Snowball Cookies with Pecans are always one of my favorite holiday cookies. They are buttery, tender, nutty from the chopped pecans, and covered in sweet powdered sugar. They're a Christmas classic in our house! These cookies are such a favorite that they go by many names!
Other Names for Snowball Cookies:
- Mexican Wedding Cookies
- Russian Tea Cakes
- Italian Wedding Cookies
- Butter Balls or Pecan Butter Balls
The snowball cookie dough requires just a few ingredients and results in a tender, shortbread like cookie. Like many cookies, this dough does require chilling. It can be chilled for as little as 30 minutes or up to 3 days. Making this the perfect option to make in advance. Mix up the cookie dough one night, then roll into balls and bake another day.
Ingredients You'll Need:
- Unsalted Butter - softened to room temperature is a must to cream it properly. You can use salted butter if that's all you have on hand but you'll want to use a little less salt.
- Powdered Confectioners Sugar - this is used both in the dough and for rolling the baked cookies. You roll the baked cookie balls twice and the second roll if really when you notice it sticking in a nice layer.
- Kosher Salt - Salt is so so important in sweets. Never skip it. It helps balance the sweetness and brings out the flavors.
- Vanilla Extract - Use the good stuff. It makes a difference 🙂
- All-Purpose Flour - A baking pantry staple. It's going to seem like a lot of flour at first, but I promise the dough will come together. Mixing in the flour on low first prevents making a huge mess..
- Finely Chopped Pecans - You can either buy them pre-chopped, use a sharp knife, or give a few pulses in your food processor (this if my favorite way).
Snowball Cookies with Pecans are always one of my favorite holiday cookies. They are buttery, tender, nutty from the chopped pecans, and covered in sweet powdered sugar. They're a Christmas classic. Recipe at KathleensCravings.com
- 1 cup unsalted butter (softened at room temperature)
- ¾ cup powdered confectioners sugar
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 ¼ cups all purpose flour
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans
- 1 ½ cups powdered confectioners sugar (for rolling)
- In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the butter on medium until smooth and creamy. About 1 minute. Add the ¾ cup of powdered sugar and salt and beat on medium-high until combined and smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Add the vanilla and mix until combined.
- With the mixer on low speed, slowly add in the flour. Once the flour is mixed in you can turn the speed up to medium-high until the dough comes together. It will be thick. Finally, mix in the chopped pecans.
- Chill the dough. Cover the dough and chill for at least 30 minutes and up to 3 days. If you chill the dough for more than a couple of hours you'll need to let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes or so in order to roll into balls.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper. In a small bowl, add the 1 ½ cups of powdered sugar.
- Roll the dough into 1-1 ½ tablespoon sized balls. Place on the baking sheets about 2 inches apart.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 13-15 minutes. The cookies will be set and just barely getting golden yellow on the bottom.
- Allow the cookies to cool on the sheets for about 5 minutes until still warm, but cool enough to handle. Gently roll the warm cookies in the powdered sugar. Place on a wire rack to cool completely. Once cool, roll in the powdered sugar again - you'll notice that the powdered sugar really sticks now.
- Prep Time: 45 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Dessert
- Cuisine: American