6 Steps to the Easiest-Ever Cookie Swap

A cookie swap is a fun holiday party that gives you a chance to socialize with friends, co-workers, or neighbors before the holidays. Plus, everyone can stock up on cookies for upcoming holiday events or give them away as gifts. This minimal-effort party can come together in just a few weeks.

1. Invite guests. The longer your guest list, the more baking there is for everyone involved. Invite six to eight friends who love baking (and eating) cookies for starters.

Save time and money by emailing invitations or creating a Facebook event. Invite people at least two weeks before the actual swap so everyone has enough time to make cookies.

Gingerbread Cookie Trees

2. Set some ground rules.

  • Give an exact number of cookies for guests to bake so everyone leaves with a good variety. We recommend everyone bake a dozen cookies per guest. For example, if you have invited six guests, ask each person to bring 72 cookies.
  • Ask each guest to email you a copy of their recipe and let you know about any food allergies they may have.
  • Ask each guest to bring enough festive trays to display their cookies at the party.
  • Request cookies that are durable, but pretty. You can do wonders with chocolate drizzle or holiday sprinkles.
Cookie decoration

3. Choose your cookie. Bake your cookies a few days before the swap. Choose a sturdy cookie that’s easy to stack and holds up well to travel. Skip the meringues and try one of these cookie swap all-stars:

  • Mexican Wedding Cookies: These nutty, buttery cookies, also called Snowballs, are classics. They’re so delicious, that eating an extra one or two is worth the powdered-sugar evidence they leave on your face and clothes.
  • All-Occasion Cookies: This is consistently one of our most-viewed recipes, and you can make a big batch in a hurry with a Rolling Cookie Cutter. Our recipe includes a gluten-free variation, as well.
  • Classic Spritz Cookies: Our cookie press makes quick work of these holiday classics.
all-occasion cookies

4. Offer gift boxes. Save a trip to the mall and find pretty cardboard gift boxes and festive ribbon online. This provides each guest with a lovely way to transport their cookie collection home.

5. Plan a simple menu. The night of the party, brew some coffee and tea, and maybe uncork some wine. Provide a few simple, savory snacks and a veggie tray so guests don’t get sugar buzzed on all the sweet treats. Here are some sweet-treat accompaniments:

Easy Gingerbread Houses

6. Swap! After a little socializing and sampling, it’s time to swap. Invite your guests to share a story about their cookies. Are they a twist on Grandma’s classic cookie recipe or a successful Pinterest experiment? Guests can even vote on their favorites.

Then, let each guest walk around the table and make their selections. Include a table tag for each recipe.

Everyone should be able to take home about the same amount they came with.

We Want to Know!

In the comments below, share what cookie recipe you’d bring to a cookie swap and why. Is there a Pampered Chef cookie recipe that’s your favorite?

13 Responses to 6 Steps to the Easiest-Ever Cookie Swap

  1. Beth December 3, 2016 at 7:50 am #

    Cookie swaps are fun and you get to try some different ones than what you normally bake. Love sharing the recipes too!!

  2. Mary Davis December 4, 2016 at 10:36 pm #

    Had my first Cookie Exchange party today and it was so much fun! My host chose the Peppermint Fudge Sandwich Cookie, Classic Spritz, and the Gingerbread recipes. The Gingerbread recipe is amazing while the Peppermint Fudge Sandwich is delicious but rich. Classic Spritz flavor was nice but not a good recipe for the cookie press. We watched the video several times to make sure we were doing it correctly, tried again, still it would not cut when lifted. We decided the dough was too thick. We ended up just placing dough on the cookie sheet. The flavor was really good though.

    • Ashley December 13, 2016 at 6:14 pm #

      Did you use the pampered chef cookie sheets?

  3. Patricia Kown December 5, 2016 at 6:29 pm #

    This was fun and easy shopping. However; I do miss laughing and mingling with the other guests and tasting the wonderful food made and how they made it with all of the Pampered Chef products…

  4. Lynda Smith Pilgreen December 6, 2016 at 3:06 pm #

    Just seeing this on December 6 🙁 Two weeks from now is the 20th which is mighty close. I’ll remember for next year, though! 🙂

    • Michelle December 11, 2016 at 8:37 pm #

      You’d be surprised how many love a swap close to Christmas. I’m hosting one on the 23rd because so many of us enjoy having a variety for guests coming, but don’t want to do the work. Even with just 6 guests you get a nice variety with minimal work. 🙂

  5. tiffany garner December 6, 2016 at 7:39 pm #

    This is going to be my first home party as a new consultant, and I am super- excited

  6. Cathy Billiter December 11, 2016 at 8:04 am #

    Mexican wedding cookies, or as my MIL called them, pecan sandies. I would use her recipe. The best cookies ever.

  7. Maria December 18, 2016 at 6:22 pm #

    I would bring Spritz cookies! I really want to do a cookie swap party next year!

  8. Eli January 17, 2017 at 1:22 pm #

    My daughter hosted a cookie exchange last year. I co hosted this year and it was a blast . It has been about a month, but I intend do blog about it.

  9. Deena Snyder October 15, 2017 at 6:25 pm #

    Might try a cookie swap this year, and make it a house warming party also. I would bring nut cups (often call pecan tassies

  10. Robbin Valerio November 27, 2017 at 9:17 am #

    I would bring chocolate chip cookies cause everyone in my family loves them and my niece, Misty Legault won’t accept me not baking them.♥♥

  11. Janie December 2, 2021 at 6:31 pm #

    Chocolate chip. Maybe the wedding cookies. Like you said, something easily transported.

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