By Lydia Bolen



A cookie swap is an easy, affordable way to host a party during the holidays. It is a great way for friends and their families to make fun memories.


My daughter has hosted a cookie swap every Christmas with her girls. It is a special time and fun preparing for the party. Festive invitations are mailed and the swap is usually held close to Christmas.


Each girl and their mother come with 2 dozen cookies on a decorative tray for the table. While enjoying the goodies, each girl makes an ornament to take home with them. They are provided a take-home Christmas tray and choose one of each type of cookie to share with their families.


Enjoy making my family favorites of Oreo Truffles, Crispy Cornflake Wreaths and Candy Cane Kiss Cookies.




Candy Cane Kiss Cookies

  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract, optional
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 2 cup Candy Cane Hershey’s Kisses, finely chopped
  • Granulated sugar (for rolling)
  • Unwrapped Candy Cane Kisses, about 4 1 /2 dozen

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Using mixer, combine powdered sugar, butter, extracts, and egg. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often until creamy.

In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.

Add to wet mixture and beat until well blended. It will be crumbly. Stir in chopped Kisses.

Shape dough into 3/4-inch balls; roll in granulated sugar. Place balls on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, one inch apart. Bake for 8 minutes. As soon as they come out of the oven, gently press a Candy Cane Kiss in the center of each cookie.

Immediately place cookie sheet (with cookies) into the refrigerator or freezer to allow the Kisses to set quickly.

Leave for a few minutes; remove cookie sheet, and transfer cookies to a cooling rack.

Store in airtight container up to a week.





Oreo Truffles

  • 1 package regular Oreos
  • 1 8 oz. block cream cheese, softened completely
  • 16–18 ounce vanilla almond bark (8-9 squares)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Crisco (to thin almond bark, if necessary.)
  • Sprinkles, crushed candy canes, crushed Oreos, for toppings.


Spread a sheet of parchment paper onto a large cookie sheet.

In a food processor, pulse Oreos until they are fine crumbs.

Pour crumbs into a separate bowl and add softened cream cheese. With the back of a spoon, combine crumbs and cream cheese, pressing down into bowl until crumbs are evenly moistened.

Form 1-inch balls and place onto the parchment paper.

Freeze truffles overnight.

Melt the almond bark according to package directions, adding 1 /2 teaspoon Crisco. Remove the truffles from the freezer.

To coat the truffles in the almond bark, lower each one into the melted almond bark with a fork.

Gently lift the truffle out and tap the fork on the side of the bowl for drips back into the bowl.

Sprinkle your desired toppings on each individual truffle as soon as it comes out of the melted bark.

Let truffles dry on parchment lined cookie sheet.

Refrigerate truffles to set the almond bark coating.

These are best served cold!





Christmas Cornflake Wreaths


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 5 heaping cups miniature marshmallows
  • 1 teaspoon green food coloring
  • 5 1/2 cups cornflake cereal
  • 1 package cinnamon red-hot candies


Measure cornflakes into a large bowl.

Melt butter in a large saucepan over low heat. Once melted, add the marshmallows and stir continuously until completely melted.

Stir in food coloring.

Pour melted marshmallows into the large bowl with the cornflakes. Stir until well coated.

Lay out a piece of parchment paper on the kitchen counter. Dollop spoonfuls of the cornflake mixture on the parchment paper.

Grease your (clean) hands with butter. Use your fingers to shape each spoonful into an individual wreath. Top each wreath with cinnamon candies for holly.