A classic snowball cookie recipe made with gluten-free flour, pecans, butter, sugar, and vanilla extract. Snowball cookies are soft, buttery, and tender with a nutty flavor. This family recipe is perfect for the holiday season to enjoy with a cup of hot chocolate.
Snowball cookies are a traditional confectioners sugar covered cookie known around the world. They are also called Mexican Wedding Cookies, Italian Wedding cookies, snowdrops, pecan butter balls, and Russian Tea cookies. They’re similar to shortbread cookies but made without eggs so they have a delicate crumb texture.
Snowball Cookies Recipe Made Gluten-Free
When I was little my mom used to make my grandmother’s Mexican wedding cookies recipe right before Christmas. Every holiday season she would make a batch to enjoy with Mexican hot chocolate while we watched Miracle on 34th street – her favorite Christmas movie! I have fond memories of eating these soft, tender cookies covered in confectioners’ sugar during Christmas time.
I have since adapted the recipe to make it for my children. This recipe can be made with regular all-purpose flour however, we have adapted it to meet our family’s dietary restrictions. We use a gluten-free flour blend that is an equal swap for the traditional flour called for in this recipe.
Snowball Cookie Ingredients
- Gluten-free flour
- Superfine Sugar
- Vanilla extract
How to make gluten-free snowball cookies (VIDEO recipe instructions)
- To make this recipe you will need to ground half of the pecans in a food processer. This will help break down some of the oil in the nuts.
- Combine the ground pecans and chopped pecans in a bowl. Stir in flour and salt.
- Cream together the butter, sugar, and vanilla extract, then slowly incorporate the flour and pecan mixture.
- Shape into 1-inch balls and bake.
- Roll in powdered sugar, repeat once the cookies have cooled.
What kind of gluten-free flour to use?
- I recommend trying this recipe with your preferred brand or homemade recipe of gluten-free flour. I’ve had great luck with King Arthur Gluten-Free Flour, which is the most easily available at my local grocery store and online. I’ve also tried this with a homemade flour blend from America’s Test Kitchen, and both had similar results. Please note that not all flour blends are the same and results may vary.
How do you make confectioners’ sugar stick to cookies?
- The trick here is to roll the cookies in confectioners’ sugar twice. Roll the cookies in the powdered sugar about 5 minutes after removing them from the oven then again before serving. Once the cookies are cooled, the second coat of powdered sugar will stick to the cookies better.
What can I add to snowball cookies?
- The most common add-ins are miniature chocolate chips and crushed peppermint candies. I’ve also seen recipes with mini M&M’s candy mixed in.
More Holiday Recipes:
- 2 cups gluten-free flour blend with xantham powder
- 2 cups pecans chopped
- ¾ tsp salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened
- ⅓ cup superfine sugar
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups confectioners sugar
- Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 325°
- Add 1 cup pecans into food processors; pulse for 15-30 seconds.
- Combine crumbled pecans in a medium mixing bowl with 1 cup chopped pecans. Stir in flour blend and salt.
- In a stand mixer or using a handheld mixer, beat together butter and superfine sugar until light and fluffy (about 2-3 minutes). Beat in vanilla and almond extract.
- Slowly incorporate flour mixture into butter and sugar. Mix until fully combined, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally.
- Use a cookie scoop to create 1-inch portions; gently roll into a ball. Place on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 16-18 minutes.
- Cool cookies for 5 minutes on the baking sheet. Place confectioners sugar in a bowl then roll cookies to evenly coat. Place on a cooling rack. Roll the cookies in confectioners sugar again before serving.