Get ready to spread some holiday cheer with these easy reindeer sugar cookies. They’re a cinch to make, don’t require any fancy cookie cutters or rolling pins, and are sure to add a dash of festive fun to any holiday celebration.
If you’re like me and love spreading joy with your holiday baking but don’t want the hassle of cookie cutters or rolling pins, these reindeer cookies are for you.
It’s a slice and bake sugar cookie recipe that doesn’t require royal icing.
So they’re super easy to bake and decorate. Which makes them a perfect project for kids and adults alike
These delightful treats will have you whipping up a herd of charming Rudolph cookies in no time.
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This recipe will make 20 cookies.
Here is your shopping list:
- Dairy – 1 cup unsalted butter
- Baking supplies – 2½ cups flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder
- Eggs – 1 large egg
- Sugar – 1 cup sugar
- Flavoring – 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
- Oil – 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- Chocolate – ½ cup chocolate chips, or 3 ounces of chocolate – we’ll melt these to make the eyes and horns.
- Toppings – 20 mini red M&M’s or cinnamon candies
- You can use salted butter instead of unsalted if that’s what you have on hand.
- To make gluten-free cookies, substitute measure-for-measure gluten-free flour.
How to make reindeer cookies
Start by taking the butter out of the refrigerator a couple of hours before you begin baking. This will allow it to reach room temperature and soften, which is essential for creating a smooth, creamy texture in your dough.
Next, prepare your baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper. This will prevent the cookies from sticking to the pan during baking.
Make the cookie dough
Begin by putting the softened butter and sugar into a mixing bowl.
Use an electric mixer to combine these ingredients until they’re smoothly blended together, about 2 minutes. This helps to incorporate air into the mixture, making your cookies light and fluffy.
Next, add the egg and vanilla to your creamed mixture. Continue to mix until these ingredients are fully incorporated and the texture is smooth.
Now, add all of the flour and baking powder to the bowl.
Switch your mixer to a low speed to avoid a cloud of flour.
Mix until these dry ingredients are combined with the wet ingredients. Do not overmix as this can make the cookies tough.
Once your dough is ready, lay out a strip of plastic wrap and place your dough onto it.
Shape the dough into a log that’s about 2½ inches in diameter.
Wrap the dough tightly in the plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator to chill for an hour.
This step is important as it makes the dough easier to handle, helps the cookies hold their shape while baking and prevents them from spreading too much.
Preheat your oven to 400℉.
While the oven is heating, remove your dough from the refrigerator.
Using a sharp knife, slice the dough into ¼-inch wide pieces.
Place these cookie slices onto your prepared baking sheet.
Bake them for about 8 minutes, or until the edges are set and just slightly browned.
Take them out of the oven and let them sit on the baking sheet for a few minutes.
Then move the cookies to a cooling rack to let them cool completely.
Before you start decorating, make sure the cookies are cool to the touch. Otherwise, the chocolate icing may not set.
Make the chocolate icing
We’ll be using melted chocolate to decorate the cookies.
To make the icing, combine the chocolate chips and coconut oil in a microwave-safe bowl.
The coconut oil helps to smooth out the melted chocolate and gives it a smooth consistency that’s easy to decorate with.
Heat the mixture in the microwave for about 30 seconds at a time, stirring well after each interval.
Repeat this process until the mixture is smooth and fully melted.
Don’t try to increase the time or skip the stirring step. The chocolate can look like it isn’t melted on top when it has underneath.
Transfer your melted chocolate to a piping bag with a small round tip (such as #3) or a ziploc bag with a small corner cut off.
Don’t make the hole too big. Otherwise it will be difficult to control the flow of chocolate and create detailed designs on your cookies.
Pipe the reindeer antlers, two eyes and a small dot for the nose on each cookie.
To create the design so it looks good, imagine a V shape while you are piping:
- The nose is the bottom of the V.
- The eyes are a up a little ways along the V.
- The long part of the antlers is the top of the V.
Then add 2 small V’s on each of the long lines to complete the antlers.
While the chocolate is still wet, place a red candy on each nose dot.
Let the chocolate set before serving. This will ensure your designs stay intact.
Now, your cookies are ready to enjoy!
Arrange the reindeer sugar cookies on a festive platter or in a holiday-themed cookie jar for a cheerful presentation.
For serving, pair these cookies with a glass of milk or hot cocoa for a classic holiday treat.
Additionally, you could bundle them in clear cellophane and tie with a ribbon for a homemade gift.
Store the cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days, or freeze them for up to three months.
Ensure they are fully cooled before storing to prevent condensation and maintain their texture and flavor.
Other Christmas sugar cookies you might like
Or browse all of our christmas cookie recipes.
Reindeer sugar cookies recipe
- measuring cups and spoons
- mixer with mixing bowl
- plastic wrap
- Sharp knife
- parchment paper
- cookie sheet
- Cooling rack
- Microwave Safe Bowl
- piping bag with a small round tip (such as #3) or a ziploc bag
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla
- 2½ cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ cup chocolate chips
- 1 teaspoon coconut oil
- 20 mini red M&M’s or cinnamon candies
Make the cookies
- In a mixing bowl, combine the softened butter and sugar with a mixer. Cream until smooth.
- Add in the egg and vanilla. Mix until smooth.
- Add in all the flour and baking powder. Mix on low speed until well combined.
- On a strip of plastic wrap, shape the dough into a log about 2 ½ inches in diameter.
- Wrap tightly and chill for an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside.
- Remove the log of dough from the fridge/freezer and using a sharp knife, slice the dough into ¼-inch wide pieces.
- Place the cookies on the parchment lined baking sheet and bake for about 8 minutes. The edges should be set and just slightly browned.
- Cool completely on a wire rack before decorating
Make the chocolate icing
- In a microwave safe bowl, combine the chocolate chips and coconut oil.
- Microwave for 30 seconds at a time and stir well between each interval until smooth.
Decorate the cookies
- Transfer the melted chocolate to a piping bag with a small round tip (or ziploc bag with a small hole cut in one corner).
- Pipe the reindeer antlers, two eyes and one small dot for the nose.
- Place the red candy on the dot for the nose before the chocolate sets.
- Allow the chocolate to harden before serving
- Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 3 months.
Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.