These Mexican Wedding Cookies are a classic at Christmas time but you can enjoy them anytime! Switch up your nut choice for different flavor variations.
A week or so ago, I got an email from a reader asking me if I had a Mexican Wedding Cookie recipe on the blog. I wrote back and told her I didn’t but that I should.
What are Mexican Wedding Cookies?
So why are they called Mexican Wedding Cookies? Because they are traditionally served at weddings and celebrations in Mexico!
Prior to 1950 the cookies were usually called Russian Tea Cakes but in the mid-50’s the recipe began appearing in cookbooks as Mexican Tea Cakes. It is speculated by many food historians that the name was changed as a result of the strained relations between the U.S. and the Soviet Union during the Cold War.
The cookie is basically a combination of nuts, powdered sugar, and butter. This is an egg free cookie.
I used pecans for my version but I have seen versions using walnuts or almonds. The nuts give the cookie a great texture and flavor. Because of the powdered sugar this cookie basically melts in your mouth. It’s a soft, tender cookie.
How to Make Mexican Wedding Cookies
There is powdered sugar in the cookie and then after they are baked, and cooled for a few minutes I like to gently roll or sprinkle the cookies with even more powdered sugar. The recipe calls for the dough to be chilled. Chilling the dough will help the cookies to not flatten out as much and be more “ball like” I actually like mine a little flatter so I only refrigerate them for 30 minutes or until the dough is easier to handle. Refrigerate for longer if you want your Mexican Wedding Cookies rounder.
I may have mentioned a time or two that I love almond extract. I used half vanilla and half almond extract in these cookies. Feel free to use all of one or the other if your prefer. I also prefer to use roasted nuts rather than raw nuts because it adds some extra richness and flavor to the cookie but they work well with raw nuts too.
Other favorite cookies include:
My favorite kitchen items I used:
PARCHMENT PAPER SHEETS – These precut sheets of parchment paper are a total time saver in the kitchen.
SHEET PAN – I have at least six of these in my kitchen. I use them everyday. The 13 x 18 size is perfect and I use them for everything!
COOKIE SCOOP – I have these in several different sizes but this is the one I use the most and is the perfect size for cookies.
Mexican Wedding Cookies
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 2 cups flour
- powdered sugar for dusting
- Put pecans, sugar and salt into food processor and pulse until nuts are finely ground.
- Cut butter into tablespoon sizes pieces and add to mixture. Pulse until smooth
- Add extracts.
- Add flour and pulse until blended. Refrigerate dough for at an hour or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Scoop dough into one inch size balls, rolling them to make them round.
- Place on a parchment lined baking sheet, 2 inches apart. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until cookie just begins to brown.
- Cool for 3-4 minutes and then roll in additional powdered sugar