Linzer cookies are a classic during the holidays! They are delicious and simple to make, with a fruity filling in a nutty, almond flavored cookie. What’s not to love?
Linzer cookies with raspberry preserves, and made with a buttery almond cookie dough.
These are one of my husband’s favorite cookies. And they are a cinch to make. The base of this cookie recipe is similar to my pate sucree dough. The crispness is about the same. However, these cookies have a delightfully nutty almond flavor that is very classic in the linzer cookie.
What you will need to make linzer cookies
- Unsalted butter
- Egg yolks – add richness to the cookies
- Confectioner’s sugar (powdered sugar) or caster sugar – to easily dissolve in the butter
- Almond flour (ground almond)
- AP flour
- Raspberry jam (or raspberry preserves)
- Spices & flavoring (vanilla, cinnamon, lemon zest)
How to make Linzer cookies
Just like my pate sucree dough, linzer cookies are also easy to make and very forgiving.
How to make the dough for linzer cookies
If you’re only making a single batch, you can even do this without a mixer. But use a stand mixer for larger batches.
Make sure all the ingredients are at room temperature.
Cream the butter and sugar together until creamy and smooth. Do this at low speed so that you don’t get any air in your butter. I also like to add salt to the butter, which gives it a better chance of dissolving well.
Add the egg yolks, lemon zest (or extract), and vanilla, and mix them in well until smooth.
Add the almond flour, all purpose flour, and cinnamon, and fold in to mix with the dough. Avoid overworking the dough.
The dough for linzer cookies will be very soft. So lightly dust your hands with flour when handling the dough, so that it doesn’t stick.
Shape the dough into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm. Alternatively, you can roll the dough while it’s at room temperature too.
Rolling out the dough
If you want to roll out the dough while it’s soft and at room temp – Place the dough between two sheets of parchment paper when you roll it out. To prevent any folding and creasing, remove the parchment papers and put them back on both sides from time to time.
If you chill the dough – You can roll it out on a lightly floured surface. Make sure to turn the dough a 1/4 turn after every one or two rolls, to maintain an even shape.
If there are any cracks in the dough, simply pinch together the surrounding dough area to seal the cracks (see pictures below). I like to flip the dough over while rolling it to make sure both sides of the dough are nice and smooth.
Roll it out to a 1/4 inch thickness. Cut out circles using a cookie cutter (I use a 3 inch cookie cutter).
Bring the scraps together, and let them rest for about 5 – 10 minutes, and then roll it out again. Since the dough is soft, I roll it out between parchment papers. Cut out more circles for linzer cookies.
Next, punch a smaller hole in the center in half of the cookies, using a smaller cutter. You can make this cut out hole into a circle, a heart shape, a flower, or a star, or whatever shape you like using shaped cutters.
Place the cookie dough circles that you cut out on a parchment paper lined tray and refrigerate for about 30 minutes until firm. This will help the cookies keep their shape as they bake.
Baking and filling the cookies
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line some baking sheets with parchment paper.
Place the chilled cookies on a baking tray (lined with parchment paper), with about 1 inch of space between the cookies.
Bake the linzer cookies in the preheated oven until the edges are JUST starting to turn lightly golden in color. Remove the cookies from the oven and place them on a cooling rack to cool completely – about 15 minutes.
Then take all the cookies that were cut out in the middle, and dust them on the surface with confectioner’s sugar.
Spread some raspberry jam on the bottom cookie, and gently press the sugar dusted top cookie into the jam filling. For presentation, ideally you want the jam to be contained inside the sandwiched cookie, but also slightly bulge out of the hole on the top cookie half.
Tips for making Linzer cookies
These cookies are very easy to make. But here are a few more tips to guarantee success.
- Make sure the butter is very soft, but not melted. This makes it easier to cream the butter and sugar together.
- Don’t forget the lemon zest. The lemon brightens up the flavors, and complements the cinnamon and almond flavors.
- You can also add a little almond extract, although I prefer not to.
- To save time, you can roll out the soft dough between parchment papers, without chilling the dough first. The dough is soft and forgiving.
- To get Linzer cookies with an even thickness, use rolling pin guides (or wooden dowels / sticks).
- Refrigerate the cookies before baking. Chilling the dough will minimize the spread and help maintain the shape of the cookies.
- For best results, dust the top cookie half with confectioners sugar BEFORE filling. However, this is not a big deal, you can dust the cookie after filling too.
- Use any fruit preserve you like, it doesn’t have to be raspberry jam.
These cookies are a classic for a reason! They don’t let you down. They are easy, beautiful and impressive, and delicious! That lightly spiced nutty and fruity flavor combination is irresistible.
I love eating these cookies with a cup of tea or coffee. But even better when shared with friends and family! 🙂
Classic Linzer Cookies Recipe
- 150 g unsalted butter 5.3 oz / 10.5 tbsp (softened, but not melted)
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 115 g confectioner’s sugar 1 cup (you can also use caster sugar)
- 2 egg yolks from large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 ½ tsp lemon zest
- ¾ tsp ground cinnamon
- 100 g almond flour ground almonds
- 200 g AP flour 1 ⅔ cup, measured by spoon and level method
- ¾ cup raspberry jam approximately (exact amount can vary)
- Confectioner's sugar to dust
- You can use a stand mixer, electric hand mixer, or a spatula to make these cookies. If you’re using a mixer, mix on low-medium / medium speed.
- In a bowl, cream the butter, salt, and confectioner’s sugar together until creamy and smooth. Do not incorporate too much air (butter should be creamy, but not fluffy).
- Add the egg yolks, vanilla extract, and lemon zest. Mix them in until well incorporated. Again, avoid incorporating too much air into the mix.
- Add the cinnamon, almond flour, and AP flour. Fold them in until the dry ingredients are well mixed.
- The dough will be soft and a little sticky. Lightly dust your hands with flour and gently fold the dough a few times to knead it together and form a smooth ball.
- Flatten the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Allow the dough to chill in the fridge for about one hour.
- Alternatively, you can roll out the dough while it’s soft at room temperature as well. Please see recipe notes.
- Lightly dust your work surface with a little flour and place the dough on the surface. The dough should be pliable enough to roll out (knock the dough with a rolling pin to make it pliable, or leave it at room temp for a few minutes to slightly soften).
- Roll out the dough to about a ¼ inch thickness. Keep moving the dough and lightly dusting it to make sure it doesn’t stick to your work surface or rolling pin.
- Using a 3 inch cookie cutter, cut out as many cookies as possible. Then using a smaller cookie cutter, make a hole in the middle, in half of the cookies. You can make this cut out hole in to a circle, a heart shape, a flower, a star, or whatever shape you like using shaped cutters.
- Gather the leftover dough scraps and form another dough disc. Let it rest for a few minutes. Roll out the dough and repeat the above step to cut out more cookies.
- Place all the cookies on a parchment paper lined tray and refrigerate until chilled – about 30 minutes (or even overnight).
- Preheat the oven to 350°F / 180°C.
- Place the chilled cookies on a parchment paper lined baking sheet / cookie sheet with about 1 – 1.5 inch of space between each.
- Bake the cookies in the preheated oven for about 10 – 15 minutes, or until the edges are just starting to turn light golden brown in color.
- Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool for a few minutes. Then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Dust the surface of all the cookies that were cut out in the middle with confectioner’s sugar.
- Spread a dollop of raspberry jam on the flat side of the bottom cookies, and sandwich it with a sugar dusted top cookie. They are now ready to be served. Enjoy!