Some healthy holiday cheer (cookies, duh!)

12-days-of-cookies_lemon-012_s4x3-jpg-rend-sni12col-landscapeLife around the holidays always gets hectic. But I think we can agree that it is the good kind of hectic. Christmas is so full of treats and presents, though, it cane hard to approach the month of December without thinking about the massive lack of wellness that could come from celebrating all the Christmas cheer.

If you are anything like me, you know that the most wonderful time of the year is not complete without cookies, so I dug up one of my favorite healthy cookie recipes that I love to deck the halls with. These ricotta cookies have so much cheer and are also on the healthier side that maybe they will help even Santa keep his weight down this holiday season.

Ricotta Cookies with Lemon Glaze

Ingredients
Cookies:
2 and a half cups of all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
1 stick of softened unsalted butter
2 cups of sugar
2 eggs
1 (15-ounce) container of whole milk ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons of lemon juice
1 zested lemon peel
Glaze:
1 and a half cups of powdered sugar
3 tablespoons of lemon juice
1 zested lemon peel

Directions
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
To Make the Cookies:
In a medium bowl mix together the flour, baking powder and salt. Then put this bowl to the side for later.
In another larger bowl, combine the butter and the sugar. With an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until airy and fluffy for around 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until you can’t see them anymore. Then mix in the ricotta cheese, lemon juice and lemon zest. Beat until mixed together and then stir in the dry ingredients.
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Spoon the dough (about 2 tablespoons for each cookie) onto the baking sheets. Bake for 15 minutes, until slightly golden at the edges. Remove from the oven and let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 20 minutes.
Glaze:
Combine the powdered sugar, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small bowl and stir until smooth. Spoon about 1/2-teaspoon onto each cookie and use the back of the spoon to gently spread. Let the glaze harden for about 2 hours. Pack the cookies into a decorative container to achieve ultimate cheer.

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