The holiday season isn't complete without eggnog and what better way to enjoy it than in Christmas cookies! These eggnog cookies melt in your mouth with every bite and feature all the best eggnog flavors like rum and nutmeg. The cream cheese eggnog frosting uses actual eggnog for the most delicious holiday cookies of the year.
Confession: eggnog didn't used to be my favorite drink. I never understood why people drank it until I got a little older and realized that smooth creamy texture mixed with rum and fresh nutmeg is like experiencing the holidays in a cup. I love it so much that this dairy-free eggnog is a staple every Christmas.
Delicious and Soft Eggnog Cookies
Eggnog is a creamy, winter drink featuring eggs, sugar, cream, and warm spices, often with a mix of rum. This eggnog cookie recipe takes all of those flavors and incorporates them into the softest cookie that actually melts in your mouth with every bite. The texture is exactly like these extremely popular soft pumpkin cookies. And the flavor of eggnog comes through in the cookie and the frosting with each bite.
The best part is that these easy cookies take minimal effort, and don't require any chilling. While chilling is crucial for recipes like triple chocolate cookies and marshmallow cookies, this simple dough holds well and puffs up to be a soft and melt in your mouth cookie without a cold dough.
Eggnog lovers will absolutely love this recipe, but even those that aren't a fan of eggnog won't be able to resist. Get ready for the most wonderful time of year and enjoy your favorite holiday drink in cookie form!
Eggnog Cookie Ingredients
- Unsalted butter: I always recommend using a quality butter as the base of cookies because it affects the flavor so much. You can also use a vegan butter (we like Myokos).
- Granulated sugar: a staple in cookies and helps give these soft cookies and light and tender crumb.
- Leavens:baking soda and bakingpowder help these cookies rise. Make sure your leavens aren't over 6 months old or it could affect the eggnog cookies.
- Salt: it helps balance out the sweetness in the cookies. I like to bake with a kosher or sea salt.
- Ground nutmeg: this is a staple in eggnog and is an iconic flavor people identify with eggnog. A little goes a long way! You could also add a little bit of cinnamon if you want!
- Egg: try your best to use a room temperature egg because it helps emulsify and mix into the batter better.
- Flavors: we're using vanilla extract and rum extract in these cookies. Eggnog is often mixed with rum, so the extract gives that flavor without the alcohol!
- Full fat eggnog: You can use a store bought eggnog to keep it simple, but I also have a dairy free eggnog recipe that you could use to keep these dairy free.
- All purpose flour: we tested these cookies a few times and added a little more flour at the end to give them the best structure. You could swap this for a 1:1 gluten free flour.
- Cream cheese: we're using this in the frosting and it's so good. Kite Hill makes a great vegan cream cheese to keep them dairy free.
- Confectioners' sugar: this is also part of the frosting and makes it sweet and creamy!
How to Make Eggnog Cookies
Learn how to make these delicious eggnog cookies with these step by step photos. Skip dow to the recipe card for the full printable ingredients and instructions.
Cream the butter and sugar: In a large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed for 2 minutes. Beat in the egg, vanilla and rum extract until the yellow streaks are gone.
Add the eggnog: Mix in the eggnog until smooth and incorporated.
Dry ingredients: Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg in a separate medium bowl.
Finish the dough: With the mixer on low, add half of the flour mixture, then turn the speed up to medium to incorporate it fully. Repeat the process with the second half of the dry ingredients. The cookie dough will be wet.
Scoop and Bake
Cookie scoop: Use a heaping tablespoon or medium cookie scoop to drop the dough a few inches apart on a cookie sheet lined with a piece of parchment paper.
Bake: Bake in the preheat oven for 10 to 12 minutes until the edges are golden brown and the tops are no longer look wet. The cookies will spread out first then start to rise. Allow to cool on cookie sheet for a few minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Frost the Cookies
Make the frosting: Use a large mix bowl fitted with the paddle attachment or hand mixer to beat together the softened butter and cream cheese until smooth and all of the lumps are gone. Add 1 cup of the confectioner's sugar and beat on medium speed to incorporate. Add the eggnog, vanilla and rum extract and beat until combined and the mixture is smooth. Finish by adding the last 2 cups of confectioners' sugar and beat well until smooth.
Frost the cookies: Frost the cooled cookies with a tablespoon or two of the frosting. I like to make a swirling motion on the top. Sprinkle with more ground nutmeg before serving.
If you prefer an eggnog icing, you could use the simple eggnog icing on these Taylor Swift chai cookies. However, I think this eggnog cookies recipe is perfect with a thick layer of frosting!
- Store at room temp: the cookies will be good at room temperature for up to 2 days because the sugar in the frosting helps preserve it. However, if it's hot in your home I recommend storing them in the fridge.
- Store in the fridge: Store the cooled and frosted eggnog cookies in an airtight container for up to 5-6 days.
- Store in the freezer: Allow the baked cookies to cool completely then store them in a freezer bag or airtight container, without frosting, for up to 3 months. Thaw them in the fridge overnight then make the frosting and frost them before sharing.
Yes you can freeze eggnog cookies before they're frosted. Store them in an air tight container for up to 3 months and thaw them in the fridge overnight.
Heavy cream is a good substitute for eggnog in this recipe is that's all you have, but you will miss some of the eggnog flavor.
Most store bought eggnog is made of a mix of eggs, cream, sugar and spices. There are often unwanted extras in certain brands, like corn syrup, so be sure to check the ingredients if that's important! I also have an easy homemade dairy free eggnog recipe you could use.
- Gluten free: swap the all purpose flour for 1:1 gluten free flour. We like Bob's Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Flour or King Arthur's Measure for Measure Flour.
- Dairy free: use a vegan butter (like Myokos) for the cookie and frosting and use a dairy free eggnog like a store bought one made with almond or oat milk. Or use this dairy free eggnog recipe.
- Cream the butter and sugar: don't skip this step because the sugar cuts into the butter to create air pockets and help the cookies rise.
- Sift the powdered sugar into your frosting for extra smooth and creamy frosting.
More Christmas Cookie Recipes
- Double chocolate chunk marshmallow cookies
- Snowy meringue Christmas trees
- Gluten free dairy free sugar cookies
- Chocolate chip pudding cookies
- Hot cocoa cookies
Soft Eggnog Cookies (Melt in Your Mouth)
For the eggnog cookies
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter softened to room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¾ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ teaspoon rum extract
- ½ cup full fat eggnog
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (can sub 1:1 gluten free flour)
For the eggnog cream cheese frosting
- ⅓ cup unsalted butter softened to room temperature
- 4 oz cream cheese softened to room temperature
- 2 tablespoons eggnog
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ teaspoon rum extract
- 3 cups powdered sugar sifted
- ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg plus more for dusting
Make the cookies
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or a hand mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed for 2 minutes.
- Add the egg, vanilla and rum extract then beat well, until the yellow streaks are gone.
- Add the eggnog and beat again until it's incorporated.
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and nutmeg in a separate medium bowl. With the mixer on low, add half of the dry ingredients, then turn the speed up to medium to incorporate it fully. Repeat the process with the second half of the dry ingredients. The cookie dough will be wet, this is what you want!
- Use a heaping tablespoon or medium cookie scoop to drop the dough a few inches apart on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until the tops are set and no longer look wet. The cookies will spread out first then start to rise.
- Allow to cool on cookie sheet for a few minutes then transfer to wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
Make the cream cheese frosting
- Beat together the softened butter and cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth and all of the lumps are gone.
- Add 1 cup of the confectioner's sugar and beat on medium speed to incorporate. Add the eggnog, vanilla and rum extract and beat until combined and the mixture is smooth.
- Finish by adding the last 2 cups of confectioners' sugar and beat well until smooth.
- Frost the cooled cookies with a tablespoon or two of the frosting. I like to make a swirling motion on the top. Sprinkle with more ground nutmeg before serving.