Classic Spritz Cookies
Classic Spritz Cookies are the ultimate Christmas cookie. Made using a cookie press and a variety of disks they are a quick and easy way to add elegance to a holiday cookie tray. Top the buttery cookies with colorful sugars and sprinkles to produce festive treats in no time.
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Easy Spritz Cookies
Today I’m sharing one of my favorites, Spritz Cookies. These classic nostalgic cookies may not have all the fanfare of other cookies with their gooey fillings and candy mix-ins, but don’t let them fool you. Not only are they beautiful cookies, but they also have wonderful buttery flavor with just a hint of almond flavoring. They are a soft yet slightly crisp cookie, as long as you don’t over bake them, that just melt in your mouth. Fair warning….you won’t be able to stop eating at just one.
Once you get the hang of how to use a cookie press, you’ll see that it’s a lot of fun and you can make a high volume of cookies in a flash.
These fun little cookies aren’t just for Christmas either………they can be made in all kinds of shapes, sizes, and colors for any event or holiday.
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What are Spritz Cookies?
Spritz cookies are small delicate cookies that are similar to sugar cookies and shortbread. They are buttery and sweet, but not overly sweet. Unlike sugar cookies that are shaped with a cookie cutter, spritz cookies are shaped by using a cookie press.
The name Spritz Cookies comes from the German word spritzen, which translated into English means “to squirt”. Spritzgebäck is a very common type of German cookie made of flour, butter, sugar, and eggs. They’re somewhat dry but incredibly buttery and delicious. It’s a tradition for a lot of families to gather together and bake the classic cookies during the Christmas season.
How To Make the Ultimate Spritz Cookies
(full printable recipe at the end of this post)
Step 1: Make and Color Your Cookie Dough
Start by gathering all of your cookie ingredients listed in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. Using a large bowl and electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar on medium-high until fluffy; add egg, milk, vanilla, and almond extracts and beat on high speed until well combined, scraping sides of the bowl down as needed. Gradually add the flour and baking powder and beat until combined.
If you want to have some fun with these spritz cookies and make them extra festive, color the dough using a few drops of food coloring. Just be careful not to use too much food color or your dough will become too sticky. I prefer gel food color because you don’t need as much. If you want to use more than one color, simply divide your dough into equal parts, then add the food color and mix well.
Step 2: Shape Your Spritz Cookies
The best part of these festive Christmas spritz cookies is the amazing designs that make them look like they came right out of an expensive bakery. Using a cookie press can seem intimidating at first, but by following these simple steps you’ll be a cookie press pro in no time!
How to use a cookie press:
Filling Your Press: Before filling your press, make sure all the pieces have been washed and dried. Pull the plunger all the way up to the top of the press. Using clean hands, fill the barrel with your room-temperature prepared dough. Place your desired disk, into the base of the press, then screw the base onto the barrel.
Using Your Press: Hold the cookie press upright and give it a couple of presses to help push the dough down. Rest the bottom of the press firmly against an ungreased cookie sheet. Squeeze trigger to release the dough and form the shape of your cookie. Gently lift the press to release the dough and move on to the next cookie.
- Do not chill the dough before using. The dough should be at room temperature so it can be piped through the press. If the dough was frozen or refrigerated prior, allow it to come back to room temperature before piping it through the press.
- Use consistent, even pressure to push the dough onto the pan—don’t overload each cookie. If 1 full click isn’t working, 1½ clicks will usually work.
- Remember, it’s not the cookie press that is releasing the dough, it’s the dough sticking to the pan. After clicking, slowly lift the cookie press to release the cookie. Take your time.
- You need a cool (not warm) non-greasy cookie sheet, no parchment (parchment will make the cookie spread) – you can even chill your pans if they are warm.
- If any of your cookies come out misshapen, just put the dough back in the bowl and reuse it.
- Don’t have a cookie press? You can still make spritz cookies! Fill a pastry bag fitted with a star tip with the cookie dough and create a swirl design. Another option is to place the cookie dough into a zip-top bag, snip the corner of the bag off, and use that to pipe out cookies into a swirl on the baking sheet.
- Avoid adding ingredients like nuts or dried fruits to this spritz cookie dough, BUT you can add things like: chopped nuts, candied fruits, currants, small candies, or candied fruit peels to the cookies before baking.
Step Three: Get Creative and Decorate!
While technically you can skip this step if you really want to, but you have to admit, they are more fun with sprinkles and color. Decorating your spritz cookies is almost as fun as eating them! There are endless possibilities when it comes to how to decorate your beautiful pressed cookies.
Here are just a few of the ways to decorate:
- Sprinkle cookies in colorful sprinkles, sanding sugar, candied pearls, or jimmies before baking
- Before baking, sprinkle unbaked cookies with cinnamon and sugar
- Drizzle or dip baked cookies with melted chocolate
- Top baked spritz cookies with a vanilla glaze (powdered sugar and milk)
- Add sprinkles to cookies with melted chocolate or glaze.
Step Four: Perfectly Bake Your Cookies
We’re finally nearing the finish line. You’ve made it past the cookie press phase and now it’s time for the grand finale. Prep your oven, press out your cookie dough, and watch your spritz cookies come to life.
For the best results, do not use parchment paper or cooking spray when baking these cookies. As long as you use a non-stick baking sheet, the spritz cookies will easily release from the cookie press without any problems.
Since spritz cookies don’t spread a lot feel free to place them closer together on the pan. You should only need about 1½-inch of space between each cookie on the baking sheet. Once your pan is full, place it in the oven and bake until the edges are ever so lightly brown. Remove the pan from the oven and let the cookies cool on a wire rack to cool completely.
You can make spritz cookie dough ahead of time and refrigerate it in an airtight container for up to one week – but be sure to bring it back to room temp when ready to press and bake. To freeze the dough – wrap in plastic wrap, then in a ziptop bag, and place in the freezer for up to 2 months.
These cookies are sure to be a hit on your holiday cookie tray!
More Classic Christmas Cookie Recipes
Easy Holiday Rum Balls – Tender, pecan-filled truffle-like treat that is for adults only. Made with dark rum, they are a delicious way to spread holiday cheer.
Peppermint Surprise Crinkle Cookies – Super soft chocolate cookies hold a peppermint surprise in the center
Snowman Cookies – Make a simple and fun decorated snowman cookie with royal icing.
Eggnog Cookies with Eggnog Buttercream – This deliciously soft spice cookie infused with eggnog and spiked with a touch of rum is always a cookie tray favorite!
Soft-Baked Christmas Sprinkle Cookies – Soft-Baked Christmas Sprinkle Cookies have all the deliciousness of a vanilla pudding cookie packed with Christmas sprinkles.
Christmas Gooey Butter Cookies – A Christmas cookie twist on the favorite St. Louis Gooey Butter Cake. These melt in your mouth cookies are soft and totally irresistible!
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- 1½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg , room temperature
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- food coloring (optional)
- sprinkles (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400° F.
- Using a large bowl and electric mixer, cream butter and sugar on medium-high until fluffy (about 2 minutes); add egg, milk, vanilla and almond extracts and beat on high speed until well combined (about 1 minute) scraping sides of the bowl down as needed.
- Gradually add the flour and baking powder and beat until combined.
- Dough will be very stiff. If you want to color the dough, divide your dough and add color now and mix well.
- Push dough into the cookie press fitted with desired disk and press shapes onto ungreased non-stick cookie sheet about 2-inches apart. You can press sprinkles into the cookies before baking.
- Bake for 6 minutes, until edges are lightly golden-brown. Allow cookie to cool on the pan for 3-5 minutes, then transfer cookies to a cooling rack to cool completely. Cookies will stay fresh in an air-tight container for 1 week.
- Use an ungreased non-stick cookie sheet. Also, avoid using parchment paper on your pan.
- Do not chill the dough before using - if you need to make or freeze ahead of time, be sure to bring it to room temperature before placing the dough in the cookie press
- Do not press cookies out on warm pans, chilling the pans between batches will help dough stick to pans and keep cookies from spreading.
- When using sprinkles, add to cookies before baking.
- If coloring your dough, gel food color is ideal.
- To Freeze dough; wrap the cookie dough in plastic wrap, then in a ziptop bag and place in the freezer for up to 2 months. Bring to room temp before using.
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OXO Good Grips Cookie Press with Stainless Steel Disks and Storage Case,White,100
Red Sanding Sugar
Gold Pearlized Sugar Sprinkles
Green Sugars Spinkles
Wilton Icing Colors, 12-Count Gel-Based Food Color
Aluminum Baker's Half Sheet Pan
KitchenAid 7-Quart Pro Stand Mixer
KitchenAid Hand Mixer
Glass Bowl Set
Nutrition Information:Yield: 90 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 32Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 8mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 0gSugar: 2gProtein: 1g
Nutrition information is estimated based on the ingredients and cooking instructions as described in each recipe and is intended to be used for informational purposes only. Please note that nutrition details may vary based on methods of preparation, origin, and freshness of ingredients used.