When we dug into the data behind which Christmas cookies were the most popular overall, then drilled down to the state level, most of it made sense, some of it surprised us, and a few tidbits still have us scratching our heads.
What was obvious? Peanut Butter Blossoms are America’s favorite Christmas cookie, based both on total number of pageviews from the U.S. population as a whole, and number of states that ranked it as their top cookie (which is six, by the way). That’s not an unexpected result; you’d be hard-pressed to find a cookie tray in December that doesn’t have at least a dozen of them on it. But what might surprise to you is that the recipe was created as an entry for the ninth Pillsbury Bake-Off in 1957—and it didn’t win. So, if you were tempted to make the joke that even though Peanut Butter Blossoms didn’t win the Bake-Off battle, they won the aWARd for most beloved Christmas cookie, you’d be correct.
One particular nugget of data that surprised us is how much America loves fudge. In fact, 3-Ingredient Christmas Swirl Fudge is the second most-visited Christmas recipe (right after those Peanut Butter Blossoms). We knew it was a popular recipe, but we didn’t know it beat out Christmas Sugar Cookie Cutouts. These colorful classics rank somewhere in the top five for every single state except Mississippi; they have it as their eighth most loved Christmas cookie. Sugar-cookie-loving-Mississippians, you’re a special group and we’re here for you. Please enjoy this collection filled with every sugar cookie recipe you could ever want.
Our favorite discoveries are ones that we can’t explain. If you have theories, we want to hear them! In no particular order, here they are:
Nebraska is the only state that ranks Peanut Butter-Chocolate Cookies as their number one, which is really a recipe for Peanut Butter Blossoms that uses a chocolate star instead of the far more popular choice, Hershey's® Kisses® Brand milk chocolates. And though it’s not their top cookie, Iowa also prefers stars to Kisses®.
Nearly every state ranks Cake Mix Fudge Crinkle Cookies somewhere in their top ten. As the recipe title points out, it’s made using Betty Crocker cake mix (hello, quick and easy!). However there are four states that prefer to make it from scratch using this classic Chocolate Crinkles recipe: Alaska, Montana, Oregon and Washington. Based on total time for each recipe, you have to wait an extra two hours for your crinkles in those states.
Alabama is the most cookie-bar obsessed state in the union. Two of their three top Christmas cookies aren’t event cookies, they are bars. 1. Sugar Cookie M&M’s™ Bars 2. Loaded Chocolate Chip Cookie Christmas Bars 3. Classic Christmas Sugar Cookie Cutouts
West Virginia is even more obsessed with cookie cups than Alabama is with cookie bars. And in fact, only one of their top five Christmas cookies is an actual cookie! 1. Easy Peanut Butter Cookie Cups 2. Sugar Cookie M&M’s™ Bars 3. Holiday Sugar Cookie Cups 4. Peanut Butter Blossoms 5. Twix™ Sugar Cookie Cups
And without further ado, here’s a look at the top cookie in every state using data from Crocker and our sister sites Pillsbury and Tablespoon. Does your state’s top pick surprise you?