Ethnic-Inspired Holiday Cookie Recipes

Spice up your holiday baking by whipping up a batch of cookies inspired by another culture. Every recipe here is a delight.

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  • 1 of 19

    Italian Fig Pockets

    Dried fruits flavored with orange zest fill these soft cookie pockets. A star-shaped cookie cutter and coarse sugar dresses them up.

  • 2 of 19

    Mexican Chocolate Icebox Cookies with Dulce de Leche Filling

    Lightly spiced chocolate cookies and dulce de leche, a caramel sauce popular in Central and South America, make delightful mini cookie sandwiches.

  • 3 of 19

    Lebkuchen

    We've added lemon glaze and a candied fruit topper to Germany's famous spicy Lebkuchen honey cakes.

  • 4 of 19

    Greek Honey-Dipped Cookies

    "Melomakarona," a traditional Greek Christmas cookie, is made in a rounded shape so it retains its soft texture. After the cookies cool, they are dipped in a mixture of honey and spices.

  • 5 of 19

    Gone Bananas Biscotti

    We've given this crunchy Italian cookie a bit of extra flair by adding banana to the batter and dipping it in chocolate.

  • 6 of 19

    Baklava Tassies

    No need to make homemade dough -- these Baklava (a Greek favorite) start with purchased phyllo dough cups. The classic honey and walnut filling is irresistible.

  • 7 of 19

    Earl Grey Bocca Di Nonna

    These rich sandwich cookies, filled with dark, satiny ganache, are adapted from an Italian celebration cookie called Bocca di Dama -- or Lady's Kisses

  • 8 of 19

    Alfajores

    These traditional Argentine cookie sandwiches feature a creamy dulce de leche filling with a caramel flavor.

  • 9 of 19

    Irish Creme Delights

    The creamy splendor of Irish coffee bursts from these coffee-flavor treats topped with an Irish Creme frosting.

  • 10 of 19

    Polvorones Sevillanos

    Topped with toasted coconut, this Spanish shortbread cookie features an infusion of citrus flavors, including chopped candied pineapple and a lemon glaze.

  • 11 of 19

    Viennese Almond Bars

    Named for the enchanting Austrian capital, this raspberry-almond cookie looks fancy but it starts with a sugar cookie mix.

  • 12 of 19

    Italian Spice Cookies

    A powdered sugar drizzle adds an extra touch of sweetness to these cinnamon-spiced cookies. Orange peel adds a touch of zest.

  • 13 of 19

    Anzac Cookies

    These nutty oatmeal-coconut cookies are inspired by the variation that soldiers in the Australian and New Zealand Army Corp were gifted during World War II.

  • 14 of 19

    Greek Almond Shortbread Rounds

    Rose water, a distillation made from rose petals, blesses these cookies with a distinctive fragrant, floral flavor.

  • 15 of 19

    Sweet Empanaditas

    A simple and sweet pineapple filling tastes delicious inside the cookie crust rolled in cinnamon and sugar.

  • 16 of 19

    Italian Amaretti Cookies

    Gently flavored with amaretto, these Italian macaroons pair beautifully with espresso.

  • 17 of 19

    Austrian Walnut Chocolate Bars

    A rich chocolate-rum frosting makes these moist bar cookies irresistible. Serve them with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

  • 18 of 19

    More Cookie Recipes

  • Next Slideshow Fantastic Holiday Bar Cookies

    Fantastic Holiday Bar Cookies

    These festive holiday bar cookie recipes -- including butterscotch-toffee bars and classic brownies -- make delicious gifts and party desserts. With make-ahead options, store-bought shortcuts, and mix-and-match topping ideas, the hardest part of your holiday dessert prep will be choosing which of these marvelous and merry bar cookies to try first.
    Begin Slideshow »
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