Christmas time in South Dakota means embracing the winter weather and baking some delicious holiday sweets. Santa loves visiting South Dakota kiddos while enjoying tasty snacks along his journey through the state of "Great Faces, Great Places."

Many Christmas treats come to mind: Peppermint bark, hot chocolate with marshmallows, and of course the delectable homemade Christmas cookies! But with all the Christmas cookies to pick from, what is South Dakota's favorite?

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The website Evite has a list of the "Most-Popular Christmas Cookies by State." With the help of Google Analytics, Evite has determined the "Most-Popular Christmas Cookies by State" based on what cookie lovers in the country search for the most.

Google Analytics
Google Analytics

So what is the most popular Christmas cookie in South Dakota? St. Nicholas and South Dakotans are really cookie crazy for Christmas Sugar Cookies!

Olivie Strauss (via Unsplash)
Olivie Strauss (via Unsplash)

It's undeniable that Christmas Sugar cookies are some of the top desserts to enjoy during the holidays. I have some of the best memories with my great-grandma thanks to her Christmas Sugar cookies. My G.G. would have just the right amount of frosting and sprinkles on each cookie. It was always a special day when she made them too!

Homemade sugar cookies are the best. Lucky for us, there are sweet Christmas Sugar cookie recipes online that are simple to try, especially if you're baking them for the first time. This recipe comes from Handle the Heat with Tessa Arias. It's called the BEST Sugar Cookie Recipe: Soft, Chewy Drop-Style Cookes.

Here are a few sugar cookie recipes from Handle the Heat with Tessa Arias:

Ingredients For the Perfect Sugar Cookie Recipe:

  • All-purpose flour – Make sure to weigh your flour accurately. If you add too much flour, your cookies won’t spread at all and won’t be soft or chewy.
  • Baking powder – This gives the sugar cookies lift, without adding too much spread or browning.
  • Fine sea salt – So important to balance the sweetness!
  • Unsalted butter – It’s important that your butter is at a cool room temperature, otherwise your cookies may spread.
  • Granulated sugar – The star ingredient! Don’t reduce the sugar – find out why here.
  • Eggs – One whole egg with an extra egg yolk lends richness and chewiness to the texture. Make sure they’re at room temperature.
  • Vanilla extract – No sugar cookie recipe is complete without vanilla extract.

How to Make SOFT Sugar Cookies

  1. The extra egg yolk helps to add more moisture and richness, for a soft and chewy texture.
  2. The other trick is found in the size of the dough ball…. a whole 3 tablespoons in each! This creates larger cookies that spread out perfectly with ultra-soft centers.
  3. Whatever you do, don’t overbake this sugar cookie recipe. They should still look ever so slightly ‘wet’ in the center when you pull them from the oven.

Your sticks of butter should give slightly when pressed with your finger but still hold their shape. To be precise, your butter should be 67°F.

Happy baking! Make sure you make extra Christmas Sugar cookies for Santa Claus!

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