This Linzer Cookies recipe is made with your choice of jam sandwiched between simple almond-flavored shortbread cookies. Easy to make and fun to customize with different shapes and flavors of jam!
It’s the Year of the Linzer Cookies here in our casa! ♡
Each holiday season, there always tends to be onecookie recipe that ends up being the new fave that we can’t stop baking. And this year, my husband and I are officially obsessed with these classic, lovely, buttery, jam-filled little delights.
Linzer cookies originally hail from Austria, where they are said to have become popular hundreds of years ago (basically as a mini version of their famous Linzer torte). They traditionally feature a sandwich of simple buttery shortbread cookies made with almond flour, which are then filled with a colorful window of raspberry jam poking through.
Nowadays, you can find variations on Linzer cookies all around the world made with all different kinds of nut flours (or nut-free), different types of fillings (jams, lemon curd, Nutella, you name it), or cut out into all sorts of different shapes and sizes (I’ve included lots of cute cookie cutter recommendations for you below). So there are lots of fun ways to get creative with these cookies! Here in our house, we’re definitely partial to the more traditional-style Linzer cookies made with almond flour, and especially love mixing a generous amount of orange or lemon zest into the dough as well. (You’re also welcome to add in some ground cinnamon if you’d like.) I also love that the shortbread recipe here is not overly sweet, so the cookies balance the jam quite nicely and really let its fruity flavor shine through. Plus they always look so fun and festive this time of year!
Anyway, I know that there are probably already a million Linzer cookie recipes out there on the internet. But after baking — oh — nearly a dozen batches of the cookies already this season (like I said, we’re a bit obsessed), my husband and I have decided that this is the Linzer cookie recipe we officially love best. So today I wanted to pop in and share it with you too!
Linzer Cookies | 1-Minute Video
Linzer Cookie Ingredients:
Before we get to the full Linzer cookie recipe below, here are a few important notes about the ingredients you will need to make them:
Almond flour: As I mentioned above, we also love using traditional almond flour in the shortbread cookies, which you can either buy pre-ground or you can purchase about 120 grams of blanched almonds and then toast and ground them yourself.
Butter: You will just need unsalted butter that is room temperature, so that it will mix well with the sugar.
Salt: I also used 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt in this recipe. But if you only have iodized table salt on hand, you will only need to use 1/2 teaspoon.
White sugar: I made these cookies with traditional white granulated sugar, but feel free to experiment with any other sweeteners that you prefer.
Vanilla extract: I also love a generous amount of vanilla extract in the shortbread.
Egg: To bind all of the shortbread ingredients together.
Lemon or orange: I would say that citrus zest is optional for this recipe, but honestly it adds so much that I really believe it’s essential! We’re partial to making the shortbread with orange zest, but lemon is more traditional and also quite lovely.
Ground cinnamon + almond extract: These are both optional add-ins that you can mix into the dough if you would like. I’m personally not a huge fan of cinnamon in this dough, but really love the almond extract.
Powdered sugar: For dusting the tops of the cookies.
Jam: For filling the cookie sandwiches. We’re quite partial toBonne Maman jams in our house (they are absolutely everywhere here in Europe!), but any favorite brand/flavor of jam that you love will do.
Linzer Cookie Cutters:
So you can totally make Linzer cookies with any type of cookie cutter or biscuit cutter that you’d like. If you’d like to make things easy, there are pre-made Linzer cookie cutter “sets” you can purchase that have interchangeable shapes for the smaller “windows” inside. Or alternately, you can just use any sort of round or larger cookie/biscuit cutters (ideas below) plus a mini cookie cutter that you already own. Here are a few suggestions:
Linzer cookie cutter sets: I used this set for the heart cookies pictured just below, which yields small 2-inch round cookies with traditional window shapes. I also love these small 2-inch cookie sets, which you can purchase with either traditional, Christmas, Halloween, winter, or springtime window themes.
Mini cookie cutters: There are lots of fun mini cookie cutter sets online, such as these mini assorted, alphabet, Christmas, or dogs cookie cutter sets. (I just recommend double-checking the size of any mini sets that you order online to be sure that they will fit inside your larger outer cookie cutter, as sizes for “mini” cutters seem to vary considerably.)
How To Make Linzer Cookies:
Detailed instructions for how to make Linzer cookies are included in the recipe below, but here is a quick overview of the process:
Make the shortbread dough. Prep the dough as directed.
Chill the dough. Shape the dough into disks, wrap tightly in beeswrap or plastic wrap, and refrigerate for about 30-60 minutes until chilled.
Roll out the dough. Roll out the dough on a floured surface until it is uniformly about 1/4-inch thick. Then use your preferred cookie cutters to cut out the dough — 50% shapes that are solid, 50% shapes with “windows” cut out in the center. I also like to bake the little window cut-outs too.
Bake. Transfer the cookies to a parchment-covered sheet and bake until lightly golden, keeping a close eye on the cookies as different shapes/sizes may cook more/less quickly. Remove from the oven and transfer cookies to a wire baking rack to cool.
Assemble the cookies. Then the fun part! Dust the window cookies with powdered sugar. Spread a dollop of jam on the other cookies and gently place a window cookies on top to form cute little Linzer cookie sandwiches. And enjoy!
Here are a few more ideas for how to customize this Linzer cookies recipe if you’d like:
Make your own DIY almond flour: Simply measure out around 120 grams of unblanched almonds and ground them (in a food processor or coffee grinder) to make almond flour. I also recommend lightly toasting the almonds in the oven before grinding them for better flavor.
Use a different kind of nut flour: Instead of almond flour, you could alternately toast around 120 grams of raw pecans or walnuts and ground them (in a food processor or coffee grinder) to make pecan or walnut flour. I also recommend lightly toasting the nuts in the oven before grinding them for better flavor.
Use a different filling: In place of jam, you could fill the Linzer cookies with lemon curd (or any type of citrus curd), Nutella, or any other fillings that sound fun.
More Cut-Out Cookie Recipes:
Looking for more delicious cookie recipes to bake this season? Here are a few of my favorite cut-out cookies:
This Linzer Cookies recipe is made with your choice of jam sandwiched between simple almond-flavored shortbread cookies. See notes above for possible ingredient variations plus cookie cutter recommendations!
Combine the dry ingredients. Combine the all-purpose flour, almond flour, salt, and cinnamon (if using) in a medium mixing bowl, and stir until evenly combined.
Combine the wet ingredients. Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer (or you can use a hand mixer with a large mixing bowl) and beat on medium-high speed for 2 minutes until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract, almond extract (if using), egg and zest to the butter mixture and beat on low speed for 30 seconds until combined.
Add in the dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredient mixture and beat on low speed for 1 minute or so until combined, pausing to scrape down the sides of the bowl at any point if needed.
Chill the dough. Shape the dough into a disk about 1-inch thick, wrap tightly with beeswrap or plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30-60 minutes or until chilled.
Prep the oven and baking sheet. Heat the oven to 350°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment.
Roll out the dough. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and using a rolling pin to roll it out until it is about 1/4-inch thick. Cut out your desired shapes with your cookie cutters (half solid shapes, half with cut-out “windows”) and place them on the prepared baking sheet. Re-roll out any dough scraps that remain and repeat the process to make use of all of the dough. At this point, if the cut-out cookie dough seems soft and warm, it’s best to pop the entire cookie sheet in the fridge for 10 minutes to re-chill the dough. Otherwise, proceed immediately with the next step.
Bake. Bake the cookies for about 11-13 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly golden around the edges. Different sizes/shapes of cookies may require different amounts of cooking time, so I recommend keeping a close eye on the cookies during the final minutes or baking to be sure that they do not overcook.
Cool. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and let the cookies rest for a few minutes. Then transfer the cookies to a wire rack until they have cooled completely to room temperature.
Assemble the cookies. Transfer the cut-out window cookies back to the baking sheet and use a fine mesh strainer to dust them with powdered sugar. Then spread a dollop of jam on a solid cookie and gently place a window cookie on top to form a cute little Linzer cookie sandwich. Repeat with remaining cookies and enjoy!
Salt: If you only have iodized (table) salt on hand, reduce the amount of salt to 1/2 teaspoon.
Storage instructions: Cookies can be stored in a sealed container at room temperature for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months.
Yield: This recipe makes a big batch — about 38 to 40 (2-inch round) sandwiches. (Which means 76 to 80 cookies total, of that size.) The yield will definitely vary depending on the size and shape of cookie cutter that you use, as well as the thickness of your rolled-out dough.
Wow these are so festive and just stunning! Making them today!
I use baking flour along with the almond flour and the texture of the dough is wonderful I make this cookie slot it’s a favorite thanks for sharing
I love the snowflake pattern Linzer tarts…where can I find the cookie cutter?
I love all your recipes!!! Thank you!
See the links at the bottom of this for cookie cutters. Wilton has a Christmas set that includes the snowflake.
I love Linzer cookies. I just started making them last year using the King Arthur Flour recipe. I’m going to have to try this one!
I made these as part of my Christmas cookie baking session yesterday. They are SO GOOD! I filled half with seedless raspberry jam and half with nutella. Thanks for the amazing cookie recipe!
My new favorite Christmas cookies! Thank you!
These cookies were delicious! I’m planning to make them again. The orange zest is definitely important for the overall flavor. Thanks for sharing this recipe.
These must be the most gorgeous Linzer cookies I have ever seen!! :) Absolutely stunning!! :)
Thank you for the amazing blog with the most beautiful pictures :)
Warm and Merry Christmas and Winter wishes from Finland :)
These were delicious, family all loved them! Thank you!
First time making them with my new Linzer cookie cutters. QUESTION: When are you suppose to sprinkle powder sugar and avoid the sugar on the jam?
Before you top them onto the jam dolloped base cookie.
These came out amazingly good! I didn’t have almond flour so I used 2 3/4 c flour instead. I made a lemon curd for the filling and loved the tangy/sweet combo.
Perfection! My whole family devoured them. I didn’t have almond flour, so I substituted with more regular flour and they turned out great, with nice hints of lemon flavor from the lemon zest. I will definitely be making these again.
I made these for Valentine’s Day and everyone loved them! They were fun to make and turned out darling with heart shaped windows and raspberry filling. I used a gluten free all purpose flour (as mentioned was possible) and it worked great. I have a feeling these will become a favorite in our house. Thank you for the recipe!
Hi There…..this recipe sounds delicious. Can I make it in a tart pan? Thanks, Lauren
These cookies are a show topper!!! This recipe is divine. It is relatively easy, and the end result is so professional and impressive. I will make these again and again.
I evidently did something wrong. The chilled dough was too hard to roll and, left out for just a couple minutes, was wayyyyy too soft. Ended up just blobbing dough on the cookie sheet. Came out very delicious, just freaking ugly and nowhere to put the jam. Please help!
This happened to me too! I’m thinking I might have let the butter get too soft before making the dough but I’m not totally sure. The flavor was great though, I will be trying it again. I might also add a tablespoon of cornstarch next time to help the cookies keep their shape.
Hi The recipe looks amazing. Can you please advise if it is possible to make the dough ahead of time and freeze it, thaw it and then cut out the cookies. Thank you for your help.
Question can you freeze uncook cookie dough or baked cookies?
Just made these tonight for thr first time for hubby’s cookie exchange at work tomorrow.
I love this recipe. Ive been making Linzers for 15 years and this is the best recipe I’ve found. Almond flour works so much better than grinding up almonds. Whipping the butter and sugar at high speed for a while makes a more tender dough. Zest IS mandatory… I prefer the lemon and almond and the cinnamon but that’s just personal taste. Chilling the dough is key to keeping the cookie shape. I also bake my solid cookies and the cutout cookies separately. They bake at slightly different rates because the cutouts have less dough. Most important to watch these cookies so they don’t overbake. Thanks for the links to all the cookie cutters!
My father in law is from Germany and he was OBSESSED with these cookies! He told me they were the best he’s had – even better than his favorite German bakery!
Hello, I have a question about extracts. My family loves almond, could I add a teaspoon without overpowering this dough?
Thank you for this recipe! I made these on 2/13/2022 with a 2 1/2″ cutter and a 1 1/2″ inside heart. Rolling out at 1/4″, I only yielded 16 sandwich cookies :-(. Will definitely have to buy the Wilton Linzer cookie cutter. I prefer the smaller, European-sized cutters and love the scalloped edge and the smaller inside cut-outs too. Couldn’t find anything similar at any of my area bake shops.
I think I will set my rolling pin for a thinner top (1 1/6″) and thicker bottom (1/6″) rather than both at 1/4″. I also flipped and spread the fillings on the bottom so the sandwich would fit together and look better.
Fillings I used: Maman Apricot Preserves, Maman Raspberry Preserves, Trader Joe’s Lemon Curd, and Nutella. All delicious! Will surely double the recipe next time as well. These were fantastic.
Please note that your link text should state: Joy of Baking (not Joy of Cooking).
I believe that I followed the directions carefully but the cookies came out rock hard
What did I do wrong?
The best Linzer Cookie recipe. I topped it with my home made steawberry jam and some with home made lemon curd. Every one in my family loves it.
I love these! curious if the jam would spill if I were to pack them in a box?
I typically love all your recipes. I need 120 of these cookies for a wedding. This dough is a mess! Very tacky, difficult to roll out evenly. I would not use this recipe again, unfortunately.
It’s such a struggle.
I have Diamond Crystal Kosher salt. Do I use the same amount as noted in your recipe?
Very easy to work with! They turned out beautifully but the yield is off for me…may I rolled them too thick? Either way, they’re a lovely addition to my Christmas cookie tray!
P.S. Chill that dough! And then chill it again!
Didn’t get 38-40 sets either! 27 sets was my total, and I carefully rolled them with my 1/4″ band roller and used a 2″ cutter. Super yummy tho!
I would love to try this recipe but what can I substitute for nut flours as we have nut allergies in our home.