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Cookies for Santa: Frosted Sprinkle Cookies

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Simple Christmas Eve cookies for Santa with crisp edges, chewy centers with festive sprinkles and simple vanilla buttercream. These chewy frosted sprinkle cookies are so delicious you might risk the naughty list to eat them yourself!

christmas cookie on a merry christmas plate

Baking with kids can sometimes be a challenge, someone’s stealing sprinkles, another is trying to play in the dry ingredients, you’re vigilantly watching to make sure no one sticks their finger in the mixer….it can be stressful, but these frosted sprinkle cookies are a stress-free bake for the parents and the kiddos. 

  • easy to find ingredients
  • simple to make batter
  • no chill dough
  • makes just over a dozen cookies

Whether you typically reach for the ready to cut sugar cookies at the store or you bake up trays and trays for the holidays, these frosted sprinkle cookies are no fuss and so tasty any skill level can get these right!

labeled ingredients for christmas eve cookies

Santa’s Favorite Cookie

Did you know that Santa has a favorite cookie?! Yep. He does. And they are chewy with delightfully crisp edges, a sweet swipe of frosting and chuck full of sprinkles.

frosted cookies for santa on a wooden platter

As someone who has a long list of to-do’s in a short period of time, Santa can appreciate a recipe that’s sugar cookie in its base and is straightforward and quick. We’re talking no chill time needed on the dough. Plus any type of baked good that brings family together has to be points for the nice list in the big guys eyes, right?

For the frosting, this buttercream is standard and whips up in just a couple of minutes, but if you don’t have the patience for that you can always use a small slather of store bought icing. The nice touch about the homemade buttercream is that it’s not quite as sweet as store bought and after sitting for a bit hardens a touch, which makes the cookies stackable.

spreading frosting on sprinkle cookies

Granted, I’m pretty sure Santa will love any Christmas Eve cookies you bake up – like these salted caramel dreams or bourbon infused gingerbread – but these festive sprinkles are chasing away any grinchy thoughts that sneak up.

Don’t forget the cookies for Santa!

And the milk too, right? Plant-based, traditional, whatever you dip your baked circles of heaven in is good. Maybe some carrots for the reindeer. Granted, I heard they prefer candy canes so maybe both.

cookies for santa on a plate with a cup of milk

There are a few different theories on where the tradition originated. Some tie it back to ancient Norse traditions, more recent theories say it was taught during the Great Depression as a way to give to others and show gratitude for gifts. Baking for others does tend to soothe the soul.

Do you have a go to Christmas Eve tradition? Now that are two girls are in prime tradition building age – 16 months and 4 years – things are really starting to take shape during the holidays, it’s so fun! Shea absolutely loved making these cookies for Santa, even if it was a few days early!

Tell me your traditions and your favorite treats to leave by the fireplace!

kids helping bake cookies



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christmas cookie on a merry christmas plate

Cookies for Santa

  • Author: Lauren
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 42 minutes
  • Yield: 14 cookies 1x


Easy and quick cookies for santa!  Chewy frosted sprinkle cookies are so delicious you might risk the naughty list to eat them yourself!


  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup Christmas sprinkles

Simple Cookie Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 2 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Line two sheet pans with parchment paper.  In a medium size bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar, salt, and set aside.
  2. In a standing mixer or a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 1 minute.  Add the egg and vanilla extract, scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl if needed and beat until combined.
  3. Reduce to low speed and mix in the dry ingredients.  Pour in the sprinkles and mix until just combined.
  4. Using a medium cookie scoop (1.75 inch) or 1 1/2 tablespoons of dough, scoop and roll the cookie dough into balls.  Place on the parchment paper lined cookie sheets with generous space between cookies.  Bake for 12 minutes and let cool for a 5-8 minutes on the cookie sheet before transferring to a wire rack to finish cooling.
  5. While the cookies bake, prepare the frosting.  In a standing mixer or in a medium bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy.  Reduce to low speed, add the vanilla and gradually add the confections sugar.  Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until smooth.
  6. Once the cookies are completely cool, about 15 minutes, spread about 1 tablespoon of frosting on each cookie.  Finish with a sprinkle of your favorite Christmas sprinkles!


  • For evenly baked cookies, bake them 1 tray at a time.
  • If left uncovered, buttercream frosting will start to harden and the cookies can be lightly stacked.
  • Cookies can be left at room temperature for 24 hours.  For longer lasting, fresh cookies store in an air tight container in the fridge…or leave out for Santa!
  • A medium or “#40 cookie scoop” holds about 1 and 1/2 tablespoons cookie dough.  You can use a larger or smaller size but may need to adjust the cook time by a few minutes – less time for smaller cookers and more time for larger cookies.
  • Category: cookies
  • Method: bake
  • Cuisine: american

Keywords: cookies for santa, santa's favorite cookie, christmas cookies, christmas eve cookies, christmas sprinkle cookies

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