Sweet Musings with a Bitterly Sharp Wit

The Christmas Cookies That Weren’t


Despite best intentions, holiday gifts always end up as a rushed, last-minute affair. What with the endless waffling over precisely what to make and share, there ends up being little time to actually bake, wrap, and ship those treats off so that they arrive before the appointed holidays have passed. Well, for the first year in recent memory, those sweets never made it to the post office at all, let alone their destinations. To put it simply, it was an “epic fail” on my part.

Still borderline delirious after being taken out by a vicious head cold, perhaps it was not the best idea to leap into a project of such scale. But oh, what false confidence I had! I even did a test run of the recipe, to make sure it was tasty, reasonably mail-able, and all around a solid choice. Shaped as adorable little wreaths and brilliantly emerald green, they were so perfectly festive, too! Glittering with a light sprinkle of coarse sugar, I was certain that these sweet, minty little numbers would be the hit of the holidays. Of course, I tested them as a small batch… And I foolishly believed that this formula could effortlessly be increased, by four times, no less.

No dice. As soon as the mixer started to crank up into gear, I knew I was in deep sh– …dough. Flour and sugar spraying over the sides of my overburdened mixing bowl like a lawn sprinkler on a rampage, those ingredients had no desire to come together and make cookies. Feverishly working to remedy the situation and add more of the dry goods with no rhyme, reason, or measuring, things only got worse with every haphazard addition. The dough was unsalvageable; a depressing lump of lurid green goo that no one in their right mind would want to consume.

So, to all of my friends and loved ones, these are the cookies that you should have received this holiday season:

Can you accept an IOU, and the (successful, small batch) recipe, instead?

Minted Matcha Wreaths

1/2 Cup Non-Dairy Margarine
4 Ounces (1/2 Package) Vegan “Cream Cheese”
1 Cup Granulated Sugar
1 3/4 Teaspoon Matcha Powder
1 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract
1/2 Teaspoon Peppermint Extract
1 3/4 Cups All Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Garbanzo Flour
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder

Decorative White Sugar Crystals, or Turbinado Sugar

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheet with silpats or parchment paper. Set aside.

In your stand mixer with the paddle attachment installed, thoroughly cream together the margarine, “cream cheese,” sugar, and matcha, so that the mixture is homogeneous. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure that everything is incorporated. Add in both extracts, mix to combine, and set aside.

In a separate large bowl, whisk together all of the remaining dry goods for the cookies so that the ingredients are well-distributed throughout the mixture. Slowly add them to the stand mixer, incorporating them in 2 or 3 separate additions. The resulting batter with be very thick, and it may seem like it’s not going to come together, but just be patient; Do not, under and circumstances, add any extra liquid!

Once you achieve a cohesive dough, place a few mounds of it into your spritz cookie gun, which should already have the design you desired installed (the wreath shape, if you want to keep with the intended theme here.) Squeeze out cookies as directed by the manufacturer of the gun, reload when you run out of dough, and repeat. Lightly sprinkle decorative sugar on top of the cookies.

Bake for 8 – 12 minutes, until no long “wet” looking on top and the cookies look solid, with just the vaguest hint of golden color around the edges. Be sure to pull them before they become too brown, or you’ll loose the effect of having pretty green wreaths.

Let the cookies cool on the sheets for at least 10 minutes, and then completely on a wire rack.

Makes 40 – 50 Cookies

Printable Recipe


Author: Hannah (BitterSweet)

Author of My Sweet Vegan, Vegan Desserts, Vegan a la Mode, and Easy as Vegan Pie.

36 thoughts on “The Christmas Cookies That Weren’t

  1. Hi,
    I just discovered your blog.. really love your photo’s!!
    This post really made me laugh, thank you.



  2. I hear you! I spent the last day before travelling home to my parents making chocolates and truffles. I had prepared it all and it was still last minute as usual! My truffles weren’t nearly as beautiful as your cookies though.


  3. Those are so pretty!

    Kitchen failures happen to the best of us. I think the best way to deal with them is to know when to cry uncle! haha


  4. I did the same thing everything last minute despite all my planning. They sure are beautiful cookies!


  5. I am glad you are better! I am sorry to hear of your illness! I seem to always get ill before exam (even when I’m not stressed).
    Yet, this looks like a wonderful cookie! They are minty and naturally green! I am kicking myself because I found Matcha Powder for the first time in Whole Foods ( a special and rare trip). I didn’t get any. ha ha!
    The cookie is shaped so pretty? Was it a mold?


  6. I too am sorry to hear you weren’t feeling so well Hannah. Although I must admit it’s somewhat comforting to know that baking mishaps happen to everyone. The small batch version looks beautiful.


  7. These look amazing! So sorry that multiplying it turned into a disaster. Don’t worry, I am enjoying seeing the pictures of the cookies.


  8. Shame they didn’t work out, but I’m sure people will still appreciate belated ones, if moreso because they won’t have been innundated with food!


  9. Oh, you poor thing! I knew you were under the weather and that the cookies weren’t turning out but now we know why. You just tried to do too much.

    I got sick Tuesday night of Christmas week and was expecting company on Wednesday so I can totally relate. Didn’t take long to pare down my list of things I was going to do. And you know what? The holiday was great, anyway.

    Your test cookies are gorgeous, Hannah. I’ve got matcha powder in my pantry but have only made tea with it. Clever of you to use it in the cookies!


  10. Waouw, nice recipe, well done !
    Oh no, to bad, I’ve not “vegan cream Sheese”, it’s not easy to find it :(
    I have almost everything you need otherwise.

    For what I can replace? I have thick cream is the same texture as “vegan cream Sheese” but the taste is sweeter, you think it will be good too?


  11. Wait – cookies aren’t supposed to come out like green goo? That’s how all my cookies turn out. These are pretty and hopefully the intended recipients will gladly accept an IOU.


  12. These look so good! and the pictures are beautiful as well!


  13. Oh no! I had the very same experience with a bread recipe when I tried to increase it 5 x the original amounts. Oh well… at least we have the original batch to prove how good it was.

    Those are adorable cookies. Re-shape and use the recipe for Valentines Day to give to all your friends. :)


  14. Poor Hannah! Baking disasters are no fun, especially when you end up with a depressing lump of lurid green goo! (that made me laugh out loud!)

    The small batch cookies are beautiful and festive though. There’s always next year! :)


  15. UFF! Sounds like you had a rough time. Been there, done that. And yes my kitchen was uber messy. Not to mention my mom nearly killed me. But the ones that worked out look lovely!
    Jess : )


  16. Aww but they are so pretty! And you tried so hard! It’s the thought that counts. Besides, think of it as by just providing the recipe you are helping others help themselves! So basically you’re a good samaritan.


  17. Oh, I’ve had flour and sugar mixer explosions too many times to count! And without the excuse of a headcold, either…

    I shall absolutely accept this cookie recipe. I do so love matcha!


  18. glad to hear that you are feeling better, hannah! i hope you had a wonderful holiday season (minus the getting sick and the cookie fiasco!). hope to talk to you soon! : )


  19. Lovely looking! They were worth the wait. Hope you are feeling much better. ;)


  20. Really glad to have found your blog! Going to make this for lunch today, thanks for the inspiration..


  21. I have the same idea every year but take it one step lees then you lOL! I usually think about baking to cookies but don’t actually bake the cookies.

    It’s the worst type of kitchen disaster when you have all that pressure to perform :P I hope it works out better for you Xmas 2011!


  22. Well the cookies look gorgeous & delicious! If I were your friends or family, I’d happily accept the IOU :) I love how you always remind me of the fact that I need to use my matcha. It’s an ingredient I love so much but always forget about.


  23. well these certainly look delicious! Don’t you hate it when recipes don’t double…. triple… right?? Such frustration!!


  24. this looks fabulous love the colour


  25. I just discovered your gorgous blog and I’m so happy I did! You are so talented! I love your writing style and your recipes and photos are fantastic! The holidays seemed to slip by me this year and I feel like there were so many things I wanted to bake that I just didn’t get the chance to. These cookies look fantastic and I’ve bookmarked the recipe for next year’s holidays…if I can wait that long to make it! :)


  26. This post made me laugh so much. I feel like I am always this way in the kitchen, jumping into things, making a mess, and have terrible disasters occur! >< The final recipe looks delicious, though! <3

    Also, I've nominated you for the Stylish Blogger Award! (here:


  27. Happy New Year to you Hannah! These are so cute and would be a great addition to the holidays. Sorry you weren’t feeling well.


  28. Macha and peppermint. I am trying to work out how that will taste. I ahve just been approached by a matcha company wanting to use one of my recipes.


  29. I’m sorry to hear about your flour and sugar explosion. I’m no stranger to baking disasters, so it made me feel better knowing that they even happen to the best of us! Now you get to enjoy your beautiful looking baked goods in relative peace. Yay!


  30. Happy New Year!! These cookies are so pretty, Hanna!


  31. Pingback: Minted Matcha Wreaths

  32. Those look utterly delicious! I’m definitely going to have to give them a try.


  33. Aw I’m sorry to hear about the frustrating experience you had with the original cookies you tried to make. These ones however look amazing and I’m loving the combination of matcha, mint and cream cheese!


  34. These are beautiful Hannah! I am a big lover of matcha, these look delicious.


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