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Rows of pistachio cookies on wire rack

Pistachio Butter Cookies

  • Author: Paula Montenegro
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 65 minutes
  • Yield: 3 dozen 1x
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: International


Pistachio Butter Cookies are one of the easiest and most delicious ever. Laced with lemon, they are sensationally nutty, melt-in-your-mouth and perfect for gift giving.


  • 1 cup butter (225g, at room tº )
  • 4 Tbs (60g) confectioners' sugar
  • ½ teaspoon orange blossom water
  • Zest of ½ a small lemon
  • 2 cups (280g) all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup ground toasted pistachios
  • Extra confectioners' sugar (for coating)


  1. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until creamy and smooth.
  2. Add zest, orange blossom water and beat well.
  3. Add flour, 1 cup at a time and then the pistachios. Mix just until smooth.
  4. Gather into a ball, wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least 3 hours.
  5. Preheat oven to 350º. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
  6. Roll portions of cold dough between your palms to form balls.
  7. Place 1-inch apart on lined baking tray.
  8. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until they are a bit golden and cracked.
  9. Let cool completely on a wire rack. Roll in some extra confectioners' sugar to coat.
  10. These cookies freeze well unbaked.
  11. When you need them, just line them up on a parchment-lined or greased baking tray, thaw, and bake.


Tips & tricks for making the pistachio butter cookies:

  • Creaming: butter should be soft, so you can use a spatula to mix it with the sugar, no need for beating.
  • Flavoring: I use lemon zest and add it to the butter mixture (image 1).
  • Flour: when the flour is added it will look like it's too much and that it will never come together into a cohesive dough (image 2). It will, just be patient.
  • Pistachios: they're added last (image 3), and again, it might feel as though you won't be able to mix them well. Trust me that it does bind into a wonderful greenish mixture (image 4).
  • Keeping: the dough can, at this point, be refrigerated for 3 days or frozen for up to 3 weeks. Always well wrapped in plastic wrap. Make sure no air is in contact with the dough or it will dry out in those spots.

Keywords: butter balls, pistachio cookies, pistachio butter cookies