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Amaretti Cookies – Italian Almond Cookies

These easy Amaretti Cookies or Italian Almond Cookies, have only four ingredients which makes them a fast and easy Cookie Recipe. They are also gluten and dairy free too, which means almost everyone can have one!

I usually make these cookies during the Christmas Holidays along with some of my Mom’s best cookies including Whipped Shortbread and Almond Crescent Cookies. But then again if the Italian bugs me enough I will whip up a batch for him.

amaretti cookies on a white plate


 

When our youngest daughter was home it was always a race to grab as many as they could before the other got to them first. They both swear these are their favourite cookies. And to tell the truth they are so quick and easy to whip up, especially when you use a food processor that you can have them made and baked in 25 minutes.

My husband is an absolute Nut lover. He has even planted a few nut trees, Hazelnut and Walnut to be exact. He adores Christmas just so he can sink his teeth into some Torrone.

What are Amaretti Cookies

Amaretti Cookies are basically found in all of Italy, meaning they are found in every Region. Although every region makes them a little different. Some let the dough refrigerate for 24 hours and some add an Almond Liqueur. Some use icing sugar and some granulated sugar. But all are made with almonds.

I did neither, I made a simple recipe that a friend gave me years ago which I made a few times, I actually make it two different ways one for the Italian and one for my youngest daughter. He likes them more the traditional Italian was baked longer and with only one egg white, my daughter prefers them flatter which are made with 2 egg whites. Either way you can can’t beat these Amaretti Biscotti Recipe.

6 amaretti cookies stacked on one another on a blue board with almonds scattered
Made with 2 egg whites and some chocolate chips added.

How to make the Italian Almond Cookies

These almond cookies are always a favorite in our house, just a few ingredients and you have a delicious easy cookie. Gluten free also! For the full recipe ingredients and instructions scroll to the bottom of the post for the recipe card.

In a food processor add the almonds and sugar and pulse until mixture is finely ground.

almonds in the mixer and ground with the sugar

 

Then add the egg white (or whites if you want a flatter cookie)and almond/vanilla flavouring and again pulse until the mixture comes together.

If you use one egg white you can roll the dough to form a small ball, if you use 2 egg whites then you will need to drop the mixture with a teaspoon on the prepared parchment paper cookie sheet. Be sure to leave space between each cookie. Sprinkle with granulated sugar if desired and bake until golden.

making the amaretti cookie dough and placing on a parchment paper cookie sheet

Let cool completely, and sprinkle with icing sugar if desired. 

Recipe Tip

To make the cookies you can either make your own ground almond mixture with whole roasted almonds or purchase almonds already ground, but do not use almond flour which is ground much too finely. You will need approximately 2 cups of whole almonds to make 1 1/4 cups ground.

How to roast almonds

Place the almonds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for about 10-15 minutes. With a metal spatula turn the almonds a mix a couple of times while in the oven. Immediately move them to a clean bowl to cool before grinding them.

These Amaretti are a crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside type of cookie. Since they are so quick and easy they are even perfect for when you have unexpected guests arrive, whether during the holiday Season or anytime! You could slip into the kitchen and whip them up in no time. Ok maybe a bit of an exaggeration! But close enough.

up close amaretti cookies
Made with just one egg white.

More delicious Italian Cookies

Can you use Almond Flour?

I wouldn’t use flour because it is too fine, to make ground almonds you can use either skinned or skin on almonds, it depends on your preference. I usually use skinned and lightly roasted. If you like more of a bite to your cookie you can leave them a little less finely ground.

amaretti cookies on a white plate

How to store the Almond Cookies

The baked cooled cookies should be stored in an airtight bag or container. They will last for up to three days at room temperature. They can also be frozen in a freezer safe bag or container and will keep for up to six months.

Tips for making the Best Amaretti Cookies

Be sure your almonds are as fresh as possible. If you don’t have almond flavouring then vanilla flavouring works well too. Adding a few chocolate chips to some of the cookies can change them up a bit. And be sure to sprinkle with a little sugar before baking.

So if you are looking for a tasty quick and easy Italian Cookie then I hope you give these Amaretti Cookies a try and let me know what you think. Enjoy!

amaretti cookies on a white cake plate
amaretti cookies on a white plate

Amaretti Cookies Italian Almond Cookies

Rosemary Molloy
Amaretti Cookies, a sweet Italian Almond Cookie crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside cookie recipe. Fast & easy, gluten and dairy free.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Christmas Cookies, cookies, Dessert
Cuisine Italian
Servings 14 cookies
Calories 72 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • cups ground almonds (not almond flour)
  • ¼ cup + 2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar (81 grams total)
  • 1 large egg white (room temperature)
  • ½ teaspoon almond or vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • Pre-heat oven to 340°F  (170° celsius).  Line a large cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  • If making your own from whole almonds, in a food processor add the cooled almonds and sugar and pulse for 20 seconds until very fine.  Then add egg white (or whites) and almond flavouring again pulse for 30 seconds until mixture comes together.
  • If using ground almonds then in the food processor add the ground almonds, sugar, flavouring and egg white and combine.
  • Roll the dough into small balls (or if using 2 egg whites drop by spoonfuls) and place them about an inch apart on the prepared cookie sheet, sprinkle with a little granulated sugar if desired. Bake for approximately 17 -23 minutes or until golden*.  Let cool completely, sprinkle with icing sugar before serving if desired. Enjoy!

*Depending on how baked you like them, my kids prefer them on the lighter side (17 minutes and my husband the more traditional Italian cookie about 23 minutes).

    Notes

    If making your own ground almonds, place the almonds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes in a pre-heated 350°F (180°C) oven.  With a metal spatula mix a couple of times while in the oven, immediately move to a clean bowl and let cool 20 minutes before grinding. Grind the cooled almonds with the sugar. You will need approximately 2 cups of whole almonds to make 1 1/4 cups ground. Any extra ground almonds can be frozen for up to 6 months. 
    The baked cooled cookies should be stored in an airtight bag or container. They will last for up to three days at room temperature. They can also be frozen in a freezer safe bag or container and will keep for up to six months.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 72kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 4mg | Potassium: 4mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg
    Did You Make This Recipe?Please leave a comment below or pin it to your Pinterest account!

    Updated from December 16, 2016.

    54 Comments

    1. 5 stars
      Hello Rosemary. Your recipe refers to 1 1/4 cups of ground almonds. Just curious as to how many cups of whole almonds does it take to make 1 1/4 cups of ground almonds. Planning of tripling your recipe and was wondering how much to buy.

      1. Hi Claudine, you will need about 2 cups of whole almonds. Any leftover ground almonds can be frozen for a couple of months. Let me know how it goes. Take care!

      2. Hi Rosemary , I was just wondering do you have to boil the almonds and remove the skin from the almonds or put them in the oven and roast them but keep the skin on because I want to make amaretto cookies

        1. Hi Patrizia, I buy skinned almonds and then roast them. I know some people that leave the skin on and roast them. Hope that helps. Take care!

    2. 5 stars
      My new favorite Amaretti cookie recipe! I didn’t blanch the almonds,dusted with powdered sugar before baking to get that crackling effect, baked for 21 minutes. Exactly 14 cookies. Absolutely delicious!! Thank you Rosemary.

    3. 5 stars
      I discovered these I was exploring how Amaretto is made (which my wife loves). Went the 17-minute route, and the texture was amazing — a bit firm on the outside but chewy on the inside. Will absolutely make these again. Thanks!

    4. 5 stars
      I started with almond meal and did not use the food processor at all. Instead, I whisked everything together by hand. It all came out very well.
      I like this recipe a lot. I made these cookies for Passover because the ingredients are Kosher for Passover. I certainly plan to make these cookies again.

    5. 5 stars
      Hello from Toronto
      These cookies are AMAZING, EASY and very very good. I’m planning on making some batches for Christmas.
      However the 2X and 3X option has not updated the grams. Would it be possible to have those updated? My measuring cups don’t seem to equal any of the weighed amounts ever.
      Love the site!
      Thank you!

      1. Hi Mercedes, hi to Toronto, thanks so much, I updated the post so now it should work. The only thing is the sugar should be multiplied using the total 81 grams. Hope that helps. Take care!

    6. 5 stars
      Thank you for this and other recipes..I know you said that almond flour is to fine,i like to use the almond flour ,do you need to modify the recipe if using it??
      Thank you ..JP

    7. I tried your recipe as easy to follow but the cookies turned out quite hard. I used 1 egg white and did not beat it. Could that be the issue. The amarretti biscuits I buy are softer and not as dense. What did I do wrong?

      1. Hi Maria, I really don’t know, they are chewier, and no the egg quite should not be beaten. Sometimes they add baking powder or additives to make them soft. 🙂

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