This gingerbread pizzelle recipe makes authentic Italian Christmas pizzelles. These holiday cookies have a crisp texture and delicious ginger snaps flavour. Aromatic cinnamon, ginger and cloves add a spicy touch to the pizzelle cookies, while molasses gives them a rich sweetness. This Christmas cookie is a holiday tradition.
Looking for a holiday season Italian cookie that everyone will love? Try this gingerbread pizzelle recipe and you will find they make amazing gifts as well as delicious treats for everyone at home. This is a classic Italian Christmas cookie you’ll love!
Ingredients for Italian Pizzelle Cookies
The basic staples of eggs, sugar, melted butter or margarine, flour, and baking soda combine for the perfect pizzelles. And then you have cinnamon, clove, ginger, and molasses adding that authentic, delicious and festive flavor.
The last ingredients are some salt, vinegar, non-stick oil for cooking, and some powdered sugar for decorating them.
How to Make Christmas Pizzelles
Are you ready to make a batch of classic Italian pizzelle cookie treats as one of your Italian Christmas Eve recipes?
The first step is to preheat a pizzelle iron. Next mix the eggs with the sugar, and then blend in the salt and spices. Add the butter or margarine, molasses and vinegar and stir well, before adding the flour and baking soda dry ingredients.
Grease your preheated pizzelle press and add some of the batter. Close the lid and cook for about 45 seconds or until the cookie is golden brown. Remove the cookie with a spatula and it let cool on a cooling rack, where it will crisp up.
Repeat with the rest of the pizzelle batter until you have all your hot pizzelles cooling on the rack. And you must use a wire rack here, so air can circulate all the way around the cookies and crisp them up.
Once they’re completely cool, you can dust each Italian cookie with powdered sugar if you want. Keep them in an airtight container if you can resist eating the warm pizzelle cookies!
Pizzelle Recipe Variations
If you love this gingerbread pizzelle recipe, I expect you’ll also love the variations! Some people like to make them with vanilla extract and almond extract, while others go for anise seeds or anise extract (which tastes like black licorice). Others like to experiment with ground cardamom or even cocoa powder for a chocolate taste. Brown sugar can also be used instead of granulated sugar. There is nothing better than a savory pizzelle!
Some bakers even like to dip their batch of pizzelles in chocolate bark or melted chocolate.
So if you want to try some of these, divide the pizzelle dough up and flavour each one differently. That way, you can make different flavours of these traditional Italian waffle cookies in the same batch.
For a gluten free version, use gluten-free flour instead of all purpose flour. This authentic Italian pizzelle recipe tastes just as good when made gluten free.
How to Use a Pizzelle Iron
Although most can be simply closed and left alone for 45 seconds, some (including the Dash brand) should be pressed down for the first half of the cooking time. This is so the lid doesn’t rise up and produce a less crispy cookie. Check the manufacturer’s directions before using.
If they aren’t coming out crispy, you either aren’t leaving them in there for long enough or else you’re in a humid climate, in which case pop them in a 200 degrees F oven to dry them out a little more.
Gingerbread Pizzelle Recipe FAQs
The crisp texture is one of the best thing about this Christmas cookie. But they won’t stay crispy for long. Cover them lightly and store them at room temperature.
A paper or plastic bag would work. They should stay crispy all week if you make sure you don’t store them until completely cooled. Else the steam will still come out and this will lead to them getting soggy.
Something else you might like to do is prepare the Italian cookie dough ahead and keep it in the refrigerator for up to three days before bring the pizzelle batter back up to room temperature. You can then proceed with the recipe.
If your pizzelles have gone soft, you can put them on a sheet pan and bake in an oven that’s been preheated to 300 degrees F. Just turn the oven off when you put the cookies in there and leave them in there for an hour, so some of the crispiness is restored.
Although there are replacements, only a pizzelle iron or pizzelle maker will make authentic Christmas pizzelles because it presses them to the right shape, gets them nice and thin (to make them crispy!) and has the right baking time to cook them right without burning them. You can use a pizzelle press to make cannoli shells, so they are good for more than Italian cookies.
If you don’t have one, you could try a griddle and pressing the cookies down or even a waffle iron. But again you aren’t going to get the right pattern on the cookies and they won’t be thin and crispy either.
Festive Gingerbread Pizzelle Recipe
Festive Gingerbread Pizzelle Recipe
- Preheat your pizzelle iron.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar until it becomes slightly frothy.
- Add in the spices and salt, mix well.
- Add the melted butter, vinegar, and molasses, mix again.
- Add the flour and baking soda, mix until fully combined.
- Lightly oil the pizzelle iron
- Scoop about one tablespoon of batter onto the open iron, you may need to adjust how much batter you use per cookie based on the iron you’re using. Close the lid and cook the pizzelle for approximately 45 seconds, check and cook longer as needed. The cookies should be golden when they are done.
- Use a thin heat safe spatula (a pie server works well) and gently lift the pizzelle off of the iron. Place the cookie onto a wire cooling rack. As the cookie cools it will become crisp.
- When cooled, eat as-is or dust with a generous amount of powdered sugar.
- Store in an airtight container.
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.
A gingerbread pizzelle recipe isn’t something to omit from your Christmas time baking. They’re perfect for Christmas gift giving and this classic pizzelle recipe is sure to put a smile on everyone’s face. Enjoy gingerbread pizzelles with ice cream or just as they are.
This classic Italian cookie recipe will be a cookie that you make year after year. Tasty thin Italian waffle cookies are perfect with a cup of coffee or hot cocoa. These classic pizzelles are a great idea for holiday gifts.
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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.