Easy gluten free Christmas pinwheel cookies are sure to put a smile on your face this holiday season. They really are festive looking! These Italian Christmas swirl cookies might look like something from an Italian bakery but it isn’t hard to make this Christmas cookie roll yourself. Add these red and green Christmas cookies to your gluten free holiday baking list this year!
The taste and texture reminds me of shortbread or sugar cookie recipes. They’re certainly worth adding to your gluten free holiday baking list.
Swirly Red and Green Christmas Cookies Ingredients
Gluten free 1:1 baking flour works well in this Christmas cookie roll. The Bob’s Red Mill brand is a good choice or you can pick a similar one.
You also need sugar, butter, eggs, and baking powder, as well as salt. Finally, vanilla and almond extracts add delicate flavours and you’ll need green and red food colourings.
How to Make Them
After creaming the sugar and butter, you can add in the vanilla and almond extracts, salt, and eggs and then the flour and baking powder. Divide the dough into 3 equal sized pieces and roll them out. Parchment paper and a sprinkling of flour helps with this part.
Next you can add red dough to one part and green to another. The last part of the dough stays white. Once you’ve done this you can layer the red and green Christmas cookies dough with the white dough. Wrap them nice and tight so they stick together and give the best gluten free Christmas pinwheel cookies result.
Chill it overnight if you can or for at least 45 minutes before rolling the log in more sugar or sprinkles if you like. Christmas sprinkles in red, green and white, would be great on these.
You can then cut it into slices and then bake the Italian Christmas swirl cookies until they’re set. These gluten free Christmas pinwheel cookies offer a shortbread or sugar cookie texture and a delicious vanilla flavour.
Something else you might like to do is punch a hole in the top of each one before baking. Then you can thread ribbons through the cookies and hang them on the Christmas tree. That’s another good reason to add this Christmas cookie roll to this year’s gluten free holiday baking list.
7 Tips for Perfect Pinwheel Cookies
- Although these gluten free Christmas pinwheel cookies aren’t hard to make, they can be a bit fiddly. This is especially true when layering the different colours.
- Make sure you chill the dough before layering it and press down so it all sticks properly. You can use your rolling pin to help layer the colours. Adding a few drops of water in between the layers helps them stick together.
- If you’ve rolled up cinnamon rolls before, it isn’t too different rolling up these except you’re working with three layers here.
- The dough is supposed to be sticky so don’t add more flour to make up for it. If you do, these red and green Christmas cookies will come out tough.
- If you love the Christmassy flavour of mint, you can swap the almond extract for peppermint extract.
- Making these ahead? That’s fine – the dough will be fine in the refrigerator for a day or so before rolling out and baking.
- If you don’t have two baking sheets, you will need to make these in two batches instead.
If you’re like me, you love choosing which gluten free holiday baking recipes to make, to wow everyone at Christmas.
There are just so many to choose from and every year I seem to find more! Of course there are the recipes my mom has made for years and they’re dear to my heart. But then it’s also a lot of fun to try brand new recipes.
If you’re wondering whether these gluten free Christmas pinwheel cookies will be difficult to make, they really won’t be. Italian Christmas swirl cookies are fun to make and even if they don’t come out as ‘perfect’ looking as factory made ones, they will taste just as good. Or better!
Take your time mixing the ingredients and make sure you give the dough sufficient chilling time. I love the shortbread or sugar cookie texture in this Christmas cookie roll and I think I’m going to add a splash of peppermint to the next batch too for a brand new twist!
Find these cookies and others in my holiday cookie box
Gluten Free Christmas Pinwheel Cookies Recipe
Gluten Free Christmas Pinwheel Cookies
- In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and airy, approx 4 minutes
- Once light and airy add in the eggs, salt, almond extract, and vanilla extract. Mix until combined.
- Add in the flour and baking powder. Mix until combined.
- Divide the dough into 3 equal amounts.
- Cut a 15” piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper and lay it down on your work surface. Very lightly sprinkle with flour.
- Take one piece of the dough and lay it on the parchment paper. Gently roll the dough out into a rectangle about 9”x12”, use a little flour if needed to prevent the rolling pin from sticking. Dust off any excess flour from the rolled dough, then set the rolled dough aside.
- Take another piece of dough and set aside for a moment while you work with the last piece of dough in the bowl.
- Add green food colouring to the dough that is in the mixing bowl, and mix until fully incorporated
- Repeat steps 5 to 6 with the green coloured dough.
- Rinse and dry off the bowl and the mixer so that no green food color is left behind
- Place your last piece of dough back into the mixer and add in the red food coloring. Mix until fully incorporated.
- Repeat steps 5 to 6 with the red dough.
- Now that all of the dough has been rolled out, bring the white piece of dough and set it in front of you. Carefully flip the red piece of dough on top of the white dough (plastic wrap/parchment side up), then peel off the plastic wrap/parchment. Dust off any excess flour from the red layer, then repeat the process with the green dough, flipping it on top of the red dough, peeling off the plastic wrap/parchment and dusting any excess flour off.
- Use a rolling pin to gently roll the stack of dough a bit, the purpose of this is to ensure all of the layers stick together.
- Using a long knife or a pizza cutter, trim the two 12” sides of your stack of dough, so that all 3 layers are even
- Starting on one of the 12” sides, tightly roll the dough, just like you would cinnamon rolls, into a log. You can use the plastic wrap/parchment on the bottom to help roll it up evenly and tightly. It is important to roll them tightly so that all of the layers stick together.
- Wrap your cookie log in plastic wrap and set it in the fridge for at least 45 minutes (or overnight) to chill.
- When you are ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare a couple cookie sheets by lining them with parchment paper
- Remove the cookie dough log from the refrigerator and unwrap it. If you want to add sprinkles to the outside, this is where you would roll in sprinkles to cover the outer portion completely.
- Use a very sharp knife to slice the log into ¼” slices. Place the slices onto your prepared baking sheets
- Bake in a preheated oven for approx 10 minutes, until the edges have set.
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.
Let me know if you try to make these red and green swirl Christmas cookies. They are just like regular, but gluten free! If you are looking for other gluten free recipes, you might like this Homemade Torrone Italian Nut Nougat.
Bella Bucchiotti is a storyteller, food lover, dog mom and adventure seeker living on the Pacific coast. She shares her passion for food, dogs, fitness, adventures, travel and philanthropy, in hopes of encouraging followers to run the extra mile, try new recipes, visit unfamiliar places and stand for a cause. Bella lives with Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease.