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Reindeer Cookies are a Christmas Treat

Perfect for holiday gatherings, these reindeer cookies will bring smiles to both kids and adults! Such a fun and easy Christmas treat.

reindeer cookies

As we hustle and bustle through the festive season, there’s one activity that stands out as a beacon of fun in the holiday chaos – baking! But not just any baking.

We’re talking about a cookie-making extravaganza that transforms a classic Christmas shape – the gingerbread man – into a delightful reindeer!

Today, I’m going to share with you the ultimate reindeer cookies recipe, perfect for edible gifting and cookie exchanges.

By using a gingerbread man cookie cutter, you’ll lay the groundwork for an adorable reindeer face.

And what’s a reindeer without its distinctive features? Never fear, because we have Nilla wafers, M&Ms, candy eyes, and pretzels to complete the transformation to cute.

Picture the surprised expressions when your friends and family realize that what they thought was just a reindeer is actually a gingerbread man in delicious disguise.

These are not just Christmas treats; they are conversation starters, smile generators, and maybe, just maybe, the best reindeer cookies you will ever make.

reindeer cookies on a cookie sheet

So, grab your apron, preheat that oven, and let’s embark on a sweet journey. Everyone is going to love these, including you!

Tips for Making Delicious Cookies

Before you try this recipe, I’ve got some tips for you on making the best (and tastiest) cookies. If you’re interested, check them out. Otherwise scroll to the bottom.

Use Quality Ingredients

Use high-quality, fresh ingredients for the best cookie flavor and texture. You’ll for sure want to get fresh eggs, good quality butter, and pure vanilla extract (instead of imitation).

Measure Precisely

Flour is often the main dry ingredient in these cookies. Measure using the scoop-and-level method, as adding too much flour can result in dry baked goods.

reindeer cookie recipe

Bring Cold Ingredients to Room Temp

Bring ingredients like butter, eggs, and milk to room temperature before mixing. They will incorporate better, resulting in smoother batter and soft cookies. They don’t need to be warm; slightly cool to room temp is fine.

Avoid Overmixing

Mix the batter just until ingredients are combined, or the dry disappears into the wet. Overmixing can result in tough cookies.

Chill the Dough

Chilling the cookie dough in the fridge for the specified time (or even overnight) before baking allows the flavors to meld and the fats to solidify.

This results in cookies with better flavor and texture. It also prevents them from spreading too much during baking.

christmas cookie reindeer

Remember, practicing and experimenting will help you perfect your cookie baking skills over time. Have fun and enjoy the process of creating delicious baked goods!

Here’s what you’re going to need for these Rudolph cookies.

Reindeer Heads

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Reindeer Face

  • 48 chocolate covered pretzels
  • 48 candy eyes
  • 24 vanilla wafer cookies
  • 24 red candies (like M&Ms or Red Hots)
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips, melted


These last in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week.

gingerbread man as reindeer

You can also freeze them in an airtight container for up to two months (I would wait to decorate them until after freezing). When you bring them out of the freezer, let them rise to room temperature naturally as opposed to microwaving.

gingerbread man reindeer cookies

Get the printable recipe for these gingerbread man reindeer below:

Yield: 24 cookies

Reindeer Cookies

reindeer cookie recipe

This reindeer cookie recipe is sure to become a new family favorite during the holiday season! You'll use a gingerbread man cookie cutter to make the head.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 11 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 41 minutes


Reindeer Head Cookies

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Face

  • 48 chocolate covered pretzels
  • 48 candy eyes
  • 24 vanilla wafer cookies
  • 24 red M&Ms
  • 1 cup milk chocolate chips or chopped up chocolate bar


Make the Cookies

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder.whisking together flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking powder
  2. In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and then vanilla.creamed butter and sugar with eggs and vanilla added in
  3. Slowly add flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat just until combined.wet and dry ingredients mixed together to form chocolate dough
  4. Remove dough from bowl to waxed paper or plastic wrap. Shape into a square, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to overnight.Cookie dough formed into a square and wrapped in plastic wrap
  5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.Preheating the oven
  6. Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness and cut 24 heads using a gingerbread cookie cutter. Place the cookies onto the prepared baking sheet.cutting a gingerbread man shape out of the dough
  7. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes until edges are set. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.baked gingerbread men cookies

Assemble the Face

  1. Place the chocolate into a bowl and melt using 30 second intervals in the microwave. Add coconut oil if needed.melting the chocolate in a bowl with coconut oil
  2. Spread melted milk chocolate onto the bottom of each vanilla wafer and place over thee gingerbread head for the reindeer snout.Hand holding a nilla wafer with melted chocolate on it
  3. Dot a small amount of chocolate onto the red candy and set onto the snout.Red M&M being attached as a nose
  4. Using more melted chocolate, attach the eyes over the snout. Then, add the pretzels to be the antlers, placing them onto the gingerbread man’s feet.Eyes and pretzel antlers attached with chocolate
  5. Allow the chocolate to set completely before packaging or storing.Finished reindeer cookie

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 cookie

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 580Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 37mgSodium: 379mgCarbohydrates: 90gFiber: 3gSugar: 51gProtein: 7g

Did you make this recipe?

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If you enjoyed these Christmas cookies, let me know in the comments! I’d also love for you to check out these other holiday dessert recipes:

Candy Cane FudgeChristmas Butter CookiesChristmas CrackChristmas CupcakesChristmas Linzer CookiesGingerbread Bundt CakeGingerbread CupcakesGingerbread MuffinsGrinch CookiesGrinch CupcakesMarshmallow Pretzel TreatsMini Santa StrawberriesOreo BallsPeppermint Frosted CookiesPeppermint Ice CreamPeppermint Pudding CookiesPopcornRed Velvet Thumbprint CookiesReindeer ChowRice Krispie TreatsSanta CookiesSpice CakeTree BrowniesTree CupcakesWhoopie PiesWreath Cupcakes

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