See more of the story

The leaves and falling, the night air is frosty. Halloween is on the horizon, and the winter holidays aren't all that far away.

It's the perfect time to perfect your recipe for the 21st annual Star Tribune Holiday Cookie Contest — your recipes will help make it the sweetest one yet. But hurry, because the deadline is almost here.

Since 2003, our contest has introduced cookies that have become beloved standards in Minnesota kitchens, including Lemon Rosemary Cremes, Spumoni Squares, Almond Triangles, Nut Goodie Thumbprints and our delicious 2022 winner, Maple-Roasted Walnut Delights, created by Stephanie Steinwedel of Minneapolis.

Your recipe could join the winners' circle, but not unless you enter.

The rules: There aren't many, but they are important. We love original recipes, but if you've encountered a new-to-you recipe in a cookbook, newspaper, magazine, website or other source that you've adopted and made your own, feel free to submit it. Just be sure to share its origin.

Pro tip: The purpose of the contest is to provide Star Tribune readers with new gotta-bake recipes. That's why we steer clear of spritz, chocolate crinkles, sugar cookie cutouts, Russian Tea Cakes and other tried-and-true favorites. We've seen them all.

How to submit: All entries must include the recipe — and the story behind it — along with your name, street address, daytime phone number and email address. If submitting via email, include "Star Tribune Holiday Cookie Contest" in the subject line and send it to Please include all text in the body of the email, not as an attachment. Photos are helpful, but not required.

If using U.S. mail, send to Star Tribune Holiday Cookie Contest, Star Tribune, 650 3rd Av. S., Suite 1300, Minneapolis, MN 55488. All snail mail entries must be postmarked by Oct. 16.

Deadline: Wednesday, Oct. 18, at midnight. Entries received past the deadline will automatically be entered in the 2024 contest.

Prizes: The winner — and four finalists — will appear in the Nov. 30 issue of Taste. The winner will receive a $200 gift card to Cooks | Bellecour, and the four finalists will receive $50 gift cards. Stay tuned for details on our celebration. Happy baking!