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Christmas Pinwheel Cookies


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Christmas Pinwheel Cookies are a fun and festive sweet treat. These fun-colored cookies will look amazing on the holiday dessert table.

These Christmas cookies are not only delicious but also perfect for holiday cookie exchanges. Not only are Christmas Pinwheel Cookies colorful but they are also the perfect soft sugar cookie.

Vertical image of Christmas Pinwheel Cookies scattered on the table with green garlands above it and a table cloth with white and red stripes.

Pinwheel cookies come in such a wide variety of flavors, you can find everything from savory, fruity, nutty, or even colorful. My family has passed down many pinwheel cookie recipes over the years, but I have to say that the red and green festive cookies have always been my personal favorite.

Why I Love This Recipe

These Christmas Pinwheel Cookies are not only easy to make they are also colorful and will look great on your dessert table.

  • Easy to make
  • Fun to make
  • Always a hit at parties
  • Looks beautiful on a plate
  • Fills the house with a delicious aroma

IF you love festive Christmas cookies you may also enjoy this Red Velvet Cake Mix Cookies recipe.

Horizontal image of stacked Christmas Pinwheel Cookies with some of them blurred in the background.

Ingredients

You only need nine ingredients to make these festive holiday cookies. You may already have these items on hand in your pantry, but if not, one quick trip to the grocery store and you’ll be so glad you made these soft sugar cookies.

  • softened unsalted butter
  • granulated sugar
  • eggs
  • vanilla extract
  • all-purpose flour
  • baking powder
  • salt
  • red gel food coloring
  • green gel food coloring
An image of ingredients used to make Christmas Pinwheel Cookies.

Substitutions

Butter: Don’t have unsalted butter? Salted butter will work in this recipe, just reduce your salt to 3/4 teaspoon.

Food Coloring: Liquid food coloring can be used in place of gel you may just need to add more drops for a better color.

Equipment Needed / Helpful Tools

To make these homemade Christmas cookies you need four kitchen tools. You should have the tools already in your kitchen.

How to Make Christmas Pinwheel Cookies

These pinwheel cookies have eight steps but don’t be intimidated by these steps, I promise these cookies are easy to make and worth the effort.

Step 1: Cream butter and sugar

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together butter and granulated sugar. Once butter and sugar are well combined, add eggs and vanilla and mix some more.

Creamed butter and sugar in a red mixing bowl with eggs, vanilla, and some ingredients added to it.

Step 2: Add dry ingredients to your dough

Next, add flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix until cookie dough forms. Divide the cookie dough into two equal halves.

A vertical image of two formed dough on a wooden chopping board.

Step 3: Dye your cookie dough

Color one half with red gel food coloring and the other with green gel food coloring. Knead each dough half until they’re both completely tinted.

A vertical image of one dpugh with red dye on top of it ready for rolling.

Step 4: Roll the cookie dough

Sprinkle a working surface with flour. As well, add flour onto a rolling pin. Begin by rolling out the green cookie dough into a rectangular shape, until it’s slightly larger than 6 in x 9 in. Set aside.

Flattened green dough shaped in rectangle.

Step 5: Finish rolling the dough

Do the same for the red cookie dough and press it on top of the green cookie dough. With a paring knife, trim the cookie dough so that it’s exactly a rectangular shape, 6 in x 9 in.

Step 6: Shape cookie dough

Rolling lengthwise (so from the thinner end), roll the layered cookie dough into a log. Wrap it in plastic and refrigerate it for one hour.

Stacked red and green rectangular flattened dough and being rolled to form a pinwheel cookie log.

Step 7: Cut the cookies

Remove the cookie log from the fridge once the time is up. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.

Step 8: Bake the cookies

Cut out 12 cookie slices from the log, about ½ an inch thick. Line them up on the lined baking sheet. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Pinwheel cookie log being cut to form a pinwheel cookie highlighting the red and green swirls inside the log.

Variations / Options / Add-Ins

Want to personalize your Christmas cookies? Here are my favorite ways to change up these Christmas cookies.

Sprinkles: dip your cookie dough roll into festive sprinkles for additional fun cookies.

Candy Cane: Skip the green food coloring, and use red food coloring for half and the other half white for a candy cane striped pinwheel cookie

Tri-Color Dough: Split your dough into thirds and dye one-third for red, green, and white pinwheel cookies.

A vertical image of Christmas Pinwheel Cookies slightly stacked on each other showcasing the red and green swirls.

Serving Suggestions

Looking for ways to use your Christmas Pinwheel Cookies? Here are my favorite uses for them:

  • cookie exchanges
  • holiday parties
  • class parties
  • teacher gifts
  • neighbor gifts
  • Cookies for Santa

Tips

Want your cookies to turn out perfectly? Here are my best tips for baking these Christmas Cookies.

  • If you are making your cookies on a stainless steel pan, reduce your bake time by 2 or 3 minutes.
  • Cookie dough can be stored in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
  • Use a sharp knife for easy and straight cuts.
A vertical image of Christmas Pinwheel Cookies that are stacked.

FAQs

Have questions about Christmas Pinwheel Cookies? Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions.

How to store

Cookies can be stored on the counter in an airtight container for up to one week.

Can I freeze these cookies?

Yes! You can freeze the cookie dough raw or even baked cookies for up to three months. If you are freezing the cookie dough raw, I recommend slicing it first.

Can I double this recipe?

Yes! This recipe doubles well. Just make sure to bake your cookies in two batches so the cookies have room to spread on the pan.

A horizontal image of Christmas Pinwheel Cookies slightly stacked like a fallen domino tiles showcasing the red and green swirls.

More Christmas Cookies Recipes

If you like Christmas Cookies, give these recipes a try:

Christmas Pinwheel Cookies Recipe

Ready to get cooking? Print off the recipe card below or toggle on Cook Mode to keep your screen from going dark while you follow along on your phone or tablet.

Christmas Pinwheel Cookies

Christmas Pinwheel Cookies are a fun and festive sweet treat.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 1 hr 15 mins
Cook Time 9 mins
Total Time 1 hr 24 mins
Course Dessert (Cookies)
Cuisine American
Servings 12 Cookies
Calories 365 kcal

Equipment

  • Mixer
  • Mixing Bowl
  • Cookie Sheet

Ingredients
  

  • 2 sticks softened unsalted butter about ½ cup
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour + extra for rolling
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp red gel food coloring
  • ¼ tsp green gel food coloring

Instructions
 

  • In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat together butter and granulated sugar.
  • Once butter and sugar are well combined, add eggs and vanilla and mix some more.
  • Next, add flour, baking powder and salt. Mix until cookie dough forms.
  • Divide the cookie dough into two equal halves. Color one half with red gel food coloring and the other with green gel food coloring. Knead each dough half until they’re both completely tinted.
  • Sprinkle a working surface with flour. As well, add flour onto a rolling pin.
  • Begin by rolling out the green cookie dough into a rectangular shape, until it’s slightly larger than 6 in x 9 in. Set aside.
  • Do the same for the red cookie dough and press it on top of the green cookie dough.
  • With a paring knife, trim the cookie dough so that it’s exactly a rectangular shape, 6 in x 9 in.
  • Rolling lengthwise (so from the thinner end), roll the layered cookie dough into a log.
  • Wrap it in plastic and refrigerate for one hour.
  • Remove the cookie log from the fridge once time is up. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • Cut out 12 cookie slices from the log, about ½ an inch thick. Line them up on the lined baking sheet.
  • Bake for 9 to 11 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Nutrition

Serving: 1CookieCalories: 365kcalCarbohydrates: 49gProtein: 5gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 10gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 68mgSodium: 208mgPotassium: 128mgFiber: 1gSugar: 17gVitamin A: 512IUCalcium: 44mgIron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Need to run to the store for a few ingredients first? Don’t forget to pin this recipe so you can find it when you’re ready to cook!

A collage of two images of Christmas Pinwheel Cookies with a large text in the middle saying "Christmas Pinwheel Cookies Recipe"

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