Italian Butter Cookies Recipe

italian butter cookies on a glass stand

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I don’t know about you but I love, love, love Italian butter cookies. You know the ones I mean – the kind you always get on cookie trays. With the jam in the middle, or dipped in chocolate with sprinkles?

I always looked forward to stealing one or two or ten when a box of cookies showed up but never thought I would ever actually bake them. And guess what? They are not that hard to make at all. They do require a bit of well, butter as you might expect from their name. So read on to learn how to make these delightfully delicious treats.

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Italian butter cookies

Italian Butter Cookies Recipe

The number it makes is rather fluid depending upon what sizes and shapes you choose.

For the cookies:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup, unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 TBS whole milk if needed

For Decorations

  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt
  • In a stand mixer with the paddle attached, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy
  • Mix in the egg yolks, one at a time, then add the vanilla.
  • At low speed gradually add the flour mixture until just incorporated. IF the dough seems too dry you can add the milk at this time, 1/2 TBS at a time. (I did not need to add the milk) You want a soft but still slightly sticky dough.
  • Now you form your cookies – you can use a piping bag and an open star tip or do as I did – portion out about 1 tsp of dough, roll it into a ball and then press a shape into the center. (I used a Russian piping tip)
  • For the filled cookies I portioned out 2 tsp sections of dough, made little logs, pressed them down and then used the tines of a fork to make the indentations.
  • Add about a quarter teaspoon of jam to the indentation in the center
  • Bake on the prepared baking sheets in the preheated oven for 10 – 12 minutes for the smaller, round cookies and slightly longer for the larger cookies. Turn once during baking.
  • Cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.


  • For the dipped cookies: melt the semi sweet chocolate with the butter. Dip half the cookie in the chocolate and set on waxed paper to cool.
  • If desired dip in sprinkles or non-pareils
  • You can also drizzle a little chocolate over the jammy cookies if desired
italian butter cookies on a glass stand

How Were the Italian Butter Cookies?

Seriously delicious. Just as buttery as you would imagine and the chocolate added the perfect compliment. These did not last long.

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