December 13, 2017

Mexican wedding cake cookies

It's cookie time!! I mean, it's always kind of cookie time, but now it's Christmas cookie time!! There are a lot of cookie recipes on this blog. A lot (over 40 as of now). I try to post at least one new cookie recipe for the holidays each year and so far I've been pretty successful with that. Somehow over the years, this classic Christmas cookie has escaped making it onto the blog. I made Chocolate Chip Snowball Cookies previously using the same base recipe, but this is the classic version. This recipe comes from my great-grandmother. These were a cookie she made every year that I can remember. Although I know she didn't create them as Mexican Wedding Cakes and Russian Tea Cakes are super popular and very similar cookies that you'll find everywhere. My family has always made them with walnuts as I did with this recipe, but pecans would work well, too. The only change I make from hers is giving the walnuts a light toast before adding them to the dough to make them extra flavorful. These cookies definitely remind me of family and of being a kid at Christmas. My mom frequently made them as well when I was a kid and I always helped her with the holiday baking. I just love when food evokes memories. These photos also hold a couple nostalgia pieces - the cookie tray my brother and I used for Santa's cookies and a tablecloth that belonged to my Grandmother.

If you haven't tried these cookies, this is the year for you to add them to your cookie tray. They are super simple in both ingredients and effort, which is a bonus this time of year! This recipe will make about 2-1/2 dozen cookies.

Mexican wedding cake cookies
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup powdered sugar, plus another 3/4 cup for rolling
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup finely chopped walnuts

In a small heavy-bottom skillet, toast the walnuts over medium-low heat, stirring often, until fragrant. Remove from heat and set aside.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, cream together the butter and powdered sugar until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix until combined.

Turn the mixer on low and slowly add the flour and salt. Mix until just combined and then fold in the walnuts with a wooden spoon.

Shape the cookies into about 1 tablespoon sized balls, rolling in the palm of your hands. Place about 1/2 inch apart on the baking sheets and bake for about 9-11 minutes, until the bottoms turn golden. Place the cookies on a wire rack to cool.

When the cookies have cooled for about 10 minutes, gently roll them in a bowl with the remaining powdered sugar, shaking off excess. Return to the wire rack to fully cool. Store in an airtight container. Like most cookies, they will taste better after a day or two.

What was I cooking one year ago?: pork & cabbage stir fry
Two years ago?: eggnog pudding pie
Three years ago?: smoky garlic, delicata squash, & bacon pizza
Four?: glazed eggnog loaf cake
Five?: dates stuffed w/ cardamom goat cheese & salted pistachios
Six?: sugar plums
Seven?: chocolate peppermint crinkle cookies
8?: Rosemary shortbread Christmas tree cookies


  1. Hooray cookie season! These are my favourite.

  2. Love it went I see these cookies on a holiday cookie tray. Great recipe!

  3. These are always a cookie I look forward to!

  4. these have so many names, and they never fail to please me! love your cookie tray, by the way. :)


I love to hear from you!