Christmas Butter Spritz Cookies

by Gretchen Price on November 10, 2013

Post image for Christmas Butter Spritz Cookies


I should clarify right away that this recipe is NOT JUST FOR CHRISTMAS! This is a fabulous cookie recipe to make all year round, but it seems to be made and sought after mostly during Holiday Time!
I suppose the insurgence of Cookie Exchanges from Thanksgiving through to the New Year is the trigger, but whatever the occasion you will not be sorry to have this cookie recipe in your repertoire!

This is a variation on my Famous Woodland Bakery Italian Butter Spritz Cookie Recipe which happens to have Almond Paste in it. Many have told me that they cannot use almond paste for allergy reasons or that they cannot find it anywhere, or that they simply Don’t like it!
So for those of you who are Sans Almond Paste, try this recipe on for size!

All Occasion Butter Spritz Cookie Recipe
Yield approximately 2lbs of dough for roughly 3-4dz assorted cookies

Unsalted Butter at room temperature 2 sticks (8oz) (227g)
Granulated Sugar 1 cup (200g)
Large Egg 1 (50g)
Milk 2 Tablespoons (44ml)
Vanilla Extract 1/2 teaspoon
Pastry Flour Or Cake Flour 2 cups (240g)
Salt 1/4 teaspoon

Mix Method:

This is a Basic Creaming Method

In the bowl of the Kitchen Aid Mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large mixing bowl with a hand beater) cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Combine the egg and vanilla extract together and add to the creaming butter mixture.
Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl to incorporate well.
Add the milk and mix until combined, scrape the sides again.
Sift the flour and salt together, then add to the mixer all at once and mix on low speed just until combined. Do not over mix or you will create a tough dough.

With your Heavy Duty Arrow Thermo Pastry Bag fitted with the #866 tip all provided in your Woodland Bakery Professional Series XL Decorating Kit you will pipe the dough onto a parchment lined sheet pan spaced about 1 inch apart.

You may of course use a cookie press as well

This is a very stiff dough, which is why I recommend a very durable pastry bag such as the Arrow Thermo that I provide here for purchase in the Woodie Store
Depending on your method of measuring ingredients, you may find if you are using the inferior method of cups/volume measure vs the superior Weighing with Scale you will have a dough that is inconsistent based on heavy handed measuring with cups.
If you feel that your dough is too stiff to pipe, you may add a few tablespoons more milk to the recipe.

To avoid spreading of the dough, you may place the sheet tray of piped cookie dough in the freezer while you preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
After about 15 minutes or once your oven has reached proper temperature bake for about 15-18 minutes or until the cookies are lightly browned on the edges.

Troubleshooting: Some have complained that their cookies are spreading too much and not holding their shape. I can only guess at some things to help you troubleshoot, as I am not there to actually see the condition of your dough.

~Make sure that the butter is not too soft before making the dough.

~Be sure to cool cookie sheets between batches. A hot cookie sheet can melt the butter before the cookie dough can set.

~There is no need to grease a cookie sheet unless the recipe indicates to do so. Greasing a cookie sheet when the recipe does not call for it can cause the cookies to spread too much and brown too quickly around the edges.

~Before baking an entire batch, bake a test cookie to give a good indication of dough condition. If it spreads too much, the dough may be too soft. Try refrigerating dough until well-chilled (1 to 2 hours). If the dough is still too soft, stir in 1 to 2 tablespoons of more flour.


Allow to cool completely before filling with your choice of Jam, Tempered Chocolate Ganache or Buttercream
It is your option to fill and decorate the cookies as you wish, or you can watch the following video and see how I do it!

Finished cookies can be stored at room temperature for up to 2 weeks in a clean, dry airtight container.

If you choose to use Ganache as a filling, you will have to be careful as that is a dairy product and will spoil faster, store ganache filled cookies in the refridge for up to 2 weeks


{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

Judy October 30, 2014 at 2:48 am

Hi Gretchen,

thanks for redirecting me to this recipe, from the Rainbow Cookies recipe. No, the rainbow cookies I like had sprinkles all over. Do I just make the cookie onto some sprinkles and then turn the cookie over to bake? It wasn’t just on the corner.

My hubby knows when I am eating one of the Rainbow Cookies because I oooh and ahhhh with each bite, LOL! You’re bringing out the kid in me again!

Also, how do I make those 5 layer cookies pictured?

Thanks, Judy


Gretchen Price October 30, 2014 at 4:37 am
Carol October 28, 2014 at 12:43 am

Hi Gretchen. Just wanted to know if I wanted to make a full chocolate version would I use 1/2 cup cocoa. Just wanted you to know I spent the weekend watching all your videos. You are truly amazing for doing this for everyone.


Gretchen Price October 28, 2014 at 1:11 am

Great thank you!
Yes to full recipe


dave October 26, 2014 at 2:38 am

Hi Gretchen , I just wanted to start by saying I like your site and your videos as they are very informative. I am currently trying your spritz cookie recipe( no almond paste version) its chilling right now in fact and my question is what is the best way to color the dough ? I plan on splitting the dough and coloring half for Halloween should I return it to the mixer and add color so its more uniform.
Thanks and keep those recipes coming !


Gretchen Price October 27, 2014 at 4:57 am

sorry for the late response I have been away- but yes you can do it that way- just be sure not to overmix you don’t want a tough douhg1 You’ll kill your hands piping it!


Dave October 29, 2014 at 7:55 pm

Thanks Gretchen , I did have one problem and that was getting the dough to stick to the cookie sheet. I was using a cookie press which I have used before with no problems but I think I am the cause because I chilled the dough. if you have any thoughts or recommendations on this it would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you !


Gretchen Price October 29, 2014 at 9:53 pm

Oh yikes, this dough is so difficult to work through the press or pastry bag as is, chilling will just make it stiffer!


Tim October 8, 2014 at 12:43 am

What are the flat round cookies on top? There kinda crunchy but chewy?


Gretchen Price October 8, 2014 at 1:13 am

those are called Florentine lace cookies (I have not done a video, but I will note that for the near future)


Ann Marie July 25, 2014 at 6:28 pm

Hi Gretchen,
I was wondering if you had updated this recipe, because a little over a year ago I have been using the one that has orange extract,vanilla extract, shortening plus butter, eggs and eggwhites etc. This one seems a lot easier to make. Does the cookies end up with the same outcome of texture? Thank you,

PS. do you make “saviad” cookies? and if so are you willing to share the recipe? Its an oval shaped cookie with a cracks on the top from egg whites, that some confuse with lady fingers. I live in the carolinas now, was from SI/Bkyln and I really miss those cookies! Thx!


Gretchen Price July 26, 2014 at 12:02 am

Same cookie recipe, and feel free to add those extracts, sometimes I have to change things because too many people have trouble getting the ingredients and I get hundreds of questions, so it is easier to eliminate than answer the same thing over and again

No I have not heard of that cookie


Ann Marie July 26, 2014 at 6:37 pm

Thank you so much! :)


Maria March 12, 2014 at 6:26 pm

I would like to try the green leaf cookies on this tray. Are they made with the butter spritz dough?


Gretchen Price March 12, 2014 at 11:41 pm

No, the green leaf cookies are one what we bakeries (& supermarkets) here in NJ buy from a company called Continental Cookies
You could however make your own, by using the Basic Cookie Dough colored GREEN, roll them and cut them with a leaf cutter, an then bake, cool and sandwich together with melted chocolate!


sabrina January 20, 2014 at 1:51 pm

Tried this recipe and it was a hit. thank you for ur wonderful recipes.
i divided my dough in 3 parts, one part with cocoa powder, the 2nd part plain and the 3rd with coconut had to add more flour as it was spreading. i think i added abt half a cup and i could pipe. thanks!


rima January 20, 2014 at 12:28 pm

hi Gretchen……..just asking for some advise I love baking cakes and decorating with buttercream and also with fondant…I’ve made a few cakes that friends and family have orderd for special occasions and they loved them.Ijust wanted to know how I should get started by running a cake decorating from home as a hobby for now,and if u could share your experience on how u started and became so successful..thank u


Gretchen Price January 20, 2014 at 9:05 pm

HI Great news! You will find much valuable information in my Guide to Owning a Bakery


Jack December 25, 2013 at 8:59 pm

Fantastic taste. We divided dough in two parts, added 1/4 cup cocoa powder to one half and piped with pastry bag. Baked and tasted perfect. The other half spread too much and lost the fluted definition. So, I recommend to add 1/4 cup of (pastry flour, confection sugar, or corn starch) to the plain batch.

Thanks again for the incredible recipes!!!



Lisa Ingersoll December 24, 2013 at 5:50 am

These turned out great. Thank you for the recipe!


Mandy December 18, 2013 at 3:03 am

My cookies spread as well. I can only guess it’s the American cup measurements instead of measuring by weight. They still had some ridges from where I piped and taste AMAZING, but they don’t look as pretty! I’ll still be giving them away. A little chocolate drizzle on them…no one will ever know!

Gretchen – thanks for the time you put into this blog, the YouTube channel and your bakery! Only wish Virginia was a little closer! I would be there buying quite a bit!! I had thought about opening my own bakery at some point, but you solidified it for me that I NEVER want to open one! haha! LOVE baking, but I am not as committed as you!

I’ll be making the Rainbow Layer cookies this weekend!

Merry Christmas!


Carol December 14, 2013 at 7:16 pm

I am so thrilled that I found your website. I have been trying different spritz recipes to make my Italian finger sandwiches for years and have yet to find a good one. So, I am getting ready to try yours. I have two questions, I normally just heat red raspberry jam, let it cool a bit, and then spread on the cookie. It seems like you put a little more on your cookie. How much would you say you put on the cookie and how do you do your raspberry filling. Also, I use fiori di sicilia in my cookies but keep trying different measurements. My Italian Bakery in NY used this in their cookies and everyone loves the flavor. I’ve tried 1/4 tsp and 1/2 tsp. Any recommendations? Thanks.


Gretchen Price December 14, 2013 at 11:05 pm

Hi Carol, I use a Raspberry Jam that is made for commercial bakeries, its from a company called Otto Brehm, I think it is great. In the past I have also used HERO brand which may be more available to home bakers, I have seen HERO in the supermarket actually.
I use a good amount (as you can see) but it is preference really, whatever YOU want to use is best!


Carol December 16, 2013 at 10:07 pm

Hi, I sent you a private message through facebook because I couldn’t find a private way on this page, did you get it? Thanks so much for responding to this post. I would appreciate a response to my fb message. Have a great day.


Gretchen Price December 17, 2013 at 12:01 am

Im not sure I got it?? Can you send to


Patti December 14, 2013 at 6:28 pm

I just made a batch of these butter spritz cookies and had a problem with them spreading even after I put them in the freezer for 15mins. My butter may have been too soft. I’m going to try your two suggestions chilling the dough and maybe adding more flour. My cookies look like milano’s. They piped beautifully using your kit but baked flat. I’ve made the ones with the almond paste and they came out perfect.
I love your videos and have your cookie ebook vol 3. Thank you for sharing your ideas, tips and recipes.


Gretchen Price December 14, 2013 at 11:08 pm

AWE! Bummer, I am always surprised at the different results people get from the SAME recipe. Some have complained that their dough was so stiff it was impossible to pipe and here you say yours flattened :(
I have to suspect measureing errors (or maybe not so much errors but different styles of measuring in volume can affect the outcome- and why CLICK HERE FOR MEASUREMENTS 101 weighing is always no fail everytime)

Thanks for the comment! Keep me posted as to the outcome!


Mary C December 10, 2013 at 5:05 am

I want to make the leaf shape shown in green on your plate. Is this a pressed cookie? If so, what brand press comes with the plate to make the leaf cookie?


Gretchen Price December 11, 2013 at 1:24 pm

These cookies are called FILLER cookies, they are bought from a company called Continental Cookies


Dean December 8, 2013 at 8:14 pm

Gretchen: I am curious why you use butter in this recipe, but shortening in the Italian version.


Gretchen Price December 9, 2013 at 2:29 am

its just two different recipes.
I do not create all of the recipes –most of them I have happened upon over the years and stuck with them, some I change but many I do not.
You can interchange shortening here for the butter if you wish.


patty December 7, 2013 at 7:50 am

hi there,

this recipe changed completely from the original one which had crisco…we all loved the old recipe, before making this one…how different is the taste?


Petra Williams November 29, 2013 at 1:11 pm

I have a question, on your Butter Spritz recipe you have a 5 layer cookie or cake that looks very interesting and I was wondering if you could share that recipe?


sara n November 22, 2013 at 6:53 pm

Im curious if anyone that made the almond paste recipe tried this one yet. I did a test run with the almond paste last night and I couldnt decide how long to cook them for. I used my cookie press (first time and its an all aluminum one) and it was WONDERFUL. I was going to make plates of these for christmas to give out, I was wondering this recipe I think would be cheaper to make because the almond paste is like over $5 per batch just for that from my regular grocery store. It seems to me these would taste different with no almond in them at all.

Can anyone comment on the taste? I also had questions if you put preserves in them what exactly do you use? Can I use normal from a jar at the store? What other kinds of fillings can I add? I think Im going to do some with the ganache recipe – any other suggestions?

One more thing! I love your site and thank you so much for doing this. I have to check out your store to see what goodies you have there. Do you have recipes for any of the other cookies on this plate? My family is from new york and when I would visit we would always stop at the bakery and get a plate of these as a gift for whomevers house we were going to dinner at!


April November 22, 2013 at 1:06 am

No shortening ins this recipe.


Gretchen Price November 22, 2013 at 3:42 am

Not here, nut you can of course sub in for some of the butter if you prefer


Pat November 14, 2013 at 6:28 am

When you made this recipe in the original videos way back when, you mentioned adding orange emulsion flavoring…does that ring a bell? I have a bottle of that and was wondering if this recipe should indeed have some in it, or am I imagining things? Thanks!


Gretchen Price November 14, 2013 at 1:58 pm

Yes sure, add it


Christian November 11, 2013 at 9:22 pm

I love the your old recipe for the butter spritz cookies but I’m definitely gonna try this one too


Zhe Rong November 11, 2013 at 2:43 pm

When did you guys film this? Because it seems like vol 3 of your book is already out but you are working on 2 in this vid. Plus this video was only uploaded on. 10 nov and is REALLY recent. But does your book come in hard copy or it is only ebook?


Gretchen Price November 11, 2013 at 10:56 pm

The video is from Italian Butter Cookies, the RECIPE here though was just uploaded last night.


Zhe Rong November 15, 2013 at 3:59 pm

I see…


Rose November 11, 2013 at 12:26 am

If you aren’t particular about the shape of the cookie, I’ve used a cookie scoop to put the spritz dough onto the pan then I flattened the dough gently in a criss cross motion with a fork. Often this is how peanut butter cookies are shaped. A bonus is that the grooves help to hold the sprinkles in place. Also, a mini scoop makes cookies that look like buttons.


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