestyle Chocolate Chip Cookies Dietary: soy-free, nut-free, gluten-free (link through to GF version)

My original version of these cookies might be my most popular cookie recipe ever. They are a cinch to make, and please just about everyone! The ultimate classic chocolate chip cookie recipe, just made much healthier and of course, vegan. For those needing a gluten-free version, I’ve got you covered.

Homestyle Chocolate Chip Cookies by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

photo credit:

6. Chocolate Mint Melties Dietary: nut-free, soy-free

Think of these as your double-chocolate-mint-infused cousin of the Homestyle Chocolate Chip Cookies. If you enjoy that chocolate-mint combo, you just must make these!

Chocolate Mint Melties by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

7. Nicer Krispie Squares Dietary: gluten-free, soy-free, oil-free

No kidding, these look and taste SO much like traditional rice krispie squares. Not just made vegan, but made withOUT vegan marshmallows or margarine. I think these are one of my most inventive cookie recipes ever, and I have a nut-free version coming in my next cookbook. I want everyone to enjoy these!

Nicer Krispie Squares by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

8. Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies Dietary: soy-free, oil-free

These are a robust cookie, nutty and oaty, but still sweet enough to be a pure cookie treat. You can also substitute nut butters, and I offer a nut-free modification as well!

Oatmeal Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

9. Lemon-Kissed Blondie Bites Dietary: soy-free, oil-free, gluten-free option

When you’ve had enough of chocolate (did I just write that?) and want a sweet treat that tastes bright and vibrant and not sugary – these wee bites are just the thing! I think they are lovely for gifting too!

Lemon-Kissed Blondie Bites by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

10. Raw Chai Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting Dietary: soy-free, raw, oil-free, gluten-free

There are some hidden gems in LTEV, and this is one of them. I hope to eventually bring you photos of all the recipes in that book because the photo is what usually inspires us to try the recipe! My thanks to Lisa Pitman for the visual inspiration to try these yummy bars…

Raw Chai Bars with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting - photo by Lisa Pitman

Photo credit: Lisa Pitman,

11. Gingerbread Folks

What’s Christmas without Gingerbread? These are not too spicy, and not overly fussy to make. Decorate as simply or elaborately as you like!

Gingerbread Folks by Dreena Burton, plant-powered kitchen

12. Vanilla Bean Almond Fudge

Ok, I cheated just a little. This recipe is coming next week. It’s worth the wait, promise! #suchatease 😉

Vanilla Bean Almond Fudge by Dreena Burton, Plant-Powered Kitchen

I can’t finish just yet. A post about gifting cookies and treats just isn’t complete without mentioning the new Edible Gifts ebook from Nicole Axworthy and Lisa Pitman.


I adore these ladies, and adore their new ebook. Beautifully designed and filled with imaginative and exciting recipes. If you love to gift goodies, during the holidays or anytime of year, have a look at this book. You will really enjoy it!

Do you have a very favorite Christmas cookie? Or, do you have a cookie that is your signature holiday cookie? Or a Christmas baking tradition? Let’s hear it! (and stay tuned for that almond fudge!) xx 


  1. Nida says

    The frosted B-raw-nies are my absolute favorite! Already made the Nicer Krispie Squares and the Lemon Kissed Blondie Bites, very delicious!

    Tried to make the chocolate chip cookies once, but that didn’t work out, oops :-) Have to try that again. And really want to try the Almond Blondies, those look yummy!

    Fantastic recipes, Dreena, thanks!

  2. Jenny says

    Thank you for this blog Dreena! I made your Gingerbread People and Homestyle Chocolate Chip cookies today in preparation for the holidays this week and both were fantastic! The chocolate chip cookies remind me so much of the cookies my neighbor used to make for me while I was growing up- surely those were full of eggs and butter though! Thanks for making a great website that I visit often for inspiration!

  3. Tracy says

    Thanks for the list, they look great. One thing, I was psyched to see a link for Gluten Free Chocolate Chip cookies, but when I went to the recipe, it is not gluten free, it has a wheat free option with spelt, but that is not gluten free, did I miss something?

    • Dreena says

      Tracy, thanks for spotting that! I had intended to put in the link to the GF version where I wrote “I got you covered”, but forgot at the time. It’s there now! Thanks again.

  4. says

    You’re amazing, Dreena! I was so impressed by reading this lovely list of cookies ideas (I still need to make some for the holidays) and then I see you mention the ebook! Wowzers. Thank you so much!

  5. says

    Perfect timing! I’m trying to finalize my menu and the old cookie favorites from my childhood just don’t cut it anymore. Several of them (Gingerbread Folks, Sugar Cut Outs and “Hello Vegan” Bars) have a replacement now…thanks to you. :) I’m going to veganize one of my own (Mexican Wedding Cakes…ever heard of them? They are a type of shortbread cookie made into a ball rolled in powdered sugar.) I made the Mint Chocolate Melties last year and that’s now a staple for Christmas. I was looking for something fudgie (can’t wait for the vanilla fudge recipe!!) and something new! There aren’t many recipes I haven’t tried, but how could I have missed the Chai bars?! That’s going on the menu!

    Thanks!! <3
    Christine Magiera recently posted..Recipe! Corn RisottoMy Profile

    • Dreena says

      awww, you are so kind Christine. It’s very special to know that some of my goodies are becoming holiday favorites for you. Yes, I *have* heard of Mexican Wedding Cakes – but I haven’t ever made them. (why? oh why???) I’ll have to catch up with you about those, see if you make them and how they turned out! Happy baking my dear! xo

  6. Laurie says

    Dreena, you are a cookie genius!! I just made your Coconut Pillows from your Plant Powered 15 cookbook and they are DELICIOUS!!! I love that your recipe contains no added oil. I will definitely triple the recipe next time! Thank you so much and Merry Christmas!

  7. Becky S says

    When I click on the snickerdoodle recipe it comes up with the chocolate chip recipe. Can you include the snickerdoodle recipe please…I would love one. Thanks so much

  8. says

    You truly are my BEST FRIEND! Thank you so much for posting your top cookies for us. I cannot wait to devour these bad boys. Your recipes NEVER disappoint, and I always look forward to each new recipe of yours I try. Headed to the kitchen now, to see what I have on hand. Fingers and toes crossed I can make something SOON :) May you and your family have a Merry Christmas!

    • Dreena says

      Lol, you crack me up Laura! Happy to provide the baking inspiration. You’re very kind to say that, and I hope you find a few faves in the bunch! Merry Christmas to you too!…
      Signed, your bcff 😉

    • Dreena says

      I know, Shannon, think I put myself on the naughty list doing that. :) Thanks – you’ll be able to enjoy it very soon!

    • Dreena says

      Thanks Kim! I haven’t started holiday baking yet either, apart from testing out the almond fudge, and um, testing out the best chocolate to use in cookies. 😉 Thanks for the note, happy baking!

    • Dreena says

      Oh thanks, Anna. I know you’ve been enjoying LTEV, I so appreciate your feedback. I’ve been eating so much dark chocolate lately, the citrus and vanilla treats are really calling my name (just the chocolate shouts so loud most days)! #shhh 😉
      Hope your kiddos like the bars – that’s awesome they enjoy some spice! Enjoy!!

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