When the holidays arrive, there are many things to look forward to. Two of the most anticipated things are snow and tasty treats – so why not combine them into one? Of course, recipe designer Kate Shungu’s snowball cookies don’t contain real snow, but they look like snowballs! Not only are these sweet and classic cookies reminiscent of fresh snow, but they’re a staple for holiday parties and family get-togethers. “My grandmother made a version of these cookies for many years,” says Shungu. “For me, these are essential cookies for my own holiday baking – my family looks forward to them every year. We often have to make multiple batches in December because they never last long!”
So what exactly is going on in this snowball cookie recipe? Well, they look like wedding cookies, and if you have flour, powdered sugar, butter, and pecans, you already have almost everything you need to whip these cookies together.
Despite their simplicity, these cookies are a decadent treat, and Shungu can attest to that herself. “These cookies are rich, buttery and slightly crumbly,” she says. “I recommend eating them with a napkin in your hand so that the powdered sugar doesn’t fly everywhere!” If you’re looking for the perfect cookie recipe to bring to your next holiday celebration, you can rest easy knowing that these snowball cookies are sure to delight everyone.
Gather the ingredients to make snowball cookies
Without further ado, let’s dive straight into this festive recipe. As with any recipe, you’ll want to make sure you have all the proper ingredients on hand. Luckily, the shopping list for this one is pretty short, and you’ll just need butter, powdered sugar, all-purpose flour, vanilla extract, salt, and chopped pecans. Shungu notes that there is some wiggle room when it comes to nuts: “You can easily substitute chopped walnuts with chopped pecans. Or if you don’t like nuts, you can skip walnuts altogether. pecan.”
Make the cookie dough
Now that you’ve sorted your ingredients, it’s time to get to the cooking part. First, preheat your oven to 350 F. Next, place the softened butter in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on high until creamy.
Now turn off the mixer and add ½ cup powdered sugar. Turn the mixer back on at a low speed, so the powdered sugar doesn’t fly everywhere. As the sugar incorporates into the butter, increase the speed and beat the ingredients for two to three minutes, until light and fluffy.
Add the vanilla extract and salt, then stir to combine. Then add half the flour, mix it with the other ingredients, then add the other half. Mix everything until just combined, because you don’t want to overwork your dough. Finally, pour in your chopped pecans and gently mix them into your cookie dough.
Shape the cookies and bake them
Once you are done making your cookie dough, you can start shaping the cookies and arrange them on the baking sheet. First, take your baking sheet and place it right next to the bowl of cookie dough. Using a spoon or just your hands, take a globe of cookie dough and roll it into a ball shape, making sure each cookie ball is about an inch thick. As you roll, place each finished cookie ball on the baking sheet and be sure to leave about an inch of space between each cookie.
After filling the baking sheet, put it in the oven and bake for 15-17 minutes. You will know the cookies are done when they are golden brown on the bottom.
Roll the cookies in icing sugar
Now that your cookies are baked, they’re ready to snowball! Take a bowl and pour the remaining cup of powdered sugar into it. Now take your freshly baked cookies while they are still warm and roll each one in the powdered sugar. Once they have received their initial coating, you can set the cookies aside to cool. After rolling each, you can repeat the process with the remaining sugar, giving each cookie another layer of snowball-like goodness.
Serve your snowballs and enjoy
Just like that, you’ve cooked up some holiday magic in your own kitchen. As soon as you have finished rolling the cookies in powdered sugar, you can serve them and enjoy. “A steaming cup of coffee or tea is the perfect complement to these cookies,” notes Shungu.
If you have leftovers, these cookies will hold up well. “Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for up to a week at room temperature,” says Shungu. “You can also freeze these cookies for up to a month.” These cookies may look like snowballs, but inside they’re warm and fluffy, perfect for parties!