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Polvorones (Mexican Wedding Cookies) with Shaved Bittersweet Chocolate (#NutFree!)

Pistachio Polvorones

These sweet, shortbread-like cookies are extremely difficult to resist. They require no leavening and, as a result, are incredibly dense, rich, and buttery. Often known throughout the United States as Mexican wedding cookies and served south of the border at weddings and other special celebrations, this version is made even more festive with the incorporation of toasted pistachios.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Cookies
Author Meagan Micozzi


  • 1 cup pistachio kernels
  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Spread the pistachio kernels in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes or until fragrant and slightly golden. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
  3. Cream butter and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks and vanilla. Add flour and mix just until you have a uniform, stiff dough.
  4. Coarsely chop the cooled pistachios. Fold into the dough, using clean hands if necessary to gently work the pistachio pieces throughout. Place finished dough on a large sheet of parchment paper and shape into a log approximately 2 to 3 inches in diameter. Wrap tightly and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours.
  5. Once the dough is chilled through and you are ready to bake your cookies, preheat the oven again to 350°F. Slice the dough log into 1⁄2-inch-thick slices and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet (these cookies will not spread so you can fit up to 16 on a standard-sized half sheet pan). Bake for approximately 25 to 28 minutes. Finished cookies will be firm and just turning light golden brown on the bottoms. (Note: if you bake your cookies straight from the refrigerator, you may need to leave them in the oven for up to 30 minutes. But that said, overbaking these cookies is not good, so start checking for doneness at 20 minutes.)
  6. Remove baked cookies from oven and cool for 5 to 10 minutes on the cookie sheet. Place the confectioners’ sugar in a small bowl and toss the still-warm cookies in the confectioners’ sugar. The key is to toss the cookies in the sugar when they are not so hot that the sugar will melt, but warm enough that it will adhere to the exterior of the cookies. Place finished cookies on a rack to cool and set completely.
  7. YIELD: approximately 25 cookies
  8. © Hippocrene Books