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Pizzelle: the prefect Italian cookie

Updated: Dec 19, 2022

You will need a pizzelle iron to make these, but they are fairly inexpensive and available from Amazon or Walmart. Check out this one, it looks like Grandma's with a cord.

Follow the links at the end of this post to see all the tools and great flavors

It's time you learned about one of the best Christmas treats.

Fun to make, fun to eat, and even more fun to give as gifts.

They are truly Italian, and they are often referred to as Italian cookies, Italian snowflake cookies, or Italian waffle cookies. I just call them Yummy!

These cookies are the Centerpiece of every Italian Gift basket for friends

and family, but be careful, because they WILL ask you to make them again next year!

For those not familiar, pizzelle are made from flour, eggs, sugar, some type of fat (butter, shortening or oil), and flavorings (the most popular are vanilla and anise). The one I can't wait to try is Amaretto! What could be more Italian?

Here are some Recipes

Depending on the ratio of ingredients, you can make them thin and crispy or thick and soft, or any variation in between. This recipe is for pizzelle that fall in the middle in terms of thickness and that have a nice crunch but do not crumble when you bite into them.

Here are the ingredients to make 72 delicious treats

· 12 eggs

· 2 cups granulated sugar

· 2 cups butter melted

· 3 tablespoons whiskey

· 3 tablespoons vanilla extract *see optional ingredients below*

· 5 cups all-purpose flour

· 2 teaspoons baking powder

Nutrition for each cookie

Calories: 106kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 39mg | Sodium: 53mg | Potassium: 31mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 187IU | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 1mg

Yor can cut ingredients in half for a batch of 36 treats. Makes it easier to try all the different flavor options. The batter can be mixed together quickly in one bowl, and then you’re ready to roll!


Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the eggs and sugar together until thick and pale in color, 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the melted butter and beat until thoroughly combined and incorporated, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add your choice of flavoring and beat to combine.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour and baking powder, mixing until thoroughly combine and smooth.

Follow the instructions of your pizzelle maker for cooking the pizzelle. I drop 1 heaping tablespoon of batter and then cook to desired doneness (about 1½ minutes for me, but time can vary based on machine and personal preference).

I give my pizzelle iron a quick spritz with non-stick cooking spray and then use a cookie scoop to start portioning the batter onto the iron. Most irons close down and have a clamp you can use to seal it shut while it cooks, which doesn’t take long at all! Only about a minute, give or take, for one batch.

It can take some trial and error and all irons are a bit different, so you might need a little less or a little more batter and find that you need a little more time or a little less time to get the pizzelle to your desired degree of doneness.

Remove pizzelle from the machine using a thin spatula and transfer to a wire rack until cool. You can drape over a rod to curl for filled pizzelle creations. Or maybe form in a small bowl making a cookie dish to hold ice cream.

Serve plain or dusted with powdered sugar. Pizzelle can be stored in a container at room temperature for up to 1 month.

Troubleshooting tip:

Pizzelle Sticking: If your pizzelle iron is stainless steel, you will want to spray it lightly with Pam (or whatever oil spray you prefer) before you start. I find that one spray, in the beginning, is sufficient since the fat from the recipe usually will act as a non-stick agent as well.

*Different flavors*

Some of the very best pizzelle had a very distinct flavor from the combination of whiskey and vanilla. However, I know many families find anise to be the traditional flavor; you can absolutely mix and match flavors to make these your absolute favorite!

Here are some suggestions:

Alcohol: You can substitute brandy, Sambuca, or any other liquor for the whiskey called for in the recipe, or you can omit it entirely.

Butter: It is the standard ingredient, but many other recipes call for vegetable oil instead. You can also use margarine or shortening. The texture and taste will differ slightly but will still work!

Anise: If you prefer anise-flavored pizzelle, substitute 2 teaspoons anise oil (oil is more concentrated than extract and provides more flavor). If all you can find is anise extract, use 2 tablespoons. You can also still use some whiskey and vanilla to balance out the flavors.

Other Extracts: Play around with others such as mint, coconut, almond, maple, etc. if you’d like to experiment with some non-traditional flavors!

Anise Seeds: Some people like the flecks of anise seeds in pizzelle; you can add 2 to 4 tablespoons of anise seed.

Citrus Zest: Add lemon or orange zest to brighten up the flavor!

Chocolate: Replace ¼ cup of the flour with cocoa powder. Give it a test and if you’d like more chocolate flavor, add more!

Given their natural dry and crunchy texture, pizzelle are a perfect candidate for long-term storage and getting a head start on holiday baking!

They can be stored in virtually any type of storage container from Tupperware-style to cookie jars and tins and resealable bags. They will easily keep well for at least 1 month.

To freeze the pizzelle, make sure they are completely cool, then store them in an airtight container or resealable freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw briefly at room temperature.

Share the Love; Share this recipe with friends.

Here is link to the tools and flavorings.

Amazon Pizzelle makers

Flavoring Oils

Walmart Pizzelle makers click here

and WM flavoring oils click here

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