12 Days of Christmas Recipes: 9 cakes and cookies for your holiday table

Published: Dec. 22, 2022 at 6:08 PM CST
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TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - On the ninth day of our 12 days of Christmas recipes, we have nine recipes for you to choose from as you decide what to bake for the holidays. Honestly, we won’t judge if you bake anytime of the year, because these recipes are fantastic.

5-ingredient apple-cranberry cake

6 cups of fruit (I used five cups chopped apples and 1 cup fresh cranberries)

1 1/2 sticks of butter, melted

1 yellow cake mix

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 teaspoons cinnamon


Heat oven to 350 degrees, and spray a 9x13 baking dish with cooking spray.

Wash, core and chop apples. (I used Granny Smith, as they hold up well to baking) If using fresh cranberries, wash them, as well.

Place the fruit across the bottom of the baking dish. Combine the cinnamon and sugar, and then sprinkle evenly over the fruit. Toss the fruit a bit to help settle the cinnamon sugar.

Sprinkle the cake mix evenly over the fruit. Shake the dish to help the cake mix settle.

Pour the butter evenly over the whole mixture.

Bake 45 to 50 minutes, until top is golden brown, bubbly around the edges, and not wet in the center of the top.

Allow to cool 15 minutes before serving; top with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, if desired.

Chocolate mint crinkles by Mama Steph

1 box Devil’s Food Cake Mix

1 cup chopped Andes Mint Candies, chopped (or use Andes Mint baking chips)

½ cup canola oil

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup powdered sugar

In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except the powdered sugar.

Mix for a minute with a hand mixer.

To make large cookies, use a 2-ounce scoop, which will yield a dozen cookies.

Drop a scoop of dough into the bowl of powdered sugar, and then place on parchment paper-lined baking sheet.

Bake at 350 for 13 to 15 minutes.

Let cool completely before serving…if you can make yourself wait!

Pumpkin spice poke cake

Pumpkin spice poke cake with spiced pecans

1 box vanilla cake mix

1 (15-oz.) can pumpkin puree

1 (10-oz.) jar caramel

1 (8-oz.) container whipped topping

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/4 c. toasted chopped pecan


Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 pan with baking spray, or grease with butter or shortening.

Mix together the cake mix, can of pumpkin puree, and the pumpkin pie spice with a hand mixer for a minute to 90 seconds, until smooth.

Spread into pan, and bake for about 27 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely.

When cool, poke holes all over the top of the cake with the handle of a wooden spoon. Pour the caramel over the cake to fill the holes. Save a bit of caramel to decorate the top, if you like.

Spread whipped cream over the top of the cake. Sprinkle with the pecans, and then drizzle the top with caramel that you saved.

Keep chilled until ready to serve. Cut in to squares and enjoy!

Alternatives: You can also prepare a spice cake or a yellow cake according to package directions, omitting the pumpkin. Bake as normal, and allow to cool before proceeding with the recipe.

Banana pudding poke cake

Banana pudding poke cake by Mama Steph


1 yellow or white cake mix, and the ingredients to make it. (I add one extra egg and a teaspoon of vanilla extract to cake mixes. I also use milk in the place of water. This gives a moister, more flavorful cake.)

For the pudding:

3 cups of milk

1 cup of sugar

2 1/2 tablespoons of corn starch

4 egg yolks, whisked

1 tablespoon vanilla extract


Put the sugar and corn starch in a large (at least 2 quarts) pot. Whisk together.

Whisk in the milk, then turn on the burner under the pot to medium. Cook, stirring constantly, for five minutes.

Next, put some (about 3 tablespoons) of the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks to temper them. whisk. Add another tablespoon more, and whisk again.

Add the eggs slowly to the pot, whisking constantly. Whisk well until combined. Continue cooking the pudding over medium heat for another ten minutes, stirring almost constantly.

When it has thickened, take it off the heat. Stir in the vanilla extract.

When the cake comes out of the oven, use a chopstick or other object about that size to poke holes across the top of the hot cake. Then, pour the warm pudding over the cake.

Refrigerate for two hours or more.

Top with whipped cream, smoothing over the pudding, covering it completely.

Top with banana slices and vanilla wafers. You can even add chopped pecans, if you like! Keep refrigerated

4-ingredient fudge crackle cookies


1 box Betty Crocker Super Moist devil’s food cake mix

2 eggs

slightly less than 1/2 cup of oil (remove 1 tablespoon)

powdered sugar, for dredging the cookies


In large bowl, combine cake mix, oil and eggs with sturdy spoon until a thick dough is formed.

Use a cookie scoop (I use the OXO medium size scoop) to make uniform cookie dough balls.

Dredge each cookie in a bowl containing about a cup of powdered sugar, until well-coated.

Place on cookie sheet (non-stick, or lined with parchment paper) and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes.

Yields 18 large cookies.

Secret-ingredient Cinnamon Cookies

1/2 cup mayonnaise (trust me, you won’t taste it!)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup sugar

1 cup plain flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

cinnamon sugar


Heat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine sugar, mayo, and vanilla in a mixing bowl. In another bowl, combine the flour, sugar and baking soda, and whisk together. Add to the wet ingredients. Add a teaspoon of cinnamon to the dough, then stir in to create a stiff dough.

Use a cookie scoop or a teaspoon to grab some dough, dip into a bowl of cinnamon sugar and roll around. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for about 10 minutes before removing from oven.

3-ingredient cookies with cranberries, white chocolate and pecans

1 box of white cake mix

1/2 cup oil

2 eggs


1 1/4 cups dried cranberries

1 1/4 cups white chocolate chips

roasted, salted pecans (optional)

Powdered sugar for dusting


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, combine cake mix, oil and eggs, and beat with mixer or by hand until no more lumps of cake mix remain and batter is thick and smooth.

Add the chips and cranberries, stirring them in until well-distributed.

Using a cookie scoop, place the cookie dough on the cookie sheets about 2 inches apart. Top some of them with the salted pecan halves, if desired. (I like the touch of saltiness in contrast to the sweet cookies.)

Bake for about 8 minutes, until edges are golden brown. Cool on cooling rack, and sprinkle with a dusting of powdered sugar.


NOTE: If you’d like to make these cookies completely from scratch (not using the shortcut of the cake mix) click here.

Turtle Cookie Bars


16 ounce roll of sugar cookie dough

13 ounce can Dulce de Leche condensed milk (either in baking aisle or Hispanic foods section)

12 ounces chocolate chips, preferably semi-sweet or special dark

toasted pecan pieces


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13″ baking dish with foil, then spray the foil generously with cooking spray.

Spread the cookie dough across the bottom of the pan into a smooth even layer. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Cool cookie crust completely.

Next, place the dulce de leche into a microwave safe bowl. Place the chocolate chips into a separate microwave safe bowl.

Microwave the caramel in 30 second increments, stirring between increments. When it is spreadable, pour it over the cookie crust, spreading smoothly across the whole thing.

Repeat the same process with the chocolate chips, being careful not to burn them. It usually only takes two 30-second intervals for them both to be sufficiently spreadable.

Toast the pecans: Place a cup of pecan pieces into a non-stick skillet. place over medium heat until slightly browned an fragrant, which usually happens in five minutes or less. Remove from heat immediately.

Sprinkle the pecans across the top of the chocolate, pressing into it very gently so they’ll stick when cooled. Place in the refrigerator and allow to cool completely and harden before cutting.

To cut, remove the bars with the ends of the foil, and place on a cutting board. Use a large serrated knife to cut into squares. Keep refrigerated.

4-ingredient red velvet crinkles


1 box of red velvet cake mix (I like Betty Crocker super moist

½ cup vegetable oil

2 large eggs

powdered sugar to roll dough in

Method: In a mixing bowl, stir by hand the cake mix, oil and eggs until a ball of dough is formed.

Use a cookie scoop to create uniform balls of dough.

Dredge balls of dough in powdered sugar until completely coated.

Bake on parchment paper-lined cookie sheets at 350 for 9 to 10 minutes.

Remove from oven.

After about two minutes, remove cookies to cooling racks and allow to cool completely before storing.