My recipe for these classic Italian almond cookies, known as Amaretti, were passed down to me by my aunt – Zia Rosa, which were passed down to her, and so on and so forth. This is the real deal! If you have never tried Amaretti you are in for a real treat. These home-made cookies are so soft, they almost melt in your mouth! They are tender, chewy, and nothing at all like the store bought version that you may find pre-packaged. If you have ever been to an Italian event (Wedding, Shower, etc…) you have probably seen these cookies on the dessert table, made by a sweet little Italian Nonna (Grandma), and they are usually the first to go, and for good reason! Making these at home are so delicious and satisfying, you will never need to buy these or search for another recipe again once you’ve tried mine. They are SO easy to make, using only a few simple ingredients, with very little prep and cooking time. In this version, I take my basic recipe, but rather topping them with an almond, cherry, coffee bean, or any old chocolate, I top them with a chocolate mini-egg, perfect for Easter! If you are making these for any other day of the year, those other toppings are great, but since Easter is right around the corner, I decided to be extra festive. If you would like to watch my YouTube video, to see how these are made, click here! Below is the written Amaretti recipe, I hope you enjoy:
4 Egg Whites (from a Large Egg)
5 or 5 & 1/2 Cups Almond Flour/Finely Ground Almonds
2 Cups Sugar (regular caster sugar)
3 Tsp Almond Extract
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
Approx. 1 cup Icing Sugar (for rolling the cookies in)
Optional: Peel of Lemon
Optional: If your mix looks too dry, or you want added flavour, you can add a shot of your favourite liquor
Using a hand or stand mixer (or muscle power), on medium to high speed, whip the egg whites until stiff peaks form (about 3 to 5 minutes using my KitchenAid stand mixer). Set aside.
In a large separate bowl, blend together the almond flour, caster sugar, vanilla & almond extract, lemon peel, (and liquor) if using. I used 1/2 the peel of a small organic lemon.
Slowly fold egg whites into the almond mixture until incorporated.
Let almond mixture rest at least 1 hour in the rifrigerater (can leave over night).
Remove from the fridge, and roll into little balls (about 1.5 to 2 inches thick), then roll into the icing sugar, and place onto a baking sheet, lined with parchment paper. I made 24 cookies out of the batter.
You can then place the almond, chocolate, etc… in the middle of the cookie and bake. However, since I am using these mini-eggs and they tend to crack a little if baked in the oven, I simply leave an imprint in the cookie, bake them, and as soon as they come out of the oven, I place the mini-egg inside, and allow the cookie to cool. (You can watch my YouTube video HERE to see how this is done).
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes max (at 350 degrees F) for a soft, tender, and chewy cookie. These may not look done, but once cooled, they are the perfect texture. I baked mine for 11 minutes, but if yours are slightly larger even 12 minutes is fine. It is important to not over-bake these.
As soon as they come out of the oven, as I previously stated, you want to add 1 mini-egg to each cookie, and allow these to cool in the pan for 5 minutes.
You can transfer these to a wire rack to cool completely (about 5 to 10 more minutes). Once cooled, you can plate these, or put them in baking cups and gift these to your loved ones. Of course you can also sneak one while still warm, they are so delicious!
These cookies are best to eat the day of, or the day after, and up to 3 to 4 days later, but of course, these are best enjoyed in the first day or two of making them.
I hope you enjoy these Amaretti (Italian Almond Cookies) as much as I do – they are a staple in my home for so many events. They also happen to be gluten-free, which is an added bonus! Each cookie also packs 5 grams of protein! 🙂
If you use my recipe please comment below and let me know! If you have Instagram and it is open, use the hashtag: #LaDolceLisaRecipe or tag me @ladolcelisa so that I can see your delicious creations! Happy Baking (and Happy Easter if you celebrate)!
Don’t forget to share these with your loved ones. My little cousin wanted a taste! hehe..
– Lisa (@LaDolceLisa)
To watch my video click here!