How To Throw A Holiday Cookie Swap Like A Pro!


The holiday season is a fabulous time to host a cookie exchange. It’s a super fun tradition and a great excuse to get together with your friends! The best part is that guests arrive with one type of cookie and leave with up to a dozen different types (it depends on the number of guests invited to the exchange).



How to throw a holiday cookie swap

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Pick the date and time. Remember that it’s a busy time of the year and try to keep in mind that in general, your friends will have busy schedules. So, choose a time that you know won’t conflict with major plans and keep the time frame as short as possible. Guests appreciate that. Send out the invitations at least 2-3 weeks in advance.

Next, think about the rules. Guests need to know ahead of time the cookie exchange rules. Will your guests be exchanging 1 dozen cookies or 3? Do they need to be homemade only? Will you have your guests contribute a few cookies for dessert so that everyone can taste what they’ll be taking home? Would you prefer that your guests bring their recipe on recipe cards or should they email the recipe to you? Will lunch or dinner be served? Make sure that your guests know what to expect at your cookie exchange!




Choose cookie recipe


Choosing your cookie recipe is one of the most enjoyable parts of a cookie exchange in our opinion. There are just so many incredible recipes to pick from! Do you pick a new one that you’ve had your eye on, or go with one that’s tried and true?

No matter what you decide, take a test run before the cookie exchange to make sure the cookie is delicious. You do not want to make cookies that you are embarrassed to contribute.




Wrapping station


Once all the cookies have arrived at the cookie exchange, the cookies will need to be re-distributed! So, a cookie wrapping station is essential. Provide paper platescellophane, boxes, or some sort of storage container for the cookies, as well as decorative elements to make the packaging festive.

The cookies are meant to be given as a gift so the items provided at the cookie wrapping station should go together to make wrapping up cookies that look beautiful (we LOVE bakers twine). The goal is that your guests should want to give them as a gift.




provide food


Every party needs food, and since your guests will be tired of just cookies, you should provide something savory whether it’s hors d’oeuvres or a light lunch or dinner. A salad bar is always a great bet because it’s not heavy, it’s easy to put together and serve, and it’s healthy.





Just like at kids’ parties, bridal showers, and baby showers, you should plan for an activity outside of the cookie packaging at your cookie swap. A cookie exchange is a fun time to have a gift exchange or even to collectively bake a few dozen cookies for a family that could use some holiday cheer.

Plan an activity that you think your guests would enjoy but don’t stress about it. Keep the activity short!



collect recipes


Don’t forget to collect the recipes and distribute them at the end of the party or send out an email with the recipes within a week of the party!




Do you have any great tips for hosting a holiday cookie exchange?

Here are more ideas…

Christmas Cookie Exchange Recipes

14 Christmas Cookie Exchange Recipes




cookie exchange party printables christmas party
Cookie Exchange Party Printables {Christmas Party}




Laurie Turk the Tip Junkie
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~ Laurie {a.k.a. the Tip Junkie}

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