Harvest Spice Cookies

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Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
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Total time:
Yield: 7 to 8 dozen cookies

Recipe photo

These cardamom-perfumed spice cookies are extra-pretty when piped from a cookie press.

Harvest Spice Cookies

star rating (26) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 7 to 8 dozen cookies
Published: 01/01/2010


  • 1 cup (2 sticks, 8 ounces) butter
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ cup cream cheese
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice or ground clove
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • colored sugar for decorations, optional

Tips from our bakers

  • To give these cookies a creamy, citrus-y flavor, omit the spices (cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and allspice or clove), and replace 1 teaspoon vanilla extract with ¼ teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia flavoring. You could also add the very finely grated zest of one whole orange and/or lemon to your dough.


1) Preheat the oven to 375°F. Get out two cookie sheets; they don't need to be greased. If you're making shaped cookies using a cookie press, (e.g., spritz cookies), chill the cookie sheets as you make the dough.

2) Cream together the butter, sugar, cream cheese, salt, vanilla, and spices.

3) Beat in the egg yolk, then stir in the flour.

4) If you're using a cookie press, follow the directions that come with the press to pipe cookies onto the baking sheets.

5) Or drop the dough by the teaspoonful onto the baking sheets; a teaspoon cookie scoop works well here.

6) Top with colored sugar, if desired.

7) Bake the cookies for 8 to 10 minutes, until they're brown around the edges.

8) Remove the cookies from the oven, and let them rest on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to racks to cool. Be sure to move the cookies to a rack before they're totally cool, as otherwise they may stick to the pan.

Yield: 7 to 8 dozen cookies.


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  • star rating 11/20/2013
  • Pam from Charlotte, NC
  • These are big fall and Christmas favorites at my house. I think they taste better the next day and are perfect with a cup of tea. Chilling the cooky sheets is very helpful, and I find it easier to work with a plain pan instead of parchment.
  • star rating 12/23/2012
  • Kristi from New Mexico
  • When I was a kid, grandma made spritz and I "helped." Until this recipe, I had spotty luck with spritz. I think the key is "freezing" the cookie sheets first. Even my cowboy husband could squirt them out without sticking on the sheet! Love the spices.... I double up on the cardamon, because we are cardamon freaks. Wonderful change from the ubiquitous "almond" spritz cookies out there. This recipe is a year-round keeper!
  • star rating 12/17/2012
  • Joshua C. from Lowell, Ma
  • These are fantastic! I added 1/8tsp freshly cracked black pepper, 1/2tsp ground ginger and the zest of half of an orange. The orange pairs nicely with all of the spices. The dough was easy to work with. I used an aluminum pan and I just bought a new oven, which hasn't been working very well, so it took me 17 minutes to bake my cookies. Also, I made 9 dozen with a few testers.
  • star rating 12/17/2012
  • Joshua C from Lowell, MA
  • These are fantastic. I added 1/8 tsp freshly cracked black pepper, 1/4 tsp ground ginger and the zest of half an orange. The spices and orange go so well together. I'm pretty impressed because I'm not much of a spritz cookie guy, but these are definitely a must for any holiday party.
  • star rating 12/05/2012
  • Pik from Dominican Republic
  • Dough was too sticky I couldn't use it with the cookie press.
  • star rating 11/27/2012
  • lbienick from KAF Community
  • I thought the flavor of these cookies fell flat even with all the spices. It needs something else to bring out the flavors. Will have to work on it later
    Sorry to hear that these were not a favorite. MJR @ KAF
  • star rating 12/16/2011
  • ktnunes from KAF Community
  • The taste of these cookies was delicious, however the fact that it mentions spritz cookies and shows a photo of spritz cookies, I assumed the 7 or 8 dozen yield was of spritz cookies. Since I needed to make 6 dozen cookies for a swap, I thought it would be perfect. However, the 7 or 8 dozen yield must be if one makes teaspoon size drop cookies----through the cookie press, they only made about 2-1/2 or 3 dozen cookies. I was really disappointed, as I didn't have enough cream cheese to make another batch and had to seek other recipes. I think the yield should state that spritz cookies have a much lower yield.
  • star rating 12/12/2011
  • Katie G. from KAF Community
  • I made these for my family's Christmas cookie baking day. It was my first time using a cookie press, and while it can be fussy, it produced beautiful little cookies (sprinkled with a little KAF edible glitter for a festive touch). Room temperature dough and chilled cookie sheets were key. Cookies only took 6 - 7 minutes in the oven, depending on the size/shape of the cookie produced by the different decorating disks. Very good flavor - tangy cream cheese with an undertone of spices. A day later, the cookies are holding their shape AND their soft texture, and the spice flavor and aroma is more pronounced. I only hold back on 5 stars because I was hoping for an assertive cardamom flavor; I may play with the ratio of spices to achieve this.
  • star rating 10/03/2011
  • amannina16 from KAF Community
  • These are great, I've been making them for the past two fall seasons. I decorate them like I do the Christmas spritz, with a little chocolate chips on some of them. I love the spice flavor and they always come out great!
  • star rating 12/23/2010
  • jan from carlisle pa
  • flavor is good, but i have made pressed cookies before and these would not stick to cookie sheet (tried cold sheet, room temp sheet, room temp dough, chilled dough....)
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