Best Christmas Cookie Recipe – Glazed Little Orange Cookies with Cinnamon and Cloves

by Irvin on December 23, 2013 · 16 comments

Pin It

If you’re looking for the best Christmas cookie recipe, look no further, these glazed orange cookies with cinnamon and cloves are THE taste of Christmas!

The Best Christmas Cookie Recipe Ever - Orange cookies with cinnamon and cloves. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

“Those SMELL like Christmas.” said AJ when he walked into the apartment after going for bike ride. I had just read my friend Pat’s article about the smells of Christmas so I was pleased to hear him say that. In fact, I’m going to throw caution to the wind and call these the Best Christmas Cookie Recipe Ever! These orange and cinnamon cloves cookies DO smell like Christmas, in the best possible way. Even after baking a slew of desserts for my party, I was happy to be back in the kitchen, baking these, and these cookies are the perfect ones to end my run of 12 Days of Holiday Cookies. (Jump directly to the recipe.)

The best Christmas cookies recipe ever: Orange cookies with cinnamon and cloves. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

Orange and cloves is a classic Christmas scent like the modern day pomanders  that people make and give out as handmade gifts. I’ve never been that crafty, and the idea of poking tiny little cloves into an orange sounds a bit tedious but I’m always impressed when I see them at friend’s houses. The scent is intoxicating and, of course, is perfect for the holidays.

Orange Cookies with Cinnamon and Cloves. The Best Christmas Cookie Recipe Ever. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

So when I came across a recipe for Pezzetti di Cannelle (little cinnamon cookies) in Southern Italian Desserts by Rosetta Costantino I knew I had to immediately adapt it to include orange and cloves like a cookie form of pomanders. Turns out that the cookies not only smell like Christmas but they taste like Christmas too! AJ took one bite and turned to me and said, “Yep, Christmas is here.” See, Best Christmas Cookie. Ever.

These orange cookies with cinnamon and cloves are the best Christmas cookies ever. Photo and recipe by Irvin Lin of Eat the Love.

If you like these cookies, check out the rest of my 12 Days of Holiday Cookies:

Chocolate Crackle Cookies
Chewy Oatmeal Cookies with Dried Blueberries and Crystallized Ginger
Gluten Free Ginger Snaps
Butterscotch Cookies with Triple Chocolate Chips
Chocolate Double Rye Cookies
Hermit Cookies with Brown Sugar Icing, Dried Cherries and Crystallized Ginger
Chocolate Shortbread Cookies, Aztec Style
Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies with Hazelnuts
Lemon Cookie Bars with Pomegranate Seeds
Mocha Cookies with Dark Chocolate and Pistachios (Gluten Free)
Caramel Bars with Salted Roasted Cashews (and Gluten Free option)

And check out these other awesome holiday cookies from around the web:
Sprinkle Bakes’ Chocolate Sugar Cookies
101 Cookbooks’ Minty Chocolate Christmas Cookies
Tidy Mom’s Red Velvet Gooey Butter Christmas Cookies
Simply Recipes’ Walnut Snowball Cookies
Chocolate Chocolate and More’s Swedish Christmas Cookies

Pin It

Connect with Irvin via Social Media

You can connect with Irvin on a more direct level via his twitter page, his facebook fan page or his page. Just be forewarned that he tweets a heck of a lot.

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Eileen December 23, 2013 at 9:42 am

So it seems like I really need to add these to the seven or eight other kinds of cookies already kicking around the house! NOM. 🙂


Claudia December 23, 2013 at 10:39 am

Did not even get past the first sentence before I shared this on my facebook page. (Hope that’s cool with you?) I totally believe you. They sound incredible. Thanks for spreading the joy of Christmas.


Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar December 23, 2013 at 2:08 pm

If you say these are the best I believe you!! Can’t wait to try!


Aimee @ Simple Bites December 26, 2013 at 6:33 am

As someone who sat around and made pomanders this Christmas, I know that these would be right up my alley.

Happy Christmas, Irvin!


Leni December 26, 2013 at 3:25 pm

Just found your site, I am instantly intrigued! Can’t wait to try this recipe. My family is going to be very happy. 😉


Nicole February 2, 2014 at 9:09 am

Can you describe what the texture of these cookies should be like? I made them and the flavor is nice, but the texture is not at all what I expected. It’s very soft and bready. I did have to use flour when rolling out the dough, as it got incredibly sticky while sitting for the half hour. I had no problem with sticking while kneading it, but when it came to rolling it into the logs it was gluing itself to my cutting board. Could the flour I used in that step be contributing to the texture I got? Or is the texture supposed to be like that? I thought from the photos that they might be little crunchy cookies, but I have no idea!


Irvin February 3, 2014 at 3:00 pm

Hi Nicole.
Hmmmm. The cookies aren’t really crunchy when they come out of the oven, as I bake them to be a little soft, but they shouldn’t “very soft and bready” though. I’d probably put the texture around a soft shortbread.

I wonder if maybe you should bake them a bit longer to get them to firm up a bit? Otherwise I’m not sure why they would get so gluey and sticky. Do you know how old your flour was or how humid your kitchen was? Sometimes old flour can soak up humidity and moisture from the air.

If you make them again and roll them out and they get sticky, try using cornstarch instead of flour to keep them from sticking. That and the extra minute or two in the oven should help give them a little more snap and less bready softness.


Michelle @ The Gathering of Friends November 24, 2014 at 8:45 am

Can’t wait to try this recipe! The pictures look incredible. We featured this recipe in our Feature Friday blog post last week for Cinnamon and Spice Desserts! I hope you can visit


Penelope November 14, 2015 at 3:45 pm

I would love to make these for my upcoming holiday brunch! But I’m hoping to do most of the prep ahead of time. Do you think the dough would freeze, or would the unglazed cookies freeze well? Thanks!


Food, Faith, and Other Fabulous Finds January 5, 2016 at 9:25 pm

You are so right, these are just the most amazing Christmas cookies!! They taste just like this amazing lebkuchen that my best friend and I eagerly anticipate buying every Christmas. Yay! Now I can make them myself. 🙂


Cinnamon Vogue February 29, 2016 at 10:53 pm

Irwin your bio is as fabulous as this recipe. Love it. Orange cloves and cinnamon in a Christmas Cookie. Voila!! Cointreau or Grand Marnier for the Glaze. Definitely a hedonistic recipe but worth every effort.


Ceylon Cinnamon December 21, 2016 at 2:46 am

I would like to make these recipe in coming holidays. Thanks for sharing the post!


Margaret January 8, 2017 at 10:45 am

I made these and the smell is amazing but for my taste they need more fat for a more satisfying taste. Maybe some butter or ground nuts!


Leave a Comment

{ 3 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: