How to Host a Cookie Exchange
Here’s everything you need to know about How to Host a Cookie Exchange along with an amazing Caramel Macchiato Cookie Recipe!
There are so many amazing Christmas cookie recipes out there and the best way to get to taste them all is to host a cookie exchange. Have you ever been to one? It’s so much fun, you get to try lots of new Christmas cookie recipes and at the end you take some home, along with the recipes so you can make them yourself! Today we’re going to give you some tips on how to plan a cookie exchange this holiday season.
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How to Host a Cookie Exchange:
- Bake Cookies – Each guest makes a cookie recipe of their choice.
- Share Cookies – They need to bring 1 dozen of those cookies to the party for tasting, and 1 dozen per guest to share. So, if you have 10 guests each person will make 10 dozen cookies, 1 dozen per guest (not counting themselves), and one dozen for the cookie table. Now, if you are having more than 10 guests you might only want to have your guests make half a dozen cookies per guest to share. That’s totally up to you, just make sure everyone brings cookies for your guests to take home and some cookies to serve at the party.
- Share Cookie Recipes – Each guest will also need to bring recipe cards with their cookie recipe on them for each guest. Fun right?
- Take Cookies Home – Since your guests are all going to be bringing cookies to share you’ll want to make sure you tell everyone to bring some extra containers so they can take home all of the cookies they will be receiving, or, you can provide boxes for your guests. I personally prefer to just bring my own reusable plastic containers. I go home with so many cookies that I usually stick half of them in the freezer so they stay fresh until I’m ready to eat them.
HOW TO HOST A COOKIE EXCHANGE
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Easy Cookie Exchange Recipes:
The hardest part about hosting a cookie exchange is deciding what cookie to make! Here is a list of some of our favorite easy Christmas cookies for a cookie exchange including a recipe for Caramel Macchiato Cookie below!
- Gingersnap Cookies (with video!)
- Chocolate Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies (with video!)
- Low Carb Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie (with video!)
- Soft Gingerbread Cookies
- Berger Cookies
- Frosted Cashew Cookies
- Mexican Wedding Cookies
- Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Ranger Cookies
- Snickerdoodle Cookies
- Crispy Coconut Cookie
- Cowboy Cookies
- No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
Recipe Card Templates for a Cookie Exchange:
To make sharing your cookie exchange recipes a little easier you can DOWNLOAD these super cute recipes cards for your party. Add your cookie recipe to it to hand out to your friends, and send them to your guests before the party so they can print them out for their own recipes!
I also made a recipe card that fits right on top of a resealable container for our Mad About Plaid cookie exchange. It is perfect for sending your cookies home with people! DOWNLOAD HERE.
Right after eating cookies my favorite part of hosting a cookie exchange is decorating. I LOVE holiday decorations and this year I’m all about the rustic Christmas look. I used galvanized chargers as my cookie trays, and I found this awesome metal box at Home Goods that I used to hold some of the coffee flavored cookies. I filled the bottom of the box with paper and covered the paper with a Christmas napkin, then I placed the cookies in it. I love the look!!
If you’re looking for something different check out our Mad for Plaid Cookie Exchange. We have free printable labels and more ideas for hosting a cookie exchange.
I have one last thing to help you out with your first, or next, cookie exchange, this Caramel Macchiato cookie recipe. It’s the perfect cookie for your favorite coffee lover. One of my friends described it as eating a cup of coffee :).
CARAMEL MACCHIATO COOKIE
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Caramel Macchiato Cookies
- 1 1/2 cup Butter, , unsalted, room temperature
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1 Egg, , large
- 3 1/4 cups All-purpose flour
- 4 teaspoon Starbucks VIA Instant Latte White Chocolate Mocha
- 16 Caramels
- 2 tablespoon Heavy Cream
- 1/2 cup Chocolate Chips
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- In a large bowl use a mixer to beat the butter and sugar together.
- Add egg and continue to mix until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.
- In a small bowl mix together flour and coffee powder.
- Turn mixer to low and add flour mixture. Do not over mix. Stop as soon as flour is combined.
- Make dough into 1-inch balls and place on a baking sheet 3-4 inches apart.
- Use the back of a teaspoon, or your thumb, to press down in the center of the ball to make an indentation.
- Bake until cookies are golden brown around edges, 18 – 20 minutes.
- When cookies come out of the oven use the back of the teaspoon to gently press the centers down again.
- Let the cookies cool completely on a wire rack.
- Unwrap caramel candies and place them in a microwave safe bowl. Add heavy cream and microwave, 15 seconds at a time, until melted.
- Once the cookies have cooled fill each indentation with the caramel.
- Let caramel cool and then place the chocolate chips in a microwaveable dish and microwave for 15 seconds at a time until they are completely melted. Drizzle the top of the cookies with melted chocolate.
- Once chocolate has hardened serve and enjoy!
I hope this has helped answer some of your questions on how to host a cookie exchange. If you decide to host a cookie exchange this year let us know what cookies you serve!
I just love your rustic decor, and the idea for using the metal drawer for the cookies. They really are the star of the show, and look sooo delicious! #client
Is there a substitute for the Starbuck’s ingredient, our country store doesn’t carry Starbuck’s anything?
Any instant coffee works!
We have a cookie exchange at our church ladies meanings the month of December and this sounds so interesting about to sign up from the recipes for your cookies. thank you for your reply
Below, I was wondering about the Starbucks coffee because I don’t use Starbucks I seen your answer to another question thank you
I hope you and your church group enjoy them. They were a hit last year!
How many caramels do you use for the two tbs of heavy cream?
About 16 I will fix the recipe. Hope you enjoy the cookies!
Hi, do u hav the metrics measurement?
3 ½ dl (341 g) Butter, , unsalted, room temperature
2 ⅓ dl (201 g) Sugar
1 Egg, , large
7 ⅔ dl (416 g) All-purpose flour
4 teaspoon Starbucks VIA Instant Latte White Chocolate Mocha
2 tablespoon Heavy Cream
1 ⅛ dl Chocolate Chips
I’m just wondering how many caramel pieces you use?
Oh sorry I’m seeing it now ! 16
Do you normally store in the refrigerator?
No I just store them in an airtight container with wax paper between each layer of cookies.
Hi, I was just wondering how many cookies this recipe actually makes?
This recipe makes about 36 cookies
Hey there, I was wondering if you can make the dough ahead of time and freeze it until I need it?
Yes you can. Just wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store in a freezer bag for up to 2 months. When you’re ready to use let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator before following the instructions for portioning out and baking.
I will be hosting my 9th cookie exchange this year and this looks like a yummy cookie to bake and easy 🙂
It is delicious! Even people who aren’t coffee fans have complimented us on it. I hope you have a great cookie exchange!
Very disappointed my dog did not set up follow the ingredients to the hilt made a lot of cookies and my day never had this happen before
I’m sorry you had that problem. Is it possible your butter was too soft? It should be room temp so that it is pliable and will mix with the other ingredients but not so hot that it is melted or runny. If you think that might have been the problem you could try chilling the dough for about 30 minutes before rolling it into balls.
Can I use Dulche de Leche instead of caramels??
You can! I think it’s delicious that way. It is a little messier to store because I find the dulce de leche sticks to other cookies more.
Any tips on how to drizzle the chocolate? Mine is too thick soft ended up messy. How did you get yours so neat?
My trick is to put the melted chocolate in a plastic sandwich bag and snip just a tiny piece off of one corner. Then you can pipe the strips on neatly. Then it is just a matter of letting the chocolate cool and firm up. If it is too funny let it cool a little before piping it.
I love how popular cookie exchanges are becoming again. Such a fun way to try new recipes and hang out with friends.
Hi! This recipe looks amazing, but can you tell me if the caramel sets firm enough to put in gift boxes without sticking to wax paper?
Hi Chastety, not firm enough to be stacked without messing them up.
Followed this recipe exactly and my dough was nothing but powder. So disappointed! They look so delicious!
Hi Michele, are you certain you used 1.5 cups of butter? That is 3 sticks of butter. With that plus 1 egg I don’t know how this dough could have been nothing but powder.
Good morning! I am going to try these cookies for the exchange I am hosting this weekend. Do the cookies have to be 3 to 4 inches apart, or 3/4 in apart. 3 to 4 inches seemed like a lot , but 3/4 seems really close:). Thanks, in advance, for the clarification:)
I’m sure we erred on the side of caution with our spacing so you can get a little closer but I would keep them at least 2 inches apart
How did you make the caramel look so perfectly molded and not drip out the edge?
Practice :). My tip would be to use less caramel than you think you need and make sure it is warm enough to drizzle off of the spoon. Let it drizzle into the center of the indentation on the cookie and let it level itself out.
This looks like a perfect cookie for me and my coffee loving friend! ❤️ I have a question though, I guess you use hard caramels, could you also use fudge instead? I came across some fudge with a coffee flavour… Maybe they could make a nice pair? I don’t suppose you know if fudge can be melted at all? Thanks for this recipe! I pinned it and can’t wait to try it! 😄
Hi Evie, we have not tried it using fudge. I not sure the fudge and caramels melt the same way.
I can’t find the Starbucks via instant white chocolate mocha!!
is there a similar suggestion?
Try looking of the creamer White Chocolate Creamer that is sold at Target, Walmart and most local grocery stores.
Hi Tammy, any brand of instant latte or cappuccino will work. It doesn’t have to be white chocolate but here are a few I’ve found.
Can you use white chocolate drizzled over cookies instead of regular chocolate?
Yes you can.
These cookies turned out amazing! Wait did have one re- do batch due to over mixing. Could not find the Starbucks VIA Instant Latte White Chocolate Mocha anywhere except online, substituted with 1 tsp hot chocolate & 3 tsp VIA Instant Vanilla Latte, then drizzled with both white & semi sweet Chocolate. Turned out fantastic!
I don’t see any baking powder or soda. Do they rise ok without it? Thanks
Hi Carol, it works without baking soda or baking powder. These cookies don’t rise much and they also don’t spread very much since they don’t have the leavening agent in them.