Ricciarelli Cookies

When we went to Europe this summer, we had one day that was a tour of Tuscany. When we were in Siena, we stopped into this tiny little shop, full of cookies. The gentleman running the shop must be fairly used to tours popping in as he had a plate of samples ready for us. We all tried this cookie, and…


They were little bites of heaven. We immediately purchased a box to take with us. My sister didn’t want to share with the Versace family, but we made her anyway. What were these cookies called, you ask?

– Ricciarelli Cookies –

They’re these delicious, almond-flavored, doughy cookies covered in powdered sugar. I’m the baker of the family, so all eyes were on me to be able to make these back home.

Well, fast forward to this past weekend, and I took the plunge. I used trusty Pinterest to find the perfect recipe, searching ‘ricciarelli cookies’. I didn’t really know the difference in recipes since I’ve never made these, so I just went with the first one. These cookies are naturally gluten free, made with almond flour. Almond flour is a bit more expensive than I’m used to. I got a 32oz bag for about $12.00 at Walmart. It’s actually the same price on Amazon too, so no savings there. The ingredients themselves were fairly simple. I did accidentally spill half of a bottle of almond extract all over my counter. My house smelled really nice, but almond extract is expensive.

Ricciarelli Cookies

{Italian Almond Cookies}

  • 3 cups fine almond flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, divided
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  1. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the almond flour, granulated sugar, 1 cup of the powdered sugar, the baking powder, and the salt in a bowl.
  3. In a separate large bowl, beat the egg whites into soft peaks. Fold in the almond extract, vanilla extract, lemon zest, and almond-flour mixture. Stir until completely combined.
  4. Use a tablespoon to scoop out a large ball of cookie dough. Roll the dough into a ball in your hands, then use the bottom of a glass to gently smash the cookie into a disk about ½-inch thick. Roll in the remaining powdered sugar and set on the parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  5. Let sit, uncovered, on the counter for about 45 minutes, or until the surfaces dry out just a touch. Preheat the oven to 250°F (121°C).
  6. Place the cookies into the preheated oven and bake for 22 to 27 minutes, until they are golden brown around the edges.
  7. Cool completely on a cooling rack, then store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Recipe from Fearless Fresh.

Now, I set my timer for 20 minutes. Usually, when I bake, I’ll take the cookies about about one minute before it says they’re supposed to in order to keep the cookies soft. These, I kept in for about 28 minutes total. The recipe mentions that the edges are supposed to get golden…mine never did. I also didn’t feel like dirtying a cup or a tablespoon, so I just used my hands to work the dough. Finally, the recipe said it made 48 cookies, but I only got 28. I don’t know if I made them too large or what. I tried to make them the size I remember in Siena.

ricciarelli cookies

Now, stay tuned this year. My sister and brother in law are vegan, so I have to find a suitable substitute for egg whites. Wish me luck!


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