Holiday Cocktail & Cookie Swap

Enjoy cocktails and a holiday cookie swap with Love and Lemons and Crate and Barrel. Includes two cookie recipes and a cocktail recipe!

Holiday Cookie Swap / Love & Lemons + Crate & Barrel Cookies & Cocktails w/ Holiday Drinkware

For as long as I can remember, my family’s Christmas season officially started with cookies. Before we were even tall enough to reach the countertop, my mom would pull over kitchen chairs so my sister and I could “help” out and get our hands in the flour. She would get out the baking sheets, the ingredients, and the flour-dusted recipes that were reserved only for the holiday season. We’d bake batch after batch after batch, eating more cookie dough than actual cookies.

This year, to kick off our holiday season, I created a little cookie & cocktail party taking inspiration from my family cookie memories. And we’ve partnered with Crate and Barrel to share a few cocktail and cookie recipe ideas and tips to create a sweet gathering of your own.

pictured above: Hatch Rocks & Shot Glasses, Snowflake Coasters

Holiday Cookie Swap /

Create your Cookie Swap: 

After a quick google search, I’ve learned that some people have some pretty serious Cookie Swap rules. I personally don’t think rules and parties go together so here are just some of my tips to help get you started:

– Invite some friends who have a big sweet tooth. There’s no calorie counting at this party! The more people you invite, the more cookie varieties you’ll have.

– Ask each person to bring one batch (about 2 dozen) homemade cookies and a tin or storage container to take cookies home in.

 – Make a fun & festive cocktail but I like to keep it simple. I made a Blood Orange and Bourbon Cocktail with a sprig of rosemary.

– Set up platters for guests to place their cookies so everyone can share cookies and swap recipes.

pictured above: Nesting Mixing Bowl, Stainless Steel Measuring Cup, Mini Silicone Spatula-Spoon Set

Holiday Cookie Swap /

The Cookies:

My mom and I spent an afternoon baking some of our family favorites: this Spritz cookie is my family’s signature cookie. It’s a light buttery cookie flavored with sweet almond extract. Create fun shapes using a Cookie Press – the poinsettia flower shape was always our favorite. We also made vegan sugar cookies, pistachio truffles (which are also vegan), and pecan turtle bars.

pictured above & below: Round Storage Bowl SetBoxed 6” Appetizer Plates, Lumi Batik Cocktail NapkinsJingle Cookies for Santa Platter

Cookie Swap Holiday Decor / Love & Lemons + Crate & Barrel

And don’t forget some cookies for the dogs – ours are always looking for handouts!

Peppermint Bark Dog Treats /

 Peppermint Bark Dog Treats

4.8 from 4 reviews

Holiday Cocktail & Cookie Swap (recipe: vegan sugar cookies)

Recipe type: dessert
Serves: 1-2 dozen cookies, depending on your cookie cutters
  • 1 cup Earth Balance vegan margarine, at room temp
  • 1 ½ cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 ½ cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  1. With an electric mixer, beat margarine until creamy. Mix in powdered sugar until creamy, and then add almond milk, vanilla and almond extract. Combine flour, baking soda and baking powder. Gradually add dry ingredients to wet ingredients until blended. Spoon dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap. Wrap dough and refrigerate at least two hours.
  2. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Divide dough in half. On a floured surface, roll each half to ¼ inch thickness. Use cookie cutters to cut into desired shapes.
  3. Bake 7 to 8 minutes. Let cool and frost (optional).

4.8 from 4 reviews
Blood Orange & Bourbon Cocktail
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Cocktail
Serves: 1 cocktail
  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • 2-3 dashes of Angostura bitters
  • a squeeze of orange, plus an orange slice for garnish
  • rosemary sprig, for garnish
  • ice
  1. Fill a tumbler glass with ice. Pour the bourbon, bitters, orange juice and stir. Add an orange slice and a sprig of rosemary and stir.

4.8 from 4 reviews
Spritz Cookies
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: approx. 2 dozen
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2¼ cups flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • colored sanding sugar
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 F and set aside 2 ungreased baking sheets.
  2. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter until creamy. Add the sugar and mix well. Add the egg and almond extract and mix until smooth.
  3. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients and mix well.
  4. Spoon dough into a cookie press and follow the instructions on the press to create shaped cookies. If the dough becomes too sticky, chill it in the fridge to firm up.
  5. Sprinkle cookies with sanding sugar and bake 8-10 minutes.


This post was created in partnership with Crate & Barrel. All words, opinions and images are my own.


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Rate this recipe (after making it):  

  1. Mary from

    very cute…Great idea, I cant wait to try these.

  2. Theresa from

    What great ideas! The cookies are so cute. This year I am definitely going to give a few Christmas tins of goodies out!

    I would love if you checked out my blog –

  3. Christine from

    Ooh cocktails! These sound so delicious! I think you’ve just made the traditional cookie swap 100x more fun

  4. ooh, i love spritz cookies 🙂 i have the best memories of me and my mom making them and the cookie gun exploding everywhere LOL. my fave spritz shape was always the christmas trees.

    lovely post as always jeanine. hopefully we can exchange cookies irl one day!

    • jeanine

      ha, the trees were our second favorite (they were always batch #2!)

  5. Jessica from

    Love this idea! I think I’ll do the same thing with my friends. Thanks for the tips!

  6. Brittany from

    Love participating in cookie swaps! Excited to try some new recipes this year 🙂

    Beautiful photos!

  7. Regina from

    That’s such a great idea, who does not love cookies, specially at Christmas time?

    These photos are beautiful & inspiring 🙂

  8. Cassandra

    Your dog is adorable, what breed is he or she?

    • jeanine

      thanks! She’s a Shiba Inu

  9. I may be doing a swap for the first time ever this year. I had no idea of the specifics, thanks for the tips! Those pistachio truffles look amazing!

    • jeanine

      of course, thanks! I tried to keep it simple – but I did have a fun time reading about some crazy serious rules.

  10. ooh man this is so much fun!!! cookie swaps have always held a place in my heart, but BOOZY COOKIE SWAPS? consider it done.

    • jeanine

      Ha, thanks Molly 🙂

  11. Mandy

    The pistachio truffles are vegan too! Yay…

  12. Love cookie swap parties. Such a fun way to kick off the holidays. And what is better than an almond flavored butter cookie?!

  13. These photos are gorgeous, such a beautiful post! I hadn’t seen your recipe for pistachio truffles before, definitley will be giving those a try… love the combination of pistachio and chocolate.

  14. Holly from

    This is such a cute idea. I’m definitely going to try it this season! Also love the pictures.

  15. Beautiful! How do we get an invite to this lovely little party? Hehe.

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.