Flourless Soft Almond Cookies (Pasticcini di Mandorle) can be soft like marzipan or baked a few minutes more for a slightly crunchy chew. Made with only 4 ingredients, these delicious cookies are naturally gluten free and ideal for Passover or Easter sweetness.
Why you'll love this recipe
When it comes to dunkable, dip-able, cookies with amazingly long shelf life, Italian cookies win the prize. Perhaps this is due to espresso being so much a part of the Italian culture and the obvious need for a cookie to go along side.
Perhaps Italian bakers are just genius. From biscotti to taralli dolce di pasqua (Italian Easter Cookies) to these soft almond cookies, Italian cookies are what your cookie jar and care packages should be filled with.
Flourless Soft Almond Cookies may be the easiest cookie you ever make. There are only four ingredients; almond flour, confectioners’ sugar, lemon zest, and eggs.
There is no mixer required. Just combine the ingredients, roll in confectioners’ sugar, bake, and enjoy. The naturally gluten free, grain free ingredients, make this almond cookie recipe a lovely Passover or Easter treat.
Mandorle are definitely eye catching without any decorating. Should you want to add a bit of spring color, here's an easy way to color the confectioners’ sugar.
Color Kitchen sells little packets of all natural food coloring powder. I bought mine at Whole Foods.
The packets come in red, yellow, and blue, which can be combined to create all the colors of the rainbow. Mixing the powder in a small plastic bag with the confectioners’ sugar colors the sugar in soft pastel hues.
This is an overview of the instructions. The full instructions are in the recipe card below.
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together the almond flour, confectioners’ sugar, and lemon zest. Add the beaten eggs. Mix until combined and dough forms.
- Put ½ cup of confectioners’ sugar in a small separate bowl. Optional: For colored confectioners’ sugar, divide evenly into three ziplock bags. Add ¼ teaspoon of powdered coloring and knead bag until the sugar is evenly colored. Add additional powder in ¼ teaspoon increments until desired color is achieved.
- Scoop dough into slightly rounded 1 tablespoon portions. Roll to coat the dough ball in the confectioners’ sugar. Roll in palm, over the sugar bowl, to form a ball and to remove excess sugar.
- Place cookie balls 2” apart on a parchment lined baking sheet. With a finger, make a small indentation in the middle of each cookie to promote even baking. Bake at 350 degrees F, for 11-12 minutes for soft cookies or 14-15 minutes for slightly crunchy-chewy cookies.
Store soft almond cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one month.
More Italian cookie recipes
Italian Butter Cookies are melt in your mouth cookies with just a bit of crunch. The soft, buttery dough can be piped, used in a cookie press, or rolled into balls.
Taralli Cookies are Italian Easter Cookies, a lightly sweet cookie with a crunchy sugar icing flavored with citrus. So good with a cup of tea or coffee.
Italian Chocolate Cookies have a soft, cake-like texture and a crunchy vanilla icing. Enjoy them with added chocolate chips or chocolate covered raisins.
Biscotti, the most well known Italian dipping and munching cookie, come in many flavors. Take your pick of chocolate espresso biscotti, lemon biscotti, chocolate chip biscotti, or chocolate mint biscotti!
My experience with this recipe
There are rarely any Monday Box recipes that use nuts. I am extremely allergic to tree nuts and can’t even bake with them.
Almonds are a partial exception for me. I can’t eat them, but it doesn’t bother me to bake with them. That said, in order to evaluate the flavor of Flourless Soft Almond Cookies, I had to rely on the reactions and comments of my taste testers.
I can’t tell you first hand that these cookies live up to the rave reviews I read while researching. However, I can tell you that no one I gave them to stopped at one cookie. Two or three cookies into their “taste testing”, each person was still smiling, munching, and muttering some version of, “Mmmmm,” while reaching for another.
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Flourless Soft Almond Cookies (Pasticcini di Mandorle)
- 3 ¼ cups almond flour
- 2 cups confectioners’ sugar plus about ½ cup for coating
- Zest from 1 lemon
- 2 large eggs lightly beaten
- Optional for colored sugar coating:
- 3 packages of Color Kitchen powdered natural food coloring red, blue, yellow
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, mix together the almond flour, confectioners’ sugar, and lemon zest.
- Add the beaten eggs. Mix until combined and dough forms.
- Put ½ cup of confectioners’ sugar in a small bowl.
- Optional: For colored confectioners’ sugar, divide evenly into three ziplock bags. Add ¼ teaspoon of powdered coloring and knead bag until the sugar is evenly colored. Add additional powder in ¼ teaspoon increments until desired color is achieved. (Combine primary colors to create additional shades. Red and blue were combined for the purple coloring.)
- Scoop cookie dough into slightly rounded 1 tablespoon portions. Roll to coat in the confectioners’ sugar. Roll in palm, over the sugar bowl, to form a ball and to remove excess sugar.
- Place 2” apart on the prepared cookie sheet. With a finger, make a small indentation in the middle of each cookie to promote even baking.
- Bake for 11-12 minutes for soft, marzipan-like cookies or 14-15 minutes for slightly crunchy-chewy cookies.
- Remove from the oven and move the cookies onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Store baked cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one month.
- Almond flour is made from blanched almonds and is very finely ground. Substituting almond meal, made from raw almonds with a ground coarsely, will not produce the same results.
- For more intense almond flavor, add ½-1 teaspoon of almond extract.
- Wrap pairs of cookies, bottoms together, in plastic wrap.
- Stack the wrapped bundles in a freezer weight ziplock bag.
- To use a plastic storage container, layer cookies between sheets of wax paper. Add crumpled tissue paper between the cookie and the lid, if necessary, to prevent ANY movement while shipping.
First Published: March 14, 2018. Last Updated: February 18, 2022. Updated for additional information and better reader experience.
I can't wait to make these for Pesach/ Passover.
They sound like they'll be a BIG HIT!
Thank you! Chag Samach/Happy Holiday!
They are definitely a favorite at our house! Enjoy! Chag Samach. 🙂
Hello! These cookies sounds delish! Would it be possible to to use an egg substitute to make the cookies vegan as well as GF? Thank you.
Hi, Pat. I haven't tried these cookies with an egg substitute, but I think it might work. I'm just not sure of what the texture will be like with a substitute. These are a soft and chewy, but even crunchy I think they would taste good. Good luck with your experimenting! I hope you will let us know how the cookies turn out.
The easiest almond flour cookie ever and so delish
Hi, Susan. I'm so glad that you are enjoying these cookies! In the unlikely event that you have some left over (or want to bake a double batch) these freeze really well too. 🙂
These were absolutely DELISH! Thanks so much for the recipe!
I'm so glad you enjoyed them, Ellen! Thank you for the 5 star rating. 🙂
Gorgeous! My 110+% Italian husband is super skeptical of any gf thing I make, so I was delighted to present these a knock his tastebuds’ socks off. I love marzipan and so used almond extract. So good!
Can you share the source of your gorgeous cups and saucers? Thank you!
Hi, Katie. I am delighted that you AND your 110+% Italian husband loved these cookies! 🙂 They are my gf daughter's favorite cookies. If you love marzipan, you might want to take a look at my marzipan recipe. I just learned recently how crazy easy it is to make! (5 ingredients and about 5 minutes to make!) Thank you so much for your kind compliment on my cups and saucers! They were a gift from a friend. The box they come in looks like a round hat box and says, "I. Godinger & Co." on the lid. The label says "Espresso Set, Pearl Luster". I hope that helps!
These look delicious. One note, this recipe is not kosher for Passover because there is cornstarch in confectioners sugar.
Hi, Suzanne. I understand you concern about the cornstarch. Not all brands of powdered sugar contain cornstarch and it is possible to buy kosher for Passover powdered sugar. However the easiest method, when cornstarch is a concern, is to simply make your own powdered sugar by grinding up granulated sugar in a food processor. In just a minute or two you will have all the powdered sugar you can use! I do it once at the beginning of my Passover baking and use it throughout the week. I will add that note to the recipe card. 🙂 Happy Passover!
Just made these cookies. Oh substituted orange zest for the lemon (as that’s what I had) and added a teaspoon of almond extract. Baked for 12 minutes they are soft and delicious!
Made about 24 2” cookies.
Sounds great, Belinda! I'm glad you enjoyed the cookies.
Saw them and just had to bake them. They are beautiful and taste amazing. Thank you!
Hi, Jennie. I'm happy to hear that you loved these cookies as much as we do! Thank you for taking the time to write a review and the 5-star rating. 🙂
i dont know what i did wrong but mine didnt spread out... it stays like a ball, just like the shape when i roll it before baking... the only thing i did change is that i used swerve confectioners sugar....go to waste....
Hi, Andy. Not every recipe works with substitutions. You actually told me exactly what went wrong. You used artificial sweetener instead of sugar. Even with sugar, these cookies do usually maintain a rather round shape. That is why the directions call for making an indentation in the top before baking, to help the thick cookie bake evenly. My suggestion is to look for one of the many cookie recipes on the internet that are developed for use with Swerve.
Love these!!! Instead of using lemon zest, I used Almond extract. Because no one likes lemon in this house, except for me, and I would end up eating them ALL! They taste just like Almond paste cookies, without spending the enormous cost of the paste. Lol
Hi, Kristen. I delighted that you love the cookies! Your adaptation sounds like a good safety measure. 🙂 I appreciate that you took the time to leave a comment and 5 star rating! Just in case you are ever in need of some Marzipan or almond paste for other recipes, I have a homemade version that is unbelievably quick and easy and so much less expensive. Take a look https://themondaybox.com/marzipan-recipe/
These were *great!! Early in Quarantine, our p/u grocery replaced our 'All Purpose Flour' with almond flour (2 bags)! 😳 One failed attempt at 'bread' & they've been sitting unused! As luck would have it, fast forward several months and our Dr wants my teen to try going "Gluten Free" for a bit (tummy+rash/skin troubles)! Used lime zest as I had a bag on hand. Delish. ❤
Hi, Alisha! I had a similar surprise grocery experience when my order for brown rice was replaced with brown rice krispie cereal! Two huge boxes! I am so glad that your almond flour came in handy for these cookies and that you loved them! My daughter has to eat gluten free and these are her favorite almond flour cookies. Thank you so much for taking the time to write about your experience and to leave a 5 star rating!
I just made these, substituting a combination of Swerve confectioners and Pyure Confectioners Stevia blend and they turned out perfectly!
Hi, Amy. Happy New Year! I'm so glad that your substitutions worked and your cookies turned out perfectly. Thank you for sharing your experience and 5 star rating. Readers wanting to try alternative sweeteners will find this very helpful!
How much of each did you substitute in the recipe? Thank you!
I tried this recipe and have to say it was just gorgeous. I did alter the quantity of sugar (by around a 1/4 cup less) and only had medium size eggs. The biscuits look a tad bit flatter than your photo but oh my goodness the taste is sooo good. The texture was slightly sticky like marzipan and the lemon zest came through but in perfect balance with the almonds. It was sweet enough. I took it to work to share on our last day before Christmas and I swear everyone had at least 2 each before I ran out. So next time I will make 2 batches. I was happy to be able to offer these up to my friend who cannot eat gluten. She thought they were the best she's had! I have to give it 5 stars just on taste alone!
many thanks for sharing this recipe.
Hi, Frances! I'm delighted to hear that your cookies were a success! My daughter has to eat gluten free and these are her favorite cookies. 🙂 I think that if you use large eggs the next time, your cookies will rise more, but I am glad they were delicious with your adaptations too! Thank you for leaving a comment and 5 star rating!
I would love to make these for my hubby but he can't have eggs. Do you think I could use flax egg instead?
Hi, Della. I don't know if flax eggs will work in this recipe, because I've never tried. The eggs are the rising agents in these cookies and I don't know if the flax eggs will do that (they may mostly be for binding and moisture). I suggest that you google eggless almond cookies. There are a bunch of yummy looking recipes with good reviews. Good luck!
So I'm allergic to almonds. Can I use regular one to one gluten free flour for this recipe?
Hi, Audry. No, these would not be a good cookie for you. The whole taste of this cookie is almonds. It would not work with gluten free flour. Perhaps you would like these instead : https://themondaybox.com/flourless-chocolate-crinkle-cookies/
I just made these cookies for the first time. I always measure the ingredients. The dough was so sticky I could hardly get it off my fingers. Is that normal? Thanks
Hi, Margit. I'm sorry this recipe gave you trouble.The dough for these cookies should not be that sticky. I make these cookies frequently and just roll the dough in my hands before coating in confectioner's sugar. Are you in the US? I ask because sometimes ingredients are slightly different in other countries (grind of almond flour, starch is often added to powdered sugar in the US and not other countries, egg sizes vary). I would try adding a tablespoon more of the almond flour and powdered sugar and see if that firms your dough a bit. For future reference, I always use either Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour or Trader Joe's fine ground almond flour. I hope this helps and your cookies end up tasting delicious.
Thanks for getting back to me!
I am in the U.S.A.
I’m going to make another batch tomorrow. I’ll let you know how they come out.
The cookies are delicious ?
Awesome, Margit! Thanks for letting me know! I would really appreciate it if you would leave a 5 star rating so that other readers will know that this is a recipe they should try! Happy baking and stay safe!
I made another batch today and they came out perfect!
Stay safe! And thank you so much for a wonderful recipe!
You are so welcome! Enjoy!
Hi there! Can these be frozen? I see you wrote about storing them in an airtight container for a month. But I’m just wondering if they can actually be Frozen also? 😊 thank you!
Hi, Caitlin. Yes! These cookies freeze well! I made a LOT of these for my daughter's July wedding and we are still happily munching on leftovers from the freezer. 🙂
This is a perfect recipe for my cousin wedding tomorrow. I want to bring something for the house for the guest. I doubled the recipe.I put red maraschino cherries I cut them in half and put them at the top. They look so nice I can’t wait to try them. Thank you for sharing. I will do them again. Have yourself a beautiful day.
Hi, Tania. Congratulations to your cousin! I made these for my daughter's wedding last summer with great success. I bet the cherries look so pretty on top!