Italian Christmas Cookies & Recipes Italian Cookies Recipes


These classic  anise cookies are tender, easy, and covered in a glaze with sprinkles.

Enjoy these cookies as part of a holiday cookie tray or year-round!





Makes about 25 cookies


For the cookies:

  • 1/2 cup butter

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 3 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt

  • 1 teaspoons anise extract  (okay to use lemon or vanilla too!)

Video Recipe:


Directions for cookies:

– Sift flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl. Set aside.


– In the microwave melt butter  in a bowl.


– Beat the melted butter  about 2 minutes.


– Add granulated sugar and mix well.


– Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, about 1 minute each.


– Mix in lemon extract.


– Add the flour mixture to the creamed mixture slowly, until fully incorporated. Don’t overmix.


– If the cookie dough is too sticky to roll in the palm of your hand, add a bit of flour. However, the dough should remain very soft, so don’t add too much.


– Roll the cookie dough in small balls (they puff up quite nicely) and place them on ungreased cookie sheets.


– Bake at 370 degrees F for 8-10 minutes (mine took 8 minutes). The bottoms of the cookies should be lightly browned but the tops of should remain light in color.


– Remove cookies from the cookie sheet immediately and move to a wire rack. Cool completely before glazing.


For the glaze:


  • 2-3 tablespoons milk
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract (okay to use anise or vanilla)


Directions for the glaze:


– Slowly mix milk with powdered sugar and lemon extract.

– The glaze needs to be thick to adhere to the cookie.

– Dip the top of each cookie into the glaze.

– Sprinkle each cookie with nonpareils and leave them to completely dry.

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