I remember making these cookies a few times with my mom when I was a kid, and they always seemed so special and whimsical. Also called “Russian Tea Cookies” or “Mexican Wedding Cookies,” something about those names just made them extra special, like they demanded elegance and a refined place at the table.
Surprisingly, they were one of the easiest recipes to make gluten-free, and if you choose ghee over butter you can enjoy them dairy-free as well. They’re buttery, crispy, and perfect for sharing for the holidays! They’d be great for a holiday cookie exchange, for gifting homemade goodies to friends and family, or just for enjoying with your own fun and whimsical tea party!
Snowball Cookies (AKA Russian Tea Cookies or Mexican Wedding Cookies)
Makes approx. 24 small cookies
1 1/2 cup plus 1 Tbs* cassava flour
1/2 cup organic powdered sugar (plus additional for dusting, approx. 1/2 cup more)
1 cup pastured butter or ghee
1 tsp vanilla
3/4-1 cup chopped pecans (add more based on preference)
1/4 tsp salt
*add the extra tablespoon if you live in a more humid climate, as the cookies can be a little too soft and crumbly without it
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
In the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment or in a medium bowl using a hand mixer, cream together butter, vanilla, and 1/2 cup powdered sugar.
Add cassava flour 1/2 cup at a time and salt and mix to combine.
Gently mix in pecans.
Using a small cookie scoop (approx. 1 Tbs-sized), scoop dough, gently roll into a ball with your hands, and place on your lined cookie sheets. If you find your dough is too soft at this stage, you can refrigerate it for a few minutes.
Bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown on bottom (oven cooking times may vary)
Let cool completely (Because of the higher fat content, these will be pretty soft right out of the oven, so letting them cool completely is really important!) Add additional powdered sugar to a small bowl and toss cookies (this is easiest with one at a time) until covered. Traditional recipes call for a second dusting of sugar once the cookies are completely cooled, but this is entirely optional. I prefer one coat to cut down on sweetness.
Let cool completely and enjoy! Keep stored at room temp or in the fridge in an airtight container.
Whip up these snowy little gems for the perfect holiday treat! Be sure to tag me in your photos (@ashley.castle.nutrition on Instagram), I love to see you enjoying these treats!
Happy holiday baking!