Also sometimes called 'Mexican wedding cookie', 'Russian tea cakes', or 'butterballs', can also be made into crescents. You can also substitute pecans and they are very good as well. This is the best version of these I have ever seen, it was given me by a friend who grew up in central Europe.



Original recipe yields 40 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).

  • Cream butter or margarine in a bowl, gradually add confectioners' sugar and salt. Beat until light and fluffy. Add almonds and vanilla. Blend in flour gradually and mix well.

  • Shape into balls (or crescents) using about 1 teaspoon for each cookie. Place on ungreased cookie sheets, and bake for 15-20 min. Do not brown. Cool slightly, then roll in the extra confectioners' sugar.

Partner Tip

Reynolds® parchment can be used for easier cleanup/removal from the pan.

Nutrition Facts

140 calories; 9.7 g total fat; 18 mg cholesterol; 45 mg sodium. 11.5 g carbohydrates; 2.2 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (276)

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335 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 251
  • 4 star values: 57
  • 3 star values: 16
  • 2 star values: 3
  • 1 star values: 8
Rating: 5 stars
these cookies were delicious! the best recipe i've found for this type so far... if you make a small change.. i agree with the other reviewers about the salt. i added only 1/4tsp to the dough and they were perfect. i especially like that this recipe calls for pwd sugar instead of white sugar in the dough. i think that it made the cookie extra melt-in-your-mouth. i also used ground pecans instead of almonds that's the way i like best. a hint for rolling them in the sugar after they bake... roll once when the cookie is still hot and again when it is completely cool. YUM! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
I took everyone's feedback here on the first try and used salted butter with no more salt added (surely the amount shown is a typo?). I also decided that with the almonds and the heavy dose of vanilla called for in this recipe that I would make either true "almond crescents " which is a popular cookie or true wedding cookies. So I used only 1 tsp. of vanilla and 3 tsp. almond extract. I could not grind the almonds finely enough however so the texture of the final result was a bit too rubbery and bumpy with almond bits easily noticeable and getting stuck in teeth (at least mine) but this was probably my own fault. I'm sure that finely ground almonds would have enhanced my results (can you buy finely ground almonds? I cannot imagine grinding these by hand or machine such that they would truly be fine enough...the almond is very moist). The flavor of these cookies was marvelous! Everyone liked them. Since I bake cookies almost exclusively as my Christmas gifts I appreciated the larger quanitity produced from this recipe than most others I see. So a hit for this year means a tradition next year. Think I'll try them with ONLY the vanilla and pecans next Christmas (in addition to the almond crescents again). Thanks for a nice recipe. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I made 1/3 of this recipe and got about 15 cookies. I used about a pinch of salt. everytime Ive had wedding cookies (store-bought) I thought they were too salty. even with all the sugar though I dont think they need that much. Anyway after I finished rolling these cookies in the sugar I realized that I left out the ground almonds. Luckily I used almond extract along with the vanilla and it still tasted PERFECT you couldn't even notice it was missing it. I ended up sprinkling the ground almonds on top over the sugar. Also I found it easiest to coat the cookies in a deep bowl filled with the sugar using a spoon. If you use your fingers (and the cookies are still warm) it will stick and come off the cookie. Read More
Rating: 4 stars
This is a delicious recipe. As I'm always too busy the first time I made them I modified the recipe and made half the amount (40 cookies less to be tempted by!?) but at the end I wished I'd made the entire amount as they were so good! I put the butter and icing (confectioners') sugar in the moulinex food processor added the vanilla and only a half teaspoon of salt (which was fine) then gradually added the flour as well and mixed all together with a couple zaps. The mixture became soft crumbly and I easily formed the balls quickly and rolled them by hand. The entire process took less than half the time too and they were all eaten in 10 minutes by the family who loved them!! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
These were excellent. My husband has always loved these cookies and I am by no means a good baker and he raved about these. A little tip... I scooped them inot a 1 oz cookie scoop and clicked the handle a few times to form perfect balls. No messy hands and they turned out perfect! Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This recipe produces an excellent version of this type of cookie. I reduced the salt to about 1/4 tsp and rolled them in 10X sugar three times each. I found that about 12 minutes produced the right amount of doneness. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
Someone get these away from me - I can't stop eating them! And I don't usually like nuts in my cookies. Other than putting in a teaspoon of almond extract and reducing the salt to about 1/4 teaspoon (I used lightly salted almonds that I ground in my mini-chopper) I made them as stated. I wasn't sure how far apart to place them on the cookie sheet but they didn't spread at all so you can really load up the sheet. I cooled them for about 10 minutes and then rolled them in the confect. sugar once waited about 3-4 minutes and then rolled them again. I'm making these for a wedding - I hope they last until then! Thanks for the great recipe. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I thought these turned out pretty good. I made them for a wedding reception and they were very elegant. I used unsalted butter and reduced the amount of salt to 1/4 t. I also added 1 t. of almond extract for a bit more flavor. With a small food scale I weighed my dough to about a half ounce per cookie and the recipe made more than 80 cookies. I made the crescent shapes and they didn't "roll in the extra confectioners sugar" too easily so I put them on wax paper and sifted the powdered sugar over them. Also to finely chop the almonds I used a Black and Decker Handy Chopper. It chops about a 1/2 cup to 1 cup at a time. Just have to run it for at least a minute to get the almonds as small as it will chop. Final Note: Not your average cookie so don't expect the kiddos to go wild over them! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
This was a very simple cookie to make. I made the ground almonds by grinding up sliced almonds in my blender it works well if you do it in small batches and scrape down the sides now and then. The cookie itself reminds me of a biscotti but not completely dry - it has that puffy airy texture to it. Very nice slightly sweet almond flavor I think I'll try adding a little almond extract to enhance the flavor. I used unsalted butter and added 1/4 tsp salt per the other reviewers comments. They're very pretty and rustic - I plan on giving these as favors at my sister's bridal shower!:) Read More