This website is one of the oldest recipe sites on the Internet.
This archive of Christmas cookie recipes is one of the oldest continuously operating recipe websites on the Internet today. It’s older than Martha Stewart, AllRecipes and Epicurious (if you’ve never heard of these, you’re way too young!). It started in 1996 as a single page called “Mimi’s Christmas Cookie Archive” and you can still find references to it online. In 1999 it got its own domain name, (with a hypen because someone beat me to the domain with no hyphen). That year I hired a programmer to help me easily add more recipes; everything was hand-coded, because CMSs as powerful as WordPress were not around at the time.
The original recipes on the website were handed down to me by my grandma Evelyn. Later, family and friends contributed their favorites, and I added a recipe submission form. Eventually, the site had nearly 600 Christmas cookie recipes to share with the world. In its heyday, it had the #1 ranking for “christmas cookies” and “christmas cookie recipes” on AltaVista, Yahoo, AOL, AskJeeves *(yes, we are THAT old!) and finally Google and Bing. This led to companies contacting me to put their recipes online. Eventually, only Google mattered, and in 2011 Google changed its algorithm so that the site lost its #1 ranking. Traffic fell off dramatically and I lost interest in updating the site.
About the 2021 update
Covid19 changed many things in the world, and this site is one of them. With everything locked down most activities curtailed, in March 2020 I started work on redesigning this website. The old code it was built on was no longer secure and there were a lot of things I couldn’t do because it wasn’t built on a modern framework, so everything had to be hand-coded. I finally began the process of converting it over to WordPress. This meant a lot of data entry because there was no straightforward way to otherwise import the old recipe format.
This gave me the opportunity to really vet each recipe. I fixed typos, re-worded recipes to be more clear, and addressed issues brought up in the thousands of reviews left by visitors. Each review also had to be added by hand. Some recipes had 200+ reviews! To avoid this massive job, I added only the first 5 to 15 reviews per recipe, being careful to include the negative reviews to keep the star ratings as close as possible to their original star ratings. I did discard most recipes that had less than 4 stars, so if you’re wondering why all the recipes are supposedly great, that’s why!
About the webmaster
My name is Mimi I was a professional web designer and graphic designer. It’s hard to believe that I started this website when I was 25…and as of this writing I am 51! Now I’m mostly retired but I do the occasional job now for friends. If you need to contact me, write to me here.
Christmas-Cookies.com is a proudly Canadian website! It was originally developed in Canada and it’s the brainchild of a Canadian. But it has a lot of American roots. I was born in the US, so spelling tends to be American, but I’m not very consistent about that!