Sicilian Almond Cookies Original Recipe

If you love Italian desserts do not miss this recipe: Sicilian Almond Cookies

 sicilian almond cookiesSicilian Almond Cookies  are a famous local dessert typical of Sicily. Soft and tasty, they are fast to make (and to eat…). They are also known as marzipan or almond pastries and are a gluten-free dessert.

This recipe is without flour. You need 4 ingredients: peeled almonds, sugar, egg whites and vanilla extract.

In some Sicilian Almond Cookies recipes you can find candied orange peel, pureed and added to the mixture (about 50g), and a little honey. We think this recipe is faster while respecting the Sicilian tradition. You can use almond flour, although biscuits made with peeled almonds taste much better.

For decoration we used some peeled almonds, but you can use candied cherries, coffee beans or flaked almonds as well.

If you are interested in another recipe made with almonds then read: How to make Caprese Cake (Torta Caprese) 

Sicilian Almond Cookies Recipe

Prep Time: 10 Min
Cook  Time: 5 Min
Yelds: 25 cookies 


  • peeled almonds for decorating


An Electric Food Processor is a kitchen tool you may need for this recipe. Check here for some options; the food processor is used for chop, slice, whisk, knead and has variable speeds you can set on your own speed as well as a pulse mode.

sicilian almond cookies

In a mixer grind almonds and sugar in order to reduce them into a rather fine flour (1) (2). If you have already the almond flour, just mix it with sugar. Add egg whites (2) and vanilla extract then mix everything with the electric food processor. The mixture of almond paste has to be firm (3).

Sicilian almond cookies

Fill a pastry bag with the mixture and make cookies squeezing the dough directly on a baking tray covered with greaseproof paper (4). Decorate each almond cookie with an almond (or half-candied cherry or a coffee bean if you prefer) (5). Preheat the oven to 240° (460F) then bake them for 5 minutes. Pay attention to the cooking: almond cookies should be just golden outside and still soft inside. This type of cooking keeps the pastries crispy but with a soft almond heart (6).

Let them cool and serve.

Sicilian Almond Cookies Recipe: variations and suggestions

This is the traditional Sicilian recipe of almond cookies and the one that we find perfect (easy, quick and tasty). But there are some variations of almond biscuits recipe. Let’s see:

  1. Vanilla icing sugar instead of the traditional one. The almond paste is softer and you don’t need to add the vanilla essence.
  2. Candied peel of oranges. They must be pureed and added to the mix
  3. Miele di Zagara (orange blossom honey). Zagara is the Italian name for the orange or lemon blossom. It is a honey produced in Sicily, the land of citrus fruits. It must be added to the mix that will become softer.
  4. Let rest the almond biscuits 10/12 hours in the refrigerator before baking. This depends on the ingredients you have used: if the mix is soft then yes, it’s better to let them rest.
  5. Whip the egg whites. Not recommended. In the Sicilian authentic recipe the egg whites are never whipped
  6. 1 bitter almonds or a few drops of bitter almond extract. Optional, depending on taste.
  7. Decorations: candied cherries, flakes almonds, pine nuts, coffee beans.
  8. Almond cookies shape: instead of using the pastry bag you can make balls with your hands and crush them sideways, then add decorations.
  9. And finally no liquor, no butter and no whole eggs: we are talking about almond cookies original Sicilian recipe…

Sicilian Almond Cookies Ingredients Box

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 5 min
Yields: 25 cookies
  • 200 g (7oz) of peeled almonds
  • 200 g ( 1 cup) of sugar
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
  • peeled almonds for decorating


User Rating

3.6 (29 Votes)



7 Replies to "Sicilian Almond Cookies Original Recipe"

  • comment-avatar
    Lina December 10, 2020 (4:44 am)

    How much honey should I add if I wanted to try that variation

    • comment-avatar
      Barbara December 10, 2020 (6:40 am)

      Hi Lina,
      1 tablespoon should be enough.

  • comment-avatar
    Marissa Wheeler August 25, 2019 (6:02 pm)

    Easy recipe and just like I remember eating in Sicily. Thank you.

  • comment-avatar
    Gedi July 9, 2019 (2:30 am)

    Hi, I loved these cookies, but they did not retain the shape of the pastry bag’s nozzle. they flattened out. The mixture was firm and not liquid, so not sure why (I may need to add more almonds or use smaller eggs).
    Thank you!

    • comment-avatar
      Meagan Studenko April 6, 2020 (12:51 am)

      Maybe try resting the dough in the fridge before piping next time

  • comment-avatar
    Albert Bevia February 8, 2018 (2:12 pm)

    We have some cookies that are very similar here in Spain, just made in a different way, these Sicilian almond cookies look so delicious! I could eat a bunch of these with a warm tea!!! great recipe 🙂

    • comment-avatar
      Barbara Lucchini February 8, 2018 (5:33 pm)

      Thanks honey! If you like almonds, try caprese cake recipe. With dark chocolate. Haw…it’s to die for! Kiiiiissss;-D

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