Keto Christmas cookies might sound like an impossible holiday miracle, but they do exist. And the keto diet has become so mainstream, we wouldn’t be surprised if Santa himself were tempted to try it. Luckily, these keto cookies would all be welcome on his—or anyone else’s—holiday dessert plate.
The things everyone seems to know about keto are that it is high in fat (which means you can still enjoy holly jolly holiday feasts of bacon-wrapped prime rib), and that it’s low in carbs (which seems like it would knock cookies right out of the equation). But with the right substitutions, you can still enjoy sweets.
Related Reading: Keto-Friendly Low-Sugar & Sugar-Free Cookbooks
Keto-izing desserts and junk food on the regular is perhaps not the best way to stick to the spirit or the letter of the keto lifestyle, but it is a great way to get a taste of holiday spirit without totally wrecking your diet.
Keto Baking Essentials: Flour & Sugar Substitutes
Butter and eggs are A-OK per keto guidelines, but flour and sugar need to be swapped out.
Anthony's Erythritol Granules, 2.5 pounds for $12.99 on Amazon
A common keto sugar substitute.
Erythritol-plum fairies just doesn’t have the same ring to it, but in cookies and other baked goods, keto-friendly sugar substitutes like this are a necessity.
Related Reading: The Best Zero-Calorie Sweetener We’ve Tried So Far
Stevia, xylitol, and monkfruit are some other sugar substitutes you’ll see in these keto cookie recipes, so be sure to read them beforehand and make sure you have all the ingredients you’ll need.
If you want to get into keto cakes and savory keto baked goods, you’d do well to check out keto cookbooks and online blogs.
The Ultimate Guide to Keto Baking, $24.47 on Amazon
This brand new book from Carolyn Ketchum of the popular All Day I Dream About Food blog is full of sweet and savory keto baking knowledge.
Keto Cookie Recipes
Try these on for size, and be sure to save some for Santa.
You may play around with different cookie types every year, but chocolate chip cookies are a non-negotiable part of the holiday cookie plate. This keto version of the classic uses almond flour, erythritol, and sugar-free chocolate chips. The xantham gum helps bind the dough. Get the Keto Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe.
The other (and perhaps the primary) holiday cookie all-star is the sugar cookie, with its cheerful shapes and festive colors. In making it keto-friendly, not only do you have to deal with the dough, but the sugar-based royal icing. This recipe uses two specific sweeteners and two types of flour to achieve the best effect. So break out those cookie cutters and get the pin rolling. Get the Keto Sugar Cookie recipe.
Prefer less sweet icing and more warmly spiced cookie, but still want the squee-inducing shapes? Keto gingerbread men are here for you, and these are baked twice (just like biscotti!) to achieve a perfect crisp bite (though if you prefer soft and chewy ginger cookies and don’t like fussing with cutters, try this keto ginger cookie recipe). Get the Keto Gingerbread Men recipe.
Easier than linzer cookies but equally charming, thumbprint cookies are perfect for showcasing your favorite sugar-free jam in the center. Heed the recipe tip to not use parchment paper here, as it causes these cookies to spread. Get the Keto Thumbprint Cookie recipe.
Are mere chocolate chips in buttery vanilla-scented dough not enough for you? Make these double-chocolate chunk keto shortbread cookies and satisfy your deepest, darkest (chocolate) cravings. Milk most definitely required. Get the Keto Chocolate Shortbread Cookie recipe.
Related Reading: The Best Uses for Non-Dairy Milks Besides Cereal
Spode Christmas Tree Tiered Stand, $32.99 at Wayfair (normally $100)
Speaking of Christmas cookie platters, this one is lovely.
Soft, chewy, cinnamony perfection, in just about 30 minutes, and with minimal carbs per serving. Add these to your holiday baking list for sure. Get the Keto Snickerdoodle recipe.
Yes, those delightfully old-fashioned spritz cookies can get a keto makeover too. Dust off the cookie press and prepare for a big batch—cut the recipe in half if you don’t want so many sweets around, or ship some to keto friends and fam who live far away. Get the Keto Spritz Cookie recipe.
OXO Good Grips Cookie Press with Stainless Steel Disks and Storage Case, $29.95 on Amazon
If you've never tried a cookie press, now's the time.
Pecan sandy fans, take note: These low-carb butter pecan cookies are an ideal keto stand-in for your old faves. Get the Keto Butter Pecan Cookie recipe.
You know those unassuming little powder sugar-coated cookie lumps that taste so good and melt away just like actual snow on your tongue? Well, you can have a keto rendition of those too! Get the Keto Snowball Cookie recipe.
Header image by Chowhound