Italian Wedding Cookies are an easy 6 ingredient nutty, buttery holiday cookie with ground almonds, chopped almonds and vanilla rolled in powdered sugar.
Italian Wedding Cookies are light, airy and melt in your mouth delicious, much like a Meringue Cookie. But no need to reserve these just for the holidays, they’d be perfect for Baby Showers, Bridal parties and any other excuse to eat a yummy cookie. In fact, there are over 50 different Cookie Recipes for you to choose from to fit any occasion.
ITALIAN WEDDING COOKIES
These little powdery cookies go by a few names, butterballs, snowballs or Italian Wedding Cookies. They’re much like Mexican Wedding Cookies and Russian Tea Cakes but instead of pecans, they’re made with chopped almonds and ground almonds.
Christmas is almost here but that doesn’t mean you can’t add one more cookie to your cookie tray for Santa. They have the perfect delicate balance of sweet from the powdered sugar and nuttiness from the ground almonds.
You won’t believe how easy these Italian Cookies are to make. They only require a handful of ingredients and take about 15 minutes of prep time, perfect for even a beginning baker. Another great thing about these Christmas cookies is that the recipe doesn’t require you to chill the dough. You can just make, bake and enjoy!
This recipe calls for ground almonds which you can get from the store but it’s also very easy to grind your own. All you need are almonds and a food processor. Make sure to pulse the nuts in short bursts and not allow the food processor to run continuously otherwise it’ll release the nuts oils. You’ll know when you’re done when the almonds are ground but still have a bit of texture to them.
Are powdered sugar and confectioners sugar the same thing?
Yes, they are exactly the same thing. You might also see it called 10x sugar. Basically, it’s sugar that has been ground so fine that it’s now a powder and then cornstarch gets mixed in to prevent clumping.
MORE HOLIDAY COOKIE CLASSICS:
HOW TO MAKE ITALIAN WEDDING COOKIES
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees f.
- Cream butter in a mixing bowl.
- Gradually mix in ¾ cup powdered sugar and salt into the butter.
- Add almonds and vanilla.
- Mix in flour gradually.
- Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Form the dough into small balls and place them on the cookie sheets.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes, watching carefully to make sure they don’t brown.
- After the cookies cool for about 5 minutes, roll them in the remaining powdered sugar to coat.
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VARIATIONS ON ITALIAN WEDDING COOKIES
- Nuts: Substitute the almonds with walnuts, hazelnuts or pistachios.
- Extract: If you want a stronger almond flavor, substitute the vanilla extract with almond extract or keep both the vanilla and almond extract in the cookie dough.
- Vegan: Swap out the butter and use Vegan butter. Super easy!
MORE DELICIOUS COOKIE CLASSICS:
- Use an ice cream scoop or cookie scoop to scoop out the cookie dough and then roll into balls with your hands. It’ll keep them all around the same size.
- Because of the amount of butter in these cookies (yay!), you can use ungreased cookie sheets to bake them on or line baking sheets with parchment paper. Cookies can be placed close together but make sure they’re not touching.
- Make sure that the butter is at room temperature before starting this recipe. It’ll make the creaming process much easier. I suggest letting it sit out on the counter for about 30 minutes prior to using it.
HOW TO STORE AND SERVE
- Serve: Enjoy these cookies fresh from the oven or out at room temperature.
- Store: You can store these cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. Make sure to place a piece of parchment paper in between each layer to keep the cookies from sticking together.
- Freeze: For best results, I wouldn’t recommend freezing them with the powdered sugar coating on them. Freeze the cookie dough balls and flash freeze on a baking sheet for about an hour. Then move the balls to a freezer-safe storage bag or container. No need to thaw them before baking, just add an additional minute to the bake time then roll in the powdered sugar per the recipe.
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter
- 2 cups powdered sugar , divided
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 1/2 cups almonds , divided
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups flour
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Add 1 ½ cups of the almonds to a food processor and pulse until the almonds are ground into a sand-like texture.
- To your stand mixer add the butter and cream on medium speed for 1 minute until light and fluffy.
- Add in ¾ cup powdered sugar and salt.
- Add ground almonds and vanilla extract.
- On low speed add in the flour until just combined.
- Add in the chopped almonds for just 5 seconds until mixed in.
- Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or a silpat.
- Scoop 1 tablespoon sized scoops of dough onto the cookie sheets.
- Bake for 13-15 minutes, watching carefully to make sure they don't brown.
- After the cookies cool for about 5 minutes, roll them in the remaining powdered sugar to coat, let them sit one minute then roll a second time to get a nice powdery coating.