Italian Ricotta Cookies

  • Author: Roz Corieri Paige | La Bella Vita Cucina


A very soft and tender cookie with hints of lemon. Decorate with your favorite cookie sprinkles. A favorite at Christmastime!



For the Cookies

  • 3 1/2 cups (495g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup (8 oz) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 3/4 cups (370g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 15 oz. ricotta, whole milk or fresh (1 3/4 cups)
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs

For the Glaze

  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • 3½ cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice (or 1-1/4 tsp almond extract)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole milk, adding more if necessary to your desired consistency — we like the icing more ‘light’ than thick and heavy, but it is entirely up to you and what you prefer.
  • Red and Green colored sugar sprinkles, but it would also be festive with Silver and Gold sprinkles too!


For the cookies

  1. In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking soda and salt for 20 seconds, set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment whip together butter, granulated sugar and lemon zest until pale and fluffy (scrape down sides and bottom of bowl occasionally throughout entire mixing process).
  3. Mix in ricotta and vanilla extract then blend in eggs one at a time.
  4. Set mixer on low speed and slowly add in flour mixture and mix until combined.
  5. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and chill 2 hours or up to 2 days.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees during last 20 minutes of dough chilling.
  7. Scoop chilled dough out 1 Tbsp at a time (and no larger!) and shape into balls (if it’s too sticky just drop onto sheet using two spoons), drop onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  8. Bake in preheated oven 12 – 14 minutes until underside of cookies are golden.
  9. Cool on baking sheet several minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  10. Once cool dip tops of cookies in glaze and return to wire rack, immediately add sprinkles if using. Allow glaze to set at room temperature.
  11. Store in an airtight container in a single layer.

For the glaze

  1. In a mixing bowl whisk together powdered sugar, melted butter, lemon juice or almond extract, vanilla.
  2. Add ½ cup of milk until smooth, adding in more milk 1 a little bit at a time to thin as you desire.


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