Holiday Cookies eBook: Free Download

Today is the big day!  I switched my site over from my previous to Grace and Good Eats.  This change was a long time coming and I am so excited to begin 2015 with my new site.  When I started Sweet Bella Roos it was a semi-private blog, affectionately nicknamed after my daughter, and my Mom was my only reader.  I never imagined it would grow to what it is today or that I would still get so much joy from sharing a little piece of my life with all of you.  I struggled with a bit of an identity crisis, afraid to commit to being a “food blog”, but as my recipe development and food photography skills have (immensely) improved over the past five years, I’m finally ready to wear the title proudly.

To celebrate I’m giving away a free download of my Holiday Cookies eBook! 

FREE DOWNLOAD: Holiday Cookies- 10 delicious cookie recipes for the holidays and beyond

This digital cookbook features 10 of my most favorite cookies (never before seen on the blog).  Most of these recipes are my go-to, tried and true, recipes- with a few new ones thrown in to the mix.  These are the recipes I would pull out when I needed to bake some goodies to bring to work for a holiday celebration, to a potluck event at church, or even just a rainy Saturday deserving of cookies.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Holiday Cookies- 10 delicious cookie recipes for the holidays and beyond

Holiday Cookies is a 24 page PDF with 10 recipes, full page color photographs of every cookie, tips and methods, and includes:

  1. Chai Spice Cookies
  2. Browned-Butter Shortbread
  3. Sea Salt Caramel Pecan Sandies
  4. Lemon Sandwich Cookies
  5. M&M Monster Cookies
  6. White Chocolate Cherry Macadamia
  7. Peanut Butter Blossoms
  8. Oatmeal Cranberry
  9. Sugar Cookie Wreaths
  10. Mint Chocolate Fudge

These are all simple, easy to follow recipes that don’t require any crazy ingredients.  I’ve included a mix of chocolate, fruit, and spice so you are sure to find something to please everyone.  While these cookies are perfect for the holiday season, they can certainly be made any time of year!


I hope you enjoy baking and sharing (and eating!) these cookies.  And I hope you will follow along with me on my new site.  I’ve changed the name of most of my social media accounts, so please make sure you are following me under my new accounts!




M&M Candy Pretzel Bark

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Glad & M&M’S®. All opinions are 100% mine.

M&M Pretzel Candy Bark- so yummy, and perfectly giftable for the holidays

I feel like I’ve been unusually on the ball this holiday season.  The house is decorated inside and out, I’ve been busy baking treats, and I’ve even remembered to move the Elf every night!  I talked my husband into a real Christmas tree this year (our fake one is starting to look a little “Charlie Brown”) and I already have presents under it.  Last year we didn’t even get our lights up on the house and I was up all night wrapping on Christmas Eve. …

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Sweet and Salty M&M Popcorn

The perfect mix of sweet and salty popcorn

Are you a fan of popcorn?  I can take it or leave it.  It always smells so amazing freshly popped, but after a big handful I’ve usually had my fill.  It’s my husband’s favorite snack (second maybe to chips and salsa) and he likes to have a big bowl of it while we catch up on the DVR after the kiddos go to bed. …

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DIY Coffee Sugar Scrub

This post brought to you by Dollar General. All opinions are 100% mine.

DIY Coffee Sugar Scrub- an easy gift for teachers, friends, or family! Less than $2.15 each

I’m one of those people who doesn’t like to drink coffee, but loves the smell of it.  My husband recently started drinking it in the mornings and since then I’ve been stealing whiffs from the canister as I’m trying to wake up.   It just smells so rich!  

No one likes coffee more than my Dad though.  He drinks it morning, noon, and night- especially with my Mom’s sweet treats.  I remember always wanting to drink it as a kid to be like Dad.  My parents let my sister and I try it once; my sister loved it, but my cup ended up being about 99% milk. :)

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My Current Cookbook Wishlist

This post contains affiliate links.

Can you believe there’s only 17 more weeks until Christmas?  It always seems like once back to school hits, the holidays just sneak up on you!  I recently started a new board on Pinterest for my husband with gift ideas for me.  (Over the years I’ve learned he does better with hints… as long as those hints include exactly what I want and exactly where he can purchase it.)

This year I’m thinking about keeping it pretty easy for him after noticing my Amazon wishlist filling up with all the cookbooks I’ve been wanting.  So many of my blogger friends have books coming out soon and I can’t wait to get my hands on them!  This week I couldn’t wait for Christmas and decided to pre-order 100 Days of Real Food by Lisa Leake.  It just arrived yesterday and I am already loving it!  So pretty!

If you’re shopping for a foodie this year, I’ve listed a few of the books from my current cookbook wishlist. 

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Christmas Bingo- Free Printable

Christmas Bingo- 10 FREE Printable Cards #christmasMerry Christmas Eve!  I hope you are baking up yummy treats and spending time with loved ones right now! Just in case you are looking for something fun to do together (or something to keep the kiddos busy while you frantically wrap last minute presents… just sayin’), I’ve created this fun Christmas Bingo free printable for you.  There are 10 different cards in the set.  (You can print off an extra card and cut out the squares to make it easier to call them out if you like.)

Download Christmas Bingo

Every year we spend Christmas Eve at my Mom’s house and eat homemade tamales and play games with all of the cousins.  This year instead of a white elephant gift exchange we are going to play Christmas Bingo.  We are blessed that so much of our family lives close and we are all able to get together.     

If you are looking for any last minute holiday recipes, check these out:

Christmas Crack aka Chocolate Saltine Cracker Toffee- this stuff is ridiculously easy to make and SO addicting! Perfect to gift or snack on #ChristmasChristmas Crack aka Saltine Cracker Toffee

Peppermint Hot Chocolate CookiesPeppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies

Gingerbread Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese FrostingGingerbread Cupcakes

Classic Spritz Cookies- simple ingredients, easy to bake, and makes a lot! #Christmas #cookiesClassic Spritz Cookies



Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies

Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies

Can I tell you a secret?  I may, or may not, have just decorated my Christmas tree today.  Would it be better if I told you the naked tree has been up for two weeks but I just got around to decorating it?  No?  Not better?  Seriously, I don’t know if it was Thanksgiving being so late, or the fact we were on vacation the first week of December, but I can’t believe Christmas is only a week away!!

Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies I was so excited about being in our new house this year for Christmas.  We had plans to go all out with lights on the house, and instead we have none… in fact, if I’m being honest here (we’re all friends right?), I just took down my pumpkins from the sidewalk yesterday…!  I wanted a huge real tree, as tall as our new, higher ceilings would allow but settled for our old fake tree because it made more sense with all the timing.  At least I have been keeping up with Charlotte, our Elf on the Shelf, right?  Bonus points for that.

Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies I guess I shouldn’t feel too bad- blogger kids don’t know what holiday it is anyway.  We start baking pumpkin treats in August and peppermint in October.  Which I guess means I’m really late with these Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies. I hope they help you get more in the Christmas mood!

Peppermint Hot Chocolate Cookies
  • 1¼ cup butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 pkg. chocolate pudding mix
  • ¾ cup cocoa
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • ½ cup peppermint candies, crushed
  1. Cream softened butter and sugar; blend in eggs and vanilla.
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a separate bowl and then add to the wet mixture.
  3. Drop by spoonful onto ungreased or silicone lined baking sheet.
  4. Bake at 350 degrees for 9 minutes.
  5. Remove from oven and immediately top each cookie with a marshmallow.
  6. Return to the oven until the marshmallow begins to melt and spread, about 5 minutes.
  7. Allow the cookies to cool before removing to a wire rack.
  8. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave at 50% power for 30 second intervals until smooth.
  9. Spoon hot chocolate on top of each cookie.
  10. Immediately sprinkle with crushed peppermint candy.


Looking for more Christmas treats?



Peanut Butter M&M Cookies

Soft and chewy Peanut Butter Cookies with M&M's #recipes #cookies

I made these Peanut Butter M&M Cookies for my first year participating in The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap. Yummy cookies to fight kids cancer?  Count me in!

Wanna know how it works so you can be involved next year?  You sign up online, pay a small fee to participate- which is actually your donation, get paired with three matches, and send out one dozen cookies to each match.  While you’re shipping your cookies, three others get your name and send you a dozen cookies!  The proceeds go to the fight against kids cancer, and this year we raised over $13,000! ($13,778.40 to be exact!)  A special thank you to all of the brands that helped us exceed our goal by matching donations: OXO, Dixie Crystals, Grandma’s Molasses, and Gold Medal Flour.

This year I sent cookies to:

And received cookies from:

All of the cookies were so yummy!  It was so fun to see what everyone chose to bake.  I hope Melissa, Katie, and Rachel enjoyed my Peanut Butter M&M Cookies!  Click on the links above to see the recipes from all the other bloggers.

Soft and chewy Peanut Butter Cookies with M&M's #recipes #cookiesWhen I went to the post office to ship these cookies, an older lady asked me if I needed any help.  I was in a hurry to get in and get out, and politely told her I could manage it on my own.  That didn’t stop her from coming over to chat and help me anyway.  It probably took me a good 20 minutes longer with her than it would have on my own.  She was the sweetest lady and told me stories about working in the post office years ago as she held the boxes so that I could tape them closed.  It was such a nice reminder to slow down, enjoy the moment, and to be kind to someone else.  Who knew a trip to the post office during the busiest shipping time of the year would restore my faith in people.  So to the girls who received my cookies- they were packaged up with extra love!

Soft and chewy Peanut Butter Cookies with M&M's #recipes #cookies

Peanut Butter M&M Cookies
  • ½ cup peanut butter
  • ½ cup butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1½ cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 pkg M&M candies
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Beat butter, peanut butter, and sugars until creamy.
  3. Beat in egg and vanilla.
  4. In another bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, and salt.
  5. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet, blending until a smooth creamed mixture.
  6. Stir in the M&M's.
  7. Drop by cookie scoop onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  8. Bake 10-13 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.


Do something nice for someone today!


Gifting with Brika + Giveaway

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by BRIKA but the content and opinions expressed here are all my own. I did receive compensation for my time and work on these gift guides.

As I was trying to finish up my holiday shopping for the girls, I ran across this neat online shop called BRIKA.  BRIKA has created an online shopping experience that celebrates modern craft, storytelling and the belief that our lives are as beautiful as we wish to make them.  BRIKA is a unique online shopping destination that offers a curated selection of special pieces that are destined to become heirlooms and celebrates the makers behind them.

Isabella has been pretty easy to shop for because she can tell me exactly what she wants and I’ve began to be able to recognize her style.  Sophia, on the other hand, is the difficult one; still at that age where she’s a little too young to know what’s going on.  For her birthday we requested age appropriate toys because she didn’t have many, but now that she’s stocked up there I don’t know what to get!  I have been itching to redo her nursery, but I’m trying to hold off and wait a little longer before making it a “big girl” room when she is ready for a toddler bed.  I am already pinning ideas for it, and obsessing over pink and gold for the redo.  I found a lot of really cute items for Sophia at that would be perfect as gifts or in her new room!

Gifts for your little one- under $50


Juliette Rabbit $36 | Musical Instrument Cloth Book $35 | Peach Lucy Hair Clip $12 |
Gray & Pink Polka Dot Shoes $45 | Safari Jumble Puzzle $34


Gifts for your little one- under $75


Gold Star + Pink Cloud Mobile $50 | Let Her Sleep Pillow $70 | Drape Jacket $74 |
Gold Giraffe Shirt $29 | Felt Fox $58


Gifts for your little one- under $110


Personalized Flower Wall Decor $80 | Wooden Toy Milk Bottles $108 | Girl Dress Nursery Art Prints $78 | Toddler Apron Set $108 | Pink Stars + Moon Mobile $84


Sign up for BRIKA and be the first to shop well-crafted goods from Makers across North America. You can sign up with your email address or through Facebook.

When you subscribe, you will also receive emails from BRIKA featuring the newest Makers, any current promotions and see what’s new on the BRIKA blog. After you have become a part of the BRIKA community, follow and become a fan on Facebook, twitter, Pinterest and instagram for all of the latest crafts, well-crafted tips and happenings.

What would you choose for $25? To Enter: Go to, sign-up (for free), and come back commenting how you’d spend your $25 if you’re the winner! BRIKA will select the winner and announce it back on this post! Good Luck!  (The contest will end on December 23th at 10am PST and is open to all residents of the U.S. and Canada.)