It’s a time-honoured tradition for many of us to spend hours in the kitchen, baking and decorating holiday cookies shaped like snowmen and Christmas trees before wrapping them up for friends and family.
But not everyone has the time or skills to bake up a storm in the middle of the holiday season, and this year might be especially challenging for even the best pastry chefs among us.
For Vancouverites who still want to share the joy—or simply indulge in some delicious baked goods themselves—but lack the expertise, here are eight local pastry shops and cafés offering particularly festive cookie boxes this season.
The talented team at this pastry shop has created several treats with a “Jolly Llama” theme for the yuletide season, including a tropical holiday cookie gift box. There are 23 cookies in this colourful package, which come in nine varieties such as vanilla shortbread llamas, alfajores with housemade dulce de leche, walnut butter cookies, gingerbread cactus Santa, and more. The treats are placed in Soirette’s signature baby blue box and wrapped with a pink ribbon and gift tag, making them all the merrier. Find it online.
Jenny Bakes x Butter and Botanicals
Beaucoup Bakery alumni Jenny Galloway and Nicole Callioux have joined forces this year to offer a special holiday cookie box that should be on everyone’s radar. The duo have been mentored by Beaucoup’s founder, Jackie Kai Ellis, and their box features an assortment of goodies, such as Nanaimo bar truffles, eggnog s’mores bars, gingerbread biscotti with white chocolate drizzle, cinnamon bun cookies, and sponge toffee with milk chocolate and vanilla salt, among other tasty treats. A portion of sales will be donated to Kids Help Phone. The holiday box is available in three sizes and can be pre-ordered online until December 11.
In addition to its collection of breathtaking holiday cakes and pastries that resemble snowy landscapes and St. Nick, Buttermere has created some festive holiday cookies. The teatime cookies come in a box of 12 and featured flavours include raspberry, matcha, and chocolate almond. The Christmas print cookies adorned with adorable snowmen and reindeer prints quickly sold out, but you can still order the macarons with eggnog, red wine, and black truffle fillings. Find them online.
Co-owner Betty Hung is bringing back her bakery’s well-loved holiday cookie tin this year, which always showcases the best French-style baked goods with a bit of Asian flair. If you’re lucky enough to order a box before it’s sold out, you will have the pleasure of sampling rare treats such as tonka pecan wreaths, black sesame cigarettes russes, and kinako toffee macadamia snowballs. The holiday tin can be pre-ordered online.
Oh Sweet Day! Bake Shop
Tucked away in East Vancouver, Oh Sweet Day offers a variety of cakes, tarts, and other delectable pastries that will satisfy most sugary cravings. In addition to its whimsical Christmas Rudolph cake, the bake shop is now offering a holiday gift box with 32 assorted cookies, from classic vanilla, to Earl Grey and matcha Christmas tree shortbreads, to chewy ginger-spiced cookies and walnut and pecan snowballs. Find it online.
Coffee and cookies go well together, and Kafka’s pastry chef Adi Kesselman wasted no time putting the well-loved duo together this season. Its inaugural holiday cookie box will feature a selection of delicious treats, including sugar cookies, Linzer cookies, ginger chews, chocolate Baileys snowballs, chocolate chip cookies, and cranberry oatmeal cookies. The holiday box comes in two sizes and will be available for pre-ordered pick-up at Kafka’s three locations beginning December 5.
The small but sweet seasonal cookie collection here includes a spiced glazed gingerbread cookie with an appropriately placed snowflake on top, as well as vanilla shortbread dusted with plenty of sugar. Available in boxes of six to eight, find them at Bel Café’s downtown Vancouver or Kitsilano locations.
The Bench Bakehouse
Commercial Drive’s Bench Bakehouse boasts a wide range of holiday treats, including DIY gingerbread houses, rum balls, and fruitcake. We’re fixated on its seasonal cookie boxes, each filled with bite-sized shortbread flavours such as chocolate hazelnut, white chocolate and pistachio, caramelized chocolate, and toasted almond. (Unfortunately, the mini vegan box with ginger tahini and oatmeal hazelnut chocolate sandwich cookies quickly sold out.) The regular cookie boxes come in three sizes and can be pre-ordered online.
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