(Photo: David Bagosy, Styling: Melissa Direnzo) This article was originally published Nov. 5, 2019 and was updated Nov. 15, 2023.
It's time to build out your holiday baking game plan. Now's the time to figure out what goodies to make first for shipping afar, and for the serious cookie exchange bakers out there, to divide and conquer. So get your reserves ready for a solid six weeks of sprinkles. We dug deep into our archives to bring you all the baking inspiration you need for the sweet, sweet season ahead.
Creative (and incredible) cakes Anna Olson's Gingerbread White Chocolate Mousse Cake (Photography by Janis Nicolay) Half-Made Homemade Angel Cake (Photo credit: Zac Williams) Lauren Toyota's Black Forest Loaf Cake (Photography by Lauren Toyota) Mena Massoud's Basbousa (Photo credit: Andrew Rowley) Half-Made Homemade Penguin Cake (Photography by Zac Williams) Orange Spice Pudding with Cognac Caramel Sauce (Photography: Barry C. Parsons) Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Icing Classic New York-Style Cheesecake with Cherry Topping (Photography by Allison Day) Manitoba Vínarterta (Geoff George / The Great Canadian Baking Show) Belinda's Flourless Coconut and Chocolate Cake (Photography by Peden + Munk) Jamie Oliver's Beautiful Black Forest Gateau Flourless Lemon Ricotta Cake with Almonds (Photography by Michael Gozum) Cassata Pie perfection Maple Bourbon Pecan Pie (Photography by Florence Grunfelder; food styling by Sabrina Falone) Butternut Squash Pie with Oat Crust (Photography by Rachel Conners) Cranberry Apple Candied Ginger Pie (Photography by David Bagosy) Rum Raisin and Cider Pear Pie (Photography by David Bagosey) Classic Pumpkin Pie (Photography by Betty Binon) Farmer's Saskatoon Pie (Credit: Duchess Bake Shop) Apple Cheddar Pie (Photography by Marcella DiLonardo) Classic Tourtière Santa Stocking and Pinecone Hand Pies (Photo credit: David Bagosy) Flaky Berry Pie Squares (Photography by Rachel Conners) Cookie exchange standouts Hazelnut Espresso Shortbread Crescents (Photo: David Bagosy, Styling: Melissa Direnzo) Dark Chocolate and Molasses Cookies (Photography by Suech and Beck) Fudgy Brownie Cookies (Photography by Michael Gozum) Shooting Star Sugar Cookie Cake (Photo credit: David Bagosy) Ginger Sparkle Cookies (Photo credit: Jackson Roy) Gingerbread Cookie Advent Calendar Sugar Cookie Dreidel Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies (Photo: David Bagosy, Styling: Melissa Direnzo) Whole Grain Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies (Photo: David Bagosy, Styling: Melissa Direnzo) Spiced Chocolate Crinkle Cookies Linzer Cookies Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies (Photo: David Bagosy, Styling: Melissa Direnzo) Gefüllte Herzen (Photo by: Darren Goldstein/DSG Photo) Pastries, confections and other delicious desserts Saffron-Almond Baklava (Photo by: Darren Goldstein/DSG Photo) Chocolate Soufflé Eggnog Tiramisu Nadiya's Éclair Roll Orange-Scented Date Crumb Bars (Photography by Michael Gozum) French Macarons Old-Fashioned Madeleines Flognarde with Plums or Berries or Pears (Photography by Ellen Silverman) Swiss Meringue Reindeer (Photography by David Bagosy) Hazelnut Espresso Millionaire Bars (Photography by Michael Gozum) Brûlée Lemon Tart (Photography by Kayla Rocco) Tartes Tatin (Photography by Kevin Clark) Vanilla Bean Crème Brulée Salted Tahini Chocolate Swirl Brownies (Photo: David Bagosy, Styling: Melissa Direnzo) Sufganiyah (Hanukkah Donut) Ice Box Lemon Squares Brown Butter Blondies Chocolate Cream Profiterole Wreath Gougères Chaat Tarts (Photo by: Darren Goldstein/DSG Photo) Black Sesame Pinwheels Roselle's Banana Cream Pie Éclairs (Photography by Ryan Szulc) Jamie Oliver's Bonkers Bread & Butter Panettone Pudding Tart Lovely loaves, buns and breads Chocolate Babka Deb Perelman's Better-Than-Classic Pound Cake (Photography by Deb Perelman, styling by Barrett Washburne) Rosca de Reyes Rye Sourdough Bread (Photography by Ben Dearnley) Braided Challah with Homemade Butter and Apple Butter Pull-Apart Garlic Bread Chocolate Walnut Banana Bread Kelly Vanderbeek's Sourdough Bread Cinnamon Crumble Coffee Cake Breakfast Pinwheels Blood Orange Pound Cake Cinnamon Buns