Christmas Traditions Abroad: Christmas Cookies

Categories Blog, Things to Do
christmas cookies in colombia

I’ve hosted a “Cookie-Making Party” every holiday season since I was 7 years old. This year, Mario’s 5 year old niece came in to Medellin from Cali for Christmas, so I got the gang together to throw a Cookie Making Party: Colombian-Style.



In planning our Christmas Cookie Party, we discovered a couple of reasons why the tradition is not so popular here.


Making Christmas cookies isn’t common in Colombia.

Sooo, it might be hard to find ingredients. Half of the cookie cutter shapes that we found were barely recognizable.  Luckily, I used to live with a baker so he referred me to a specialty bakery story in Medellin to find food coloring and some decent Christmas cookie cutouts.

Christmas shapes? Debatable. 


Medellin is really hot.

Medellin doesn’t really have “winter”. They have rainy season and dry season. That means, your cookie dough will stick to the board when you roll it out. This also means that your frosting will be very melty. It made for some interesting decorations.

holiday traditions in medellin

An excellent effort by one of our finest. 


Most apartments in Medellin don’t have an oven.

Like mine. So what do you do? Well, if you’re a savvy Gringa-Paisa like me, you invite yourself, your boyfriend, and the majority of his family over to your friends’ house!

Will I probably win Most Appreciated Friend-Group Member of the Year? Probably not. Did we all stuff our faces with delicious cookies? Yes.

Pro-tip: pay for pizza.

Pro-tip #2: have an adorable niece so that your friends don’t care you invited the entire familia over to throw sprinkles all over their apartment.

christmas for gringos in colombia

This is her after consuming about 4 extremely sugary Christmas cookies. Still adorable. 


At the end of the day, cookies are delicious.

Baking and decorating cookies is really fun. With a spunky 5 year old it’s even more fun. Ugly melty cookies that are in undecipherable shapes make the entire situation funnier.

spending christmas in medellin

Santa’s sled? A gravy pot? A Genie’s bottle? It still tastes delicious. 


gringo christmas

The two gringas in charge of leading the Colombian’s first-ever Colombian Christmas cookie decorating experience decided that they did a pretty good job for rookies. Especially since the materials they had to work with were melting all over their plates.

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