Pistachio Cookies

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5 from 2 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 14 minutes
cooling time: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour 24 minutes

Italian pistachio cookies are a delicate shortbread cookie enhanced by creamy pistachio nuts. It is a wonderful addition to cookie platters or an elegant cookie for showers or parties.

Pistachio Cookies stacked on a white plate.

These pistachio cookies are great because you use a basic refrigerator cookie dough and change it up to make into this fabulous crunchy cookie. They are so full of flavor and are nutty, crispy and a breeze to make.

If you love easy Christmas recipes and ideas, check out this list of favorite holiday treats.


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These cookies start with a base cookie dough that can be turned into several types of cookies including sugar refrigerator cookiespeppermint cookies and toffee cookies. Therefore, you can make this Italian cookie and all the others from the same basic recipe.

  • 10 Minute Prep: A quick cookie to make, especially when you can use the cookie dough to make so many different cookies like this favorite from Italy.
  • Easy Ingredients: All found in pantry or the refrigerator.
  • Family Friendly: Fun for kids to eat, and also to help make.
  • Makes Great Gift Giving: A wonderful cookie for gift giving or for cookie trays.
A top shot of the cookies.

Ingredient Notes

  • Flour: This recipe is for all purpose flour but you can use a gluten-free flour if you wish.
  • Brown Sugar: Make sure that you pack your light brown sugar.
  • Egg: Always use room temperature large eggs when making these cookies.
  • Chopped Pistachios
Flour, sugar, egg and ingredients to make the cookies.

Variations and Substitutions

  • Vanilla Extract – Replace the almond extract with vanilla extract.
  • Pudding Mixes – For a cookie with more chewiness, add a box of instant pistachio pudding mix to the dry ingredients to make a pistachio pudding cookies.

How to Make Italian Pistachio Cookies

These are the basic steps for making Pistachio Cookie Recipe. Please refer to the recipe card below for more detailed instructions and nutrition information. You can always find more recipes on my Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.

Making the cookie batter and forming it into the log for the Pistachio Cookies .

STEP 1: BEGIN

First, with the paddle attachment of a stand mixer cream butter until light and fluffy and then add in brown sugar and white sugar and continue to mix until well incorporated and next add in egg and almond extract and continue mixing until wet ingredients are well blended.

STEP 2: MIX

Second, in a separate bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt and then gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture mixing after each addition until all the flour is incorporated. Gently mix in the pistachios and the food coloring.

STEP 3: CHILL

Then lay out wax paper and dough roll into a long shape with a diameter of about 2 inches and then wrap the dough in the wax paper and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. When ready, preheat the oven to 350, line a baking sheet with parchment and slice the cookie dough into 1/4 to 1/2 inch slices.

Slicing the Pistachio Cookies and placing them on a baking tray

STEP 4: BAKE AND COOL

Then bake for 10-14 minutes or until they are a very lightly golden brown around the edge and appear dry in the center. Finally, allow to cool for 2-3 minutes on the baking sheet before removing and allowing to cool completely on a wire rack.

Prep and Storage Tips

HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE AHEAD OF TIME

Indeed you do have to make them and allow the dough to chill for up to an hour before baking the cookies.

HOW TO STORE THIS RECIPE

The cookies can be stored in the fridge for up to four days and up to three months in the freezer in an airtight container.

HOW TO FREEZE THIS RECIPE

Freeze in a freezer bag or an airtight container for up to three months.

Frequently Asked Questions

CAN YOU SCOOP OUT THESE PISTACHIO SHORTBREAD COOKIE?

The best part of this recipe is that you can slice and bake however you can use a cookie scoop and bake, A good tablespoon size works well.

CAN I USE A DIFFERENT NUT?

Of course, this recipe is a traditionally made with pistachios however you can use walnuts, almonds or pecans.

DO I HAVE TO USE FOOD COLORING?

No, while they are a cute touch of color for the holidays they coloring does not have to be used

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BAKING SODA AND BAKING POWDER?

Baking powder is made of baking soda plus cream of tartar and cornstarch. Baking powder can be substituted for baking soda by tripling the amount of baking powder.

Pistachio Cookies surrounded by the nuts on a white plate.

Expert Tips for Making This Recipe

  • This Recipe Can be Doubled: Great for the holidays, cookie trays or a crowd.  Simply increase the ingredients proportionately and make in batches.
  • Add Fruit: Dried cranberries, lemon zest, cherries, candied lemon peel etc can be added.
  • Chocolate: Drizzle with chocolate or dip half the cookie in chocolate and decorate with more pistachios.
  • White Chocolate: White chocolate chips are great in these cookies too.

What to Serve with Pistachio Cookies

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Pistachio Cookies stacked on a white plate.
5 from 2 votes

Pistachio Cookies

Yield: 40 cookies
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 14 minutes
cooling time: 1 hour
Total: 1 hour 24 minutes
Italian pistachio cookies are a delicate shortbread cookie enhanced by creamy pistachio nuts. It is a wonderful addition to cookie platters or an elegant cookie for showers or parties.
Print Recipe Pin Recipe Rate Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 1 Cup Butter, softened
  • ½ Cup White Sugar
  • ½ Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 tsp Almond Extract
  • 1 Cup Chopped Pistachios
  • 3-4 drops of green food coloring

Instructions

  • With the paddle attachment of a stand mixer cream butter until light and fluffy.
  • Add in brown sugar and white sugar and continue to mix until well incorporated.
  • Add in egg and vanilla and continue mixing until well blended.
  • In a separate bowl whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
  • Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture mixing after each addition until all the flour is incorporated.
  • Add in pistachios and food coloring, mix gently on low.
  • Lay out a piece of wax paper on a flat surface. Scoop the dough into the center of the wax paper. Use the wax paper to help roll the dough into a long shape with a diameter of about 2 inches.
  • Wrap the dough in the wax paper and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  • To bake-
  • Preheat the oven to 350
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Slice the cookie dough into ¼- ½ inch slices.
  • Place dough slices on prepared cookie sheet a couple of inches apart.
  • Bake for 10-14 minutes or until they are a very lightly golden brown around the edge and appear dry in the center.
  • Allow to cool for 2-3 minutes on the baking sheet before removing and allowing to cool completely on a wire rack.

Expert Tips

 
  • This Recipe Can be Doubled: Great for the holidays, cookie trays or a crowd.  Simply increase the ingredients proportionately and make in batches.
  • Add Fruit: Dried cranberries, cherries, candied lemon peel etc can be added.
  • Chocolate: Drizzle with chocolate or dip half the cookie in chocolate and decorate with more pistachios.
  • White Chocolate: White chocolate chips are great in these cookies too.

Estimated Nutritional Information

Calories: 103kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 72mg | Potassium: 55mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 161IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 1mg
The nutritional information provided are estimates. To learn more about how I calculate this information go to www.itisakeeper.com/about-its-a-keeper/privacy-disclosure-policies/
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cookies, pistachios, Refrigerator cookie

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