Baking during the holidays is one of my favourite activities. Whether I’m attempting to build a structurally sound gingerbread house, piping meringues into perfect swirls, or decorating sugar cookies into snowy scenes, the oven in my home remains on throughout December.
That being said, after hours of folding in chocolate chips, cutting out cookie shapes, or fiddling with piping bags, it is nice to have a cheat code for holiday baking-whether you’re an enthusiastic homebaker or not. In comes the ready-made grocery store cookie doughs.
There are so many to choose from now: nostalgic Pillsbury snowman cookies, classic Toll House favourites, and even gluten-free and vegan options. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by holiday baking and just want a tray of chocolate chip cookies in a flash, these store-bought options that are already shaped and ready for baking.
Pillsbury Snowman Cookies
You’ve had these cookies before. Perhaps the shape wasn’t a snowman-it could have been a heart, shamrock, ghost, or Christmas tree instead. Either way, you know the gist: these stamped sugar cookies are pleasantly chewy with inoffensive buttery and vanilla notes. They don’t spread much when they’re baked and maintain their decorative faces, but are so identifiable that everyone at the cookie swap will know you didn’t bake them from scratch. They’re so nostalgic, however, that no one will care-they’re just excited for snowman cookies.
You can find the Whole Foods cookie dough in the freezer section rather than the refrigerated like most other cookie doughs, which is great because you can savour them and only bake a couple at a time as needed. The one downside of these cookies: the chocolate chips are incredibly sweet-they taste like milk chocolate rather than semi-sweet. If you prefer your chocolate to be more sweet than bitter in your cookie, these would be perfect.
Miss Jones Monster Cookie
If you’re a peanut butter lover, you’ll enjoy Miss Jones’s monster cookie. It contains a lot of texture thanks to its base of peanut butter and the addition of oatmeal, as well as candy-coated chocolate bits. Miraculously, the cookies only contain 5 grams of sugar per cookie and also boast 2 grams of protein in each. Bonus: They’re gluten-free.
Trader Joe’s Chunky Chocolate Chip Cookie
For the chocolate chunk stans, the Trader Joe’s cookie is extra chunky with a classic vanilla base. These cookies spread pretty thin when baked and have a richer, golden brown colour than the other cookies on this list. It’s not quite as sweet as the Whole Foods option and is equally as convenient to place on a cookie sheet and bake.
This is another vegan option that’s also gluten-, tree nut-, and peanut-free. Upon reading those words, you might draw the conclusion that this cookie dough, without butter or eggs, could not possibly satisfy-and you’d be very, very wrong. Sweet Loren’s plant-based ingredients make for a wonderfully aromatic cookie loaded with chocolate chunks and the classic flavour of your standard chocolate chip cookie. The texture is grittier than the other cookies on this list, but they make up for it for the easily identifiable ingredient list, which includes sustainably sourced palm oil.
Simple Organic Oatmeal Chocolate Chip
The chips in Simple Organic’s chocolate chip cookies are much heftier and more generously dispersed than the other cookies on this list. This cookie is ideal for those who love the rustic flavours of oatmeal cookies and want chocolate, too. There’s a lot of chocolate in this cookie and the cookie puffs up into the perfect, gooey mound once baked.
M&M’s Mini Toll House Sugar Cookies
Toll House is my childhood favourite. Their cookie dough has remained consistently balanced throughout my entire life-pleasingly buttery without being cloyingly sweet. The M&M’s version is ideal for the holidays due to the colourful red and green candies flecked throughout the dough. My batch unfortunately was sparse when it came to the M&M’s, but each chocolate-filled bite took me straight back to holiday baking with my mom as a kid.
The cold weather in most parts of Australia coinciding with EOFY celebrations is the closest thing that we’ll get to snowy Christmas vibes. And if you’re in dire need of some festive cheer after the first six months of 2023, grab your ugly sweater and head to your nearest Red Rooster for Xmas in July deals.
From June 29 – July 31, 2023, Red Rooster is serving up free food items, a chance to win $10,000 or one of 10 merch packs valued at $400 and other fun prizes. All you have to do is sign up as a Red Royalty member and spend $5 on at a location near you or online.
Each week there’ll be new delicious deals and prizes to win. The week one deals have already dropped and they’re looking pretty tasty. You can get access to them via your Red Royalty account. The more you purchase, the more chances you have to win.
Spoiler alert: you can get 10 chicken nuggets for free, right now. Brb running to Red Rooster.