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20 mins
8 mins
Like snowfall, these Polvorones make it feel like Christmas.
Like snowfall, these Polvorones make it feel like Christmas.TODAY
20 mins
8 mins


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup coarsely ground almonds
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar, for dusting cookies
  • Chef notes

    The name of these nutty shortbread cookies comes from the word "polvo," which means dust in Spanish. It references the powdery sugar that covers the cookie, as well as the trademark crumbly texture of the cookie itself. You may know these as Mexican Wedding Cookies or even Russian Tea Cakes. It seems like just about every country has their own version of this sweet treat ... and with good reason since they are as easy to make as they are delicious to enjoy.

    Technique tips: These cookies will keep fresh for about five days in airtight container. 

    Shape dough, then freeze it flat on a baking sheet before transferring to a zipped freezer bag. Store in freezer to bake at a later date. 

    Swap options: Replace almonds with an equal amount of pecans, walnuts, pistachios or a combination of your favorite nuts. 

    Add fresh lime or orange zest for a citrusy twist.



    Preheat oven to 325 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.


    In the base of a stand mixer, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the extracts and salt, then beat for another 30 seconds. Lower the mixer to the lowest setting and slowly add in the flour, letting it mix until it's all completely worked in. Add the almonds and mix until completely incorporated.


    Use a cookie scoop or your hands to form round balls from the dough, each about 1 tablespoon in size.


    Arrange dough balls on the cookie sheet, about 1 inch apart. Once you have filled the cookie sheet, place it in the refrigerator to chill for 15 to 30 minutes. This will help the cookies keep their spherical shape.


    Once chilled, place tray with cookies in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes, or until the cookies are completely baked, golden brown on the bottom but still pale on top. Let cookies cool on the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to completely cool.


    Add powdered sugar to a shallow container. Toss the cooled cookies in the powdered sugar, gently shaking off any excess. Serve right away or store in an airtight container with a little extra powdered sugar to keep the cookies well dusted.