Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies: 3 Tantalizing Types

During the Christmas season, Italian sweets are an absolute necessity. After having spaghetti and a wine-laden meal, the ideal digestif is an Italian Christmas cookie. And what each family prepares and puts on their cookie trays varies greatly. Recipes for Italian Christmas Cookies are joyful morsels. A soft, sweet, cake-like cookie topped with frosting and sprinkles, they represent all that is good in the cookie world. Since you presumably already have the necessary ingredients in your kitchen, you may bake handmade Italian Christmas cookies now!

And beyond the baking, a significant portion of the pleasure lies in the decorating: roll, ice, drizzle, and sprinkle these seasonal confections to festive perfection. Therefore, play Christmas music in the kitchen and enjoy these delicious Italian cookies as you use the below Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies.

Italian Grandma’s Cookies

Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies
Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies

Italian grandma’s cookies with icing are deliciously sweet and delicate with a vanilla glaze. These beautiful Italian cookies, with a delicious glaze and multicoloured sprinkles, are perfect for any occasion!

If you’re like us and can’t stop at just one, you’ll be happy to know that this Italian cookie recipe yields a lot, so you may eat as many as you like.

This Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies was passed down to me by my grandmother, and I will always refer to them as “her cookies.” She was an expert at forming Italian cookie shapes on the baking sheet! I am accustomed to taking the easy road and creating small balls. Family gatherings and holidays were never complete without these cookies, and now I’m passing on the tradition to my children and sharing the recipe with you.

The Ingredients for the Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies

-1 tsp vanilla

-4 eggs

-1 cup of sugar

-3/4 cup oil

-5-6 cups of flour

-1 tsp almond extract

-3/4 cup milk

-4 tsp baking powder


  • In a large bowl, mix the eggs, oil, extracts, milk, and sugar
  • Add in the 5 cups of flour and the baking powder.
  • Place your dough in the fridge to chill for 30 minutes.
  • Coat your hands in flour, shape the dough, and place it onto a prepared baking sheet.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 10-14 minutes until lightly golden brown on the bottom.
  • Let cookies cool before topping them with glaze.
  • Make the glaze, dip the cooled cookies, and add sprinkles if desired.

More about the Old fashioned Italian Christmas Cookies

Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies
Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies

The old-fashioned Italian Christmas cookies full of Italian tradition are very exquisite. They taste and feel like freshly baked sugar cookies, but they have more of a cake consistency. The delicate and silky almond flavor is perfectly balanced with the sugary sweetness.

The cookies are finished with a sweet glaze to keep them moist and provide a little more taste. I understand that we often see sprinkles as unnecessary, but they truly make these cookies shine. Perfect for parties, they are colorful and crunchy.

These are “Christmas” cookies, but you shouldn’t limit your baking to just one holiday. If you play around with different colors of sprinkles, you can make these cookies appropriate for every occasion. These basic yet delicious flavors are perfect for weddings and baby showers.

Top 3 Italian Christmas Cookie Recipes You Won’t Be Able to Resist

1.   Butterballs

Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies
Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies

Butterballs are a fantasy come true. They are, without a doubt, the best cookies. They remind people of Christmas because they look and feel like snow and melt in your mouth. You can change the kind of nut you use to flavor it (my favorite is hazelnut), leaving you with a warm, nutty taste when you eat the nuts. There’s no special meaning to the name of these treats; they’re just really tasty because of the abundant butter they contain.


  • 1-1/2 cups of whole hazelnuts
  • 2 oz. butter (left at room temperature for several hours)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup of sugar powder
  • One tablespoon of pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 cups of powdered sugar to roll and dust


1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pulse hazelnuts in a food processor until they are finely ground and almost like breadcrumbs. Don’t pulse them too much, or they will turn into a paste. Set aside.

2) Mix softened butter, salt, powdered sugar, and vanilla in a stand mixer or by hand until everything is very well mixed.

3) Put the mixer on low and add the chopped hazelnuts. Mix just until everything is mixed together.

4) Slowly stir in the 2 cups of flour until everything is well mixed.

5) Scoop cookies with a 1-inch cookie scoop or a tablespoon and roll them between your hands.

6) Put the rolled cookies on parchment paper-lined cookie sheets and bake for 20 to 22 minutes. Halfway through baking, turn the sheets.

7) Carefully lift the cookies off the baking sheets and let them cool just a little bit. Roll the cookies in the extra cups of powdered sugar while they are still warm. If they break or crumble, give them one more minute to cool. ( I do this step while the cookies are still warm so the sugar sticks better.)

Yield: 36-40 cookies

2.    Italian fig biscotti (Cuccidati)

Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies
Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies

The Italian fig cookies are a true labor of love. They need an entire weekend to prepare and have sweet, citrusy tastes that stand out on a platter of cookies. Once sliced, the cross-section of them is also very appealing. The golden fig filling is encased in a sugar cookie coated in white frosting and sprinkled with colorful sugar crystals. It may take a long time, but it’s a family recipe you can pass down through generations. They are the best addition to your catering varieties.


When baking this cuccidatis, I prefer separating this recipe into three parts: cookie batter, fig filling, and lemon glaze

For the cookie dough:

  • Unsalted butter at room temperature
  • Granulated sugar
  • Light brown sugar
  • One large egg, also at room temperature
  • Vanilla extract for flavor
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking Soda
  • Salt

For the filling made with fruit:

  • Calimyrna or Mission Figs, dried. You may get them in the dried fruit area of your local supermarket, between the raisins and nuts.
  • Dates, such as Medjool, may be substituted with raisins if desired.
  • 100% pure orange juice
  • Dried, candied orange peel
  • Granulated sugar
  • zest from a lemon fruit
  • Crushed cinnamon
  • Blanched almonds finely chopped
  • You may add orange juice, spiced rum, Grand Marnier, or Grand Marnier.

 The lemon glaze:

  • granulated sugar
  • Fresh lemon juice 
  • Fresh lemon juice 


First, prepare the cookie dough by:

  1. Using an electric mixer, thoroughly blend the butter and sugars. Add sugars, followed by egg and vanilla.
  2. In a separate dish, combine the dry ingredients using a whisk. Add the flour mixture in three additions to the butter and sugar.
  3. Form each part of the dough into a tiny rectangle. Refrigerate the dough after wrapping it in plastic.

While the dough is cooling, prepare the filling:

  1. Mix the figs, dates, orange juice, candied orange peel, sugar, orange zest, and cinnamon in a small saucepan.
  2. Cook until the fruit becomes tender and the mixture becomes thick. Remove from heat and stir in the almonds and, if using, Grand Marnier or rum. Reserve to cool.

Put together the cookies:

  1. Make a rectangle out of one piece of dough. Divide every rectangle in half. Put 1/4 of the filling in the middle of each dough strip. Chill the dough and filling in the fridge for 15 minutes.
  2. Fold the sides of the dough up and over the filling so that they overlap just a little bit. Seal the edges together to make a cylinder.
  3. Transfer to the baking sheet, seam side down.
  4. Cook the cookies until they are gently golden. Remove the strips from the oven and immediately cut them into 1-inch pieces. Cool the cookies completely on a wire rack before icing.

Ice and decorate the cookies:

Combine lemon juice and powdered sugar. Drizzle on top of each cookie, then sprinkle with sprinkles.

3.    Florentine Cookies Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies

Italian Florentine Cookies are lace cookies baked with vanilla, orange, and chopped almonds. The cookies are then sandwiched with chocolate, resulting in the most delectable cookies. Enjoy these cookies with a steaming coffee or espresso to feel like you are in dreamy Florence. The flavor combinations are exactly right—crunchy and almost toffee-like.


  • 1 and 3/4 cups of blanched, sliced almonds (about 5 ounces)
  • Three tablespoons of regular flour
  • orange zest, finely grated (about two tablespoons)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of fine salt
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 2/fourths cup heavy cream
  • light corn syrup, two teaspoons
  • Unsalted butter, five tablespoons
  • Pure vanilla essence, half a teaspoon


  • Set an oven rack in the middle and heat the oven to 350 degrees. Use a silicone baking mat or parchment paper to cover a baking sheet.
  • In a food processor, pulse the almonds until they are finely chopped but not a paste. Mix the nuts, flour, lemon zest, and salt in a large bowl.
  • Mix sugar, cream, corn syrup, and butter in a small saucepan. Stir the mixture occasionally while cooking over medium heat until it comes to a rolling boil and the sugar is completely dissolved. Keep cooking for 1 minute. Take the mixture off the heat and stir in the vanilla. Then, pour it into the almond mixture and stir a little to mix. Set aside for 30 minutes until it’s cool enough to handle.
  • For cookies that are 3 inches across, use rounded teaspoons. For cookies that are 6 inches across, use rounded tablespoons. Place on a baking sheet that you have prepared. Leave about 3 to 4 inches between each cookie because they will rise.
  • Bake one pan at a time until the cookies are thin and a uniform golden brown color, about 10 to 11 minutes. Rotate the pans halfway through the baking time. Cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet, then move to racks to cool. Repeat with the rest of the dough. Serve


What are the most common spices used in Christmas cookies?

They include Cinnamon, Ginger, Cloves, and Allspice.

How long do Italian cookies stay fresh?

Whether baked or homemade, cookies can be stored at room temperature for two to three weeks. If in the refrigerator, they can last for two months. They retain their freshness when stored in a freezer for 12 months.


Even though there are fancier desserts, few make you smile as much as a huge platter of Italian Christmas cookies. I listed my three favourite Recipe for Italian Christmas Cookies above. On this list, everyone will find something they like, but it’s hard to pick just one. I tried.

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