A soft, chewy cookie prepared with eggnog and rum. Christmas Eggnog Cookies are loaded with nutmeg too, which makes them taste extra eggnog-y! They aren’t too pretty to look at, but they taste marvelous!
An eggnog cookie had to be a part of this series. Last year, I shared my Eggnog Bundt Cake, and just a few weeks ago, I posted my recipe for Eggnog Biscotti. Not everyone is a fan of drinking eggnog – me included – but, when it comes to baking with it, I’m in! And, I happen to think that these Christmas Eggnog Cookies are delicious!
Before we get too into it, it might come as no surprise to my readers that I’m back with a third installment of Lord Byron’s 24 Cookies of Christmas. Should you be new here, let me tell you a bit about how this works. This is my third annual Christmas cookie extravaganza. Like the previous two years, I will post a brand new Christmas cookie recipe for 24 consecutive days. Yes, that means Saturdays and Sundays too! For your reference, you can find links to the first two years further down the page.
Fresh off of my 12 Biscotti of Christmas series, I’m excited to get this new series started. Last year, I also did 12 Bundt Cakes of Christmas. Now, who’s ready to get started on this journey with me? Do you have any eggnog left, or did you already drink it all? Have you decided whether you’re using rum or extract? Do you have lots of nutmeg on hand? Is your apron on and your oven preheated? Good! Let’s get to it!
EGGNOG – LOVE IT OR HATE IT?
There seems to be only two classes of people when it comes to eggnog. We either love it or we hate it. There’s rarely a person who’s in between. Personally, I can’t drink it, but I love the flavour. It’s a little too thick for my liking. That’s why I prefer to bake with it – point in case, Christmas Eggnog Cookies!
For this recipe, you’ll need just over a quarter cup of eggnog. Most of the prepared eggnog that I see in stores are sold in one litre bottles. That’s a lot of eggnog if you’re purchasing it only to bake with.
You can substitute the eggnog if you wish. Since eggnog is thick and creamy, you’ll want something that has a similar consistency. If you want to use milk, use a whole, fatty milk. I would not recommend using anything less than 3%. Alternatively, you can use half and half.
The best substitute that I have found for eggnog in baking is buttermilk. Not only is the consistency present, but I like the tangy flavour of the buttermilk in baked goods too. If you’re adding the little bit of whiskey, fatty milk or buttermilk will do the trick nicely.
MORE CHRISTMAS COOKIE RECIPES!
Did you know that I’ve been posting a 24 Cookies of Christmas series for a few years now? There are over 100 Christmas cookie recipes that you can find right here at Lord Byron’s Kitchen! To make it easier to find, I have created a page for each series. Just click on the image below and you’ll find the full series for that volume all one page!
HERE IS WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- Butter – Make sure your butter is at room temperature! To be perfectly honest, I have made these with both salted and unsalted butter and there’s no difference in taste or appearance once all is said and done. Use what you have on hand.
- Sugar – Sugar will caramelize when baked, which will help to brown cookies and cakes. In cookies, the sugar will help the dough to spread, and will create a crispness to the bottom of the cookie.
- Brown Sugar – First of all, it has way more flavour than regular white sugar! And, in this recipe, brown sugar helps to keep the cookie moist and soft.
- Eggs – Whenever you set out to bake, make sure your eggs are at room temperature too – just like your butter!
- Eggnog – These are eggnog cookies, so there’s bound to be eggnog, but you only need a little bit. One reader reported back that she didn’t want to make eggnog and couldn’t find any at her local stores, so she used buttermilk and loved the result!
- Vanilla Extract – Probably the most common extract and the most common flavouring used in cakes and cookies. In this cookie, you could substitute the vanilla with rum if you want a stronger flavour.
- Flour – No need for anything special. Just use regular all-purpose flour. I have not tried this recipe with any other type of flour.
- Baking Soda – Commonly known as sodium bicarbonate, or just bicarb, it is a baking ingredient that’s activated by a liquid and an acid to help with leavening or rising. In most cases, you will see baking soda in recipes with lemon juice or buttermilk, but that’s not always the case.
- Baking Powder – This is used to increase the volume of the batter and to add texture as well.
- Cream of Tartar – The acid in cream of tartar gives everything a distinctive tangy flavor. When used in cookies, it adds a chewiness, which happens because cream of tartar prevents sugar in the cookie dough from crystalizing into crunchiness.
- Nutmeg – Nutmeg is a seed that comes in whole or ground form. It is a key ingredient in many baked goods and is essential to anything eggnog related. I often use it in fall dishes, especially in mashed potatoes!
LET’S CALL IT CHRISTMAS CHEER!
Oftentimes, any drink that is alcohol based and served at Christmastime is referred to as Christmas cheer. Alcohol is quite common in baked goods, especially at this time of year. I don’t tend to cook or bake with alcohol much, because we don’t drink. Because we don’t drink, we never have alcohol in the house.
I made an exception for these Christmas Eggnog Cookies and purchased a bottle of rum. Not knowing anything about rum, I just grabbed the brand that I have heard of the most. My ex wife and her dad would often drink Lamb’s. I never did partake, but I remembered the brand well enough to go with it.
If you’re not a fan of using alcohol in your baking, you can easily substitute it. In the place of the rum, use vanilla extract instead. Since eggnog already has a strong vanilla flavour, it will be perfect. Alternatively, if you want to use alcohol, but don’t have rum, you can use brandy or even a bit of bourbon.
HOW TO MAKE YOUR COOKIES EXTRA SPECIAL
As you can see, I simply rolled the cookies into a cinnamon and nutmeg mixture before baking them. This intensifies the nutmeg flavour and gives the cookies a little bit of sparkle. Once the cookies are out of the oven, I like to grate over a little bit more fresh nutmeg.
You can buy a whole nutmeg. They look like really fat raw almonds. Use a nutmeg grater to get it just perfect. This is the one I have. You can store your unused whole nutmeg right inside it. Of course, store-bought ground nutmeg will work too. Be scant; the flavour can be intense!
If you prefer, you can glaze the cookies too. Simply whisk together two cups of confectioner’s sugar with 3-4 tablespoons of eggnog, or until the glaze is at your desired consistency. Drizzle over cooled cookie and allow them to set. I opted to keep mine plain, because I’m quite fond of the dimpled cookie effect.
MORE CHRISTMAS CONFECTIONS!
In some cases, we want more than a cookie. That’s why I have two more Christmas-themed collections you might want to consider. The first, is my 12 Bundt Cakes of Christmas, and the second is my 12 Biscotti of Christmas. Click on the image below to see each collection all on one page with links to each recipe!
STORING, PACKAGING, AND FREEZING
If you plan to freeze these cookies, you certainly can! Once they are completely cooled, pile them into a clean, food-safe container. The container must be freezer friendly! You’ll want to ensure a very tight fitting lid too. (I use these quite often when freezing baked goods.) I like to place a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of the container before pushing the lid on. This helps to create a better seal. The goal is to keep all of that cookie freshness locked in!
You can freeze these cookies for up to three months. If you plan to give the frozen cookies as a gift, I would lay them out onto a wire cooling rack to thaw. Once thawed, pile into cellophane bags and tie with a ribbon, or stack in a cookie tin/box.
As I said, every day I will be posting a new recipe. If you miss one, don’t fret. You can find my entire collection of Christmas Recipes right here! There are over 100 Christmas recipes and counting. There’s something for everyone! Cheers!
Christmas Eggnog Cookies
For the Cookies:
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup eggnog
- 1 teaspoon rum or vanilla extract
- 4 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
For the Topping:
- 8 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg
- In a large mixing bowl, use a hand-held mixer to cream together the butter and both sugars until light and fluffy.
- Add in the eggs, eggnog, and rum or extract. Beat well to incorporate.
- Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cream of tartar, and ground nutmeg. Beat until just incorporated.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate dough for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
- In a small, shallow bowl, whisk together the topping ingredients and set aside.
- Portion cookie dough into tablespoons. Roll into balls and roll into the topping mixture. Set on prepared baking sheet, leaving 2 inches of space between each cookie.
- Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 3 minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack to finish cooling.
- Dust with more freshly ground nutmeg, or drizzle with eggnog glaze.