Christmas cookies are fun to make and are a welcome gift to anyone with a sweet tooth. Whether you box them up in a fancy holiday container or bring them to a party or Christmas cookie swap, a few hours in the kitchen baking these sweet treats will be appreciated by your friends and family.

According to the latest Google trends, the most searched cookies in the past week include gingerbread, chocolate chip, peanut butter, sugar, and Snickerdoodle cookies. Now, that doesn't mean there aren't other cookie recipes you should try, but why not start your holiday baking with recipes that are sure to be a hit?

Must-have baking essentials

Even if you are a novice baker, cookies aren't hard to make if you follow the instructions carefully and have some basic kitchen tools on hand. One of the most important items to have is a timer so you don't end up burning your cookies.

Also, make sure you have a large bowl, spatula, and either a hand or stand mixer. A good baking sheet is essential, and to make your cookies easy to remove, Recipe Geek recommends that you use a silicone baking mat or a sheet of parchment paper. A cooling rack is another important baking basic to have on hand because it will help your cookies cool faster. Making gingerbread or sugar cookies? Head to the store to pick up some holiday-themed cookie cutters.

Pretty containers, gift wrap, or a big platter to display your cookies on are necessities if you plan to bring your cookies to a party or share them at a Christmas cookie swap.

Recipe resources

Where is the best place to find cookie recipes? There are thousands of recipe sites online, but one of the best places to find recipes — aside from the always popular food Network website — is YouTube.

Another good resource is Pinterest with an endless array of pretty cookie photos that link to recipe blogs and other food websites. Simply search "cookie swap recipes" or "Christmas cookies" and you'll find recipes and handy baking tips.

Here are a few recipes for the most searched cookie recipes to get you started.

Christmas gingerbread cookies

Watch this video and learn how to make these delicious little gingerbread men and women.

Snickerdoodle cookie recipe

The Tasty has some of the best cooking how-to videos on the web. Make these Snickerdoodle cookies and try not to eat them before you share them with your friends and family.

Peanut butter cookies with a bonus

Peanut butter cookies are always popular, but this recipe adds a chocolate kiss to make them extra delicious.

Semi-homemade chocolate chip cookies

Making chocolate chip cookies for your Christmas cookie swap is a no-fail idea. Make them soft and chewy, or thin and crisp — there are endless recipe ideas online. Here's a recipe from Betty Crocker's YouTube channel that is semi-homemade with a packaged mix if you don't have time to make cookies from scratch.

Sugar cookies are fun to decorate

Watch this video from Chowhound for some decorating ideas that will turn your sugar cookies into Christmas masterpieces.