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17 Different Types of Cookies To Enjoy

ind your new favorite cookie with our list of common varieties.

There are plenty of desserts out there, ranging from cakes and pies to doughnuts and ice cream. But, there’s one dessert that always seems to win everyone over. Cookies!

Chocolate Cookies On White Linen Napkin

Cookies are a favorite dessert among many people across the world. With flavors and textures coming in multiple varieties, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

You can find them at every bakery, grocery store, and even gas station. However, there’s nothing better than a homemade cookie. It also helps that they are an easy dessert to make!

Types of Cookies

The following are different types of cookies to enjoy, whether you’re looking for that classic chocolate flavor or something a little more creative.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate chip cookies are probably the most well-known cookie to most people. But, this cookie wasn’t created until less than 100 years ago. 

A woman named Ruth Wakefield made the chocolate chip cookie in the 1930s. She did this by simply adding a chopped-up chocolate bar to one of her butter cookie recipes.

From there, the chocolate chip cookie caught on and became the popular treat we know today. 

There’s just something about this chewy, chocolatey dessert that always makes me smile. Chocolate chip cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, brown sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking soda, and vanilla extract
  • Chocolate chips
  • Nuts (optional)

The chocolate chip is a classic comfort food and the perfect companion to a glass of milk!


Gingerbread Cookies

You’ll typically see gingerbread cookies around Christmas time, as gingerbread men and gingerbread house decorating are popular activities.

The spices within the cookie always give off a Christmas feel too. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have gingerbread at other times of the year.

The first gingerbread recipe originates from Greece in 2400 B.C. So, it has been a favorite for many years, and this recipe has helped me discover just how good gingerbread cookies can be.

They are soft and chewy, and their warm spices and slight sweetness provide a nice pick-me-up.

Gingerbread cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, brown sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking soda, and vanilla extract, 
  • Molasses
  • Ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground allspice, ground cloves

Sugar Cookies

Sugar cookies are a favorite by many due to their sweet, buttery taste. They typically have a vanilla flavor due to the vanilla extract.

However, some recipes also call for some almond extract to add another flavor profile. This gives the cookies a slightly nutty flavor.

Not only are sugar cookies delicious, but they can be fun to decorate too! I love going with something simple, like sprinkling some pretty sugar crystals on top.

Alternatively, you can get a little fancy and decorate your sugar cookies with royal icing. Either way, they will taste great.

Sugar cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking powder, and vanilla extract
  • Sugar crystals for the tops of the cookies (optional)
  • Royal icing (optional)

Snickerdoodles

Snickerdoodles are similar to sugar cookies because that’s technically what they are, with the exception of a few different ingredients.

The main difference is that snickerdoodles have the addition of cinnamon and cream of tartar. These two things change up that typical sugar cookie flavor profile.

These chewy, cinnamon-sugar cookies have a little tang to them because of the cream of tartar. The cream of tartar adds a nice, soft texture to snickerdoodles as well.

Snickerdoodle ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking soda, and vanilla extract
  • Cream of tartar
  • Cinnamon
  • A cinnamon and sugar mixture to coat the cookies

Shortbread Cookies

Shortbread comes from Scotland and is closer to a biscuit than a cookie.

Most cookies have a soft texture, but shortbread tends to have a crumbier and harder texture. Shortbread cookies also tend to be less sweet than other types of cookies.

Because of this, I sometimes like to dip them in chocolate to sweeten them up and add to the flavor profile.

The ingredients within shortbread cookies are simple, but they’re still delicious. They’re the perfect addition to your evening coffee. 

Shortbread cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, and vanilla extract
  • Melted semi-sweet chocolate to dip the cookies in (optional)

Butter Cookies

As you’ve probably guessed by the name, these little cookies have a sweet, very buttery flavor.

They are a popular Danish cookie, very similar to shortbread cookies. But, they are slightly sweeter and softer than shortbread cookies.

Butter cookies are another popular cookie you’ll find everywhere around Christmastime, although they are available all year long.

If you choose to buy these cookies in a grocery store, you’ll typically find them in a range of metal tins to keep them fresh.

Butter cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, and vanilla extract
  • Sprinkles or sugar crystals for toppings (optional)

Black and White Cookies

Black and white cookies are round cookies covered with vanilla and chocolate icing.

Half the cookie has white, vanilla-flavored icing, while the other side has chocolate-flavored, black icing.

Because of this appearance, these cookies are sometimes called half-moon cookies or harlequin cookies. 

The cookie itself tends to have a dome shape and a thick, cake-like consistency. They are very soft and spongy.

The cookie dough is similar to a shortbread dough, but a few extra ingredients such as sour cream and leavening agents give this cookie its soft texture.

Black and white cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking soda, baking powder, and vanilla extract
  • Sour cream
  • Chocolate and vanilla icing

Macaroons

Looking at the name of this cookie alone might make you confused as there is another cookie with similar spelling called a macaron.

But, these two cookies are drastically different from each other. Macaroons are coconut based-cookies that don’t even really have a cookie base. 

These cookies have a cake-like consistency due to their main ingredients being coconut and sweetened condensed milk.

That’s right. There is no flour or sugar in this cookie! I know this sounds strange, but once you taste these little treats, you won’t even miss the flour or sugar. 

Macaroon ingredients include:

  • Shredded coconut
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Egg whites
  • Salt
  • Vanilla extract
  • Melted semi-sweet chocolate to dip the bottom of the cookies in

Macarons

You probably know the macaron due to their bright colors and uniform, perfect look.

Some people believe macarons are a French dessert, but others believe that Catherine de Medici brought them to France from Italy in the 1500s.

Macarons are almond, meringue-based sandwich cookies, although sometimes called confections because of the amount of sugar within them. 

Two of these meringue-based cookies sandwich a soft filling ranging from a ganache or buttercream to jam.

The exterior of a macaron is a little crunchy, while the inside is quite chewy. The range in textures makes this cookie very interesting.

Macarons can come in almost any flavor you can imagine, so you’re sure to find one that you like.

Macaron ingredients include:

  • The cookies consist of almond flour, sugar, confectioners sugar, egg whites, vanilla extract, and food coloring
  • Fillings such as buttercream, ganache, or jam

Peanut Butter Cookies

In the 1910s, a peanut cookbook came to prominence to promote peanut crops.

Within this cookbook was the recipe for the peanut butter cookie. These cookies have a soft and dense texture, causing them to melt in your mouth.

If you’re looking to get a little fancy, you could even put some melted chocolate on them, and they’d be like a peanut butter cup cookie!

Peanut butter cookies are one of my favorites, and I’ve been making them at home for years. They’re one of my go-to cookies.

Peanut butter cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, brown sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking soda, and baking powder
  • Peanut butter

Biscotti

Biscotti are a delicious, crunchy Italian favorite that puts a smile on everyone’s face.

They’re essentially crunchy cookies in stick form. Although the ingredients of biscotti are similar to cookies, their baking process makes them different. 

The dough gets formed into almost a long log or loaf shape on a baking pan. Then this loaf gets sliced when it comes out of the oven.

After you have your biscotti sliced, they go back in the oven for a second time to dry them out. This is how they get their dry, crumbly texture. 

Biscotti ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking powder, and vanilla extract
  • Anise or almond extract (optional)
  • Add-ins such as chocolate chips, nuts, or dried fruit

Crinkle Cookies

Crinkle cookies are light yet decadent chocolate cookies that make the perfect dessert or snack.

They get their name from the little cracks that form on their tops. By rolling the cookies in powdered sugar before they go in the oven, you’re able to see the cracks clearly as they form while the cookies bake.

These chocolatey cookies offer a slightly crunchy exterior with a soft, chewy inside. The texture is perfect, and they’re absolutely delectable.

Crinkle cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, vegetable oil, eggs, baking powder, and vanilla extract
  • Cocoa powder
  • Confectioners sugar for the outside of the cookies

Meringue

Meringue cookies are egg white-based, melt-in-your-mouth confections.

They look like little pieces of piped artwork and have the simplest ingredients. They almost look like little swirls of buttercream frosting, but their texture is much different than frosting.

When baked correctly, meringues should be quite crunchy and have a lovely airy feel.

Meringues have a lot of sugar, so you can expect a very sweet taste when you bite into these crunchy treats.

But, because of this, they melt in your mouth easily. Flavors can range, but the most popular flavors are chocolate and vanilla.

Meringue cookie ingredients include:

  • Egg whites
  • Sugar
  • Cream of tartar
  • Vanilla extract
  • Food coloring (optional)

Pinwheel Cookies

Pinwheel cookies look exactly how they sound. These circle cookies consist of two different flavored or colored doughs rolled together.

Once they’re in a log shape, you slice them to make individual cookies, and they come out looking like swirls.

The original pinwheel cookie is plain sugar cookie dough and a chocolate cookie dough. So, the result is a chocolate and vanilla cookie.

But, some people use all vanilla sugar cookie dough and use different food colorings to show the swirl design. 

Pinwheel cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, baking powder, and vanilla extract
  • Finely chopped unsweetened chocolate

Chocolate and vanilla combinations are always a winner in my book. 


Spritz Cookies

These cookies are soft and buttery, similar to a sugar cookie.

Spritz cookies are of Scandinavian descent, originally called spritzgebäck, which loosely translates to “squirt.” This is due to the way you make the cookies.

The only way you can make spritz cookies is with a special spritz cookie press. This cookie press allows you to load it with dough and push it out into different shaped nozzles.

The most common nozzle shapes you’ll find are Christmas shapes, as these tasty, buttery cookies are typically made around Christmas time. 

Spritz cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, salt, butter, eggs, and vanilla extract
  • Almond extract
  • Food coloring (optional)
  • Sprinkles for decoration (optional)
  • Melted chocolate to drizzle on top (optional)

Thumbprint Cookies

Thumbprint cookies originate from Sweden, with their original name being hallongrotta, which translates to a raspberry cave.

This name makes plenty of sense as the cookies have a little hole in the middle of them that is typically filled with jam.

We call them thumbprint cookies because people typically use their thumb to press the holes into the cookies. 

The combination of the soft sugar cookie base with a fruity center is perfect. I’m not typically a fruity dessert eater, but this cookie wins me over every time.

Thumbprint cookie ingredients include:

  • A base of flour, sugar, brown sugar, salt, butter, eggs, and vanilla extract
  • Fruit jam

Fortune Cookies

This might be difficult to believe, but fortune cookies didn’t originate in China.

The first fortune cookie appeared in the 1800s in Japan, and they were more savory than sweet.

Because of this flavor difference, Japan called them fortune crackers rather than cookies.

Years later, the cookie developed a sweeter profile with butter and sugar as ingredients rather than savory ones like sesame and miso.

This is the fortune cookie most of us are familiar with. These crunchy after-dinner treats are irresistible with their light vanilla taste and extreme crunchiness.

Fortune cookie ingredients include:

  • Flour, sugar, butter, egg whites, water, and vanilla extract
  • Almond extract (optional)

Types of Cookies

  1. Chocolate Chip Cookies
  2. Gingerbread Cookies
  3. Sugar Cookies
  4. Snickerdoodles
  5. Shortbread Cookies
  6. Butter Cookies
  7. Black and White Cookies
  8. Macaroons
  9. Macarons
  10. Peanut Butter Cookies
  11. Biscotti
  12. Crinkle Cookies
  13. Meringue
  14. Pinwheel Cookies
  15. Spritz Cookies
  16. Thumbprint Cookies
  17. Fortune Cookies

Final Thoughts

Cookies are lovely little treats to enjoy after a savory meal or any time of the day if you want one. There’s never a bad time for a cookie! 

The above recipes provide a variety of flavor profiles and textures for you to explore, so there is bound to be one that you love! Moreover, the ingredients can typically be found at your local store, so you can easily stock up and dive into baking these delicious treats.

Did we leave out your favorite cookies from this list? Let us know in the comments below, and we’ll make sure to check them out.

Learn more about your other favorite desserts, like the many types of donuts or different kinds of ice cream-like treats.

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Written by Erin Elizabeth

Erin lives in East Passyunk and enjoys checking out the local restaurants in South Philly and beyond. Her favorite restaurants are those with spicy food and outdoor seating so that she can bring along her dog, Miss Piggy.