Snowball Cookies

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For as long as I can remember, baking Christmas cookies has been the highlight of my holiday season.

A few days before Christmas, my mother would somehow find the time to sit down with two small children to cut, bake, and decorate hundreds of holiday cookies. To this day, when my sister and I come home for the holidays, we still drag out the old recipes and cookie cutters.

Over the years, we’ve modified the tradition a little bit, most notably renaming it “drunk cookie decorating.” In addition to adding wine to the festivities, we’ve also experimented with new recipes.

These Snowball Cookies aren’t strictly Christmas cookies, but the wintery theme is definitely holiday appropriate. These round, delicate Snowball Cookies are true to their name, and make a great addition to any cookie tray. While kids will love the sweet treat, ground walnuts and almond extract give these cookies a rich flavor that adults will love, too.

And these cookies don’t just taste grown up. They also happen to be a skinny treat for the health conscious sweet tooth. It’s a paradox, but there are plenty of us. Fortunately, whole wheat flour and organic ingredients keep these cookies light for a guilt-free indulgence.

Now, these cookies may taste fancy, but they’re actually super simple to make. With only five ingredients, this recipe is a cinch to whip up, making it a perfect last minute dessert.

Just combine the ingredients, roll into one-inch balls, and bake at 400 degrees for eight to ten minutes. To complete the “snowball effect,” roll the cooled cookies in some additional confectioners sugar.

One thing to keep in mind when baking these cookies is the dough. Because of the ground walnuts, you may find the dough a little crumbly and difficult to roll into balls. If this is the case, simply add warm water, one tablespoon at a time, until the dough reaches the desired consistency. Then go right ahead and roll them into perfect little snowballs!

This recipe also has room for some fun variations. For a slight flavor variation, try swapping in different nuts, like almonds or pecans. Almonds will really highlight the rich flavor of the almond extract.

Meanwhile, for the chocolate lovers, it’s also easy to make a chocolate version to add to the batch. Just reduce the flour to two cups and add a quarter cup of cocoa powder to the mix.

Whether these Snowball Cookies are a holiday classic or just a fun treat, they score big in flavor and presentation. Let it snow!


If you liked these cookies, be sure to check out some of our other sweet and skinny cookie recipes, including:

Snow Ball Cookies

Snow Ball Cookies

Yields: 4 dozen | Serving Size: 2 cookies | Calories: 118 | Total Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 1mg | Carbohydrates: 10g | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Protein: 2g | SmartPoints (Freestyle): 5


  • 1 cup organic unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup organic confectioners sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, ground fine
  • Additional confectioners sugar, as needed


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. In a mixing bowl, cream together butter, sugar, and extract. On low speed, mix in the flour and walnuts until just combined.
  3. Roll into 1 inch balls and place on a cookie sheet, 1 inch apart. Bake 8 to 10 minutes until cookies just begin to brown. Remove from oven and cool. Roll in additional confectioners sugar.
  4. NOTES and TIPS: If dough is difficult to form into a ball and is crumbly, add a little warm water one tablespoon at a time until dough is easier to handle. Other nuts, such as pecans and almonds, can be substituted for walnuts. For a chocolate option, decrease flour to 2 cups and add 1/4 cup cocoa powder to mix. Continue recipe as directed.

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Like these cookies? Have some tips or suggestions? Leave a comment and let us know!

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6 Comments on "Snowball Cookies"

  1. albert  December 12, 2017

    my mother used to make what she called Orange Slice cookies.
    anyone have the receipe?

  2. natalie  June 27, 2018

    Can i use vanilla extract instead of almond extract?

  3. Tina Gonzales Meza  December 24, 2019

    Can I use Margarine instead of Butter?

    • Nichole Furlong  January 2, 2020

      yes, however it will change the flavor and texture of the cookies. Margarine is also highly processed and is not considered a clean ingredient.


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